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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Feb. 24: Lil' Ed & The Blues Imperials

Event is part of Department of Music's Performance Series.

Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of Music News Release, 1-30-2018

MANKATO, Minn. – Chicago-based blues group Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials (pictured) will perform Saturday, Feb. 24 at Hooligans Neighborhood Pub, 1400 East Madison Ave., Mankato. The concert will begin at 8 p.m., with Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials performing two sets that evening. Concert attendees are able to attend both sets.

In Chicago, a city overflowing with unrivaled blues talent, world-renowned Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials have been standing tall for almost 30 years. The band’s big sound, fueled by Lil’ Ed’s gloriously rollicking slide work and deep blues string bending, along with his rough-edged, soulful vocals, is as real and hard-hitting as Chicago blues gets. The Chicago Sun-Times says, “Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials are the hottest purveyors of bottleneck boogie to come out of Chicago since Hound Dog Taylor.” The Chicago Tribune writes, "Electrifying, raucous, pure Chicago blues...Lil’ Ed is a guitarist extraordinaire featuring his slashing slide guitar and flamboyant stage persona."

The award-winning group took home the Living Blues Award for Best Live Performer in 2011, 2012 and 2013. They won the prestigious Blues Music Award for Band of the Year in both 2007 and 2009. They have played the Chicago Blues Festival multiple times, and have appeared at The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Portland’s Waterfront Blues Festival, The Tampa Bay Blues Festival, The San Diego Blues Festival, The Pennsylvania Blues Festival and dozens of other festivals around the country. Satisfying worldwide demand, they have performed at festivals in Canada, Great Britain, France, Spain, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Japan, Australia, India, Turkey and Panama. Die-hard fan Conan O’Brien brought the band before millions of television viewers, featuring the group on his late night show on two separate occasions.

Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials released 10 Alligator record albums between 1986 and 2016. With each one, the band’s national and international stature grew as their fan base—known internationally as “Ed Heads”—continued to expand.

“We’re not band members,” says Lil’ Ed Williams, “we’re family, and families stay together.” Night after night, gig after riotous gig, the musical family called Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials bring their big, dynamic Chicago blues sound to fans across the country and around the world.

Concert admission is $18 in advance; $20 the day of the show. Tickets are available at Hooligans. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to and select the ‘News and Events’ link. For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549.

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