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Interview: Ron Michaels (of Blue Plate Special): Can You Dig It! September 9, 2010

Posted by David W. King in Interview.
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This interview was originally given to me in 2009. One of twenty four interviews with different Blues artists, this was to be part of an eBook. When my hard-drive froze, the ebooks that I had written (all seventeen of them) were irretrievably lost (or so I thought. ALWAYS back up your work). This was as devastating as losing original manuscripts to a fire or a flood.

Just recently these interviews were discovered saved on my ISP. Although they do not have the photos intended for the book, the interviews were all here; all complete and in their entirety.

They will now be offered in their entirety as given to me in the weeks to come.

What a record! With a history that stretches back to a day when the band opened for Howlin’ Wolf, Blue Plate Special has had 24 songs chart #1 on Blues radio stations throughout the world–not because of some big-moneyed corporate push, but because their listeners liked them.

Formed in 1969 by blues singer/songwriter R. P. Michaels, Blue Plate Special was there at The Cellar in Arlington Heights, Illinois in ’69-’72 opening for Howlin’ Wolf, Willie Dixon’s Chicago Blues Allstars, Zephyr w/Tommy Bolin on guitar and The Bob Seger System.

They were among the artists that played at the Otis Spann Memorial Benefit where Willie Dixon and Buddy Guy introduced the Blues community to Koko Taylor singing Wang Dang Doodle. They have been the house band at John Belushi and Dan Akroyd’s Blues Brothers Bar on Wells Street; and they have entertained at the Chicago Bears¬†Fan Convention and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Convention, as well as other big corporately sponsored events.

Over the years, Blue Plate Special has shared the concert stage with Charlie Musselwhite, Paul Butterfield, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, Siegal-Schwall Blues Band, Heartsfield, Leon Russell, Edgar Winter, Lonnie Brooks, Ronnie Baker Brooks, Lil’ Ed and the Blues Imperials, Mitch Ryder, The Kinsey Report, Larry McCray and Wayne Baker Brooks.
Ron Michaels, the founder of the band,  gave us this interview and gave us the low down on Blue Plate Special. This band has brought a lot to the table, and will likely be there long after the dishes have been cleared away.