About

Low-reen!

Low-reen on growling vocals, telecaster, and bass guitar is a songwriter who brings her sizzling hot Chicago Blues to entertain old and new fans alike with a collaboration of talented Chicago Blues partners. Low-reen performs in several bands & ensembles, as well as solo (details below):

  • Low-reen (Solo)
  • Low-reen & Maxwell St Market Blues (Band)
  • Low-reen & Charlie Love (Band or Duo)
  • Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Charles Delta Blues Hog Hayes (Band)
  • Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Peewee Hayes (Band)
  • Low-reen & Firehouse (Band)
  • Low-reen & Jim Harpdog Hellen (Band)
  • Low-reen & Graham Warwick (Band or Duo)
  • Low-reen & Paul Kaye (Duo)
  • Low-reen & Rafael Torrez (Duo)

Low-reen has a soulful sultry voice carefully curated by smokes & whiskey 🙂 that many have compared to Janis. Low-reen has been influenced by many many musicians before her, from Chicago’s own Robert Nighthawk to Muddy, Honeyboy to Wolf, Magic Sam to Jimmy Reed, as well as rock’s bluesier side Grateful Dead to Rolling Stones. Low-reen picked up guitar later in life, influenced by her friendship with her mentor David Honeyboy Edwards. Low-reen took a few classes at Old Town School of Folk Music with renowned guitarists Eric Noden & Chris Walz. Low-reen honed her skills as a musician and vocalist as well as an entertainer, sitting in with and playing alongside legendary Chicago Blues musicians such as Tail Dragger, Elmore James Jr, Little Scotty, Tony Brown, Charles Delta Blues Hog Hayes, Peewee Hayes, Bobby Too Tuff, Paul Petraitis, Rockin’ Johnny, Eddie Taylor Jr, Willie Buck, Killer Ray Allison, & LT McGee. All that good mojo has rubbed off!

Low-reen has performed in the Illinois / Wisconsin area, as well as Texas. Chicago appearances include residencies at Maxwell St Market, Polk St Pub, Lee’s Unleaded Blues, & The Water Hole- Chicago’s Juke Joint; regular appearances at Randolph Market, as well as past shows at Chicago’s historic Grand Ballroom, Buddy Guy’s Legends, Brother’s Rising MC Toys for Tots, Chicagoland Motorcycle Toys for Tots Parade, Roosevelt University, Waukegan Lakefront Summer Concert Series, and four appearances over three years at Chicago Blues Festival. Low-reen has appeared on WGN’s Dave Hoekstra’s Nocturnal Journal. Low-reen has a self-produced CD Low-reen & the Maxwell St Market Blues Band Live at Chicago Blues Fest 2013. Low-reen since 2010 has hosted a weekly blues jam to facilitate gathering/fun and growth of local blues musicians as skills get passed down from expert to novice. These weekly blues jams have had a huge influence on Low-reen’s development as a Chicago Blues performer, and she was inducted as an Ambassador into the Chicago Blues Hall of Fame in 2015 in her role as a community organizer within the Chicago Blues community.

Low-reen has many projects in the Blues Community besides performing:

  • Co-Founder & Associate Director with Brett Champlin of Chicago Blues Camp 2016-present
  • Photographer Low-reen’s Live Blues 1997-present
  • Founding Member & Director of Friends of Chicago Blues, a friendlier Chicago Blues organization 🙂 2016-present
  • Writer / Photographer Big City Blues 2017-present
  • Volunteer with Jeff Pinzino of Chicago Blues Revival 2019-present
  • Writer / Photographer / Festival Volunteer with Tom Radai, Don Petrausky, & Cazz Mandli of Wisconsin Blues Society’s Tell It Like It Is 1997-2018
  • Founding Member, Director, Stage Manager at Chicago Blues Festival Windy City Blues Society 2009-2015
  • Blues Fest Fundraisers: Blues For Home 2002, 2011, 2014 for PADS Lake County; Jam 4 Mental Health 2015 for NAMI Lake County

Low-reen & Maxwell St Market Blues!

Low-reen & Maxwell St Market Blues was Low-reen’s first musical venture, formed in 2010 after meeting at the Maxwell St Market at a Blues Jam instigated by Steve Balkin 🙂 A high-energy in-demand Chicago Blues outfit that performs upwards of 150 shows a year in the Chicago area alone, this band features Tony Brown & Low-reen on guitars & vocals, Rasheed Stewart Muhammad on bass & vocals, & Darnell DC Conley on drums & vocals. Low-reen & Maxwell St Market Blues delivers the goods! Fun on the stage entertaining the crowd with everything from original songs to Chicago Blues Standards, tight grooves to jamming, the mood is contagious & everyone has a good time! Low-reen & MSMB has played a variety of shows at festivals, parties, nightclubs, private events, as well as busking on the street! The band still plays many Sunday mornings in the Maxwell St Market, and has hosted regular weekly blues jams over the past 8 years at Polk St Pub, Jerry’s Cosmic Sandwiches, Lee’s Unleaded Blues, & The Water Hole- Chicago’s Juke Joint; regular appearances at Randolph Market, and as well as past shows at Chicago’s historic Grand Ballroom, Buddy Guy’s Legends, Brother’s Rising MC Toys for Tots, Chicagoland Motorcycle Toys for Tots Parade, Roosevelt University, Waukegan Lakefront Summer Concert Series, and three appearances at Chicago Blues Festival. The band has appeared on WGN’s Dave Hoekstra’s Nocturnal Journal. Low-reen & Maxwell St Market Blues are READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & Charlie Love!

Sparks fly when Low-reen teams up with the AMAZING Charlie Love, one of the best showmen in Chicago! Low-reen & Charlie Love started performing together in 2017, either as a duo with Charlie on guitar & vocals, Low-reen on bass & vocals, or 3-piece with Darnell DC Conley on drums & vocals. Charlie’s recording credits include 1988, 2004 on Lovemil label, So Happy I Could Cry; Chicago Blues Harmonica Project’s 2009 More Rare Gems. Charlie’s grew up with the sounds of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter and B.B. King in his home. He bought a guitar at a pawnshop, and it was Lefty Dizz & Buddy Scott, two Chicago Blues legends that took Charlie under their wings and gave him his first opportunity to take the stage at the famed Checkerboard Lounge. He then began playing with his own band, the Hotlinks, while occasionally called by Mighty Joe Young and B.B. Odem to play guitar. Charlie caught the attention of Casey Jones, ex-drummer for the late great Albert Collins, and Charlie became a regular at Kingston Mines. Charlie Love and the Silky Smooth Band have been one of Chicago’s premier Blues and dance bands on the scene for many years. Charlie Love was a past winner of the Chicago Blues Challenge and is a consistent feature at the Chicago Blues Festival. Charlie has brought his Chicago Blues to the world, touring Africa, Italy, Brazil, Switzerland, Portugal, and Spain. Low-reen & Charlie Love are READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Charles Delta Blues Hog Hayes!

Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Charles Delta Blues Hog Hayes began performing together in 2014, with Charles Hayes & Low-reen on guitars & vocals, Jojo Hayes on keys & vocals, Freemond Beld on bass, & Ray Boydog Adams on drums & vocals. Red hot rough cut old-school blues is what you get when Low-reen teams up with Charles, who lays out 50s styled hard edged guitar blues from Mississippi throughout the States & Abroad! Charles came to Racine from Alamo, Tennessee at an early age, immersed in a musical family, growing up around greats such as Sleepy John Estes, Yank Rachell, Washboard Sam, Montel Cox, B.B. King, Little Milton, the original Sonny Boy Williamson, and his father, the late Roland ‘Blue Dad’ Hayes. He has reached legendary status as a Blues musician and entertainer, carrying on the Hayes musical tradition with brothers Peewee Hayes & Jojo Hayes. Charles released the album Raw Blues on the St George Records label, as well as his self-produced album Night Train, & has played across the country as well as touring Europe! Recent area shows with Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs include Taste of Lake Geneva, Blues On the Water festival, Mundelein Summer Concert Series, Chicago’s historic Grand Ballroom, Studio Winery, house band for Waukegan’s premiere monthly art event ArtWauk, Scoop the Loop, and Mayor Cunningham’s Blues Festival! Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs are READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Peewee Hayes!

Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs featuring Peewee Hayes began performing together in 2014, with Peewee Hayes & Low-reen on guitars & vocals, Dave Morris on bass, & Frank Laubringer on drums. Searing Urban Blues is what you get when Low-reen teams up with Peewee who’s crying blues guitar grabs at your very soul! Peewee came to Racine from Alamo, Tennessee at age 8, immersed in a musical family, growing up around greats such as Sleepy John Estes, Yank Rachell, Washboard Sam, Montel Cox, B.B. King, Little Milton, the original Sonny Boy Williamson, and his father, the late Roland ‘Blue Dad’ Hayes. He has reached legendary status as a Blues musician and entertainer, carrying on the Hayes musical tradition with brothers Charles Delta Blues Hog Hayes & Jojo Hayes. Peewee has self-produced several CDs, including The Game Is Over. After many years of performing, Peewee is really busting out in a big way, playing venues large & small all around the country, from exclusive private New York parties to Telluride Blues Festival! Recent area shows with Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs include Studio Winery and Waukegan’s premiere monthly art event ArtWauk, among others! Low-reen & the Lazy Dogs are READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & Firehouse

Low-reen & Firehouse originally formed in 2016 as a few musician friends coming together to play a fundraiser at Carmel High School Street Scenes, but after two appearances at Street Scenes, Low-reen & Firehouse was chosen from 50 acts to play the main stage! Crowd excitement & engagement convinced the band to take the next step & make this a permanent thang… Low-reen & Firehouse play a mixture originals as well as Chicago Blues, Rock, & Folk Standards, from Junior Wells & Muddy Waters to Bob Dylan, Grateful Dead, & Rolling Stones! Low-reen on guitar & vocals shares front-person duty with Jim Harpdog Hellen, one of the best Chicago Blues harmonica players, vocalist, & songwriter. Jim hung out at the blues clubs in Chicago before he was old enough to even get in, sneaking time & learning a few riffs from Junior Wells. Later he played with Tawl Paul & the popular Tin Pan Alley while in Carbondale, and has played extensively in the Lake County area in Blues and Dead outfits. Low-reen & Jim, the dynamic blues duo, have both played Chicago Blues Festival. Pair them up with seasoned Marie Martens on guitar, bass, keys, & vocals, Grateful Gregg Miller guitar & vocals, Rich Cohen bass, Al Sjoholm harp & vocals, & Frank Laubringer drums, and you have a BLUES POWERHOUSE that just won’t quit! Low-reen & Firehouse are READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & Jim Harpdog Hellen

Long before Low-reen & Jim Harpdog Hellen ever met, Jim performed with Low-reen’s brother, drummer Ron Lewis, at college in Carbondale’s popular Tin Pan Alley. 20-something years later, Ron introduced Low-reen & Harpdog, who finally began to perform together in 2015, with Low-reen on guitar & vocals and Harpdog on guitar, vocals, and….well, harp 🙂 Jim Harpdog Hellen is one of the best Chicago Blues harmonica players who performs originals as well as Blues, Rock, and Folk Standards. Jim hung out at the blues clubs in Chicago before he was old enough to even get in, soaking up a little mojo & a few riffs from Junior Wells. Later in Carbondale came TPA as well as performances with Tawl Paul & Jim Skinner. Harpdog has played extensively around the Chicagoland area in Blues and Dead outfits including Voodoo Cadillac. Low-reen & Jim have both performed Chicago Blues Festival, and are a dynamic duo that’s READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & Graham Warwick

Low-reen & Graham Warwick are Chicago Blues meets Texas Hill Country Blues! Low-reen & Graham on guitars & vocals were brought together in music by Low-reen’s brother, drummer Ron Lewis, and have performed together since 2018, both as a duo and with a band. Graham Warwick brings a style of entertainment every bit as authentic as the blues music he plays to venues throughout the Texas Hill Country. Graham performs solo and with the Sensational Bonafide Blues Band in the company of some of the finest chops the Hill Country can deliver. Graham brings the blues alive, focusing on authentic, time-tested standards from the first half of the 20th century, with moving renditions on favorites such as the “St. James Infirmary Blues” and “What a Wonderful World”. However, some of his most popular tunes are ones that he’s written himself. He released his 2015 CD After All These Years on Cool Blues Hat Records label. Graham was a New Folk Songwriting finalist at the Kerrville Folk Festival, and has performed at KFF three times. He was voted Best Blues Band by 2004 Hill Country Happenings. With his partner Emmett Smith, Graham won the Simply Texas Blues Festival Blues Challenge and moved on to the 2014 International Blues Challenge in Memphis. Low-reen & Graham Warwick have performed around Texas at Roadhouse Paige, Angler’s Bastrop, and several shows at Willows at Sherwood Forest Faire, as well as the Illinois / Wisconsin area at Waukegan Fest & Kenosha Fusion. Low-reen & Graham are a dynamic duo that’s READY to BRING IT!

Low-reen & Paul Kaye

Low-reen met David Honeyboy Edwards and began to visit him & play regularly with him at his home starting in 2003. Honeyboy informally mentored Low-reen in her musical journey getting started at playing Chicago Blues Guitar. It was through this relationship that Low-reen met Paul Kaye, and they began to perform together in 2014, including a tribute to Honeyboy at Chicago Blues Fest in 2015 with Michael Frank & Joel Paterson. Low-reen & Paul both play guitar & sing. Paul toured, performed, and recorded with Honeyboy on a regular basis for twenty years. Honeyboy was a direct link to Robert Johnson, with whom he performed and caroused. Besides his work with Honeyboy, Paul also performed with Buddy Guy, Dave Myers, Harmonica Hinds, Lefty Diz, Detroit Jr, & Devil In a Woodpile. He had a regular gig at Checkerboard Lounge. He released a 2016 CD Playin’ It Cool, Paul Kaye & the Blues Cartel with Harlan Terson & Kenny Beedy Eyes Smith. “Playing with Honeyboy was a life’s ambition realized,” says Paul, but it’s become far more than that. “I kind of feel an obligation to not just the music, but to Honeyboy; to present stories about the old players, and just as importantly, how they played the tunes.” Of Paul Kaye, the venerable bluesman David “Honeyboy” Edwards said simply: “Paul Kaye can play the Blues.” And what better praise can any Blues player ask for than that. Low-reen & Paul Kaye are READY to BRING IT!


Low-reen & Rafael Torrez

Low-reen & Rafael Torrez met in 2017 at Waukegan’s monthly premier art event, ArtWauk, and began to play regularly at A Cuban Experience, Waukegan’s Luxury Cigar Lounge. When you think of Low-reen & Raffie, think Cuban Blues Fusion. Low-reen & Rafael on guitars & vocals, as well as various percussion instuments, for a night filled with Chicago Blues, Santana, & Cuban-influence music. The stage is open, and often Low-reen & Raffie are joined by other patron musicians of A Cuban Experience on a variety of percussion as well as the house Baby Grand. Low-reen & Rafael Torrez are READY to BRING IT!