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Yoshi's San Francisco
1330 Fillmore Street
SF, CA 94115
Phone: 415.655.5600

Jazz Club
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Lester Chambers / Steve Cropper: A Salute to Stax Featuring The Lester Chambers’ Blues Review (plus horns)

April 21, 2011

Limited tickets are available for a pre-show Benefit Cocktail Meet & Greet with Lester Chambers and Steve Cropper to aide Sweet Relief efforts on behalf of Bay Area Musicians  


  • 8pm  $25 (one show only)
  • meet & greet tickets avaialbe with a charitable donation to Bay Area Musicians Fund and sweet relief. $150



Last month the legendary Rock & Blues singer Lester Chambers was inducted into The West Coast Hall of Fame for his extraordinary lifetime of performing and keeping the blues alive.  On April 21 Lester will take to the stage at Yoshi’s in San Francisco for a special one-time celebration of Stax songs written by his old friend Steve Cropper.
Midnight Hour
Knock on Wood
Dock of the Bay
Soul Man
Hold On I'm Coming
Loving You Too Long
Can't Turn You Loose
and more. . .
 “. . .in March 1967, when the Beatles bowed down and kissed the ring of an American guitarist whose name few people knew.

Steve Cropper watched in astonishment as John, Paul, George and Ringo prostrated themselves before him. He was dressed in one of the suits his record label had bought for him just a couple weeks earlier on Beale Street in his hometown of Memphis, Tenn. “
Craven Lovelace
KAFM Notes
 “Lester Chambers has got to play the loudest cowbell I had ever heard. It’s still ringing in my ears. I remember our good times.  Maybe this would be a good time to have a reunion.”
Steve Cropper

Lester Chambers doesn't just play and sing his distinctive blend of rock and R&B infused gospel soul, he lives it.  Lester and his son Dylan turn clubs and halls into church every week with his smoking six-man band, Lester Chambers’ Blues Revue.  It’s two-hours of soul-healing up-lifting blues, roots, and gospel classics.

Chambers was born and raised with his seven brothers and five sisters in pre-WWII rural Lee County Mississippi before World War II.  His god-fearing southern Baptist parents encouraged all thirteen of their children to sing in the choir of a little country church where his father was a Deacon.

This early passion for music continued when the family moved in the early 1950s to South Central Los Angeles where the elder Chambers' helped established the Greater Mount Zion Baptist Church in a storefront building.  The popularity of that new church had a lot to do with the rocking gospel Lester and his brothers served up every Sunday.

Around the time the Beatles left England for America, Lester and his brothers ventured into L.A.'s fabled Ash Grove coffee house and began singing their special blend of gospel and folk music.  An old acoustic guitar, stand up bass and those heavenly voices led by Lester on harmonica and cow bell soon had folks lined up down Melrose in West Hollywood. Columbia Records was quick to embrace this unique psychedelic, rock 'n' roll, gospel group and scored a huge pop hit with a first ever 11-minute single.  Time Has Come Today, the title track, became an anthem of the era.

Time has come today
Young hearts can go their way
Can't put it off another day
I don't care what others say
They say we don't listen anyway
Time has come today

Within weeks of its release Lester and his brothers were filling arenas with both white and black kids for the first time.
As a guitar player Steve "The Colonel" Cropper finds a hole and complements what everyone else is doing, leaving a hole or two in the process.  As a record producer, and songwriter Cropper was the driving force behind Stax Records with hits such as The Midnight Hour, "634-5789," Green Onions, Knock On Wood,and Soul Man. His creative partnership with Otis Redding was particularly fruitful.  "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of the Bay" alone has been played on the radio over six million times, making it the sixth most-played song of all time.  Actors John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd tapped him for service in The Blues Brothers, a Saturday Night Live skit that stretched into several albums and a classic hit movie.

Last year Steve Cropper was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame alongside the father of American music, Stephen Foster.  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Rhythm and Blues Hall of Fame have similarly honored Steve “The Colonel” Cropper.