From: IL, United States
TRADITIONAL BLUES WITH A UNIQUE SOUND. . .
As band leader and composer, Pierre's vision has never wavered since he founded his band in 1991. His mantra is clear and focused: the band is bigger than the sum of its parts, all musicians must love to play together, all are featured and all contribute on stage and in the studio. So Pierre's various line-ups have always been known for performing together with infectious pleasure; there is a joy and there is a liveliness about this band that defines what Pierre is trying to do and that defies all blues cliches. It is fresh and it is soulful...
Yet his blues are traditional because they are steeped in the old sounds from the Mississippi Delta and in their evolution into the Chicago style of blues of the golden 50's: Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Jimmy Reed, Jimmy Rogers, Sunnyland Slim and all the great harp players... Big and Little Walter, The Sonny Boy Williamsons, Junior Wells, George Harmonica Smith, as well as many extraordinary contemporaries such as Kim Wilson, Rod Piazza, Paul deLay, William Clarke...
MISSISSIPPI HEAT emerged in 1991 on a night at the Cafe Lura in Chicago 20 years ago. Guitarist Jon McDonald invited Pierre to play harp for him with Robert Covington on drums and vocals and Bob Stroger on bass. Bob and Robert had been the rhythm section for Sunnyland Slim for years with Steve Freund on guitar and Sam Burkhardt on saxophone. It was a great night with a raucous blues crowd in this wonderful Polish neighborhood. Pierre looked so happy, and the band played with such inspiration that his brother Michel offered to find them gigs. And so the band was born.
Almost twenty years later, Pierre and his Mississippi Heat have now recorded 9 CDs and in 2002 Delmark Records produced a DVD of the band performing with Lurrie Bell as a guest at a well-known Chicago blues club called Rosa's Lounge.
Very recently, on October 28th, 2010 the band was awarded BEST TRADITIONAL BLUES CD OF THE YEAR for their CD, Let's Live It Up. This award was given by thebluesblast.com magazine at a ceremony at Buddy Guy's club in Chicago.
The band is scheduled to record its 4th CD for Delmark Records on March 12th, 2012. It will be their 10th CD and it will inaugurate the 20th anniversary of the band.
MISSISSIPPI HEAT has been the subject of several TV and movie features. ARTE produced a documentary on Blues that features Deitra Farr with the band. French Canadian TV also featured Pierre and his brother/manager Michel on one of their regular programs called BAISERS D' AMERIQUE. This half-hour segment was part of a series that aired in 35 countries simultaneously.