3RD DEGREE Mission Statement
Our mission is to spread the blues power , history and love of the music. So sit back enjoy our website please feel free to contact us and come see us perform and even sit in with us ! " Blues is the roots everything else is just the fruits ! " Willie Dixon. 3rd Degree can play soul , dixieland , jazz and rock & roll if you want it ! " We wanna fill up the dance floor " A.C.
" Here's a local band that should be making headlines all across the nation . " Jim Santella , Southland Blues,
cd review Jan. 2004,www.southlandblues.com
Sherry Pruitt aka "The Texas Songbird" Born in Beaumont Texas in 1956, into a devoutly religious family that includes ministers and gospel musicians, blues diva Sherry Pruitt made her musical debut in church at age six, with a solo rendition of ''Eyes On The Sparrow.'' Revealing an abundance of raw musical talent early on, Sherry stayed true to her calling and continued singing in church and at school throughout her formative years. In 1974 at age 18, she moved to Los Angeles with her family and began to pursue her dream of becoming a professional singer. Her abilities with gospel music translated handily to singing the blues as well as popular music and she soon began appearing around town in local night clubs and lounges. Eager to improve at her craft and not satisfied to rely solely on her considerable natural ability, Sherry took up vocal training with two of the best coaches in the business, Ronnie Hasley and Bill Collier, who helped her develop the polish and professionalism that is so evident in her performances today.
Sherry's musical odessey has taken her all over the world, even as far away as Tahiti. When, in 1991, a gospel booking in South Africa fell through and left her stranded for three months, she was taken under the wings of two of that country's greatest popular entertainers, Blondie Makhene and Brenda Fassie. While in South Africa, she absorbed a wealth of musical and cultural experiences and was able to turn a financial disaster into a tremendous opportunity for personal and professional growth. By 1997 Sherry was ready to ''bring it'' to the Peer Belgium Blues Festival. Performing with the Barry Levenson Band (Barry Levenson of Canned Heat), on the same day as Buddy Guy, Robert Cray, Ike Turner, John Mayall, Joe Louis Walker, Jeniva Magness and The Five Blind Boys of Alabama, Sherry delivered a tour de force performance of Levenson originals that included, Born To Sing The Blues, Steal Away and Te Na Ne Na Nu.
Aaron "BigHands" Chapman bandleader, guitarist and vocalist, cut his teeth early on the South Side of Chicago which was and is a hotbed for "amplified blues". Growing up in Cabrini Green and the Robert Taylor homes two of the toughest housing projects was his first lesson of the Blues. Drawing influences from Pops Staples , Lefty Dizz , Albert King , Buddy Guy , Walter Scott , Billy Flynn , Vance Kelly , Bob Stroger , Lurrie Bell and Curtis Mayfield to name a few . The historical Maxwell Street was a weekend experience sometimes with my dad and brother that was full of musical treats . Befriended by the late great Godfather of the Blues Junior Wells was an honor !
Aarons' Facebook page: www.facebook.com/aaron.chapman1
Melvin "Sunset Slim" Mitchell is a riveting presence on the harmonicas. He hails from Cleveland, Ohio, but his wide exposure to the Chicago Blues scene becomes evident in his performances. Slim cites Chicago greats like Billy Branch and Sugar Blue as having the biggest impact on his career.
Billy Pulliam bass player and vocals. Billy does a great job of holding down the bottom, playing bass lines as they are meant to be played, following the original bass parts to give our blues cover tunes their original feel and sound. Billy has shared the stage with Dick Dale and many others. He also writes his own tunes and is just a good all around friend and musician.
Mr. Jeff Fish on drums is both a professional percussion teacher as well as a performing drummer for the band. His range of musical interest spans from classical, blues, funk, rock, R&B, you name it, he plays it. Fun, reliable, and easy to get along with Jeff is our guy on drums.
Harrison "Hatch" Manell grew up with the piano in the house , his mother Adelle recieved in 1931 . Hatch fooled around with the keys until he learned some basic chords . He found a couple of friends that played guitars and soon was playing local parties and school dances . Through high school and beyond , he played in several local blues - rock groups at local clubs . His musical influences include Brian Auger , Savoy Brown , Santana , Clapton , Keith Emerson , and the Jazz Crusaders to name a few . Family life took over , but once the kids grew up "Hatch" was back on the scene with renewed enthusiasm . He studied piano and music for 3 years with teacher and pianist Lindsey Hundley of Long Beach, Calif.
I'd rather go blind , Ooh Poo Pah Doo , If you should lose me , Someone else is slip'n in , Groove me ,Mojo workin , Rollin stone , You shook me , Bo Diddley medely , Spoonful , Lil Red Rooster , Backdoorman , Ain't superstitious , killin floor , tore down , goin down , love her with a feelin , chains of love , Midnight hour , knock on wood ,634-5789 , love and happiness , The thrill is gone , let the goodtimes roll , jambalaya , Blues is alright , born under a bad sign , why I sing the blues , last 2 dollars , Shade tree mechanic , down home blues , bad to the bone , dust my broom , sky is cryin , chitlins con carne , cissy strut , messin with the kid , all your lovin , yonders wall , use me up , high heel sneakers , big bossman , roadhouse blues , boom boom , pride and joy , crawlin king snake , Lowrider , Cisco kid , slippin into darkness , back at the chickenshack , sittin on the dock of the bay , titty man, strokin , redhouse , Johnny B. Goode , 19 yrs. old , stand by me , shout , tequila , waiting in vain , stir it up , leave my girl alone , if lovin you is wrong I don't wanna be right , lets get it on , I wouldn't treat a dog ! , St. James infirmary , green onions , phone booth , drownin on dry land , scratch my back , off the wall , give me back my wig ! , Damn right I got the blues ! , soul fixin man ,Miss you , Ain't that a bitch , Real mutha 4 ya , tons of blues and soul music the list goes on and on !