Blues Fest: Backstage with the B-3 Boss

One man who’s been a linchpin at the Blues Fest for more than 20 years is B-3 Hammond organ virtuoso Louis Pain. Not only does he perform with several artists over the four-day festival, he’s also in charge of making sure all the organs on multiple stages are maintained – a significant task.

Integral to the Portland music community, especially the blues scene, Pain is a staple at several venues around the city multiple times per week. His prowess on the B-3 has earned him the nickname “King Louie.” He’s the go-to organ guy for major traveling acts (Solomon Burke, Martha Reeves, Curtis Salgado), as well as a generous team player for A-list Portland bands (Linda Hornbuckle, Mel Brown, Soul Vaccination).

Photo: Tracy Turner-Pain

Photo: Tracy Turner-Pain

In Rebecca’s backstage interview with the “B-3 boss,” he talks about the Blues Fest’s incredible growth, why Blues Fest audiences are special, the rigors of both performing and wrangling organs at the same event – and which of his organ students will be on keyboard with Curtis Salgado tomorrow night!


Rebecca Webb

Rebecca Webb is the Founder and Team Leader at Portland Radio Project Listen Now

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