Kara Grainger at BluesDays At River City on Thursday in Wheeling

Kara Grainger

Folky-blues, singer-songwriter Kara Grainger will perform at BluesDay at River City at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

Grainger is touring to promote her latest album, “Living With Your Ghost.”

“I was not aware of her until an agent pitched her to me. I went online and checked out her material and was immediately impressed with her performance and songwriting availability,” said Bruce Wheeler, producer of BluesDay at River City and of the Heritage Music BluesFest. “Kara’s tour passing through Wheeling in August made her a good choice for a BluesDay at River City.

“I’m very excited to see her live and in person,” he said.

“Living With Your Ghost,” released in June, was produced by Anders Osborne, who has appeared at BluesFest several times. The album reached No. 4 on the Billboard blues album charts last month.

Grainger’s music career began in a small suburban town of Sydney, Australia, and since then has taken her on an incredible journey throughout the globe. Combining tasteful blues and slide guitar, soulful vocals and a heartfelt approach to songwriting, Grainger’s unique sound will leave the audience uplifted and inspired.

At the age of 16, Grainger joined with her brother, Mitch Grainger, to form the band “Papa Lips.” The band toured consistently throughout Australia and produced two studio albums that received national airplay.

The band was heavily influenced by the sounds of Stax recording artists in Memphis, and by the funky style of blues and soul that derived from New Orleans.

In 2008, Grainger signed to Australian label, Craving Records, and was invited to the U.S. by producer David Kalish where she recorded her debut solo album. The recording, “Grand and Green River,” received critical acclaim and remained in the top 30 of the Americana charts for 38 straight weeks.

Since then, she has made two more albums while residing in the U.S. In 2011, “LA Blues,” which paid tribute to some of Grainger’s earliest blues inspirations, was recorded live at Studio City Sound. In 2013, she recorded and released “Shiver and Sigh” through Los Angeles record label Eclecto Groove.

She has traveled to Indonesia several times to perform at the Jakarta International Blues Festival, performing together with her U.S. band and also as a special guest with the Jakarta All-Women Blues Review. In 2011, she toured Japan with The Swampers and Donnie Fritts, the infamous house rhythm section for “Fame Recordings” in Muscle Shoal.

She has taken her band to Switzerland where she performed at the Sierre Blues Festival as well as Lucerne. The band has toured in Belgium, Germany, France, Luxembourg and Spain. In 2015, Grainger performed at the Beautiful Swamp Festival in Calais, France, and also to sell-out crowds on her debut tour of the U.K. One of the highlights was performing at Ronnie Scotts, London’s premier blues and jazz venue.

In the U.S., Grainger has performed at several festivals such as the Portland Waterfront Blues Festival, Blues from the Top in Colorado and Austin City Limits. She has also opened the show for many extraordinary acts such as Peter Frampton, Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal and Jonny Lang, to name a few.

River City is located at 1400 Main St., Wheeling. For tickets, visit www.heritagemusicfest.com.

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