Sugar Ray Norcia

09.08.2013

Biography

Sugar Ray and the Bluetones have been playing their unique style of blues the world over  for almost forty years. Not limited to one style, but able to play Chicago Blues in the style of Muddy Waters, Little Walter and Billy Boy  Arnold; Kansas City Swing in the style of "Big" Joe Turner; Texas Blues  like "T" Bone Walker and Freddie King; and the swampy Louisiana sounds  of "Lazy" Lester-all played with the distinctive originality of band  leader Sugar Ray Norcia, vocals and harmonica, guitarist "Monster" Mike  Welch, Anthony Geraci at the piano and Hammond Organ, Michael "Mudcat"  Ward playing acoustic and electric bass, and drummer Neil Gouvin.

All  of the members of Sugar Ray and the Bluetones have been featured on  other Artists recordings which include Hubert Sumlin, John Hammond,  Johnny Winter, Otis Grand, Pinetop Perkins, The Mannish Boys, Sugaray  Rayford, Debbie Davies, Duke Robillard, Ronnie Earl and many more.

Albums

1979 Sugar Ray and the Bluetones – "Oh Baby" and "Bite The Dust" (EP) Baron Records

1980 Little Boy Blue – Walter Horton live with Sugar Ray and the Bluetones JSP Records

1982 Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters Featuring the Sensational Sugar Ray (EP) Leopard Records

1984 Smoking – Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters featuring Sugar Ray and Kim Wilson Blacktop Records

1985 They Call Me Mister Earl – Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters (includes four Sugar Ray originals) Blacktop Records

1986 I Like It When It Rains – Ronnie Earl (Sugar Ray vocals on "Midnight Clothes") Antone's Records

1988 Deep Blues – Ronnie Earl and the Bluetones Blacktop Records

1989 Soul Deep – Miki Honycutt (with Sugar Ray and the Bluetones Band) Rounder Records

1989 Knockout – Sugar Ray and the Bluetones (Includes four Sugar Ray originals) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1991 JIMMY ROGERS WITH RONNIE EARL AND THE BROADCASTERS – (Live In Germany) (Sugar Ray on harmonica) Crosscut Records

1991 SURROUNDED BY LOVE – Ronnie Earl and the Broadcasters featuring Robert Jr. Lockwood and Sugar Ray Blacktop Records

1991 DON'T STAND IN MY WAY – Sugar Ray and the Bluetones (Includes five Sugar Ray originals) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1992 TEST OF TIME – Ronnie Earl Blacktop Records

1992 ANN PEEBLES – (Sugar Ray on Harmonica) Rounder Records

1994 NOTHING ELSE MATTERS – Otis Grand (includes Sugar Ray original "Careless Living") Sequel Records

1994 DEEP INTO IT – David Maxwell (Sugar Ray vocals on "Ain't Nobody's Business") Ocean Mist Records

1994 EVIL GAL BLUES – Michelle Willson (Sugar Ray and Michelle duet on "You Got What It Takes") Rounder Records

1994 TAKE IT FROM ME – Little Anthony and Sugar Ray (Includes four Sugar Ray originals) Tone-Cool Records

1994 DANCE ALL NIGHT – Roomful of Blues (includes two Sugar Ray originals) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1996 SO EMOTIONAL – Michelle Wilson (Sugar Ray and Michelle duet on "Real Lovin' Mama") Rounder Records

1996 RHYTHM AND BONES – Porkey Cohen (Sugar Ray vocals on "Sent For You Yesterday") Rounder Records

1996 TURN IT ON, TURN IT UP – Roomful of Blues (includes three Sugar Ray originals. Nominated for a Grammy Award in Best Traditional Blues Category) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1997 UNDER ONE ROOF – Roomful of Blues (includes three Sugar Ray originals) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1997 FUTURE BLUES – Ramblin' Dan Stevens Millenium Records

1997 ROOMFUL OF CHRISTMAS – Roomful of Blues Bullseye Blues And Jazz

1997 FARMER JOHN – Roomful of Blues (Live single from Bimbo's in San Francisco) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1998 GRAND UNION – Otis Grand featuring Anson Funderburg and Debbie Davis (includes Sugar Ray original "There Was A Time") Blueside Records

1998 SWEET AND SWINGING – Sugar Ray (includes songs by Percy Mayfield, Ray Charles and Hank Williams) Bullseye Blues and Jazz

1999 LATE NIGHT WALK – Michael Williams (featuring David "Fathead" Newman, Sugar Ray Norcia and Bruce Katz) Independent

 

 

Albums cont'd

1999 SUPERHARPS – James Cotton, Charlie Musslewhite, Sugar Ray Norcia and Billy Branch (three Sugar Ray originals) Grammy nomination in Best Traditional Blues Category Telarc Records

2000 YOU KNOCK ME OUT – Sax Gordon (Sugar Ray vocals on "You Knock Me Out" with Sax Gordon and Duke Robillard) Rounder Records

2000 BACK ON TOP – Pinetop Perkins (Sugar Ray harp on five songs) Telarc

2001 RAMBLIN DAN STEVENS – Millenium Records

2001 BLOW MR LOW – Doug James (Sugar Ray vocals on "Dirty People" and "I Want A Little Girl") Stony Plain Records

2001 ROCKIN' SUGAR DADDY – Sugar Ray and the Bluetones (includes six Sugar Ray originals with Kid Bangham on guitar) Severn Records

2003 SUGAR RAY AND THE BLUETONES FEATURING MONSTER MIKE WELCH Severn Records

2003 BLUES IN MY HEART – Chris Flory with Duke Robillard and Friends (Sugar Ray vocals on two songs)

2005 HANDS ACROSS THE TABLE – Sugar Ray and the Bluetones (Paul Size on guitar) Severn Records

2005 THE LEGEND – Jimmy "T99" Nelson (Sugar Ray plays harmonica on three songs) Nettie Marie Records

 2005 HOUSE OF BLUE RAGS – The Rico Blues Combo (Sugar Ray on three songs with Italian blues band from Gubbio, Italy) Pagina

2007  BOCCE BOGGIE – Live 1978 recording of Big Walter Horton with Sugar Ray and the Bluetones, Johnny Nicholas, Ronnie "Youngblood" Earl and Ted Harvey. Topcat Records

2007 DAYLIGHT JUMPER – Matt McCabe (Sugar Ray sings three songs) Spodehouse Records

2007 DUKE ROBILLARD'S WORLD FULL OF BLUES – (Sugar Ray plays harp on three songs) Stony Plain Records

2007 THAT'S WHAT I FOUND OUT– Maurizo Pugno (Sugar Ray co-writes, sings and plays harp on 14 out of 17 songs with Italian guitar player from Gubbio, Italy!)

2007 MY LIFE, MY FRIENDS, MY MUSIC – The Sugar Ray & The Bluetones Big Band Severn Records

2009 BETWEEN A ROCK AND THE BLUES – Joe Louis Walker (Sugar Ray and Joe Louis Walker acoustic duet on “Send You Back”) 2010 Blues Music Award for Album of the Year Stony Plain Records

2009 KILL THE COFFEE – Maurizio Pugno (Sugar Ray co-writes, sings and plays on seven songs) Pacific Blues

2010 GOODBYE LIZA JANE, HELLO WESTERN SWING – Lone Pine Western Swing Band Special guest... Herb Remington on Steel Guitar (Sugar Ray sings 13 Bob Wills songs!)

2010 SERENDIPITY – Anthony Geraci (Sugar Ray sings “I Can’t Go Back”) Hugadog Records)

2011 EVENING Sugar Ray and the Bluetones Severn Records

2016 LIVING TEAR TO TEAR - Sugar Ray and the Bluetones, Severn Records label

Testimonials

“Sugar Ray has great tone and great phrasing,  singing and playing the harp. One of my favorites!” – Charlie Musselwhite

“Sugar Ray is the real deal. There is nobody better to represent this music.” – Kim Wilson, The Fabulous Thunderbirds

“His approach to the harp is straight from the heart of Chicago Blues  but he’s not just recycling Little Walter licks.  Ray is clever and innovative and  he knows how to be flasy without overdoing it.” – David B. Watts, The Daily Hampshire Gazzett

Band

Sugar Ray and the Bluetones