Etcetera - 05/17/10

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Blues Therapy, a local radio show co-hosted by Bigg- daddy" Ray Hansen and Armand "The Doctor" Parada will celebrate its seventh anniversary in June.

"I still run into Blues lovers out and about that are thrilled to find out we have a blues radio program right here in Walla Walla," Ray said via e-mail.

Blues Therapy is the only locally produced blues radio show in the Walla Walla/Tri-Cities area, he said.

It's the longest consecutively running show with the exception of Jim McGuinn's (Hot Poop) Homegrown Show. Jim's show runs from 5-7 p.m. every Sunday and "we are very fortunate to have been following Jim at the 7-9 slot all these years," Ray said.

Blues Therapy Show started out as "Biggdaddy's Blues Show," but from the very first show Armand has co-hosted.

"I decided a couple years ago to ask the listeners for suggestions on a new name (taking the focus off of one person) and "Blues Therapy Show" was the top vote getter."

Both Ray and Armand have several years experience working with the local music scene. Ray was president/editor of the Walla Walla Blues Society for four years and still serve as webmaster. Armand served on the WWBS Board of Directors. Ray was also in charge of the Hot August Blues Festival for two of its four years and has promoted single live music shows as well.

Ray co-produced the CD "Best of Northeast Blues" which features all artists from the Northwest except for The Love Dogs from Boston, whose bonus track "Hey Hey Walla Walla" is on the disc.

Ray and Armand are experienced music reviewers who have written reviews for record companies the past several years.

They've been invited to host or emcee several events to include hosting the Inland Empire Blues Awards in Spokane.

Their show has been finalist for Best Blues Radio Show Of the Empire Awards for five of six years.

"This is exciting for us since the award stems out of Spokane and the only people allowed to vote are members of Spokane's Inland Empire Blues Society," Ray said.

Blues Therapy was originally a summer replacement show but the student-operated KWCW, locally on 90.5FM and streaming on www.kwcw.net, invited them to stay on as a permanent show.

Most shows on K-Dub are by students, but a few are run by local citizens, including The Homegrown Show and the eclectic Global Gumbo with Martin Smith, another veteran deejay. Blues Therapy accepts requests and dedications by e-mail at biggdaddy@charter.net, by phone, 509-527-5283/5284, or online at www.facebook.com/pages/Blues-Therapy-Radio-Show/181492076916. They monitor live chat and messages during the show. There are currently more than 700 fans and it's growing at a rate of more than 20 per week, Ray said.

"Once the Blues bites ya you never get over it."

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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