Don't worry - this won't hurt a bit. Black & Blue Blonde is an all-original jazz/funk/R&B group that has been performing head-boppin' music since 2003. The group uses computer, digital effects and improvisation to convey the messages in their songs; this also gives them the freedom of flexibility. Even though fans are familiar with the main tunes and structure in the over 60 songs they perform, Black & Blue Blonde 'stretches out' from the skeleton of the music in unique ways. The improvisation style and signature sound of sax and violin put them in a modern jazz category. But as the group 'stretches out' other styles emerge. The smooth, melismatic vocals recall the intimate sound of R&B and Smooth Jazz. The foot-stomping bass, drums and multi-rhythmic hand percussion remind one of Old-School and Funk. In the North Mississippi River area of the Quad-Cities, where Blues and Bix Beiderbeck are king, Black & Blue Blonde has found the music scene in their home town a tough nut to crack. But they have cracked that nut with a vengeance, performing for everyone from school children to the Swing crowd, teenagers to baby-boomers; Summer Festivals to dance clubs to martini bars and everywhere in-between. Frank Drew is a Quad-City area saxophonist who also performs on many other instruments. Originally from Springfield, IL as 'Funky Me,' Frank combines his imaginative writing style, energetic playing and Funk influence to help create a unique music experience for his listeners. He has composed hundreds of original pieces of music and arranged many others. His natural ability on other instruments has helped him to write lines of music that sound 'real' for those instruments. Frank has performed with countless Jazz, Blues and Rock cover bands. Like a chameleon, his saxaphone took the shape of the music. But, he had no room for experimentation. Now, his playing style and techniques are even more diverse while performing his own music. His playing is clean but courageous, as he is not afraid to push the boundaries of his instrument. He makes the saxaphone (and occasionally the flute) laugh, talk, cry and rejoice. Joanie Mercy, electric violinist and vocalist, is a native to the Quad-Cities. Classically trained, she is a former member of Midwest symphonies, string quartets and chamber ensembles. She also composes, arranges, and teaches privately. The switch from Classical to Jazz playing was a 10-year process out of the 31 years she has been playing the violin. Learning to 'loosen up' is one of the biggest hurdles a Classical violinist can overcome. She did jump that hurdle, and can now ebb and flow with nearly any style of music - something she learned how to do while playing at Jam Nights with local bands. Now she has commanded a spot as a soloist that mixes with even the electric guitars. Her playing style is a diverse mix of techniques and digital effects, sometimes including what you are taught "not to do on a violin." Joanie's singing style also had to make a large transformation. The Italian arias and German Leid from college days is greatly different from what she sings with the group now. Again, she had to 'loosen up' and let her soul drive her voice. Sometimes sassy, sometimes sexy, the lyrics in the group's songs describe everyday relationships between people. Even though it is a popular saying that 'Sex Sells,' Black & Blue Blonde doesn't try to go there. They retain their integrity while entertaining and try to create a fun and positive atmosphere. Their first CD, 'Tell Me,' is a blend of different styles, ten of the most popular songs they perform live. Since the CD was created in the studio, it is unlike their live performances which could turn on a dime and spin off into another dimension at any moment. Even so, 'Tell Me' has been popular on the home front, selling out of the first printing in less than a month. Their next CD is in the works already and will be a collection of instrumental, experimental improvisation like they perform live. This group is serious - about having fun and communicating with their audiences. Obviously, for Black & Blue Blonde, fear is no factor.