Bring on the Slop Jar Delta Funk


Nick Vigarino Returns to Bobbi’s on Idaho’s Bitterroot Loop May 2.

Blues artist Nick Vigarino will return to North Idaho’s Bitterroot Loop to perform at Bobbi’s famous rez bar, May 2, 9 p.m. to midnight, with drummer Larry Dennis and Al Rowe on bass. Vigarino has previously entertained on the Bitterroot Loop at One Shot Charlie’s in Harrison and at the Wallace Blues Festival.

Hey, if you were at the One Shot’s performance, check this fun video to see if you were among the crowd.

“He’s been compared to Ry Cooder and Leo Kottke…his style is a fusion of the Chicago and the Delta blues…. hip-hopped up with an amplified acoustic bottleneck, wailing against a very funky bump-and-grind rhythm section. The sum of the whole is nothing less than marvelous. A must hear.” – Victory Music Review

A former steelworker in Ohio, Nick Vigarino traded his blue collar for the blues years ago and hasn’t turned back. The beat up guitar he first played only had one string. That’s where he started learning slide technique in the tradition of seminal blues greats from the 30s, who played on homemade one-string diddley bos. These days his slide technique is described as incendiary.

“Nick Vigarino is where country blues meets the year 2000” – Long John Baldry

Nick Vigarino hosted numerous radio blues shows through the years. As a result, he amassed a cassette collection of radio interviews with numerous greats now in blues heaven. If you are interested in helping to digitize and preserve this classic collection of interviews contact Nick at

What is slop jar delta funk?

Nick Vigarino, Temptation Road

Temptation Road CD Cover

Improvised instruments were part of the early blues scene. During his radio interviews, blues legends

described how band members would scour their neighborhoods for parts and pieces that could be turned into makeshift instruments. One tale out of Helena, Arkansas, described percussionists using old pickle jars and cracker barrels — anything they could find to keep a beat on. One solution was a barrel used by a butcher to catch hog slop. That was a good one because, like a drum set, it produced a variety of tones.   “They called it a slop jar,” Vigarino explains. “I use a lot of old open tuning for slide guitar, hence the Delta tunings. And I’m always accused of being funky.”

“Wear comfortable shoes. Dancing is not exactly mandatory, but you might want to check for a pulse if this doesn’t do it for you.” – Anacortes American

Nick is an internationally known musician, most recently awarded Best Slide Blues Guitar by the Boston Blues Society in 2012. This year the Washington Blues Society nominated him for its Lifetime Achievement Award.

He was founding president of the Washington Blues Society back in 1988. That’s when the only blues associations on the west coast were in San Francisco and Portland. Last year the Zihuatanejo International Guitar Festival in Mexico named him Most Recognized Participant. Nick says one of the highlights of his career came in 2011 when he had the honor of performing at the Orpheum Theater in Memphis as a finalist in the International Blues Challenge.


Nick Vigarino’s original music captures the expressive passion of the blues masters. Here are his albums:

  • Victims of Cool, Nick Vigarino – Merrimack Records, Seattle, Wa
  • The Ghost of Time, The Ghost of Time – Nick Vigarino & Kathi McDonald – Merrimack Records, Seattle, Wa
  • Temptation Road, Nick Vigarino – Meantown Music, Stanwood, Wa

Complete artist information including compilations, covers, and television appearances.

Official Website