THEODIS EALEY... Blues Guitarist, Vocalist, Songwriter, Producer and Entertainer, just a few of the titles that describe the phenomenon of Theodis Ealey. This Mississippi native first picked up an instrument when his older brother, ìYî ìZî Ealey first taught him how to play at the age of 4.
Ten years later, Theodis, on bass, was playing at his first gig with brothers, ìYî ìZî and Melwin Ealey, in a group called ìYî ìZî Ealey and the Merrymakers. This brotherly trio made their debut in their hometown of Natchez, Mississippi at a local nightclub called the Horseshoe Circle.
One year later, Theodis traded his bass for a guitar and began performing with another Natchez group, Eugene Butler & the Rocking Royals. It was here that Theodis sharpened his guitar playing skills, hitting the local circuit.
Growing up, Theodis says this life-long love affair with music began when he lived on Highway 61 on the other side of the road from Miss Willie Maeís Juke Joint. I would just sit on the steps and listen to the sounds coming from there, the heart and soul of the Blues. Since leaving Mississippi, Theodis always carried the Mississippi Juke Joint Spirit with him through his music.
During his military tour of service, Theodis was stationed in Hawaii for 6 years and then moved to Oakland, California before making Atlanta, Georgia his permanent home.
Still holding strong to his Mississippi roots, Theodis played guitar with such notable artists as Little Milton, Johnny Clyde Copeland, Richard ìDimplesî Fields, the Blues Brothers and the ëlegendaryí Charles Brown. This musical journey enabled Theodis to generate a personal style based upon his love of diverse music, blues, country, soul and rock.
Established as an accomplished guitarist, Theodis took a chance and the music industry soon discovered the voice behind the guitar. Theodis ìthe artistî was born.
Ichiban Records, a respected blues label in Atlanta, recognized Theodis' multiple talents and immediately signed him to a deal in 1991. Over the next 6 years, Theodis and Ichiban Records would enjoy 4 very successful albums. It was Theodis Ealeyís charm and magnetism that attracted audiences worldwide.
Theodis Ealey generated industry recognition for his innovative style and authentic Mississippi flavor as the recipient of the Male Vocalist Top Star Award in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1994 and Moí Better Blues Male Artist of the Year Award in Atlanta, GA in 1997. Theodisí most recent awards include the Jusí Blues Best Blues & Soul Man Song of the Year 2007 for ìFrancineî and the Jusí Blues Lowell Folsom Legends Award for years 2006 and 2008.
The ìBluesman Loverî made lemonade out of lemons when Ichiban Records eventually closed its doors. Seizing the moment, Theodis Ealey used this opportunity to create his new label home, IFGAM Records. The name alone is symbolic of the Theodis Ealey spirit . . . I Feel Good About Myself (IFGAM).
At his new label home, Theodis released his fifth project entitled, It's A Real Good Thang, continuing with the Theodis Ealey tradition of music diversity filled with pure soul. The 2004 Stand Up In It project was a runaway success as the #1 Single on Billboardís Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles Sales Chart for 5 consecutive weeks, debuting at #5 on Billboard's Blues Album Chart and #69 on Billboardís R&B/Hip Hop Charts.
While retaining his title as the Stand Up In It man, Theodis decided to take some time to introduce Francine to the world and, boy, was she welcomed with open arms.
In 2006, Theodis released his first full-length solo CD after three long years, I'm the Man You Needî. Based on input from fans and DJs, it was surely worth the wait. For all the fans who needed a Theodis Ealey L I V E fix, they got exactly what they wanted in 2009's exciting, magnetic, juke joint blues. Continuing in the juke joint spirit, Theodis released two singles, much to his fans delight The Old Man's Story (MBFDD) and Slow Grindin'
Now, a brand new year brings about a more passionate side of Theodis Ealey that the fans and DJs will surely love with his new CD, You and I, Together featuring Lacee.