Blues guitarist and longtime Rochester resident Joe Beard will be on campus to perform two shows Monday, April 23.

Beard will give a private performance to a class of students, and he and his band, the Blues Union, will also give a free show in the Hirst Lounge of Wilson Commons at 4 p.m.

This will not be the first time that Beard has performed at UR ? in 1968 he joined the great delta blues musician Son House to perform for River Campus students.

Beard will perform for 32 students as a part of Professor of Religion and Classics Daniel Beaumont?s class, ?The Blues.? The department of religion and classics offers the course, which is cross-listed as an African American studies course.

Beaumont created the course to discuss the origins of the blues and its impact on American culture, including the creation of rock ?n? roll.

The performance for the students of ?The Blues? is just the most recent event in Beard and Beaumont?s ongoing relationship.

Last fall, Beaumont invited Beard to come visit his class this semester to discuss his life, his music and what he views as the relationship between the blues and black religion.

At that time, they also began working on a documentary recording Beard?s life and musical history. Born in Mississippi, Beard moved to Rochester in the mid-1950s. Beard did not become involved with the blues until later in his life, but he soon became a staple of the Rochester club scene.

The documentary will also discuss the other musicians he has worked with, particularly House.

Beard and House were neighbors on Grieg Street here in Rochester and used to spend many hours jamming together.

Beard has also worked with many other influential blues musicians such as Memphis Slim, John Ellison, Junior Wells and Buddy Guy.

Beard has recorded six CDs and was a performer at former President George Bush?s Inaugural Ball in 1988.



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