Life experiences transcend the blues and a community. See Mike Zito live Friday, May 22.

He may be one of the most lauded artists in the contemporary blues arena today, and rightfully so, but for Mike Zito, the thing that counts the most is maintaining his honesty, authenticity and integrity. Those are the qualities that have steered Zito’s career since the beginning and continue to define every effort he’s offered since.

That point became convincingly clear with his 2018 record “First Class Life,” a collection of songs detailing his journey from addiction to sobriety and the subsequent success he achieved. A multiple award winner and nominee, Zito has built his career on an ability to tap into tradition blues while maintaining contemporary credence all at the same time.

In March 2020, Zito along with musician and band mate Nick Moss started “Quarantine Blues” a recording project completed in 14 days, after returning from Europe amidst numerous canceled gigs. “Not just a little out of work, completely out of work,” stated Zito. The project helped Zito feed his family and he quickly realized that other musicians were in the same predicament. “Not everyone is comfortable asking for assistance or maybe tech savvy to do online shows or streaming,” wrote Zito on his artist website. “This is all VERY new to everyone.”

Zito and the band committed 10 original songs and made them available to the world for free, asking in return for listeners and fans to simply give what they could. What “they could” gave much needed support to Zito and his band. Taking it a step further, other artists contributed a song to the project and fans kept supporting, to the tune of over $23,000 to date – helping an entire Blues Community.

Learn more about this humble artist, his personal story of struggle and triumph, listen and purchase one or more of his 16 albums and participate in the “Quarantine Blues” project on his official artist page.

Mike Zito performs May 22 on the seveneightfive + ArtsConnect virtual house concert. His performance is presented by Topeka Blues Society. Get tickets here.

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