DETROIT (WWJ) – An enthusiastic crowd packed the Detroit Opera House for the annual Motor City Blues Festival.

This year’s festival – which was held on Saturday, February 19 – featured some of the biggest names in Blues music, including Denise LaSalle, Floyd Taylor, Bobby Rush, Sir Charles Jones, The Manhattans and the legendary Bobby “Blue” Bland.

The crowd roared and applauded loudly when Sir Charles Jones took to the stage, performing his hit “Friday.” Jones had the audience in the palm of his hands while he teased and pleased the female members of the audience who were lucky enough to grab front-row seats to the concert. But, that was just a prelude to what was to come: the crowd was equally enthusiastic when Jones dipped into his repertoire of crowd-pleasing favorites and brought out his chart-topping hit “Is There Anybody Lonely.”

Long after Jones left the stage and the festival wrapped up with The Manhattans, fans kept him busy signing autographs and taking pictures in the lobby.

Speaking of The Manhattans, the group had the audience on its feet with its rousing rendition of “Ain’t No Stopping Us Now,” the song made famous by the Philadelphia songwriting/production/performing team McFadden & Whitehead.

This year’s tour was missing blues man Marvin Sease, who had passed away just days before the show stopped in Detroit. But he wasn’t forgotten. The show’s emcee took a moment to pay tribute to Sease and Floyd Taylor – son of the legendary Johnny Taylor – performed one of Sease’s hit songs.

Now that the tour has left the Motor City, it’s headed to Florida for two engagements, in Tallahassee and in Miami. The tour will stop in several more states before wrapping up in Mississippi in mid-August.

Terri Lee, WWJ Entertainment Reporter


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