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Jimmy Ley / Coosa River Band / Blues Idiom

Cleveland, 1970-78, mid 1980s-

Jimmy Ley (Leyava) was a leader in the Cleveland blues scene during the 1970s. He was born and raised in Cleveland, but spent a lot of the 1960s travelling and living elsewhere. He starting fronting bands around 1970, starting with Jimmy Ley and the Blues Idiom. The band, according to a raw live recording, included Ley (vocals, harp), Al Silver (guitar), Rick Matsiak (bass), RIck Biagola (drums), and Jim Tinter (sax).

In 1972 the band recorded some songs at Audio Recording, two of which were released on a 45. The 45 features two original songs by Ley and was released on the GWS label, part of the infamous Florida to Cincinnati pay-to-play operation (GWS, Trip, AMG, Pilot Master). The band on the recording session was Ley (vocals, keyboards), Matsiak (bass), Chuck Drazdik (guitar), Bill Jeric (guitar), Gerry Gilbert (drums), Larry Kane (sax), Joe Calo (sax).

Sometime in the mid 70s he was working under the name of Jimmy Ley and the Coosa River Band. They played often at local clubs, especially the Mistake, and did opening shows for touring bands.

He quit music from 1978 until the mid 1980s when he restarted with a new band, and he continues to play.

Like Mr. Stress and other Clevland blues artists, recording was not a priority. In addition to the 45, there is an early 1970s acetate, and as mentioned above, a live recording, but it wasn't until the late 1980s that he had a released album.

I Think Your Time Has Come / The 413 - GWS 3554, 1973