The second phase of Blues Alley kicked off last month: This phase includes JD Moore, Frank Campagna, and Desiree’ Vaniecia.
JD’s mural depicts R.T. Ashford, businessman/entrepreneur who was a key figure in the export of Dallas’ sound. Ashford owned a music shop advertised in the Dallas Express as The Black Swan Music Shop. Ashford is himself a black swan given all of his accomplishments growing up in the Jim Crow South. Finding no portraits of him online, JD decided to depict him as just that, a black swan. The illustrations used in newspaper ads also played a role in gaining interest and giving the music they accompanied, a visual identity.
In this mural, Campagna features Sam Myers (Campagna’s old friend) and Johnny Winter. Meyer’s legacy began playing with Elmore James (who is mentioned in the Beatles song ‘For You Blue’). The other figure depicted is Johnny Winter, an internationally known blues guitarist from Beaumont, Texas. Johnny’s career took him to the highest highs of playing at the Woodstock Music & Art Fair in 1969, jamming with Jimi Hendrix and being seriously considered as a finalist to replace Brian Jones as one of the Rolling Stones. Overall, it shows his outstanding ability of playing blues guitar. In all, Campagna believes both these artists deserve to be recognized in this project for their contributions to Dallas, to blues music and to the history of what became later known as Rock & Roll.