KRCC’s Blues Under The Bridge Festival Ends

February 5, 2020
Blues Under the Bridge 2006-2019
Blues Under the Bridge 2006-2019

We hope you will agree that KRCC presented some truly memorable music underneath the Colorado Avenue Bridge during the past thirteen years.  Every summer since 2006, KRCC's Blues Under the Bridge Festival featured artists the likes of Koko Taylor, Robert Belfour, Charlie Musselwhite, the Holmes Brothers, Bettye LaVette, Los Lobos, Booker T. Jones, Chris Thomas King and the Blind Boys of Alabama, along with local musicians like John-Alex Mason, Jake Loggins, Grant Sabin, Hazel Miller, Mike Clark and Sugar Sounds, the Informants, Austin Young, and Jeremy Vasquez. 

The festival became a regular showcase for authentic blues music in a gritty urban setting - under a bridge and in front of the Union Pacific - Rio Grande railroad tracks in downtown Colorado Springs. It also happened to be a wonderful coincidence that the venue under the Colorado Avenue Bridge was only a stone's through away from where artists like Billie Holiday, Muddy Waters, Louis Armstrong, and Etta James had performed between 1948 and 1975 at Fannie Mae Duncan's Cotton Club.

Unfortunately, both the Cotton Club and the Blues Under the Bridge Festival have had to make way for urban renewal and revitalization, as well as the inevitable increase of expenses when producing live events. The Cotton Club was torn down in the mid 70's, and Blues Under the Bridge is, at least temporarily, being squeezed out by the impending construction along the railway corridor and around America the Beautiful Park.  The financial burdens of insurance, ticketing, talent fees, and event management have also been a factor in making the festival unsustainable.

KRCC wants to thank all of the volunteers who staffed the festivals, the business sponsors, and the blues music enthusiasts who helped make Blues Under the Bridge a premier music event for over a decade!