Arizona Blues Showdown Crowns Paul Cruize Blues Crew Band and Juke Joint

By Stan Bindell

At this year's Arizona Blues Showdown, Paul Cruize Blues Crew Band won in the band category and Juke Joint won in the solo/duo category. Winning means that these two bands will represent Arizona during the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, from January 21 through 25. More than 200 bands from virtually every state and several countries compete in the IBC at different venues on Beale Street for recognition that could land them on top labels.

Thirteen Arizona bands competed over two weekends at the Rhythm Room. Jim Crawford, president of the Phoenix Blues Society, said the scoring was close and that any one of the finalists would have made fine representatives of the state.