llis After Hours
American Roots Music Series

Traditional Blues
Every Thursday in May

May 2
Joe Filisko & Eric Noden
May 9
Lil' Rev
May 16
Michael Ammons & the Water Street Hot Shots
May 23
Steve Cohen & Peter Roller
May 30
Billy Flynn

Doors at 5:30 p.m.
Music at 6:00 p.m.
Cash Bar

Show Price
$5/ Members

Series Price
$20/ Members

Each series pass purchase comes with a free compilation CD of the American Roots Music Series!

Series passes and individual show admissions can be purchased in advance here or the day of the show.

Series Pass
Member Number/Name

Single Show Tickets
Member Number/Name
Musical Group Attending


Be sure to listen to WMSE 91.7 the week of each show for to catch interviews, music, and acoustic performances from each performer.

Click here to see past American Roots Music Series


Friends of Charles Allis

WMSE 91.7

Sooper Dooper

LB Recording

Simply Folk


Orchard Street Press

Thanks to everyone who came out to one or all of the performances this year for Allis After Hours. The response was incredible again and we appreciate all of your feedback and support of local music. Stay tuned this fall for announcements regarding our 2014 Allis After Hours music series. For those of you who bought series passes for this year's series, we will be mailing out your compliation CD sometime in August. Thanks again everyone!



Allis After Hours 2013

Allis After Hours 2013
American Roots Music Series
Traditional Blues Music

Come join us as we journey through early America listening to and learning about the musical styles and stories of our musical forbearers. Every Thursday in May, the Charles Allis Art Museum showcases the berth of the area’s American Roots Music talent. Our 2013 music series features traditional blues music. Kicking off the series we welcome Chicago’s finger picking blues mainstay Eric Noden and harmonica luminary Joe Filisko. Enjoy Lil’ Rev’s program Jews and Blues, as he performs a variety of music chronicling the contributions of Jewish Americans to the genre. Michael Ammons & The Water Street Hot Shots, travel from Sheboygan to let us in on, and play blues music from Grafton’s famed Paramount Records golden age of the 1920s and 30s. Milwaukee blues harmonica virtuoso Steve Cohen & Milwaukee blues mainstay, Peter Roller, perform classics from the pantheon of American blues.  Rounding out the series from Green Bay is the legendary Billy Flynn, performing mandolin and guitar blues. The purchase of a series pass to all shows comes with a free compilation CD of the American Roots Music Series! Contact info@cavtmuseums.org for more information.

Be sure to listen to WMSE 91.7 each week in May for in-studio interviews and acoustic performances, and recorded music from each musician prior to their American Roots Music Series appearance.

Eric Noden & Joe Filisko

May 2 - Eric Noden & Joe Filisko

The blues and roots music duo, Joe Filisko and Eric Noden make an unforgettable impression. Their jaw-dropping virtuosity enables them to create more layers of sound and feeling than most full bands can summon, and both are high-energy, ultra-rhythmic performers. The collective result, in both their live shows and their recordings, are charged, dramatic performances that are simultaneously powerful and sophisticatedly subtle.


Joe is arguably the worlds’ foremost authority on nearly all aspects of the diatonic harmonica, and he is one of its most respected players and teachers. He IS the world’s most respected diatonic harp technician and customizer with his work directly affecting countless players and all harmonica manufacturers. His client list includes most of the players from the who’s who list of the harmonica elite. His harps are in the hands of notables from rock, film, and even a former President. Joe has taught and performed on five continents. He was awarded the Harmonica Player of the Year in 2001 by the SPAH organization. Joe performed at the 2006 Country Music Hall of Fame, Medallion Ceremony for the induction of DeFord Bailey.


Deeply rooted in the music of 20’s & 30’s blues pioneers Eric Noden’s percussive guitar work, timeless songwriting and well-traveled blues vocals have earned the respect of audiences, critics, and musicians worldwide. Noden started playing electric guitar at age 8 but quickly gravitated toward the finger picking approach of acoustic blues masters Reverend Gary Davis, Mississippi John Hurt and Tommy Johnson. Eric has performed with and interviewed many blues legends in Chicago including Billy Boy Arnold, Honeyboy Edwards, and Erwin Helfer. Noden has performed at many major music venues including The Chicago Blues Festival, Eslov Blues Festival (Sweden), Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, Harmonicales Festival (France) and Buddy Guy’s Legends. Eric is also known as a blues educator and researcher. From lecture demonstrations at the University of Wisconsin to blues in the schools programs for the Chicago Blues Festival, his educational programs have entertained and informed thousands of students. In addition, Eric also teaches blues guitar workshops at the Old Town School of Folk Music.


Lil' Rev

May 9 - Lil' Rev

Join America’s Favorite Jewish Folksinger, Lil’ Rev for a heartfelt evening of songs, stories, humor and instrumental magic as in Jews N Blues.

This one man show celebrates the Jewish contribution to American Roots N Blues. From ragtime and jazz to the founding of Rock N Roll, Jews have made major creative contributions to all of these genres.
Listen as Lil’ Rev weaves an amazing tale of Jews whose passion, persistence and creativity has helped to paint the American popular landscape with an unforgettable vocabulary of poetic lyric and melody!
Singing his own compositions, historical anecdotes, a few choice covers and some romping blues instrumentals, Lil’ Rev strikes at the heart of America music and like the classic blues of long ago, brings forth joy, sorrow and utter determination.


Water Street Hot Shots

May 16 - Michael Ammons and the Water Street Hot Shots

Michael Lee Ammons and the Water Street Hot Shots travel to Milwaukee from Sheboygan to play songs and tell stories from the Paramount Records chapter of blues history. Paramount Records was instrumental in recording national blues musicians during the 1920s and 30s, from their home base in Grafton Wisconsin. Who better to perform this music than locals Michael Ammons and the Water Street Hot Shots.

Here is what blues scholar and renowned blues musician, David Evans has to say about them.

Michael Lee Ammons and The Water Street Hot Shots have a great repertoire of classic tunes from the blues, hokum, string band, and jug band traditions, plus some solid originals. What I like about them is their strong vocals and collective groove. They sound like a real band, not just a collection of individual talents, though there's plenty of the latter to appreciate as well. Their CD "This Will Bring You Back" makes me want to visit Sheboygan!  -David Evans Memphis, Tennessee


Steve Cohen Peter Roller

May 23 - Steve Cohen & Peter Roller

Steve Cohen, based in Milwaukee performs regularly in several of his own ensembles, averaging more than 100 personal appearances a year and is in demand as a sideman for local and national groups. He has produced eight published recordings of his own, and his playing has appeared on dozens of other recordings, demos, and commercials. Hohner Inc., the world’s largest maker of harmonicas, has sponsored him since 1986. He also plays the guitar and sings.

Cohen has received public recognition, winning over a dozen awards from several organizations, including WAMI, the Shepherd Express Readers Poll, and Milwaukee Magazine. He was a finalist at the 2010 International Blues Challenge in Memphis as a solo performer.


Peter Roller is a guitarist who has performed and recorded in styles that range from blues to French chanson to worldbeat to country swing. He was an accompanist for first generation bluesmanYank Rachell during the 1980s, playing guitar and producing Rachell’s Grammy-nominated Blues Mandolin Man (Blind Pig). While living in Milwaukee and working as an Associate Professor of Music at Alverno College, has played with black gospel quartet The Masonic Wonders, dance band Paul Cebar and the Milwaukeeans, blues singer/harmonica player Steve Cohen, and chanteuse Robin Pluer. As a composer of guitar-centered music, Roller’s lap slide piece Rancho Mirage is featured on the best-selling compilation Masters of Acoustic Guitar (Narada).



Billy FlynnBilly FlynnBilly FlynnBilly Flynn

May 30 - Billy Flynn

Born in Green Bay Wisconsin, Billy was captivated by sounds from the first. In 1970 he turned 14 and Clark Kent’s Super Joint opened up in town.  A club destined to be open briefly, the place was booked solid with blues musicians that changed Billy’s whole idea of music. Jimmy Rogers, and Johnny Littlejohn, Mighty Joe Young, Luther Allison, and Johnny Young were among the talents coming through. He was sitting outside one night when Jimmy Dawkins saw him sitting there with a guitar. He talked the club owner into letting Billy inside and even invited him up to jam. It was a new world.

Billy’s jam that night with Dawkins was the beginning of a long relationship. Dawkins called him in ’75 with an offer to join the band. He jumped at it, touring with Dawkins on and off for four years. Never willing to stick with only one musical avenue, Billy also played in home territory with Sunnyland Slim, Mighty Joe Young, Luther Allison, and others. In the early 1980s he became a regular member of the trio, Jim Liban and the Futuramics, an eight-days-a-week road band that wore any rough edges off his guitar chops in a hurry.

In the late 1980s, Billy played with ex-Muddy Waters side musicians Pinetop Perkins, Willy Smith and Calvin Jones in the Legendary Blues Band. He continues to play regularly with Willy Smith.

Billy’s voracious appetite for variety continues to be his calling card. Stints with groups like Mississippi Heat, Kim Wilson and Otis Rush, are interwoven with individual gigs that feature the cream of the Chicago blues community. Extremely active despite living three hours from Chicago, Billy works regularly with a host of Chicago musicians and makes himself available to all comers. “I played with 30 bands last year. I like that because every night I have to learn all the songs,” he says. –Excerpted from a Delta Snake Daily Blues Article by Cathi Norton