Special to Iredell Free News

Grammy Award nominee Jontavious Willis will perform in the Old Jail Listening Room at the Iredell Arts Council on Friday, March 1. The show starts at 7:30 p.m.

Willis was born and raised in rural Georgia, an environment with deep cultural roots that provides the inspiration he has continuously drawn upon to create his unique sound. He spent much of his childhood singing Gospel music at Mount Pilgrim Baptist Church with his grandfather. His passion for the Blues was sparked at age 14 when he came across a YouTube video of Muddy Waters playing “Hoochie Coochie Man.”

In 2015, Willis achieved widespread acclaim when living legend Taj Mahal invited him to accompany him onstage. He also was invited to open for Taj Mahal and Keb’ Mo’ during their joint Taj-Mo tour in 2018, giving him an opportunity to present his work on a national stage.

“Blue Metamorphosis,” his acoustic debut album in 2016, garnered rave reviews in Living Blues and Blues & Rhythm and won the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge 2018 Award for Best Self-Produced CD.

In his Grammy-nominated sophomore album, “Spectacular Class,” Willis explores an array of Blues styles with lively ensemble performances. He features prominently in solo shows and festivals across the world, sharing his unique blend of time-honored yet modern, intellectual yet danceable Blues with all.

The Iredell Arts Council is located at 203 S. Meeting Street in Statesville.


Tickets for the Statesville show cost $15 and are available online through Eventbrite.