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World-renowned Blues musician and Monticello CSD alumnus to perform

Slam Allen Concert, October 19, 7:30 p.m., Eugene D. Nesin Theatre, 22 St. John Street, Monticello

October 18, 2012

Slam Allen with the jazz improv classThe fact that a renowned Blues artist like Slam Allen chose to return to his hometown of Monticello to perform at the Nesin Theatre shows that his roots run deep. In addition to the evening event, Mr. Allen will work with RJK and MHS music students in a Jazz improvisation techniques workshop.

“I am proud to come back to my community and help young artists to learn and grow while exploring the interconnectivity of the arts to the real world,” said Mr. Allen. "I am looking forward to the experience."

For more than two decades, Slam Allen has been entertaining audiences locally, nationally and internationally with his unique blend of soul and blues, including playing the famous Chitlin’ Circuit. Mr. Allen’s music and enthusiasm has been shared with thousands of people. For the past eight years, he has played an important role as the lead singer and guitarist of the legendary James Cotton Band.

“It’s one of the highlights and privileges of my life to play with Cotton,” said Mr. Allen. “He is one of the last living legends and there’s so much history there. Cotton was directly connected to Muddy Waters — who was a major factor in the blues world as well as being one of my all-time favorites. Playing with Cotton is such a great experience for me. There are things you can learn from him that you can’t learn from any school. It’s a great honor.”

Music is in Mr. Allen’s blood. He got his start from his father and uncles who were known as the Allen Brothers Band of Monticello, NY. Allen decided to carry on the family legacy and wherever he goes, his music runs deep. According to Mr. Allen, whenever he plays a show, the people who have never heard of him leave with a feeling that they are now old friends or family.

From B.B. King to Otis Redding, Slam has a way of making you feel the soul of the music. It is often difficult to tell if he’s doing one of his originals or an old blues or soul cover. Regardless, he makes all the music his own.

$15 adults; $12 senior citizens; $8 students. For reservations and more info, call 845-794-6013. Tickets also available at the door.

Photo: Members of the Monticello High School and RJK Middle School Jazz Bands prepare for a visit from blues musician Slam Allen. Students are working on improvisation skills with assistance and direction from their Instrumental teachers, from left, Andrew Verdino and Mike Mingo.

Proceeds from Mr. Allen's performance will benefit Nesin Cultural Arts, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to quality arts-in-education programming.