OPENING ACT: The Rhythm Aces
BILLY HECTOR RETURNS FOR HIS ANNUAL CONCERT
The tradition continues, as The Sparta Summer Concert Series welcomes Billy Hector to The Nicholson Pavilion Stage this Friday night. Billy fills the field and rocks the park every year that he performs in Sparta, always a favorite performer on the summer program.
Whether Billy Hector is teasing you with his sultry slide work, picking through delta blues or flat-out cranking it up and crunching out the electric blues/rock on his beloved vintage Fender Stratocaster, his music reflects the true soul and origins of the blues; always passionate, engaging and dedicated to making the audience move and sweat. Having honed his chops and style through three decades of performances, Hector is critically recognized as one of the hottest and most interesting guitarist/songwriters on the original circuit and has even been called “A New Jersey state treasure” by music writers.
Early in his career, Billy Hector identified himself as a deeply-grounded and versatile player drawing his influences from important predecessors including T-Bone Walker, Freddie King, Jimi Hendrix, Roy Buchanan and a host of others across musical style and genre. But, as with all truly great musicians, recognizable influences are interesting only insofar as they provide a departure point for the musician's spirit. It falls on the musician to shape his predecessor's ideas into music that does not simply replicate but engagingly adds to the whole. Most can only aspire to this level of creation; Billy Hector generates it in spades and it happens every night.
In the late 70s, Hector’s first stop was as the guitarist for The Shots, a horn-driven R&B group that took over the house band role from Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes at the renowned Stone Pony. He moved on as lead guitarist for Hot Romance, a band based at the infamous Mrs. Jay’s biker bar in Asbury Park that also began receiving New York City radio airplay for its original songs. In the mid-80’s, drawn back to earlier musical roots, Billy Hector formed the five-piece blues/rock band The Fairlanes and, co-wrote and released three independent albums on the Blue Jersey label. By early 1993, Hector regrouped as a power trio and renamed his band The Billy Hector Band. The band’s present lineup is guitars/lead vocals Billy Hector, drummer Sim Cain and bassist Tim Tindall. The Billy Hector Band also performs acoustic blues in multiple personnel configurations.
A prolific songwriter/composer, Billy Hector has fourteen albums to his credit, most on the independent Ghetto Surf label. And with over thirty-five years of performing under his belt, Billy Hector is recognized as one of the hottest guitarists and songwriters playing the original circuit and serves up what more than one reviewer has called "one of the best shows you'll ever see".
Winner of the Asbury Park Music Awards “Best Guitarist”, “Best Blues Band”, “Living Legend” and “Top Classic Artist” awards. Two-time winner of the East Coast Rocker’s “Best Guitarist” award. Two-time invitee to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s American Music Masters Series celebrating the music of Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters with Charlie Musselwhite, Bonnie Raitt, Jimmy Vaughn, Vernon Reid, Dave Alvin, Sonny Landreth, Double Trouble and others. Touring guitarist for Hubert Sumlin. Winner of the Jersey Shore Jazz & Blues Foundation’s “Lifetime Achievement” award. Touring guitarist with Joe Louis Walker. Featured artist at The Kennedy Center and Grammy Museum’s collaborative concert: “Lead Belly at 125” alongside Robert Plant, Alison Krauss, Buddy Miller, and others.
Opening the concert is a local group, The Fabulous Rhythm Aces. A new group together for just five months, they play Roots Blues at it’s best. Lester The Killer on drums and vocals, also known as The Texas Shuffle King, has spent 50 years touring the world with artists like Luther Johnson and Roadside Willie. Phil Butler, performing for 45 years, plays bass and sings and has been working with Joe Taino most recently. Andreas Goergen, a Berklee grad in his 20’s, is featured on guitar and vocals. And Tony Sky, a 45 year veteran of blues bands, duos and trios, will be up front on harmonica and vocals.
The concert is a FREE to the public, rain or shine, family friendly event. Show starts at 7PM on Friday August 2nd at George Dykstra Park, 22 Woodport Road, Sparta, NJ. Bring lawn chairs and a picnic and enjoy great rockin’ blues on a beautiful summer night. Next door at Mohawk Avenue School if it’s raining. Please visit www.spartaarts.org or our SpartaArts page on Facebook for more information and updates.