Stone Church hosts acclaimed blues singer/guitarist

BRATTLEBORO — The Stone Church, 210 Main Street, in partnership with the Vermont Blues Society, presents Grammy-nominated blues singer-guitarist Jontavious Willis on Friday, July 29, at 8 p.m.

“Every generation or so, a young bluesman bursts onto the scene who sends a jolt through blues lovers,” reads the bio on Willis' website, “someone who has mastered the craft for sure, but who also has the blues deep down in his heart and soul. At the age of 22, bluesman Jontavious Willis may be the one.”

“That's my Wonderboy, the Wunderkind,” Taj Mahal said after inviting Willis to tour with him. “He's a great new voice of the 21st century in the acoustic blues. I just love the way he plays.”

“When I heard him play I said to myself: this is how the blues, as I know it, is going to stay alive,” said Paul Oscher, formerly of the Muddy Waters Blues Band.

“Only a few like him emerge every decade or so, when even the most hardcore blues fans realize immediately that this is the real deal,” writes Frank Matheis in Living Blues magazine.

Hailing from Greenville, Georgia, Willis grew up singing gospel music at the Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church with his grandfather. At the age of 14, he came across a YouTube video of Muddy Waters playing Hoochie Coochie Man and was hooked. That's when he set his course on the blues. All types - Delta, Piedmont, Texas, gospel; as a fingerpicker, flat-picker and slide player; on guitar, harmonica, banjo and cigar box. And four years later, he was playing on stage with Taj Mahal.

Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at

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