Bluesfest to return to CSUB this fall

Jon Nelson, Reporter

Blues fans and the Houchin Blood Bank will both benefit Sept. 17 when the Cal State Bakersfield Amphitheater once again hosts the B-Town Blues Fest.

“It promotes people reaching across artificial boundaries that don’t need to be in place,” said Pat Evans, founder of the festival and owner of Bakersfield Institution World Records.

This year’s lineup features Joe Louis Walker, John Nemeth, Gina Sicilia, and the Flying Arvizu Brothers.

Nemeth and Sicilia were chosen specifically because they are young artists.

“Blues music is really for everyone. They can all have a good time. It’s fun to see parents bring their kids,” said Evans.

“It’s a beautiful melting pot.”

Evans started the B-Town Blues Fest in 2005. He began doing a series of concerts in the late ’90s, and they were so successful and he had so much fun doing them that he decided to transform the shows into a yearly festival.

“Blues artists are the most dedicated musicians I’ve ever seen,” said Evans.

An important part of Blues Fest is the association with Houchin Blood Bank.

All food and drink proceeds go to the blood bank’s Bone Marrow Program and a 40 percent discount on tickets are given to blood donors.

“There’s always a need for blood donors. It’s something that people need to be aware of,” said Evans.

Evans explained that the festival isn’t just for seasoned Blues fans.

“We have a great, diverse lineup,” said Evans

The event also features what Evans described as “great, cheap food” from local restaurants, Coconut Joe’s, Frugatti’s, and Jake’s Tex-Mex.

Tickets for the B-Town Blues Fest are available at locations across Bakersfield, including World Records, which has moved to 2815 F Street.