William Howse and Jack Pearson are two extraordinary musicians who have been playing together for more than 20 years. The combination of their exceptional talent as individual musicians and their songwriting skills makes for a duo that presents a captivating show every time. William and Jack perform acoustic, country blues originals that recall an earlier, more rural style, merging tradition with personal experience that reaches the listener and
touches the soul.
Blues harmonica master, William Howse, has established a playing style in the tradition of John Lee Williamson, Big Walter and Deford Bailey. And his vocals are reminiscent of Muddy Waters. He is one of the few true bluesmen around today. Through the years William has played with such artists as Lonnie Mack and Tinsley Ellis and many local and regional groups, including the Miranda Louise Band, the Bobby Bradford Blues Band, Blues Co-op and Big Mike Griffin and the Unknown Blues Band. He has contributed harp and/or songwriting to studio albums by Gregg Allman, Johnny Jenkins and Jimmy Hall, among others. He gave a special performance at the dedication ceremony of the Tennessee Historical Marker commemorating harmonica great Deford Bailey, the first black musician to appear at the Grand Ole Opry. And William's playing was featured on the soundtrack for
the TNN production of "The Life and Times of Willie Nelson."
It is not well known that William also plays guitar. And what a natural he is! The sound that emanates from William's guitar as he fingerpicks and plays slide is so bluesy and so soulful. Performances by the duo occur less often these days. So to hear William play guitar is a rare treat.
Jack is probably best known for his blues/rock lead and slide guitar playing as a member of The Allman Brothers Band from 1997 to 1999. Often singled out solely as an electric blues slide player, Jack is just as adept in many other musical genres and is able to take each of those to another level with his guitar. His acoustic blues playing style developed from influences such as Blind Willie Johnson and Brownie McGhee. And his vocals are distinctive and soulful. In December 2001, Jack began playing the mandolin and spent many hours every day learning the instrument. He studied the playing styles of such artists as Jethro Burns, Yank Rachell and Bill Monroe. Within a year, he began including mandolin in the acoustic duo performances. Jack is passionate about his music, and whether he's playing an instrument or singing, it's always from the heart.
Through the years, the duo has shared the bill of festivals and theatres with performers such as The Fairfield our, Johnny Shines, Yank Rachell, The Nashville Bluegrass Band, Willie Eason and Doc Watson. They've also played for young children and teens at many schools in the South. A memorable performance for them took place at the dedication ceremony of the Tennessee Historical Marker commemorating blues harmonica legend, John Lee "Sonny Boy" Williamson.
Merge the talent and experience of these two fine musicians, and the result is a powerful blues collaboration. Give them two chairs, a resonator guitar and a belt of harmonicas, and the result is an authentic acoustic Delta blues duo. The proof is in their 1999 Candlefly CD release simply titled "William Howse & Jack Pearson".