Arts and Entertainment

Kingbees make Red Bike debut

Bill Brown and the Kingbees will play at 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 7, at The Red Bicycle.

It will be the longtime band’s debut at the Red Bike. 

The Island group has been together since 1986, playing its high-energy rocking blues music all over the Northwest, including at Vashon’s beer garden during Strawberry Festival.

Brown has been likened to Paul Butterfield in his use of the harmonica, and his vocals have elicited many a discussion concerning his cultural background.  

Brown grew up in a farming area outside of Columbus, Ohio, listening to his mother’s Lionel Hampton records.

Later on, his tastes went to Paul Butterfield’s Blues Band. He actually learned how to play harmonica from a guitar player, Gary Watson, while hitchhiking from San Diego to Seattle in 1969.

Brown was also heavily influenced by Muddy Waters, Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson.

Brown’s love of the genre is evident in the players he surrounds himself with.

John Gaborit toured nationally with a band called Krome Circus, and Mike Stango toured Asia with a band called Cece Rider. Tony Handy toured with Rose Royce from Los Angeles — many know them from their number-one hit “Car Wash.”  From time to time the group is joined by Dave Cashin on keyboards.

The Kingbees have most recently been working on their second album, which they hope to debut by the end of the year.

This is a 21-and-up event, and there is no cover charge.

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