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A gorgeous, memorable Saturday at Bayfront

Someone was smiling down on the Bayfront Blues Festival Saturday. Despite dire weather productions, it was another near perfect day where the sky was as blue as the music.

Someone was smiling down on the Bayfront Blues Festival Saturday. Despite dire weather productions, it was another near perfect day where the sky was as blue as the music.

And it was another day of Blues Fest memories: Big Walter Smith, turned 72 in July, returned to big crowds for his 14th consecutive festival, continuing the only unbroken streak of any performer. A musician named Super Chikan kept shouting "Somebody shoot that thing!" after every song. Kelley Hunt demonstrated that the boogie-woogie piano style is still alive and kicking. Headliner Dr. John mixed up jazz and fusion with blues and came out with a sound that had everyone partying.

And Arthur Adams pulled a Buddy Guy.

For those whose Bayfront history doesn't go back 13 or 14 years, one of the classic Bayfront moments came when Buddy Guy took his guitar and walked into the crowd, soloing as he went.

Saturday, Adams, an energetic and large guitarist, with a wonderful mellow voice, did the same thing, decked out in a bright green shirt and yellow pants. Adams climbed down from the Minnesota State Lottery State into the press area and out the photographer's entrance, spilling into the crowd and soloing all the way. For several minutes, he walked and played, displaying his friendly personality, his fleet fingers and his high-energy style while fans cheered.

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Earlier, he had played a nice cover of Louis Armstrong's famous "It's a Wonderful World."

As for Super Chikan, after seemingly every song at the beginning of his group's set, he said, "Somebody shoot that thing. But don't shoot my rooster, 'cuz he crows better than he used to."

Later on, the reference became clear when he played a song entitled "Shoot That Thing," the title track from his new CD. His humor and fun twists on the lyrics to "Sweet Home Chicago" and other well-known blues songs endeared him to the audience.

{IMG2}A few dark clouds threatened at time, but as night fell on Dr. John, closing the show, the skies cleared up. The keyboardist mixed in fusion influences, unusual instrumental sounds and jazz rhythms for a unique close to Saturday night.

Sunday's lineup starts with the traditional gospel morning, as usual provided by Minneapolis Gospel Sound. Also scheduled to appear are Mick Sterling & the Stud Brothers Horns, Denise LaSalle and Tommy Castro, before Blues Traveler closes out the festival from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

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