Saturday 15th at 3:00 pm (Blues Stage) | Sunday 16th at 3:00 pm (Campground Stage)

There’s playing the blues, and there’s living the blues, and then there’s playing and living the blues. That’s where Thomas O. “Pee Wee” Hayes comes in. He spent his earliest childhood years in the south, where his father was a bluesman who ran into resistance when he kept bringing traveling blues musicians to his café. Eventually, he was run out of town, narrowly escaping being lynched, and sent for his family when he found safe harbor in Racine, Wisconsin. At the age of 9, Pee Wee started playing out, first in living rooms and at picnics, and then with his mixed race blues-rock band in clubs and roadhouses in northern Illinois. He knew B.B. King as a young boy, watching with fascination as B.B. plugged in and picked on the family’s front porch. Today, he plays with his brother Charles and, thanks in part to the Music Maker Relief Foundation, is seeing his career as a musician finally taking hold. We believe him when he says, “I just know I can make a hit man. You can feel it, you know?” It’s never too late.