: “Nick and the Backbone” is the band created by Nick Dounoussis, well known to blues audiences from his twelve-year stint with the Blues Wire. Born and raised in Thessaloniki - Greece he first got involved with music in the late '70s. With his school buddies he co-founded GHETTO, playing rock 'n' roll in the world later to be known as "indie" rock. During 1983-1984 he cooperated with the BLUES GANG, and became a full time member in 1985. Together that year they recorded their second and third albums "On a second thought" and "Five live". In 1986 they changed their name to BLUES WIRE and became the house band for two of the most important live venues of their hometown: "Pararlama" (86-90) and MYLOS (91-96). Their flourishing career brought more records, thousands of concerts in Greece and many appearances in European blues festivals. In 1995, Nick left the band and founded NICK AND THE BACKBONE along with George Athanassiades and George Papazoglou, his bandmates from the GHETTO days.
His guitar prowess led many people to believe that the formation of his own rock-blues band was inevitable, since his playing is absolutely top-notch in that genre. Many of his own compositions were injected into the new band's repertoire, along with songs from people like Duke Robillard , the Fabulous Thunderbirds ,Freddie King , Muddy Waters , Stevie Ray Vaughan , Albert King , B .B. King , Albert Collins , Lonnie Mack , Eric Clapton and Jimmy Hendrix ,among others, presented with the BACKBONE's uniquely explosive style. Many concerts followed, augmented by Florian Micuta's presence behind the keys.
From 1997 and on the group toured Greece behind NICK GRAVENITES and performed with famous blues artists such as LOUISIANA RED, JOHNNY NICHOLAS, NELLIE TRAVIS and PHIL GUY. Their debut album came in 1999, entitled "CRACKIN UNDER PRESSURE" (released by ANO-KATO RECORDS) containing Nick's own songs and featuring Chicago blues legend NICK GRAVENITES on vocals. It is the first time that GRAVENITES was featured on a blues album by an artist outside the US, and bearing in mind that this man only worked with the likes of Michael Bloomfield , John Cippolina and Paul Butterfield , gives a special meaning to this collaboration.
(NICK:"ΤΑ ΠΑΙΔΑΚΙΑ" are grateful).
The album was hailed by local critics as a real merge of Chicago and Texas blues styles, paying equal tribute to the likes of Jimmy Reed as well as Clapton and SRV. Containing songs about friendship (Just a little time), love (Riding with the Blues-The dream that is gone) and emotionally charged by the loss of STEVIE RAY VAUGHAN (Heaven's Gates), the album's title track is inspired by the recent memories of the war in former Yugoslavia. Following the albums' release, two new members joined the band, Nick Salonitis on bass and Thanos Michailidis on drums and the band Greece behind PHIL GUY and also appeared in Skopje with the famous Chicagoan. Their fame grew in direct proportion to their live shows, much talked-about events by fans and blues aficionados alike
(Gravenites and Nicholas among others consider Nick their favorite Blues Guitar player this side of the Atlantic).
Come 2005 and , in a great reunion , Alex Apostolakis (drummer for the Blues Wire for 18 consecutive years and session player), joins the ranks of the Backbone. On bass Lazaros Lazaridis rounds out today's Backbone as a much-promising modern rock-blues outfit. As for new recordings, away from record company "hit hunters"( whose exclusive care about the latest trends has left music in Greece sterile for some years now) Nick and the Backbone are ready for new efforts, in total agreement with their passionate friends who keep on asking for more…..»
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