Local rock, blues icon Bill Engelhart, bands have gigs scheduled for his 75th

craig.sailor@thenewstribune.comMarch 14, 2014 

Bill Engelhart will play on Sunday — his 75th birthday — at Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Tacoma.

COURTESY PHOTO

Local rock, blues icon Bill Engelhart, bands have gigs scheduled for his 75th Tacoma rock and blues icon Bill Engelhart turns 75 on Sunday, and the Blues Vespers, the free Sunday music series at Immanuel Presbyterian Church, is marking the occasion with a musical celebration.

Engelhart has been making music for close to 60 years with Little Bill and the Blue Notes, a band he founded in Tacoma in 1955. Engelhart penned “I Love an Angel” in 1959, scoring one of the first Northwest hits of the rock era.

Since then he’s toured nationally, had more hit singles, and made an appearance on “The Dick Clark Show.” Engelhart continues to play play more than 100 dates a year with both his trio and his Big Band.

Engelhart will perform with both his bands at the Sunday show. Guest performers include Patti Allen, Jada Amy and Leanne Trevalyan.

On March 23, Blues Vespers will feature the father-daughter duo of Bill Sims Jr. and Chaney Sims. With bandmate Junior Mack, they make up the Heritage Blues Orchestra. Their album “And Still I Rise” was nominated for a Grammy for best blues recording in 2013 and received the 2013 Living Blues Critics Poll Award for Best New Recording/Debut Album.

Bill Sims Jr. keeps an active touring schedule as a solo artist and with the Orchestra and is a frequent collaborator on theatrical and film productions. Chaney Sims also maintains a solo career apart from the Orchestra.

Blues Vespers

When: 5 p.m. Sunday

Where: Immanuel Presbyterian Church, 901 N. J St., Tacoma

Tickets: Free, but donations for the musicians are collected

Information: ipctacoma.org, littlebill1959.com, heritagebluesorchestra.com

Craig Sailor: 253-597-8541 craig.sailor@thenewstribune.com

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