Curtis Salgado's musical journey began with his birth in Everett, Washington, in 1954. His family moved to Eugene, Oregon when he was one and he grew up there listening to jazz, and to his father, an aspiring singer of classical music. His ambitions coalesced when, at age 12, he saw Count Basie's band perform in Eugene. Curtis became a part of the burgeoning Northwest blues scene starting in 1972 with a band called Three-Fingered Jack. Eventually he hooked up with up-and-coming guitarist/vocalist Robert Cray, and recorded the album "Who's Been Talking." In six years with Robert, the higher level of visibility enabled Salgado to sit in with the likes of Muddy Waters, Bobby "Blue" Bland, Albert Collins and Bonnie Raitt. Aside from being a tremendous vocalist, Curtis is one of the finest blues harmonica players in the country. In 1979, when John Belushi was in Eugene filming Animal House, he caught Curtis' act and liked what he heard and saw. Curtis took the actor under his wing and schooled him on blues and R & B history, which Belushi soaked up like a sponge, and used a good portion of Curtis' show as the basis for the Blues Brothers act he and Dan Akroyd put together. The first Blues Brothers album was dedicated to Curtis.
"I'm playing music with the most incredible people," he says, " people are supporting me and a record company is supporting me....even in these tough times in the business. So I've got nothing to complain about. To me, I've won the lottery, I've won all the Grammys. I don't need stardom to feel validated. Of course, I'd like to sell a lot of records, as much for the company as for me, but on a personal level, I don't care. I'm alive! People are throwing so much love at me it's embarrassing. It makes me humble. So I'm just trying to stick to my guns, perfect my craft and make great music!"
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