Awards, recognition, and reviews

AWARDS

Hall of Fame 2006

 

Best Blues Band

1996, 1998, 2001, 2004

 

Best Bass Player

Rod Williamson, 2001

 

 

 

Ozark Music Awards

 

Overall Musicianship Award--2004, 2005

Best Horn Player--Brian Crowne 2000, 2004, 2005

Porky Hill Memorial Drummer of the Year--Stephen Boudreaux 2005 

Guitar Player of the Year--Gary Hutchison 2005

Lifetime Achievement Award -- Gary Hutchison 2004

Best Album Cover Art -- Prescription for the Blues (Jeanette Sinclair) 2001

Best Blues Band--1999

 

Voodoo Child Magazine--Hendrix Tribute DVD --Voted # 1 Hendrix Tribute in 2005

 

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The Press on Oreo Blue

http://www.championsforkids.org/video/easrazfestcombo4029.wmv

The commercial for Razorfest that features Oreo Blue snippet!

 

Hogwired.com November 11, 2006 (Hogville Tailgate) Press Release

Hogwired.com August 31, 2006 (Hogville Tailgate) Press Release

July 4th 2006 NWArkansas Times

Riverfest (Little Rock) review in Arkansas Times 06-09-2005

Gary Hutchison article in NWArk Times 11-29-04

UA Fort Smith Jazz Band Features Oreo Blue 04-02-03

Texarkana Rocks.com community speaks out about Oreo Blue shows at Players Club 11-10-03

Review by Al Kaplan, PhD. at bluesrockers.com of DVD

Review by Al Kaplan, PhD. at bluesrockers.com of Live By Demand

Daily Ardmorite for Two Frogs DVD Release Party 07-05-03 (Leah Simmons)

A review of the Hendrix Tribute DVD  by J. McDonald 06-05-03

Southwest Times Record--By Scott Smith 06-06-3

Fayetteville Free Weekly on the Hendrix  DVD 06-12-03

Two Guys Music Review of Hendrix Tribute DVD 06-05-03

A Review of the Hendrix Tribute DVD by Tim Jones 06-05-03

Hendrix: Red Hot and (Oreo) Blue--Morning News of NWA 02-21-03

Oreo Blue Experience DVD Review Page

50 Years of Gary Hutchison by Stephen Boudreaux

Experiencing Jimi  By Wanda Freeman 02-21-03

Urban Tulsa Weekly on Ten Down 05-01-02

Ten Down by Morning News of NWA 04-06-02

All About Town on Ten Down-Live at the ByPass 05-01-02

Daily Ardmorite on Oreo Blue 03-21-02

Daily Ardmorite on Oreo Blue 12-14-01

All About Town on Oreo Blue Video 03-01-02

Fayetteville Free Weekly on Ten Down-Live at the Bypass

Southwest Times Record--March 21, 2002

Southwest Blues Review of Nothin' But the Blues

Southwest Blues Review of Prescription for the Blues

Southwest Times Record Rx for the Blues Release

Delta Snake Daily Blues on Oreo Blue

Ten Down-Live at the ByPass Official Release

Prescription for the Blues Official Release

Press Clips

Tribute: something given or contributed voluntarily as due or deserved; especially : a gift or service showing respect, gratitude, or affection; something  that indicates the worth or virtue of the one in question.

"That Jimi Hendrix is due respect, gratitude , or affection comes as no surprise. Hendrix reinvented the electric guitar as we know it today, and there is scarcely a player who plugs a Fender Strat into a Marshall amp that doesn't owe the master a debt. To pay a musical tribute to the man, or in this case, to play a tribute to him, is a tall order- like writing a sonnet for Shakespeare. So when the veteran R&B band Oreo Blue decided to become the Oreo Blue Experience Tribute To Jimi, they approached the project with a profound appreciation for the both the technical skill and the spirit of the late, great Hendrix. The bands' desire to evoke the freedom and electricity of a Jimi Hendrix performance is attained by a rare combination of musical talent and beyond-the-boundaries risk-taking. The result is not mimicry or a paint-by-numbers greatest hits set, but a highly creative, emotional performance that embraces the familiar and the obscure, the subtlety and the bombast of The Experience."--by Tim Jones

"Great Live DVD with killer sound."
"Just recieved this new Oreo Blue Experience CD/DVD in the mail. The sound quality is amazing...crystal clear and punchy. The show was filmed nicely and features some really cool versions of Hendrix tunes done by a band in top form. Seems like the band was having a great time on stage. It has great versions of some of Hendrix's best stuff and features this great unreleased Hendrix tune called Strato Strutt...a really cool fusion type tune with some nice added percussion. The guitar and sax work is smokin' thoughout the whole set. You can either listen to the CD or play the DVD and watch the show. At any case it's definitely worth the money. It would be a great DVD to put on at a party. When I play it in the store it gets the place rockin'...play it loud!!! you'll see."--Reviewer: Steve (Two Guys Music) Rhode Island

"Unlike a lot of blues bands, the members of Oreo Blue pay as much attention to their lyrics as to their musicianship on `Ten Down,' and the result is a disc that satisfies on both levels.  Even their cover songs are well-chosen, and given just enough of a different spin to justify their being redone. This is a solid and intriguing disc."--John Wooley, Tulsa World entertainment writer on Ten Down-Live at the ByPass 

"Arkansas quartet has a polished sound that comes only from lots of performance experience.  Front men and guitarists Brian Crowne and Gary Hutchison are backed up by drummer Stephen Boudreaux and bassist Rod Williamson on 11 tunes expertly produced at Fat Rabbit Studios"--Blues Access 2001 on “Oreo Blue “Rx for the Blues”

“Rx for the Blues from Arkansas based group Oreo Blue is also distinguished  by strong writing and production.  Brian Crownes’ saxophone adds an extra dimension to the R&B/funky rock sound of this project.  The minor key blues “Nobody Knows, the swingin Why’d Ya Do It To Me, and the 70’s strut of Settle Down are the albums best. --Blues Revue Fall 2000 on “Rx for the Blues”

An excerpt from Nightflying editor Peter Read's article addressing the new CD, "Prescription for the Blues": One of Arkansas' most popular bands, Oreo blue, has just released their fifth CD, entitled RX For The Blues, an exceptional offering by an equally exceptional group. Recorded at Van Buren's Fat Rabbit Studio in March of this year, the CD contains 11 cuts of hot inspired rhythm and blues with a heady dose of playful swing and downright soulful rock 'n' roll. I've followed this band from the start and have enjoyed the evolution...from basic bar band beginnings through a stack of tours and each of their recordings. And now RX For The Blues proves this band has made the transition to professional producers as well, here delivering a studio performance that every bit equals the delightful energy they produce live. Unlike previous offerings, this is the 'stripped-down' basic 4-piece band, [without] all the accoutrements of guest musicians that dot their other recordings. And it's fine, too...as the resulting product portrays the very real power of music in its purest form played by seasoned, professional musicians who know each other's musical moves intimately. Oreo Blue consists of Brian Crowne on sax, guitar and vocals; Gary Hutchison on guitar and vocals; Rod Williamson on bass; and Stephen Boudreaux on drums and vocals...Kudos to Oreo Blue for such a fine outing. If fate and muses are kind you won't be able to see this group in the near future without having to go through TicketMaster. --Peter Read

What People Are Saying

Rock-n-Roll giant Ronnie Hawkins, who gave "The Band" and producer, David Foster, their starts in the music business said, "this band has the talent and the work ethic to go all the way!".

Doug Huffman, drummer to the super group "BOSTON" '87-'94 said, "they have been a favorite band of mine and I'm excited about filling the drum chair!"

Richard Davis publisher of The Travler said, "Oreo packed the dance floor with their original songs that held every emotional range imaginable!"

Linda Seibold of the Times Record said, "Brian and the rest of the band are a tightly meshed groove machine!"

Peter Read publisher of Nightflying Entertainment Guide said, "Oreo Blue is positively one helluva band and are definite contenders with the major players in the industry!"

Brett Brewer of the Bricktown Blues Festival OKC said, "Oreo Blue took the air out of an open air concert!"

Live By Demand  So, you attended one or both nights of the Oreo Blue live album recording sessions at Roster's Blues Club in April. And you signed the guest book so your name could appear as "co-producer" on the band's T-shirts and the double CD liner notes.  Now, you want to check out the finished product? You asked for it, you got it.  This weekend Rooster's will host the album release party for the new Oreo Blue double disk live CD. Between live performances, member of the band will autograph the CD's and T-shirts that display the signatures of the 500 or so people who turned out for the two April concert/recording sessions.  Just before I took a 4th of July break, Oreo Blue saxman, band leader and vocalist Brian Crowne brought me a copy of the CD. It was so fresh off the press it didn't have its 12-page liner note booklet inserted yet. But it had the more than 100 minutes captured live of smoldering, smokin', soaring sax by Brian, gritty, hard-hitting vocals by Chris Payton, the rock-solid rhythms of bassman Rod Williamson and drummer Don Orrel and the amazing range, technique and tone of local guitar guru Gary Hutchison (who speaks fluent guitar, in all of its dialects). -- Southwest Times Record, Linda Seubold

Brickhouse Blues Fest in OKC was just incredible. We would like to thank Brewer Entertainment and Martin Herlocher for bringing us over and thank you to our new OKC fans for the wonderful show!!! -- Oreo Blue, Special Thanks

Oreo Blue is a high-energy progressive R&B band with talented seasoned musicians who share a passion to entertain. Oreo has developed a unique style of funky-rockin-blues. They perform their kind of music with a driving vengeance that exhilarates their audience. Oreo Blue is composed of Brian Crowne (sax and vocals), Chris Payton (vocals), Gary Hutchinson (guitar and vocals), Rod Williamson (bass) and Mike Lovelady (drums). Their list of references is long and they play to packed houses in Fayetteville and many sites in a 4-state area. -- Arkansas Democrat Gazette

1998 was a tremendous year for Oreo Blue. Oreo was featured on the international radio show "The Beale Street Caravan." This has opened up doors in radio airplay on the east coast and the northwest. Oreo Blue is receiving airplay in some European markets and two markets in Australia. The band has also just released their latest CD "Nuthin' but the Blues"! It is an exciting journey down the different blues roads from Chicago to New Orleans. They have performed at the festivals and clubs all over the country to blown away audiences. The feedback and energy from the audiences has been incredible!

Oreo also signed a publishing deal with One Music Nashville to place their music on movie soundtracks. Oreo Blue is also featured on the web company Audiohighway.com.

"Earned The Right" by Oreo Blue  These guys kick big time butt, y'all. I mean they cook. I've seen'em light up the stage and I'd be willing to bet you have too. You're bound to have; seems like they have played every venue in Arkansas. And if you haven't seen Oreo Blue, you owe it to yourself to check the Sound listings and catch their act as soon as you can. If your not into the bar scene but you do like the blues, I suggest you buy this disc. It's a plenty good dose of the blues, baby. Chris Payton is the lead vocalist - sounds a bit like Miss Molly - with that deep, full voice. The inimitable Gary Hutchinson adds vocals and his own brand of blues guitar . Brian Crowne contributes vocals, guitar, and a bit of gritty saxophone. Rod Williamson and Mike Lovelady drive the group on bass and drums, respectively ( and respectively ). Recorded at Omega Sounds in Fort Smith, the album consists of originals put together by various members or the whole bygod band and should you be of the mind that songs by committee don't work, check out "Earned The Right". I'd say they got it.  -- Nightflying, Indie.

"Earned The Right" by Oreo Blue  First, I must say I am impressed. The production values on Oreo Blue's self-produced first recording, fittingly named "Earned The Right" is first class. An A-1 production from the packaging to the recording itself. Recorded and mixed at Omega Sound in Ft. Smith, its just goes to show what can be done here in the hills. The song list ( all Oreo Blue originals ) includes two titles credited to the group, four y band member Brian Crowne and associates, and three by the newest member of the group, Gary Hutchinson. Each song merits recognition. Especially noteworthy are the title tracks, the bluesy "She Exudes the Blues" and the hauntingly beautiful "Tell Me What You Need".  One of Fayetteville's favorite blues acts, Oreo Blue has indeed earned the right over the past few years even though they have experienced some personnel changes. Chris Payton's heartfelt vocals bring your soul right up into your throat. She is definitely the heart and soul of this act. Drummer Mike Lovelady is the glue of the group and bassist Rod the beat of the band. Hutchinson, one of the area's hottest blues guitarists adds power to the set that sends the message home. Last, but not least, vocalist, saxophonist and guitarist Brian Crowne is Oreo Blue. His vocals and sax attacks always bring out the crowds when the group plays local venues.-- Fayetteville Free Weekly

 

 

 

 

 

Reviews of Oreo Blue--The Trio from GarageBand.com

 

Blah Blah, Woof Woof

Track of the Day on 19Sep2008 in Blues Rock

Best Drums in Blues Rock, week of 13Oct2008

 

I-540 Song

Track of the Day on 19Sep2008 in Groove Rock
Track of the Day on 4Dec2008 in Pop
Track Of The Week on 20Oct2008 in Groove Rock
Best Male Vocals in Groove Rock, week of 22Sep2008
Best Male Vocals in Groove Rock, week of 29Sep2008
Best Guitars in Groove Rock, week of 29Sep2008
Best Production in Groove Rock, week of 22Sep2008
Best Lyrics in Groove Rock, week of 27Oct2008
Best Mood in Groove Rock, week of 29Sep2008


Home Run

Track of the Day on 20Sep2008 in Blues Rock

Best Lyrics in Blues Rock, week of 22Sep2008
Most Original in Blues Rock, week of 22Sep2008
Rocking Track in Blues Rock, week of 29Sep2008

 

 

Re:  Blah Blah, Woof Woof

*Layin' It Down
Nice feel...great groove.
The guitar work is the way I like it...straight from the amp and no toys to make it sound good,
The bass has the fat tone I like and is holding down the low end...right there in the pocket.
The drums are right on the money but could be brought up a little in mix. Like this track even though it's a little muddy [listened to on line @ 128kbps streaming]...Thumbs up guys.

- rattlinbones
Dallas, Texas


*Purple hazy intro
Easy to spot the Hendrix influence here. Guitar playing is eminently competent and as wig outs go reasonably entertaining. Drums are adequate rather than virtuoso and it might be better to have a bit more dynamics / variation from bass and drums in there to lift things. Go on give the drummer a solo too!

- dave_faulkner
Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, United Kingdom


*review
took a lick out of Jimi's book and made it your own! I like what you've done with it. Nice tone on the guitar, would be interested to know the setup. Some really heroics going on there. The drums aren't doing anything particularly exciting - but that is a good thing. Just holding down the rhythm with a nice "in the pocket" feel. Good Job.

- ChristopherLynn
Joplin, Missouri

*Jimi Rock!!!!
Wow!!!! Nice Hendrix Influence here!!! Groovy and rocking!!!! Goin to town Man!!!! Nice chromatic changes to boot!!!

Cheers Mates!!!

- Tonythekid
Watertown, Connecticut


Re:  Home Run
 

*SRV TONES ABOUND!!
Texas style blues complete with an SRV tone on the git, singing about a chick, what else can a guy want!!!
Cheers mates!!!!

- Tonythekid
Watertown, Connecticut

*Jimmi Will Never Die
Love th effects used by the guitarist. Cool track.

- jasonmhol
Terre Haute, Indiana


*Tom Petty and Sting Play Ball
I liked the laid back groove provided by the Bass on this tune.It kinda carries you along like floatin on a stream.A good beat as well by the drums.  I also liked several things about the guitar work on the song.Nice, clean chords. Good rythym work!
A taste of overdrive on the fills yet maintaining a balance in the song.No grandstanding.Nice.  On the other hand,the guitarist lost me on a rather long,wah wah solo toward the end.It,by virtue of the tone,the wah wah,and the chops utilized,had a kind of hendrix quality that seemed out of character for this song which had more of a Steely Dan flavor.  
I also liked the vocal on this tune.They had a Tom Petty quality and when the backup came in,it reminded me of Sting.A good lyric as well.
If you replace the "Hendrix" thing with something a litte more Skunk Baxter it would keep things cool!

- fubillt
Gainesville, Georgia


*Sizzlin..
Dude, the vocals are nice and strong. Cool tone and range..Like the lyrics too. Sweet guitar licks befre the verses..Very claptonish..Good job on this one..

- teddygriffin
Springfield, Missouri

*inflection and passion
The Vocals are clear and full of self confidence
The lead guitar is sharp, played very clean and crisp with good inflection and passion
The lyric I find to be quite good and tasteful
They have character,
The song is produced well and the overall performance is balanced.
Witty with a little humor and lots of emotion make the song great.
Keep this up it is good.

- bjcmusic
Victorville, California

Re: I-540 Song

*The vocals are killer. good story. it set and kept the mood. like mothers arms around you. warm and comforting..good frickrn job guys.

- sweatleaf
Wellington, Kansas

*moody!
There's a very nice vulnerability to the vocals in the verses. i was hoping the chorus would be just as engaging. the lyrics strike me as being good. sounds like a natalie merchant type mood going on. Guitar solo is quite tasty, yum. simple but cool blues, strat style.

- remedymusic

*Watch out Jack Johnson
This song lyrics are very captivating, they feel good. Most times when listening to a song for the first time the lyrics do jump out at you but this song was different. The lyrical content jumps right out at you. This is definitely a sing along song. This song could also easily be a cross gener hit because the artist weaves together elements of rock and new country.

- kupid299
Baltimore, Maryland

 

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Reviews of the Hendrix DVD Release from CDBaby

5 out of 5 stars I liked the CD verry much ...
Reviewer: coverman2002
It's my favourite cover band of Jimi.. The best thing I like from the CD is the sax .


 

 A great DVD and CD combination
Reviewer: Marc Cerrato
I really enjoyed the DVD and the music cd which is the audio of the DVD. A combination well worth the price of admission. Check it out and sit back and enjoy the show.


 

5 out of 5 stars Wicked guitar ..great band !
Reviewer: ELECTRIXBLUE
Excellant CD..If your a fan of Jimi Hendrix you will not be dissapointed by this bands interputation of Hendrix music. Even the sax found its way perfect in the blend. This is not a tribute band, but a excellant band paying homage to a truly great guitar player.This CD also contains a DVD of the concert which I truly enjoyed viewing...will be a favorite for a long time..so buy this CD/DVD pop it in your player, sit back and get EXPERIENCE oreo blue stly!


 

5 out of 5 stars Almost as good as live!
Reviewer: J P
I was there that night and love the DVD almost as much as the live performance. Few bands play with the passion Oreo Blue dose. This DVD and seeing them play live is a must for any blues/rock fan.


 

5 out of 5 stars The Greatest!
Reviewer: Ronnie Miller
The Oreo Blue Experience is absolutely a fantastic tribute to Jimi Hendrix. The work that Oreo Blue put into making this a 5 star music CD is absolutely amazing! I agree with some of the other reviewers....this CD should be making the airwaves on the radio! If you ever even thought that you liked any Jimi Hendrix music, you will be very pleased with The Oreo Blue Experience. I'm sure that Jimi is smiling over the work that Oreo Blue did to take this music to the next level. This CD is a MUST HAVE!!!


 

5 out of 5 stars Should be on the airwaves!!
Reviewer: Travis Thompson
The most spectacular tribute to Hendrix available. Loaded with licks that you would swear were Jimi. Packed with awesome tunes and both DVD and CD. What more could you ask for? I would suggest all of the Oreo Blue titles you can get your hands on. True Musicians!


 

5 out of 5 stars Makes Ya wanna play the whole cd, for me sax!
Reviewer: Searcy Ewell,Jr.
Excellent DVD-CD .Great footage high energy.Makes Ya wanna play the whole cd, for me sax!XXX the percussionist.I'm glad he inspired this cd-dvd,and I pray he's a better drummer.


 

5 out of 5 stars I had no idea how much I'd love it!
Reviewer: Reuven Bardach / Tel Aviv Israel
I've seen and heared many Hendrix tributes, but this one comes from love. The guitar-sax arrangements are fabulous, especially on little wing. The guitar playing is superb throughout. Red House is a blues masterpiece, with licks Jimi himself would have digged. And the rythm section is solid and funky, with some of the best drum and bass lines I've heared. The CD/DVD package is a real treat. Why have'nt I heared of OREO BLUE before? We have a strong blues audience here. We've had visits by BB King, Buddy Guy, Hiram Bullock, Paul Rodgers, John Mayall and many others. I'll try and connect you with some promotors and clubs, maybe we'll see OB here someday. Please thank the four members of OB for their love of music, passionate playing and talented singing.


 

5 out of 5 stars Excellent! I was more than impressed.
Reviewer: Chase Telford
I have seen them once live and read the reviews so I had high hopes. I was completely surprised by just how much better it was than I thought it was going to be. I echo all other reiveiws with great video and great sound quaility. I really felt like I was there that night.


 

5 out of 5 stars Best Hendrix tribute I have heard
Reviewer: Al Kaplan
I have several Hendrix tribute CDs in my collection and I quickly found that this is my favorite (yes, I even like it better than the Hamster's tribute). Last year I purchased their Ten Down CD and became an Oreo Blue fan. When I saw that they had a Hendrix tribute available, I couldn't quite see, based on Ten Down, where the Hendrix influence came in. This just goes to show that you can't judge a band by its previous CD. I have never seen them live, but I imagine they have been including Hendrix material in their set for years. I also had a few reservations about how a sax would fit in a Hendrix tribute. Wrong again. The sax player enhances rather than detracts from the music. The guitar playing is tremendous. Gary Hutchison, one of those guys who deserves guitar-god status in my opinion, has the knack for capturing Jimi's style of playing while avoiding any attempt to copy him note-for-note. It also doesn't hurt that he really knows his way around a wah-wah pedal. The band is tight, the recording quality excellent, the choice of covers right up my alley (versions of Voodoo Chile, Hey Joe, Red House, and All along the Watchtower that are around 10 minutes each). This is one of the best purchases I have made in months.


 

5 out of 5 stars Great Live DVD with killer sound.
Reviewer: Steve (Two Guys Music) RI
Just recieved this new Oreo Blue Experience CD/DVD in the mail. The sound quality is amazing...crystal clear and punchy. The show was filmed nicely and features some really cool versions of Hendrix tunes done by a band in top form. Seems like the band was having a great time on stage. It has great versions of some of Hendrix's best stuff and features this great unreleased Hendrix tune called Strato Strutt...a really cool fusion type tune with some nice added percussion. The guitar and sax work is smokin' thoughout the whole set. You can either listen to the CD or play the DVD and watch the show. At any case it's definitely worth the money. It would be a great DVD to put on at a party. When I play it in the store it gets the place rockin'...play it loud!!! you'll see.

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Reviews of Ten Down Live at the ByPass from CDBaby

5 out of 5 stars An absolute must have for your Blues collection!
Reviewer: Ronnie
This CD is the next best thing to a GREAT live experience listening to Oreo Blue. It deserves the 5 star rating for sure!


 

5 out of 5 stars Smokin!
Reviewer: Ray Hill
This CD is the next best thing to seeing this band live, and that is an experience in itself! Outstanding!

 

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Reviews of Rx For the Blues from CDBaby

5 out of 5 stars great cd
Reviewer: Cecil Neely
awesome band, great guitar and vocals


 

5 out of 5 stars Infectious...that's what this CD is
Reviewer: Jimmy Jeeves
I listened to the sample of "Let Me Be" and I was hooked, but don't think this is the only great song on this CD...this album is full of great blues guitar, in the pocket bass & drums, and Brian with his gutsy vocals and sax playing makes this one jamming CD!