ENSENADA, BAJA CALIFORNIA ATTRACTS WORLD CLASS MUSICIANS
Dave Riley has performed with the greats of Blues, including: Muddy Waters, Howlin Wolf, Junior Wells, and Buddy Guy. He was born in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, on March 18, 1949. Like most great black artists, Riley began playing gospel music in his father’s church. One of ten children (five girls and five boys), they constituted the church choir.
My 17 year old son Alan, is a burgeoning jazz piano player and native of Ensenada. He studies with Luis Salazar and Ernesto Rosas of “Ensenada Jazz” fame. Alan and I recently spent an afternoon with Mr. Riley and Mike a harmonica player (also a resident of Ensenada) at our beach house. A beautiful day of sun and jamming the blues. We discussed Dave’s career, plans for the club and hints for my son on how to play blues.
I have spent my life “hangin out” with Blues and Jazz musicians. And, never have I found a more gracious and generous artist. Investing an afternoon to help my son learn to play blues piano. It was a huge thrill for my boy and for me as a proud pappa.
Dave Riley began playing the blues “for real” after a tour of duty in Viet Nam. He journeyed to Seattle Washington and heard Jimmi Hendrix. He realized, that although he was a gospel artist, he could play the blues as well. He said he could feel the blues that Hendrix was playing. He had no trouble making the transition.
Ensenada’s music scene has become very soulful within the past few months. Two new jazz clubs have opened in addition to “Riley’s Blues House”. And Makeda Dread Combs has extended her World Beat Culture Center of San Diego to include Ensenada. Thanks to Makeda, we now have African and Reggae musicians diversifying our musical landscape with World Music.
If you are a non musician, like me, who loves the blues; put on your high heel sneakers mamma and that wig hat on your head. You can shake your booty with me, Le Roy Jose, D.J. on 92.9’s “Soul Street” (8:30pm) Sundays .
I’m in musical heaven with Ensenada Jazz and Deja Blues led by Armando Bueno the best of the blues and jazz without crossing the border. Avoiding all that violence on the U.S. side.