Big Joe Louis & His Blues Kings had their first LP issued at the beginning of May 1989 - selling out the first pressing after only four days in the shops. Veteran producer Mike Vernon said of the session:
"Working with Big Joe Louis And His Blues Kings was a real experience and one I would not have missed for the world. Take it from me - this is as tough as it gets this side of the pond!"
In 1992, a new Mike Vernon-produced CD and LP was issued on the Dutch Tramp label, reflecting the group’s increasing popularity in Europe. On the release of the new record, a sell-out concert was held at one of the premier music clubs in The Netherlands, Amsterdam's "Paradiso Club", and was filmed and recorded for a double live compilation CD released in June 1992. In autumn 1995, the band completed their third studio album with guests including (ex-Muddy Waters/Magic Slim guitarist) John Primer. The band have also recorded with Mississippi Delta Blues legend David “Honeyboy” Edwards and Big Joe Louis has recorded with Van Morrison and Jools Holland. For two years from the beginning of 2000, Big Joe Louis was the singer with the legendary UK Rhythm & Blues band the Big Town Playboys.
Big Joe Louis was born in Jamaica, West Indies, and moved to the UK during the 1970s. The Blues Kings were formed 18 years ago and have taken their special kind of real down-home Blues to venues the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland and with great success in virtually every country in Western Europe and Scandinavia. 1998 and 1999 brought two invitations to play in the USA, leading to exceptional reviews. A groundbreaking tour of Norway and Russia (filmed for Russian TV) in October 1993 brought blues to the north of Russia for the first time and a 1996 trip to Bulgaria was enthusiastically received. Big Joe Louis And His Blues Kings have recorded radio and TV sessions worldwide and the last 2 years have seen trips to South Africa, Poland, Finland, France, Belgium, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and Egypt as well as two visits to the Caribbean for the Mustique Blues Festival.
British Blues Awards:
Best Male Vocalist 1993, 1994
Best Male Vocalist 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001
Best Guitarist 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999
Best Band 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999
The Blues Kings are the UK’s first choice to accompany visiting American traditional/down-home Blues artists, and were invited to the 12th Dresden Blues Festival, to perform with members of the Mississippi Delta Blues package tour. Many artists and managers now specifically request the Blues Kings to accompany them in Europe.