The Original

Texas Boogie King

Nat Dove At The 2011 Smithsonian Institution 45th FolkLife Festival

Nat Dove, “The Texas Boogie King,” is an internationally acclaimed blues pianist, producer, arranger, recording artist, and performer. Born in Mumford, Texas, in 1939, Dove was playing piano by the age of four and later mastered the bass, trumpet, and drums. By the 1960s, he was in Los Angeles performing and working as a studio musician. Among the recordings he can be heard on is Little Johnny Taylor’s 1963 best-selling hit, “Part-Time Love.”

Dove has toured all of the major capitals of Europe, Asia, and the United States and shared the stage with such blues legends as Pee Wee Crayton, Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton, Freddie King, and Robert Cray. In the 1970s Dove moved to Paris where he played at the Olympia (the oldest and largest concert venue in Europe) and became the Composer-In-Residence at the American Culture Center. He also taught and performed for a number of years in Japan, where his album Deep Blues Experience was a top-seller. He composed the music for a French play, Sail to Everest, as well as the score for the film Petey Wheatstraw (1977). Later in the 1970s, he even ventured into disco/funk with the Most Requested Rhythm Band with considerable success.

Dove’s rich experience, along with his understanding of African American music history and commitment to its preservation, make him a much sought-after essayist, speaker, and educator. He is the founder and director of the Bakersfield Blues Preservation Society in California and has been involved with numerous educational forums including “Blues Alive,” a radio program on blues history; the “Blues in Schools” educational program; “The Nat Dove Blues Music Master Class,” a music appreciation workshop; and the International Blues Competition.

Nat Dove was recently honored as an inductee into the West Coast Blues Hall of Fame and continues to perform around the globe while writing his memoirs, The Blues and I (Memoirs of a Bluesman).