Posted on 8/01/2009 by Monica Yasher


Saturday Night in the Blues Capital


Saturday, May 9th I spent the later part of the day with LV Banks. LV is a Wolfe recording artist that sounds like BB King. I remarked to LV about the likeness and he said he they grew up together in Mississippi. LV said that they lived within walking distance of each other and showed each other how to play. LV credits BB with teaching him guitar. I personally think it is the other way around. I met LV at a Sunday jam session at the Riverdale Marina. Oddly enough it is located in Riverdale, Illinois. The location is on a section of the Little Calumet River. The river meanders it's way into Lake Michigan. Sitting by the dock in the summertime it almost seems like you are sitting by the inter coastal waterway in Florida. The Marina restaurant served catfish and or perch dinners. Both were great and I might add so were the drinks. Big Al was the proprietor and that man loved the blues. Catfish for a late lunch, listening to the blues and boating. Blues heaven, brothers and sisters, what else can you ask for. Cyrus Hayes and Lady Lee ( had the regular gig there. Outside every Sunday, weather permitting, you’d find a lot of top name talent stopping by. I met Johnny Drummer ( there and I got him to autograph my white Fender, as did a host of others. I’ll tell more about that guitar in a future story.

LV took the stage dressed in a lime green Neru jacket, lime green pants, and topping it off was a black derby. He was dressed to the nines. When he hit that first note I was floored. I hear a lot of blues men, some good, and some not so good. LV is truly one of the greats. My ‘hey let’s go hear some blues’ buddy Jim and I go to a lot of blues clubs together. When he heard LV he dropped the pizza he was eating. Jim and I have always talked about starting a blues record label and we immediately looked at each other and said let’s talk to this guy. I walked up to LV and introduced myself and then Jim. I asked LV if he would be interested in recording with a brand new label we were working on. LV stuck out his hand and said, “Hell yea! Give me five dollars.” I said, “What.” He repeated, “Give me five dollars.”, while putting out both hands with one finger pressing into the other hands open palm. Jim asked, “What for?” LV paused for a moment and said, “If we gotta talk business then you gotta pay me.” Jim reached in his pocket and gave him five bucks.

That was over two years ago. The record label is still in the works, so I keep telling myself. LV and I have become friends. Jim and I still hit the clubs and we both check up on him regularly. I have jammed with him on numerous occasions and we have played a couple of gigs together. He has a one-room apartment in Chicago’s President Obama's area. His place is within walking distance of the President's house. If the president is in the area the traffic is horrendous and LV's place becomes almost inaccessible.

LV and I were talking one day about an incident with his girlfriend. His girl wanted to know where he was going one night and LV told her, “Girl I told you, when I met you, I'm a blues man and I’m gonna be playing around.” Sounds like a line from a blues song. Songwriters don’t even think about it I’m already using it. I can proudly say that LV recently labeled me a blues man. LV is one of the most gracious and nicest persons I have ever met. I am truly honored to have him as a friend and by the way, every time Jim sees LV he asks for his money back!


Terrance “Gatorman” Lape

Mark Of The Gator CD available for purchase

LV gives Joliet blues man "Big Dog Mercer" some tips and advice.

Photos of LV and yours truly here

American Blues News Staff

What makes American Blues News unique is our coverage across America. Here is our lineup:

Mon: Memphis Correspondent - Robert "Nighthawk" Tooms
Nighthawk is our resident globetrotter and man behind the scenes, as he tours with the Reba Russell Band.

Tues: New York Correspondent - J. Blake
Blake is the American Blues News review and interview guru. You may catch him out and about in NY playing the blues.

Wed: National Correspondent - Monica Yasher
Monica is our executive director and artist interview specialist. You can catch Monica singing the blues around Pittsburgh or working on some country music songs in Nashville.

Thurs: Washington, DC Correspondent - Virginiabluesman
Geraldo offers inteviews and reviews. You may have seen him at an Ana Popovic concert or conversed with him on her websites, as he offers administrative support with her music.

Fri: Northeast Photographer - Nelson Onofre
Nelson offers a Friday column of blues photography and pictorial support for the interviews covered by the team.

Jim Stick in Colorado
Jim will be focusing on the Blues Festivals in the beautiful state of Colorado, and the artists that live and visit there.

Maureen Elizabeth, our resident art correspondent, will be focusing on blues art as she explores the creation of CD covers, or speaking with artists who also have a love of creating pictorial art in addition to their music! She may also feature some of her good friends in the Pittsburgh area. In her love of art, you may find Maureen's photography accompanying writer's articles on our pages. Maureen is also our marketing director.

Pittsburgh correspondent and photographer, CR Bennett, will share the Pittsburgh scene with all of you. You may also see CR's pictures accompanying other writer's articles.

We head to the big state of Texas! Abby Owen, our Texas correspondent.

Another big area to cover, the West Coast with Casey Reagan, Casey will feature many artists and events on this ocean's shores.

Lastly, we have our roving blues entertainment writer,
Chef Jimi.

And of course, we will surprise you sometimes!

Internet Marketingdata recovery