Express Blues

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Jimy Graham at the Linda as part of the Capital Region’s Blues Challenge last year.
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Jimy Graham in the solo competition sent by CRBN to Memphis. Here he is, at Orpheum Juke, on Beale Street.
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Jimy playing for the Pat Tiernan scholarship 2013.

Photos and article ‘for good measure’ by Wanda Callagy

On Saturday the crowd riding on the Cooperstown Blues Express will hear the electrified sound of Jimy Graham on his maiden voyage on the rails.  He brings with him some notable Capital Region talent.  A little about your ride ahead….


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Jimy@the Rum Boogie Café in Memphis, playing the opening night of the International Blues Challenge at a fundraiser for Generation Blues.

The Blues Express has been in existence for over fourteen years, says organizer of the ” rides with blues”  Paul..  From celebrating springtime to  runs until autumn skies and the trips wind down for another season, music runs the tracks between Milford and Cooperstown.     In the dining car there is plenty of room to have a drink and snacks. Through the years ages of participants have ranged  between 21 and 90…and bands have had a boxcar full of dancers from many locations.  Tickets sell at the Milford station @6:30, and the train leaves @7PM.  The three hour blues party returns after its noted ‘moving experience’.

Jimy Graham brings along with his fine guitar slide skills James Alanson Kirk on bass, and Rocky Petrocelli on drums.  This trio will not only play originals but blues covers that will be enjoyed for miles. Graham is looking forward to the under the stars moving event, and speaks highly of both Kirk and Petrocelli.   Kirk can be seen most Monday nights playing at the blues jam in Pauly’s on Central Avenue, or recording a little jazz with Kevin Hendrick @North Albany Studios.  Petrocelli is noted for his love of years, playing alongside Ernie Williams and sharing his gifts through his music classes and studio.

Graham has been busy in the Capital Region area since his return from Memphis in February.  There, he took in Beale Street and made many new contacts along with meeting up with many international friends.  He played in NYC as well as looking ahead to summer festivals.  More information can be found on his website,

The only necessary thing about going, according to the spokesman Paul, is to ‘Enjoy, as we keep it simple.  We only require folks to bring a smile.’





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A sweet ride.
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Model community.


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All Aboard!
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The band “Blue Hand Luke” and a long list will play again this summer. This photo taken at their performance in 2013.
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“Tickets, tickets.”



Also, for those train enthusiasts, the Leatherstocking Railway Historical Society has a wonderful website about the details of restoration of the train which also attracts tourism to the Cooperstown area by not only encouraging the Blues Express, but has many excursions and runs to celebrate holidays or to just have a fun train robbery or Halloween party.

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Singing along with the blues. Summer of 2013
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Smiles in the isles
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Last, not least.

Volunteers have spent hours restoring the equipment used on the 16 miles of track and the mission statement offers many educational goals and ideas as well as projects already in motion.


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