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Chicago isn't as famous for musical families as New Orleans is, but in recent years we've begun to witness the growth of an exciting multigenerational blues scene that bodes well for the future. Guitarist Lurrie Bell, son of harmonica master Carey Bell, inherited his father's sense of timing and tonality, but like most younger bluesmen he's also acquired a healthy dose of post-60s rock-funk-fusion adventurism. A few years ago he disappeared from the scene to get his personal life together; since resurfacing he's been tempering his youthful flamboyance with an increasingly knowing, even world-weary, introspection. In the process he's both returned to his music's roots and looked farther ahead: postwar Chicago blues--even at its most aggressive--never lost the dark, brooding quality it imported from the Mississippi Delta, and Bell's mastery of more contemporary pop stylings allows him to lay a sophisticated lyricism atop that deeply emotional foundation. Bell hasn't come through his vicissitudes unscathed--there's always a certain unpredictability surrounding his performances--but he's on target more often than not. He still has it in him to become a major figure in the ongoing evolution of Chicago blues. Thursday, July 22, Rosa's, 3420 W. Armitage; 342-0452.

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