Duke Tumatoe & the Power Trio
This event was supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Duke Tumatoe, born William “Bill” Severen Fiorio in 1947, is an American blues guitarist, vocalist and songwriter. He has gigged with Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, B.B. King, Willie Dixon, Buddy Guy, John Fogerty and George Thorogood. He was a founding member of arena-rock giants REO Speedwagon. He has released fifteen albums as the bandleader of Duke Tumatoe & The All-Star Frogs and Duke Tumatoe & The Power Trio. His 1988 live album I Like My Job was produced by John Fogerty. He typically plays more than 100 dates per year.
“The first time I heard Duke it gave me chills,” said Fogerty. “I hadn’t experienced energy like that in a long time. It was like walking in on Jimmy Swaggart in his heyday. Everybody in the audience was shouting and screaming and having a good time. I mean the crowd was just eating out of this guy’s hand. Immediately the light went on in my head–somebody ought to record these guys.”
Tumatoe is a self-taught guitarist who learned to play by watching Chicago’s blues legends. His guitar playing has been described as “B.B. King played through Jimi Hendrix (with a touch of Andy Gill).”
Tumatoe’s songs are noted for their humor, something he explains as, “There are two elements of the blues. There’s the general intensity of the music…and an element of humor, some twist in the lyrics. It’s like a comedian turning something sad into something funny.”
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