Blue Monday Monthly

Nigel Egg is a middle-class, middle-age Englishman who lives in Minneapolis USA with his wife and children. He pays on a mortgage, he drinks beer, he has an iPhone. That's what the liner notes from Nigel's latest CD “The Blues Is Personal”, say. Listen to the CD and you’ll also know he's a terrific vocalist, guitar and harmonica player. Listen to the ten originals out of the 12 songs and you know that Nigel Egg is also a tremendous lyricist and songwriter who uses humor to tell meaningful stories about today's world.  “The Blues Is Personal” is an acoustic album. Nigel goes solo on three of the cuts. His band – trumpet, trombone, clarinet and violin (!) as well as the more traditional guitar, piano, bass and drums - contributes on the remaining songs. Let's hope our governing agencies don't get any ideas don't from “Tax on the Blues” which is the best selection in my book. I’ve got to admit that “Imagining You  Naked” strikes awfully close to home, although I'm not alone as the lyrics tell me “Everybody does it”. How many musicians want to Jam Til the Day I Die”?

KSRQ Radio

Nigel Egg takes blues to a new level with unique subject matter, gritty vocals, and melodies that won't leave you alone--an incomparable effort by a rising blues artist!

Bman's Blues Report

Bman’s Blues Report

 Ramsgate Kent Music artist: Nigel Egg - The Blues Is Personal - New Release review

I just received the newest release (July 1, 2014), The Blues Is Personal, from Nigel Egg. This is going to be a fairly different review that you are typically used to sweeing from me because it is quite frankly different than much of what I review. First I want to comment on the record art. The cover, which is presented here is very artsy,attention grabbing and thought provoking. A photo of Egg on the reverse shows Egg as a colorful fun loving guy. Opening with Back To The Blues the track Egg (vocal, harp and guitar) is joined by Bob Exstrand on guitar, Tom Lewis on bass, Greg Schutte on drums, Tony Balluff on clarinet, Steve Sandberg on trombone, Zack Lozier on trumpet, David Stenshoel on violin and Dale Peterson on piano. An easy going track is nicely complimented by a full accompaniment of Dixieland style instrumentation. On theBlues Is Personal, there is a light guitar solo which compliments an other wise simple pop track. On Imagining You Naked, a simple pleasant track is transformed to a vamp with the addition of a nod to The Stripper song (boom da da boom). The Truth of You And Me has simple folk characteristics and blues rudiments including some easy laid finger picking. occupy The Blues Museum has a real straight forward blues set up with a nice walking country blues guitar set up. I've Never Missed You More develops more into full pop track with keys and some cool harp. Hoo My My My! is a catchy track that could get good audience participation just based upon the playfulness of it's execution. My favorite track, Music Man, has strong ties to country blues and a particular similarity to work by Elizabeth Cotten. You Can't Have a Fan On digs a little deeper into the blues with a slower number with tasty guitar riffs and harp to boot. The release closes with Jam Til The Day I Die lays a pop track over a blues vamp. It is really an appropriate close to a different kind of release.

From (Belgium) November 16, 2014

 Translated from the original Dutch (Flemish?) by Google Chrome

 Singer-songwriter Nigel Egg (aka Nigel Eccleston, born 1949, Ramsgate, UK) is a veteran of the British (read: London) music scene anno years late 60s / early 70s. Egg jammed with legends like "Super Tramp", "Mott the Hoople" and "Nexus" (Georgio Gomelski). In 1972 Nigel Eccleston lands in the States, he pulls toward Minnesota and he pulls himself over twenty-five years in the music business back. In 2007 musician Nigel Egg itself over again and in 2010 he made his debut with the album "Big Bang Baby Boom". From 2013 touring Nigel Egg especially in Minnesota.

There is certainly one thing, outside of course his music, which musician Nigel Egg stands out: his attire. He is always dressed in pink and gold ... Furthermore, his harmonica playing exceptional, his guitar playing solid and passionate voice. His genre? Call it blues singer-songwriter.

Egg is still very focused on the entire song, which songs are not stereotyped sequence of successive solos, embellished with the vocals and backings. Are In his lyrics he sings about everyday things related to life and now you.    

On his new album "The Blues is personal," there are only acoustic instruments (some unusual) hearing. 1 "Back To The Blues" : It makes you wonder why a clarinet (Tony Balluff), an instrument given its potential as expressively sound like a harmonica, is no longer heard in the blues. The wind can be heard on three tracks (1,3,5). The arrangements are here trumpeter Zack Lozier and are played by Balluff, Lozier and trombonist Steve Sandberg.At the end of three "Imagining You Naked" the horns sounding classic burlesque and everyone seems to be inspired by Lozier's experience in the "Doc Severinsen Big Band". Second remarkable "strangeness" is the acoustic guitar to replace / supplement the human voice. The acoustic guitar of Bob Ekstrand let you hear how the typical touch of an acoustic guitar can also be an added value. The rhythm section of drummer Greg Schutte "The Mickey Hart Band") and bassist Tom Lewis. Lewis is a very inventive bassist, who sounds at times that free jazz flowing and fascinating. Dale Peterson's piano sounds sometimes as if included Otis Spann and violinist David Stenshoel makes a few tracks (5,8,12) for some more spice and flavor. 

Written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans and used in the Alfred Hitchcock film "The Man Who Knew Too Much" (1956) with Doris Day and James Stewart, was 8 "Que Sera, Sera" a world. We have multiple versions in multiple languages, even in Chinese. But never before has a blues version recorded. With 10 "Music Man" [instrumental: Elizabeth Cotten] Egg leave a dream to see his son Mike sailing in his musical footsteps. Blues from father to son is not obvious. So, he wrote himself, but in time his own tribute song! 12 'Jam' Til The Day I Die " [Nigel Egg & Mike Gunderson] is the valve and still a father-son thing. One evening, when Egg was a bit in the clouds, his son came in and said, "Jam, daddy, till you die!" The rest of the song they wrote together ...

Thanks to the input of guitarist Bob Ekstrand is "The Blues Is Personal", the second album by Nigel Egg, become an interesting acoustic blues singer-songwriter album. These blues is for everyone, even if one says in the title of no. An album worth exploring!  

Willie Dixon Said it best: "The blues are the roots and the other music programs are the fruits. Without the roots, you have no fruits so it's better keeping the roots alive Because It Means better fruits from now on. " Nigel Egg is respectfully tending Those roots and producing fresh new fruit!

Eric Schuurmans

Blues Blast Magazine

Transplanted Minnesotan Nigel Egg has released an unlikely Blues disk entitled, The Blues Is Personal. Born in the UK, Mr. Egg was active in the pre- 1970 London music scene  as a member of Nexus.  He jammed with Mott The Hoople and Supertramp before moving to the land of Purple Rain to study at the University of Minnesota. He taught harmonica and guitar, raised a family and worked a corporate gig for twenty-five years before returning to music full-time in the twenty-first century.  His 2010 release was entitled Big Bang Baby Boom.

I didn’t say unlikeable.  Though laid back throughout, the horn section, including Egg on harp, swings. Egg draws from his own songwriting well and splashes you with unique hooks that unlock Blues to Pop mysteries heretofore unknown.

Track 6, ” Occupy The Blues Museum,” is a  teacher to student narrative: ‘I want to take you children, down to the Blues Museum, you’ll hear that Blues is the roots, of all the music that’s comin’ to be in.’ Just the inclusion of the verb occupy,  politicizes the lyric handily.  To encapsulate Egg’s bottom line is to suggest it’s time for the grey pony-tailed baby boomers to turn the music over to the kids, ‘so they can juvenate the Blues like Willie Dixon did.’

Another hook-laden composition by Mr. Egg is track 5, “Tax On The Blues.” The storyline suggests the origins and schedule of the this unfair Blues Tax.  It chronicles the amounts paid by Blues royalty: ‘Willie Dixon had to pay about a million. Muddy Waters a million-four. BB King refused to pay a damn thing, got the jailhouse blues for sure. Robert Johnson managed to save his skin. He let the devil pay the tax for him.’ Irreverent and clever, the band steams toward simmer with a bluesy violin solo by David Stenshoel juxtaposed against the Teapotty Chorus’s (that’s what they’re called in the liner notes) vocal crescendo.

Track 10 “Music Man” is a stirring, heartfelt, son to father tribute that employs country blues guitar picking reminiscent of Mississippi John Hurt.   The narrator reveals the qualities of his Blues guitar playing daddy.  How he sang with soul in the clubs and bars, taught his son how to fish, fix cars, stay outta the bars and play the Blues better than him.  This one might make you misty.

Nigel Egg released The Blues Is Personal to coincide with the 99th birthday of the late Willie Dixon.  He passionately believes that Dixon revolutionized Blues songwriting and is determined to spearhead another Blues songwriting revival.

Don’t let the Alfred Hitchcock murder mystery cover art sway you.  There are some good blues contained herein.


CyberSoulMan Tee Watts is music director at KPFZ 88.1 fm in Lakeport, CAlifornia. He is road manager for Sugar Pie DeSanto, the last Queen standing from the glory years of Chess Records.

Minneapolis Star Tribune

Minneapolis songwriter aims to resuscitate the blues

  • Article by: JIM WALSH , Special to the Star Tribune 
  • Updated: January 2, 2015 - 3:26 PM

Minneapolis musician Nigel Egg launches a one-man mission to make this the “Year of the Blues Songwriter.”

British-American singer/songwriter Nigel Egg of northeast Minneapolis wants to save the blues.

Photo: Provided by Nigel Egg,

The blues are dying, and Nigel Egg and the ghost of Willie Dixon intend to do something about it.

“The blues has been stuck in a time warp, and now it’s just dwindling,” said Egg, a 65-year-old British-American singer/songwriter and northeast Minneapolis resident. “So I decided that — in honor of what would be Willie Dixon’s 100th birthday on July 1 — 2015 should be the ‘Year of the Blues Songwriter.’ ”

Great idea. A fitting patron saint for the cause, Dixon was a central player in the Chicago blues scene in the 1950s and ’60s alongside Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf. He had writing credits on more than 500 tunes, including such jukebox and radio hits as “I’m Ready,” “Little Red Rooster,” “I Just Want to Make Love to You,” “Back Door Man” and “Wang Dang Doodle” — many of which were covered by the likes of Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix.

“He was the bass player for every Chuck Berry record; he was the house bass player for Chess Records, and in the ’50s and ’60s, when the blues had already turned into jazz and pop tunes, he took some of those basic elements back and put them into the blues,” Egg enthused over a beer at his favorite neighborhood watering hole, Dusty’s Bar.

“Now it’s becoming a niche music rather than a healthy root. Willie Dixon said, ‘The blues are the roots of all American music, and the other musics are the fruits. It’s better keeping the roots alive, because it means better fruits from now on.’ But I don’t think we’re really caring for the roots, we’re just keeping them alive.”

Blues lovers need only make a cursory spin of the commercial radio dial to confirm the blues’ on-the-ropes status. Various “save the blues” efforts and organizations have come and gone over the decades, but in a state that has nurtured such blues stalwarts as Willie Murphy, Spider John Koerner, Dave Ray, Tony Glover, Cornbread Harris, Willie Walker and Charlie Parr, Egg is determined to shine a light on this vital sound before it becomes a distant echo.

“Locally, you’ve got Bruce McCabe, Curt Obeda, Kevin Bowe, all experienced, good blues songwriters that write good songs and even hits, but their names don’t come up,” said Egg, a married father of four.

“Nobody’s really interested in blues songwriting, as far as I can tell. If I can just make it an issue, I think that would really be all I need to do.”

Teenage blues singer

Egg (né Nigel Eccleston) discovered the blues as a 16-year-old singer for a blues band in his hometown of Ramsgate in Kent, England.

He moved to Minneapolis in 1972 for graduate work in anthropology at the University of Minnesota and taught blues harmonica at the West Bank School of Music for a decade. In the 1970s and ’80s he was part of the blues-based West Bank staple Big Sky and several other local bands. He retired from music in 1985 to concentrate on working as a computer programmer and raising his family.

Then, a decade ago, he started writing and recording his own songs. Now a board member with the Minnesota Association of Songwriters and host of the popular Sunday night open mike at the Coffee Shop in northeast Minneapolis, Egg has explored his penchant for penning blues songs, including “The Blues Is Personal,” “Back to the Blues,” “You Can’t Sing the Blues,” “Lucky Man Blues,” “Tax on the Blues,” “Blue Meanie Blues” and a none-too subtle dig at blues purists, “Occupy the Blues Museum.”

‘No one can define the blues’

“The blues has not kept up with the world we live in, and I think one reason it’s fallen off is because of the words,” he said. “The music is fine, the players are great, but the words haven’t changed for a long time. If we get kids in their teens and 20s actually writing blues tunes that are about their lives and what they’re into and their concerns, then that would bring it some new life.

“I teach these blues for kids workshops for the [Minnesota] Blues Society, and we give ’em a free harmonica and I teach ’em a 12-bar blues, and by the end of it they’re playing. So I know kids can get into it. There’s a little template in their brain: the 12-bar blues.”

Thus far, Egg’s campaign is relegated to his website ( and blog (, on which he lays out his mission statement.

“I’ve got to give it a shot,” he said with a laugh, well aware of the uphill climb he faces. “Maybe you could get Brother Ali or Slug to actually record a blues song, and do it their own way. Maybe no one else would think it’s the blues, but it would be their blues. My position on this is that if the singer says it’s the blues, then it’s the blues. Because the singer has to make it the blues.

“No one can define the blues. People have such different ideas about what makes the blues the blues. Even if they like it, they’ll say, ‘That’s not the blues.’ So that makes it hard for new things to break through.”

Lucky for all blues lovers, Egg is on the case. How will he know if he’s reached his goal?

“In January of 2016, I’ll hear blues music during drive time on commercial radio,” he said.


Jim Walsh is a Minneapolis-based writer and songwriter. He can be reached at
Like us on Facebook
"He's like a bluesy Paul Simon, but taller"
Nigel Egg Club - free stuff and news!
Coming up -