The International Blues Challenge represents the worldwide search for blues bands and solo/duo blues performers ready for the international stage, yet just needing that extra big break. The world’s largest gathering of blues musicians will take place on Beale Street, with over 20 clubs hosting the challengers and fans. In addition to featuring these final rounds of the prestigious blues music competition, the IBC event week will offer seminars, showcases, master classes, film screenings, networking events, book signings, and receptions for blues societies, fans, and professionals.

IBC is held each year on Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee. GET READY NOW FOR 2025!
Click here for details on participating in this year's Capital Region Blues Challenge and a chance to represent CRBN at 2025 IBC in Memphis!

The Blues Foundation:

"Our Mission is to preserve blues heritage, celebrate blues recording and performance, expand worldwide awareness of the blues, and ensure the future of this uniquely American art form."

For more information about the Blues Foundation's programs, the HART Fund, BMA Awards, The Blues Hall of Fame Museum and more, visit them at

Get Ready for IBC 2025! Jan 7 - Jan 11, 2025



Check Out Previous IBC Highlights!

Blues Education and Enrichment Programs

Blues in the Schools (BITS)

CRBN provides school districts, BOCES, special education programs and after-school programs with educational classes delivered by regional and nationally recognized blues artists. Blues In The Schools classes can meet the needs of every age range from pre-school to pre-college. Types of programming include:

  • History of blues and its impact on American culture.
  • Blues music theory in practice: participatory classes that include learning blues rhythms, call and response, 12 bar blues progressions and writing and singing lyrics.
  • Performance experiences for school bands and small ensembles.
  • School assemblies.
  • Book readings with sing-alongs for early intervention programs.

The CRBN provides this service at no cost. Funding is obtained though fund-raising activities and grant writing.

If interested in Blues in the Schools for your school or youth program, please contact Richard Green.

Blues in the Libraries

Literacy is a fundamental skill for children, and CRBN is committed to making literacy an enjoyable experience while also teaching kids about blues music. Through the support of our wonderful donors and partners, CRBN is able to donate award winning books about blues music to public and school libraries, youth programs and community free libraries. Age appropriate children’s blues music CDs are also donated. We make learning about blues music fun!

If you are interested in Blues in the Libraries for your library, please contact Richard Green.

Generation Blues

Our parent organization, the Blues Foundation, expanded its longstanding Blues in the Schools youth education efforts with a new initiative that began in 2010 entitled Generation Blues. Generation Blues was created to provide financial assistance to aspiring young blues musicians whose limited financial resources might prohibit them from attending a blues music learning opportunity.

This scholarship program is available for those under the age of 21 to study their instrument of choice at reputable camps, seminars, and workshop programs in the United States and Canada. More information about the program can be found here.

Your Love & Support Matters

We take great pride in bringing our region's incredible talent to the forefront, fostering a love of music and education through our youth programs, and celebrating the richness of the blues as an American art form. It could never happen without the help of our members, sponsors, volunteers and blues fans who come out to the shows and keep the music alive!

Our Sponsors and Affiliates

New York State Technology Enterprise Corporation
New York State Technology Enterprise Corporation
Price Chopper's Golub Foundation
Price Chopper's Golub Foundation
Stewart's Shops
Stewart's Shops