photo by Rueben Atkins
With legendary clubs like Antone’s and iconic performers like Stevie Ray Vaughn, it’s no wonder the blues hold a special place in the Austin music scene. In recent years, nobody has done more to ensure the blues remain an important part of the Austin music experience than Nakia. A consummate band leader and incredible vocal talent, Nakia has worked hard to keep blues & soul music thriving in the Live Music Capitol of the World from the moment he arrived in 2002. Since then, Nakia has appeared as a contestant on NBC’s The Voice, shared the stage with legends like CeeLo, Sharon Jones and Alejandro Escovedo, and has become a vocal advocate for Austin musicians. His new project with The Blues Grifters finds Nakia digging deep into his appreciation of Southern blues and soul with songs like “Driving Wheel” and “Somebody Loan Me a Dime”. During his recent visit to Studio 1A we also got to listen to his contribution to the ALL ATX: Low Down Violet Crown compilation benefitting Austin musicians. You can listen to Nakia’s take on the Allman Brothers classic “Whippin’ Post” plus a couple more with his reunited Blues Grifters band in the player below.