Read a review of Live to Love, by Craig Brenner & The Crawdads, in Illinois Blues - www.illinoisblues.com/bluesartists/craigbrenner.htm
Call-Out for Musicians for Public Concert
Are you a community or student musician? If so, would you like to participate in a public concert in April of 2020?
Craig Brenner is composing and recording jazz, blues and boogie woogie tunes and presenting a free public performance of the original music. The performance will include Craig, other musicians on the recordings, and additional local musicians, including members of the community and students from local schools who want to participate, gain performing experience, and interact with professional musicians playing original music. This could be you!
This project is possible because Craig received a fiscal year 2020 career development grant - part of the Individual Advancement Program of the Indiana Arts Commission. Read the complete listing of 56 Hoosier artists receiving 2020 individual grant awards.
If YOU are interested in participating in the public concert in April of 2020, please click here for information and to find out how you can be involved.
2019 Bloomington Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano Festival
The Bloomington Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano Festival - known as Bloomington Boogies - features acclaimed piano players, dancers, and refreshments. With free and ticketed performances at multiple venues and free educational components, the 2016 festival was voted one of the top 10 festivals in Indiana!
Our mission is to present piano players in ticketed and free performances and to present free educational programs, so that young people and young pianists are exposed to world-class artists in Bloomington, Indiana.
The next festival is in August of 2019, with three days of free and ticketed events, beginning on Saturday, Aug. 10 through Monday, Aug. 12. Concert tickets are on sale now. Visit the festival website for more information!
Craig Awarded "Arts in the Parks and Historic Sites" Grant
Craig received a grant from the Indiana Arts Commission for Jan. 1 - Dec. 31, 2019, for the project, "Craig Presents Music in Indiana State Parks and Historic Sites". The grant funds four performances in state parks during which Craig will explore the jazzy side of blues, boogie woogie and other music, focusing on Indiana composers and musicians. Craig will bring percussion instruments and invite attendees to play along at each location. Performances will include Craig and members of Craig & The Crawdads. The activities are supported by the Indiana Arts Commission and National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. For dates and times, see the calendar.
The Indiana Arts Commission is providing funding for many activities at Indiana's State Parks and Historic Sites in 2019. See all 2019 Arts in the Parks & Historic Sites grants to individual artists. Craig also received grants in 2016, 2017, and 2018. See all 2018 Arts in the Parks & Historic Sites activities.
If you attend any of Craig's "Arts in the Parks and Historic Sites" concerts, scroll down to the "Arts in the Park and Historic Sites Survey Form" below and submit your comments and suggestions!
Photo at left is from the 2018 performance at Clifty Falls State Park
Photos immediately below are from 2017 grant-funded performances at Brown County (left) and Clifty Falls State Parks
Photos below are from 2016 Arts in the Parks performances at Paynetown at Monroe Lake.
Arts in the Parks and Historic Sites Survey - Please complete and submit if you attend an Arts in the Parks & Historic Sites concert!
6th Annual Indy Winter Blues Fest
Craig returned to the 6th annual Indy Winter Blues Fest at Birdy's Bar & Grill, Indianapolis. Craig played solo blues and boogie woogie piano. Andra Faye & Scott Ballantine, Mike Milligan & Steam Shovel, and Dwight Edwards Band also performed.
Craig Awarded 3rd Individual Artist Grant from Indiana Arts Commission
Craig received a third Individual Artist Program (IAP) grant from the Indiana Arts Commission (IAC) for fiscal year 2016 for his project, "Bloomington Boogies: The Bloomington Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano Festival." The grant helped Craig produce the festival, which took place on Aug. 9, 2015. This activity made possible, in part, with support from the Indiana Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Read about all the individual artists and projects receiving FY 2016 IAP grants.
Craig received his second IAP grant for fiscal year 2012 for his project, "High School Jazz Musicians Pay Tribute to New Orleans, the Birthplace of Jazz." The grant enabled him to arrange his composition, "Homage to New Orleans" for performance by students in the Bloomington High School South Jazz Band and record the students' concert performance using equipment and software purchased with grant funds. The music was also made available for other school bands.
BHSS Band Director Robert Dubinski directed the performance by the BHSS Jazz Band in Carmichael Auditorium at Bloomington High School South. Scroll down to view photos of the band rehearsing and performing "Homage to New Orleans." Watch a video of the performance. You can also watch a video with introductory comments by Band Director Robert Dubinsky. This activity made possible with support from the Indiana Arts Commission and National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
Craig Plays "Piano Hour" at Old U.S. Mint
Craig explored the jazzy side of blues and boogie woogie on April 20, 2016, at the Old U.S. Mint in New Orleans, in a concert presented by the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park. Craig's performances there in 2012 and 2013 were recorded by engineer Danny Kadar and are available on the CD Live At The Old Mint: Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano, with "Uganda" Roberts on congas and Lori Brenner on rubboard. Roberts, a native of New Orleans, has performed and recorded with many New Orleans greats, including Professor Longhair, Dr. John, the Meters, the Wild Magnolias, Willie Tee, John Mooney, and others. In 2005 he received the Sidney Bechet Award for Innovation presented by the New Orleans International Music Colloquium. Lori is lead vocalist on Live to Love by Craig Brenner & The Crawdads, and also plays accordion and percussion with the band and in a duo with Craig.
Read a review of Live At The Old Mint: Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano written by Rex Bartholomew in the July 27, 2014 issues of Blues Blast.
Craig and Uganda Roberts at the Old U.S. Mint
Lori and Uganda rehearse in New Orleans