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Bluefunk was born in the town of Macclesfield. Almost devoid of any venues dedicated to musical/arts performance it had been dubbed a "cultural cul-de-sac" in a UK wide survey of arts infrastructure available to local populations. The epithet was accurate based on buildings alone, but in spite of this there was, and still is, a bedrock of excellent musicians who had struggled gamely along for years with greater and lesser successes
In 2005, Garry the founder of the Bluefunk concept was getting fed up with having to travel miles out of town to see a quality of live performance that he thought should be available in the area that he lived. He therefore started to dabble in live events in the Macclesfield area. This included greenfield festivals, local park events and shows at Macc Town Football club. After a few early successful promotions were in the bag he decided in 2006 to set up the Bluefunk Rhythm and Blues Club, something he had always wanted to do since a teenager. The search for a spiritual home for Bluefunk began.
The first venue tried was Cuban Knights Music Bar, at the time the only commercial operation in Macclesfield, that promoted the next level of musicians which included international touring acts, housed in a town centre weaving mill. It was the only place at that time which took it seriously.
The inaugural Bluefunk gig featured a very young Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue from New Orleans. A band whose oldest member was 21 years old, they set the bar for the future of Bluefunk very high indeed with a staggeringly fine performance, from which Macclesfield never quite recovered. Shorty (Troy Andrews) was virtually unknown outside New Orleans at this early stage of his career and this was in fact his first time outside the USA. He is now of course internationally celebrated for his incredible mastery of the trombone and trumpet, and his incredible band Orleans Avenue.
Bluefunk’s stay at Cuban Knights was spectacular but brief, as the owners were planning to sell it, so when an invitation was received from Poynton British Legion to take Bluefunk there, it was accepted and the move took place.
Over the following couple of years Bluefunk was established as a serious player on the UK live blues scene with performances from Wilko Johnson, Catfish Keith (USA), Bernie Marsden (ex Whitesnake), Chris Cook (USA) and many others, many of whom now visit us regularly.
Circumstances then conspired to force the Club to find another venue. It did not have to look far, an approach to the Poynton WMC just around the corner on Park Lane was made and they welcomed us with open arms and an appearance by Mojo Buford (ex- Muddy Waters Band) on his swan song tour of Europe, cemented the relationship with them and the WMC was home for nearly 5 years.
During this period Bluefunk became a major player on the live circuit for both the best of the UK touring bands and the major overseas acts as well.
Bluefunk was privileged to host at the WMC, Jon Cleary and the Absolute Monster Gentlemen (New Orleans), Sherman Robertson (Texas), Jim Suhler (Texas), Buddy Whittington (Texas), Jim Kirkpatrick (UK), Bob Hall(UK), Chris Whitely and Diana Lee Braithwaite (Canada), Woody Mann (NewYork), Willie Nile (New York), Matt Schofield (UK) Peter Price (UK), Jon Amor Blues Group (UK), King King (UK), Aynsley Lister (UK), Tom Doughty (UK), Sinnerboy (UK). Bluefunk was the only Blues Club that the Hoax played at during their 20th anniversary reunion tour in 2010 – unforgettable. There have been many more besides. See "who's been"
During these years Bluefunk has grown like a family. Many people who attended the very first gig still come on a regular basis, hardly ever missing a single event. They have grown to love the friendly atmosphere that always abounds and whilst they may have forged close personal friendships with other Bluefunksters, any new faces that come soon feel that they belong there and almost invariably come back and back again. Apart from the unfailingly high standard of the performances this friendly un-cliquey atmosphere is probably the secret to its success.
From the artists point of view, they love to play at Bluefunk as, (they often go out of their way to acknowledge this) it is one of the most respectful and attentive audiences they meet on their tour, anywhere. They are all there for the music.
It is difficult to describe atmosphere, you have to be there to enjoy it.
After the WMC We had two great years at Cabin 5150 in Macclesfield but more circumstances took us back to The Legion in Poynton.
Then the monster Coronabastard reared it head and drove a coach and horses through all the hard work.
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In 2016 Bluefunk Rhythm and Blues Club celebrated its 10th Anniversary!
2018 & 2020 saw us receive nominations for the UK Blues Club of the Year in the UK Blues Awards!
We have finally resettled! We have returned to our old home at the Poynton WMC which has been beautifully refurbished since we left and renamed Club 142.
The disruption caused by the abomination - Covid 19 - seems like a thing of the past now, and at last it feels like we are home again.
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