Shemekia to receive
Bistro Award

Blues singer Shemekia Copeland is the recipient of the Bistro’s first Producer’s Award. Daughter of blues guitarist-singer Johnny Copeland, she displays a powerful, gutsy voice that can also be soft and sultry, and has an uncanny ability to connect to her audience with both songs and stories.

The Bistro Awards has been recognizing, encouraging, nurturing, and educating cabaret, jazz and comedy artists for 33 years through its insightful reviews and annual awards. It is the oldest award of its kind in the industry.

The 33rd Annual Bistro Awards Gala will be held on Monday, March 12 at 6:30 pm at Gotham Comedy Club, 208 W. 23rd St. “As is the Bistro Award tradition, the evening will feature performances by all of the winners,” adds Broadway World.

Read the full story in Broadway World

Discover the full list of the 2018 Bistro Awards winners

“An opportunity not easily passed up”

Shemekia Copeland, shown performing earlier this year in Aurora, brings her mighty instrument to City Winery on Saturday night. (Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune)

Blues singer Copeland’s work shows so much fervor, craft and expressive range as to appeal to jazz listeners as much as blues audiences. […] Long based in Chicago, Shemekia Copeland recently has been spending time in Nashville recording her next album, but she returns home for this show before barnstorming the country anew. So here’s a last chance to hear Copeland before the new year, an opportunity not easily passed up.

By Howard Reich before Shemekia’s performance at the City Winery in Chicago, this Saturday, December 9. Read the full story in the Chicago Tribune

“On that day,
everything changed”

Photo by Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune

“My dad sees me sitting in the audience, and he starts to play that song,” remembers Shemekia. “And I was just scared to death, because I said ‘Oh, my God, he’s going to call me up onstage.’ That’s exactly what he did.”

On that day, everything changed, starting with her name.

“I was born Charon,” she says. “Shemekia is my middle name. So my parents always fought over which one should be the first or the second. In school, I was Charon; at home I was Shemekia. But that day, he said, ‘I’m going to bring up my daughter, Miss Shemekia Copeland.’”

Her career was on.

The Los Angeles Times published Howard Reich’s feature “The making of powerhouse blues prodigy Shemekia Copeland, grown up and with a voice all her own.”

Read the full story in the Los Angeles Times


“Always been a Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival favorite”

This will be Shemekia’s 10th appearance at Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival.  She has always been a CBBF favorite. […]

“I believe that we have assembled some of the finest blues musicians touring today to celebrate our 20th year!” states Don Hooker, festival promoter. […] Chesapeake Bay Events has announced  a partial lineup for the 2018 CBBF, being held at Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis, Maryland.

Eye on Annapolis announced Shemekia as part of the 2018 lineup of the Chesapeake Blues Festival. Read the full story. 

“She can belt out
a raucous blues number”

Shemekia Copeland returns to Bridge Street Live on Friday. On her last visit, she let the audience know that she was headed home to await the birth of her first child. Now that Johnny Lee is here, she is back on the road.

Copeland captures the crowd in a variety of ways. She can belt out a raucous blues number, fire up a blistering soul-shouter, bringing the out the gospel spirit or dig deep down into a soul stirring ballad. She sounds like no one else. […]

By Domenic Forcella in The Register Citizen, before Shemekia’s performance at Bridge Street Live in Collinsville, Connecticut, this Friday, September 22.

Read the full story in The Register Citizen

“A dynamic, seasoned, veteran
performer by this point”

Teaneck-raised blues belter Shemekia Copeland, daughter of the late great Texas bluesman Johnny “Clyde” Copeland, comes to Stanhope House Wednesday night, Sept. 20, for a rare New Jersey performance.

One of Copeland’s earliest performances was at the Old Bay Restaurant in New Brunswick in the early 1990s with her father.  She was just 15 or 16 at the time and accompanied her late father on regular visits to the club (and the radio show I host). […]

She’s a dynamic, seasoned, veteran performer by this point.

By Richard Skelly, on Read the full story. 

“Her voice is her instrument”

Bluesmaster Johnny Clyde Copeland’s little girl is all grown up and her own woman now. As a shy young girl, Shemekia Copeland first sang at Harlem’s famed Cotton Club, thanks to dad’s pull. Through hard work and careful management, she since has developed her own public persona that’s taken her on tours to Europe, Canada and throughout the United States. […]

Her voice is her instrument, backed by a strong four-piece band with each member bringing decades of experience to the stage. At times she will sound like a fiery blues rocker. She does gospel as well as anyone on the circuit today. She can deliver a blistering soul shout, be sultry and even pull off a country-inspired ballad. […]

John Hahn, her longtime manager who has known the singer’s family for 30 years, said, “Shemekia, over time, has found a voice as an artist that other women can relate to. … She has really come to be her own person, singing about issues that women and mothers deal with all the time in their lives.”

By Dan Burnett in Weekender, before Shemekia’s performance at the F.M. Kirby Center in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania this Friday, August 4.

Read the full story in Weekender


Living Blues Award
for Shemekia

Living Blues Magazine has announced the winners for the 2017 Living Blues Awards. Shemekia Copeland was named Blues Artist Of The Year (Female) in the Reader’s Pole, almost two years after the release of Outskirts of Love. This is Shemekia’s 12th Living Blues Award.

“An inspiring send-off”
at North Atlantic Blues Fest

Local — and international — favorite Shemekia Copeland, winner of numerous BMAs and officially crowned the New Queen of the Blues in Chicago, will make her first appearance at the blues fest as a mom. Her first child, a son named for her father, the late, great Johnny Copeland, arrived in December. […]

Shemekia Copeland has played just about everywhere, including for the troops in Iraq and Kuwait; and with everybody — she’s opened for The Rolling Stones — but local blues fans remember her first performances here, when she was still a teen. She’ll give the first-day crowd an inspiring send-off.

By Dagney C. Ernest in The Republican Journal, before Shemekia’s performance at the 24th North Atlantic Blues Festival in Rockland, Maine, on Saturday, July 15.

Read the full story in The Republican Journal. 

“The reigning
queen of the blues”

“Shemekia is really the reigning queen of the blues after Koko Taylor passed away,” Benjamin says. “She keeps her dad’s legacy going by doing one of his songs at every show and dedicating it to him.”

By Paul Benjamin, “the man behind the North Atlantic Blues Festival,” quoted in The Main Edge, before Shemekia’s performance at the North Atlantic Blues Festival, this Saturday, July 15, in Rockland, Maine.

Read the full story in The Main Edge