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709 Washington Street, Durham, North Carolina 27701

Big Joe & the Dynaflows with special guest Anson Funderburgh

June 28, 2019  ·  Friday * 9pm * $12



Joe Maher a/k/a “Big Joe” started out his music career in his Maryland high school jazz band “The Starliners.” Musician greats like Clark Terry, Urbie Green, Mudell Lowe & James Moody often sat in with the band as guest performers and they were an inspiration to him. His father listened to Louis Jordon and blues & jazz at home so this was an influence on his musical style as well. He started his own roots blues record collection during that time in the 60’s when most of his friends were just into the rock-n-roll.

After high school he went immediately on the road with his own jazz/blues trio.  His mission then started to become an accomplished singer/drummer.  Over time he shared the stage, opened up for or backed up music Legends: Willie Dixon, Johnny Adams, Floyd Dixon, Delbert McClinton, Johnnie Johnson, Mick Fleetwood, Jimmy McCracklin, Jimmy Rogers, Pinetop Perkins, Jimmy Witherspoon, Bullmoose Jackson, James”Thunderbird” Davis, Nappy Brown, Jimmy T99 Nelson, Lazy Lester, Bobby Parker, Otis Rush & Earl King. Some often requested him when coming to town knowing he would know their material and be quite adept at covering it.

In the late 80’s after managing and performing with the 9 piece swing band “The Uptown Rhythm Kings,” and after a few years as drummer with the Tom Principato Band,  Joe formed his own 5 piece jump blues group “Big Joe & The Dynaflows.”  In between touring and local performances with the Dynaflows, in the mid-90’s Joe accepted the role as Music Coordinator for Mick Fleetwood’s niteclub in Alexandria, VA “Fleetwoods.” His knowledge of the local and national blues & jazz scene helped him land the position which had the nightclub consistently filled with top notch talent. In 1997, Big Joe and his band had the honor to perform at an Inauguration Ball for the 42nd President of the United States. in Washington, DC.

The Dynaflows release “I’m Still Swingin” on Severn Records, received the Washington Area Music Association (WAMA)”Best Blues Recording” in 1998. WAMA also voted Big Joe “Male Blues Vocalist of the Year” both in 2005 and 2009. Other Dynaflow releases include “All Night Long” and “You Can’t Keep a Big Man Down” on the Severn label; “Layin’ in the Alley” on New Orleans based Black Top Records, which received the (WAMA) “Best Blues Recording” in 1994;.”Good Rockin’Daddy” on the Powerhouse label & “Cool Dynaflow” on a European label.


In recent years, Dallas-based guitarist Anson Funderburgh has taken his band the Rockets out of the clubs and onto the festival stages with his critically acclaimed recordings for the BlackTop label out of New Orleans. With Jackson, MS-native Sam Myers delivering the vocals and harmonica treatments, this band mixes up a powerful gumbo of Texas jump blues and Delta blues that can’t be found anywhere else. Funderburgh & His Rockets are a particularly hard working band, performing across the U.S. and Europe nearly 300 nights a year.

Funderburgh recorded with the Fabulous Thunderbirds on their Butt Rockin’ album, and went solo in 1981, when the New Orleans-based BlackTop label released Talk to You by Hand, the label’s first release. Funderburgh added Myers on harmonica and lead vocals in 1986. Myers had traveled for years on the chitlin circuit, where he had the chance to accompany people like Elmore James and Robert Junior Lockwood. Funderburgh admits that adding Myers on vocals and harmonica was a turning point for the Rockets, partly because of the image they project from the stage, a big towering black man and three white guys backing him up. Funderburgh continued his association in the ’90s with Black Top releasing Tell Me What I Want to Hear (1991), Live at Grand Emporium (1995), and That’s What They Want (1997). After releasing nine albums on Black Top, in 1999 Funderburgh changed record labels with the release of Change in my Pocket for Bullseye Blues. At the beginning of the new millennium, Funderburgh is just coming into his prime by way of his songwriting talents, so his career deserves close watching in the coming years. The best is yet to come from this guitarist and bandleader.

NOTE: We do not take reservations on Friday nights. Please arrive after 8pm for the 9pm show. Seating is first come/first served.