There are many different opinions as to what the future of the blues harmonica will be. Memphis vocalist and harmonica player Brandon Santini is undeniably a worthy player to keep an eye on as the latest surge of young blues artists leave their footprint in blues history. His name is worthy of conversations that include James Cotton, Kim Wilson, Dennis Gruenling, Charlie Musselwhite and other frontline harmonica players by combining his love and respect for traditional blues with a present, colorful style of playing that is often compared to James Cotton or Paul Butterfield. Raised in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, Brandon purchased his first harmonica in 1997 at the age of fifteen when his mother took him to the local music store upon his request. He founded the Blues Music Award nominated band Delta Highway in 2003 and relocated to Memphis where he absorbed the sounds and culture of the Delta and North Mississippi Hill Country, honing his craft night after night, sweating it out in local Beale Street clubs just like Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, and B.B. King did decades before him.
Live & Extended! is Brandon’s third album released in January 2015 by VizzTone Label Group. The scene is Quebec’s upscale concert venue, le Petit Impérial, on a Sunday night in July, in the middle of the exuberant Festival D’été de Quebec. The packed house responds quickly as Brandon Santini and his tight touring band hit the stage with all the raw blues power and impact of the 1970s-era Paul Butterfield or James Cotton Blues Band. The band feels the energy and responds with over an hour of the hard-hitting harmonica-driven blues that’s been causing fans and critics alike to tap Santini as one of the most quickly-rising blues stars of his generation.
For Brandon Santini, “It’s all about the vibe of your surroundings. With a great live audience fueling you it’s a lot more inspiring and allows you to give more to the audience.” He has steadily built his fan base with two previous albums, and tours regularly. His A-Team road band includes Timo Arthur on guitar and backing vocals, Nick Hern on bass and backing vocals, and Chad Wirl on drums.