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Blues For Kids - Valerie Johnson and Al B Blue


Blues for Kids logo

Valerie Johnson & Al B Blue have presented this popular    program in schools all over the US which, thanks to the strong recommendation from the Santa Barbara Blues Society, has been wildly successful in Santa Barbara.

Kids playing a Didley bow

Combining their talents of their voices, guitars and more, they help kids gain an understanding of Blues history and the various Blues styles through a variety of musical resources. Students learn about the stories and the songs that portray that history, as well as, having the opportunity to have a hands on experience playing a large variety of instruments that relate to Blues. In the past Blues for Kids has been supported by the Hightower Foundation and the San Luis Obispo Blues Society. Currently it is being sponsored by the oldest Blues society in the nation: Santa Barbara Blues Society - going into classrooms (Kindergarden - High School) throughout the Santa Barbara area. Want Blues for Kids to come to your area? Just let us know. You can have this talented team share their musical experience with you. For booking and further information please contact Valerie Johnson at vjblues.com, bluesyall@wildblue.net or call (805) 423-8592.

Below highlights some of what they do:

BLUES FOR KIDS - a completely interactive musical workshop

Tells History of Blues Gospel and Spirituals

Starting with with Slave Ships Working in Fields

Reasons for making up songs

How words and music were used with the Underground Railroad

Explain instruments made, used and demonstrated

Show how to make and play Kazoos.

Late 1800 to Early 1900's

Blues and Jazz 

Different Style of Blues and Jazz from different areas of the United States.

Showing regional styles, from rural areas to cities and thier influences.

How Jazz & Blues got popular - Late 1800’s Important

People in Jazz and Blues

Using Blues as an Effective Communication process for players/singers and listeners

Show how a person can write and sing about anything -Facilitate song writing.

Interactive Workshops Offered

One Day - 45 minutes - Includes:  All areas listed in the BLUES FOR KIDS highlights

One Week or longer: All participants will learn the all areas listed in the BLUES FOR KIDS highlights in greater depth, as well as, make primitive instruments used with the Blues, writing and recording their own songs. They will also learn basic instrument playing, performing technics and recording fundamentals. Students original songs are recorded and all participants receive a CD of the completed originals songs.

For booking and further information please contact Valerie Johnson at vjblues.com, bluesyall@wildblue.net or call (805) 423-8592.

elementary school children at a Blues for Kids class



History of the Blues - 2011 - Present.  A two hour presentation put together by Valerie Johnson, Al B Blue and Karen Tyler.  Includes history of Blues and Traditional New Orleans Jazz from early 1900's  to  current times. Preformed at various community events and festivals.

Blues for Kids Interactive Workshops - 2010 - Present.  Various High Schools, Jr. High School and Elementary Schools in the Santa Barabara, CA area.  Sponsored by the Santa Barbara Blues Society

Blues for Kids Interactive Workshops - 2004 - various Elementary Schools, Ventura - Santa Barbara, CA.  Sponsored by the Santa Barbara Blues Society

Resource Music Teacher, 1999 - 2011, grades K-12, Santa Barbara to Big Sur, California school districts. 

Ten plus years experience as a professional music workshop developer and facilitator, including
BLUES FOR KIDS, a fun interactive performance and workshop on the history of Blues, Jazz and Gospel Music. The program introduces participants to song writing, and targets ages two to ninety-two!


 Venues throughout the United States at public/private schools,  elementary through high schools, also blues societies and libraries.  Women in the Blues Workshops also presented at various festivals in California and Canada.


Juvenile halls, youth prisons, Big Brother/Big Sister groups throughout California.  These workshops focus on the use of songwriting skills to produce a positive method of communication and to diminish emotional stress.  They also help children find their hidden musical passion. 


 Fire on the Mountain Productions, Richard Burleigh, Promoter, Soulsbyville,  CA, (209) 533-3473.
 San Luis Obispo Blues Society, Dan, President, San Luis Obispo, CA (805) 541-1837.
 Pacific Valley School, Raeanna Thomasson, Superintendent, Big Sur, CA (805) 927-8803.
Santa Barbara Blues Society, Steve Daniels, President, Santa Barbara, CA -(805) 722-8155
 Ralph Dunlap Elementary School, Mr. Joseph Dana, Principal, Orcutt, CA (805) 938-8500.




Jam Babies - Expressin' Themselves


The JAM BABIES are made up of seasoned blues Musicians. They've been together since birth - Man that's a pretty tight Band!

"ZEE" BABY can roll those tunes off the tips of his fingers. Listen real close to his rendition of Baby Bottle Blues - Wow!

"DA"BABY can shake you right into the mood. You'll be caught up in those Bluesy - Woosey beats. If you look real close he's using those designer baby rattles that came out on the market last year. They're older than he is. My, My, My….!

"YO" BABY really stirs your soul when he sings "Those Dirty Diaper Blues" and also "Playin' with My Food Again Blues". He started working on a new song last week called "Help Me Mama"

"BLUES PENGUIN" is sitting in with "The Jam Babies". Now this bird knows how to get down! He's played with greats like Bluesy Beagle, Few Harps Hound and many more. Some of the ladies he's backed up have been Trilly Lilly and Katie Cat. Glad he cruised in for a while. This summer he's going to be making the Blues Festivals route. Man, what a life.

"The JAM BABIES" say:

1. Blues is the Way to start each and everyday! (This doesn't mean to feel blue - It means to enjoy singing, playing, writing and listening to the blues)

2. When life get you down then play or sing about your problems. By putting your problems into a song you can help yourself feel better and sometimes even find a way to laugh about whats happening.

If you have some blues wisdom, please tell The JAM BABIES. They’ll make sure to pass it on.