Tuesday, October 23, 2018

The Queen of Boogie Woogie: Wendy DeWitt Sings at SFPL

Born in San Francisco, Wendy DeWitt is a Santa Rosa High School graduate. She was only 10 when she caught the attention of Western Swing Hall of Famer, Tommy Thomsen’s attention. Since then she has gone on to win regional competitions and been a finalist at the International Blues Challenge. Her album, Gateway, made the top of the charts in Italy. She has had the distinction of playing with Hank Ballard and the Midnighters, Charlie Musselwhite, Otis Rush and Jimmy Thackery. She produces the annual Queens of Boogie Woogie and San Francisco International Boogie Woogie Festival. Chris Spector of Midwest Record once said about her, “All the cool kids already know DeWitt is one smoking boogie woogie piano/organ gal and it’s time the word to spread beyond her regional awards.”

San Francisco Public Library’s Art and Music and Recreation Department is delighted to have her come back and conduct an interactive presentation on boogie woogie and blues as she takes us on a journey through America’s most grooving roots music, how it all started, and how it went to influence the world. DeWitt sprinkles her performance with stories, fascinating information, photos, and examples.

San Francisco Public Library has a wonderful collection of musical scores, CDs, DVDs, and books about boogie woogie music. Curious patrons can do a Subject Searches (Piano music (Boogie woogie)) or a Keyword Search (boogie woogie).

Here’s a list of suggested titles:

Beginning Boogie & Rags for Piano (Boston Music Co., 2006) 

The Story of Boogie-Woogie: A Left Hand like God by Peter J. Silvester (Scarecrow Press, 2009.)

Boogie Woogie Piano [DVD] / featuring Mitch Woods (Hal Leonard, 2006)

Boogie Woogie Rareties, 1927-1932 [33 rpm LP record]. (Milestone, 1969)