Hot blues, cool day

The Lizard Creek Blues Society Blues Under The Trees concert at Mineral City Speedway south of Fort Dodge got off to a cool start Saturday. Literally. It was 64 degrees when the show began.

That cool air is exactly what let Margie Rodenborn, of Fort Dodge, attend the show. If it was hot, she would have had to have stayed home.

She’s been to many of the shows. “Ever since they started it,” she said.

Rodenborn became a blues fan after attending her first festival. She and her great-granddaughter, Kenlee Porter, of Eagle Grove, may vied as the day’s oldest and youngest fans: Rodenborn is 83; Porter is 3 months old.

To counteract the cool air, guests enjoyed some hot food.

Jesse James, owner of J.J. Catering, served fried catfish, gumbo and pulled pork with a flavor from way down South.

“It’s as authentic as could be,” James said.

Cooking since he was 12, he adjusts each recipe to suit the intended crowd.

The food for the concert was hot.

“It makes the people enjoy the music better,” he said.

Bob Wood, of Fort Dodge, enjoyed the breaded catfish.

“You have to have something hot and spicy to go with the hot guitar riffs,” Wood said.

Jeff Sanford and his son, Gage, 9, of Fort Dodge, were doing just that. It’s the fourth year for Gage Sanford.

“I just love it,” he said. “It’s nice to boogie out and see live music.”

The day featured five bands. Joe and Vicki Price, of Deocorah, were the first.

They played Under The Trees two years ago and were happy to return.

“We love it,” Vicki Price said.

They were in no hurry to go after their set, so they sat back and watched some of the other acts.

“That’s the fun part,” she said. “We get to hear somebody else play.”

The other musicians offer inspiration, she said.

“It sparks your fire.”

More and more people seem to be enjoying the blues, she said, evidenced especially when an older, well-known player dies.

“Once you’re dead they realize you’re good,” she said.

Sena Ehrhardt, of Rochester, Minn., took the stage after the Prices.

“It’s awesome to be out in nature here,” Ehrhardt said. “I’m used to juke joints and bars. This replenishes the soul.”