Once a well-kept secret among select blues fans and Coloradoans in the know, the Lionel Young Band, formed by Lionel Young, Kim Stone, AnDré Mali, Dexter Payne and Jay Forrest, was relatively new on the North American and international blues circuit when they won the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge in 2011. That win afforded a bucketful of blues festival invitations, and their unique sound has enjoyed raves at festivals throughout the continental US and Canada for the last two years, working with Road Dawg Touring of Evergreen, CO. The band also made very successful appearances on the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise and in France.
The invitation from Steve Hecht to join the Piedmont Agency is a positive step for the band, harbinger of good things to come. Currently in rehearsal for a new album to follow up their successful On Our Way To Memphis (which has garnered prominent rotation on XM radio) this ground-breaking band will soon have more to talk about than the IBC win (or Lionel’s record as the only two-time IBC champ, ever). With gratitude for everyone who has helped achieve their current success, the Lionel Young Band is looking to a bright road ahead.
Director, agent and founder of Piedmont Talent in Charlotte, North Carolina, Steve Hecht oversees a diverse roster that includes such legendary acts as: Johnny Winter, James Cotton, Guy Davis, Candye Kane, Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Chas, Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater, Magic Slim & the Teardrops, and Sugar Blue.
Founded in 1989 and with a staff of 6, Piedmont Talent also handles: the Heritage Blues Orchestra, Davina & The Vagabonds, the Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band, Rosie Ledet & the Zydeco Playboys, Mike Zito, Karen Lovely, Shakura S’aida, Smoking Joe Kubek & Bnois King, Debbie Davies Band, Samantha Fish, Homemade Jamz’ Blues Band, Nora Jean, Eden Brent, Phil Wiggins & Corey Harris, Southern Hospitality, James “Super Chikan” Johnson, the Royal Southern Brotherhood, Southern Hospitality, Joe Krown Trio with Walter “Wolfman” Washington & Russell Batiste, JP Soars, Cassie Taylor and the Soul Calvary , Anson Funderburgh & The Rockets, Blues & Burlesque 2012 and others.
A relentless blues and roots advocate, Hecht is on the advisory board of The Blues Foundation, served two terms on the board of directors and has received two Keeping The Blues Alive Awards, given out annually by The Foundation.