John 'Honeyboy' Turner

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John "Honeyboy" Turner

John Turner began playing harmonica in 1985.  He became Honeyboy Turner shortly after when he joined his first band at the age of 17.   Honeyboy got his first real taste of the blues at the tender age of 19 while on a Nebraska Wesleyan University Orchestra tour to New Orleans, Lousianna.   Honeyboy was playing harmonica with the Wesleyan Jazz Band and sat in with a band at the infamous Opera House on Bourbon Street for several songs. The positive response of the crowd was infectious and he began his blues journey after that. He and longtime friend and band mate Harvey Brindell put together Honeyboy Turner & Cryin' Heart in 1991. 
They toured together throughout the nineties opening for Mighty Joe Young, James Harman, Jimmy Thackery, Magic Slim and many others. Honeyboy embodied the spirit of the great front man harp players that he so idolized. They released "Preachin the Blues" on the ismest label in 1994. He learned how to be front man while hanging out at his home base, the Legendary World Famous Zoo Bar in Lincoln.  It was while watching his idols on stage that he learned how to work the audience and learned important playing techniques.  It was at the Zoo Bar where he met his biggest hero in 1987...Charlie Musselwhite.
Honeyboy moved to Madison Wisconsin in 1997 and joined Cadillac Joe and the Blind Wolf Blues Band. They released an album and quickly began getting attention in Madison.  It was while living in Madison that he met the legendary David "Honeyboy" Edwards and finally received the blessing to use his name. Honeyboy moved back to Lincoln in 2000 and had a short run with a band called the Blues Cruisers who jammed with Magic Slim, Nick Holt and Chubby Carrier. During his playing with the Cruisers, he joined forces with Sean Benjamin and recorded Sean's fantastic self-titled CD "Big Highways" on Quadratone Records. Their harmonica and guitar duo were featured on the nationally syndicated radio program called River City Folk with Tom May.
Honeyboy and Harvey joined forces again in 2011 to form the Honeyboy Turner Band (HBT).  The HBT has become the hardest working Nebraska Blues band with a consistently busy schedule.  With the Zoo Bar in Lincoln as their home base they continue to gain popularity locally and regionally as fans and other musicians keep coming back for more.

They self produced and released their second CD in 2013 called Billiard Playing Mama.  The HBT has become the back up band for West Side Chicago Guitartist Rockin Johnny Burgin when he comes to town and has since backed up Chicago Blues Legends, The Taildragger and Mary Lane.  Delmark recording artist and Chicago blues harp master Martin Lang described Honeyboy's playing as "dynamic".  Dynamic describes his ability to front a band and bring several harp playing styles to his shows.

Honeyboy's reputation continues to bring in collaborative opportunities.  In May 2014, Honeyboy will perform with harmonica masters Deak Harp and Mitch Kashmar in Lincoln.

It is evident when listening to Honeyboy's playing that he was inspired by William Clark, Sonny Boy Williamson, Little Walter, Junior Wells, James Cotton, James Harman and many more players. From old school Chicago harp, delta blues to West Coast swing, Honeyboy's harmonica playing brings an attack that keeps his fans entertained and wanting more.

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John 'Honeyboy' Turner
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