Blues Competition

Saturday Afternoon of the
River City Blues Festival

March 16, 2019
12:30 to 3:30 pm
followed by The Delgado Brothers at 4 pm
Saturday afternoon tickets are $30
The Lafayette Hotel
101 Front Street, Marietta OH


Participants compete for sponsorship to the International Blues Challenge (IBC). The first place winner of The River City Blues Competition in 2019 will receive $1,000 in cash and $500 more when they register for the IBC in Memphis early in 2020 where they will gain valuable exposure to record label A&R representatives and Blues industry professionals and festival promoters capable of real career advancement for a serious blues musician. Second place will receive $500. First place winner will receive an additional $500 when they register for the IBC. There will be 6 slots in the competition. The big winners however, are the blues fans who enjoy an afternoon of great blues entertainment.

Doors open one hour before showtime. For reservations or info call Helen Holt 304-615-7997, or Peggy Bolen 740-376-0222. VISA/MasterCard/Discover accepted. Reservations are held at the prefunction tables. Please check in when you arrive.

Competition Schedule
Doors open 1 hour before showtime.

Saturday, March 16, 2019 – 12:30 to 3:30 pm Blues Competition and winners announced.

Competition Participants for 2019:

12:30 – 12:50 The BFH Blues Band (4 pc.) Marietta OH
1:00 – 1:20 Damian Knapp (solo) Warren OH
1:30 – 1:50 Canterberry Blues (4 pc.) Marietta OH
2:00 – 2:20 Ron & Keith (duo) Western Pennsylvania
2:30 – 2:50 The Simpletones (4 pc.) Ravenswood WV
3:00 – 3:20 Micah Kesselring (solo) Athens OH

Saturday, March 16, 2019 – At 4 PM The Delgado Brothers

Winners at The International Blues Challenge in Memphis, the city considered by many as the home of the Blues and the birthplace of Rock ‘n Roll, receive cash and prizes such as professional consultations and assistance, gigs at some of the country’s best festivals, interviews in the world’s leading Blues publications, free website design and hosting, and even a slot on the Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise.

Make sure you click on the following links to read and download Rules and Application, for 2019 River City Ohio Blues Competition, or to learn more about The International Blues Challenge (IBC). Deadline to receive application is Friday, January 26, 2019

YEAR’S WORTH OF MUSIC RAFFLE – A $450 value: At  River City Blues Festival March 20-21, 2020,  there will be a raffle for a “Year’s Worth of Music”. All proceeds from this raffle go to fund our “Blues in The Schools” events.

Mountain Stage Show – You choose a show at
Culture Center Theater Charleston, WV (2 tickets)
Fur Peace Ranch, Pomeroy, Ohio – Eric Alexander Quartet (jazz)
Sat., May 18, 2019 (2 seats)
People’s Bank Theatre Marietta, OH – $100 Gift Certificate
for purchase of tickets to an upcoming show
Pomeroy Blues & Jazz Society’s Big Bend Blues Bash
Fri.-Sat., July 26-27, 2019 (2 weekend passes)
BJFM’s 29th River City Blues Festival and Competition
Fri.-Sat., March 20-21, 2020 (2 passes to the two-day event)
Stuart’s Opera House, Nelsonville, OH
Hayes Carll, Tues., April 9, 2019 @7:30, (2 tickets)
Raffle tickets are $5 for one or $20 for five.
Winner to be announced at 9:30 pm on Saturday of the Festival.
Need not be present to win.

For those who prefer textiles—BJFM Quilt Raffle
Benefits our Blues in the Schools program.

Maren Beery, Secretary for BJFM, has once again created a quilt from past BJFM t-shirts and t-shirts from other blues societies. It will be on display at the Festival and you can purchase tickets to win. $5 for one and $20 for five.
Winner to be announced at 9:30 pm on Saturday of the Festival.
Need not be present to win.


Reservations & info
call Helen Holt 304-615-7997 or

Peggy Bolen 740-376-0222

VISA/MasterCard/Discover/American Express accepted.

PARTICIPATING ACT MEMBERS will be admitted FREE for the weekend. Special guest 1/2 price – limit one per act member. Doors open 1 hour before show time for competition.


For questions contact Competition Director, John Gifford at 740-680-6338 any day after 12:30 pm or e-mail or


One of the last riverboat-era hotels in America, The Lafayette opened on July 1, 1918, and was named in honor of the Marquis de Lafayette, who visited Marietta in 1825 at a site near the hotel. With its distinctive triangular shape, the hotel offers guest rooms, recently beautifully redecorated with Victorian era style furniture and views of either the Ohio River or the Muskingum Rivers. The Lafayette is on the National Registry of Historic Buildings and is a member, Historic Hotels of America. It is the ambiance of the Lafayette on the banks of the Ohio River that adds to the experience of attending the River City Ohio Blues Competition. For rates and information, contact The Lafayette Hotel directly at 740-373-5522, 800-331-9336 or


Formed in 1987 the non-profit 501(c) (3) all volunteer Blues, Jazz & Folk Music Society presents live music not usually found in the Mid-Ohio Valley. Our purpose is to promote, educate and encourage these most desirable art forms.