Waterfront Blues Festival

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About Big Harp George

Big Harp George/George Bisharat is a San Francisco Bay Area blues singer, songwriter and harmonica player who features the chromatic harmonica. George was a criminal defense attorney, award-winning professor of law at UC Hastings College of the Law, and expert commentator on law and politics in the Middle East before turning to music full time.

George counts George "Harmonica" Smith, William Clarke, and Paul deLay as major influences on his chromatic playing. The chromatic (compared to the ten-hole diatonic more common to blues) has a distinctive voice, and lends Big Harp George's sound a jazzy, contemporary, and sophisticated feel. He was selected as one of fifteen "rising stars" by Living Blues Magazine in the August 2014 harmonica issue.

Big Harp George's 2014 debut release Chromaticism included Northern California blues standouts Little Charlie Baty, Kid Andersen, Rusty Zinn, Chris Burns, and others. It earned "Best New Artist" award nominations from the Blues Foundation and Blues Blast Magazine and high praise from blues music critics.

Of his second and current release, Wash My Horse In Champagne, Living Blues Magazine shares:

"San Francisco law professor George Bisharat has created a most auspicious follow-up to Chromaticism, his 2014 debut CD. He remains an absolute master of the chromatic harmonica, blowing brilliantly sculpted, richly melodic solos and obbligatos throughout the 13 tunes that comprise the present disc."

In the coming year, George will be performing, developing new tunes, and preparing to record in early 2018.