A Maple Blues Awards nominee, guitarist, songwriter and singer Arsen Shomakhov is an electric blues performer truly dedicated to the style’s roots yet never hesitating to borrow means of expression from other genres.
He established himself as a blues-devoted virtuoso musician in his native Russia making it to the International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis in 2005 and winning the new talent contest at the King Biscuit Blues Festival in Helena, AR in 2007.
After moving to Vancouver, B.C. in 2008, Arsen formed the Arsen Shomakhov Trio that currently features Bruce O’Neill on bass and Chip Hart on drums. Working hard to make a name for himself and the Trio, he has performed at a variety of festivals across the US and Canada including: The King Biscuit Blues Festival, Waterfront Blues Festival, Edmonton’s Labatt Blues Festival, Montreal International Blues Festivals, and the Calgary International Blues Festival, to name a few.
Arsen’s album “On the Move”, released in the US in 2010 reached number 2 in the US and number 1 in Canada on the Roots Music Report airplay charts and hit Top 25 Blues Albums of the Year worldwide. In the same year Toronto Blues Society nominated Arsen for the Maple Blues Awards.
Arsen Shomakhov Band went to Memphis to represent the White Rock Blues Society at the IBC twice in 2014 and 2016 and both times advanced to the semi-finals. The third Arsen’s North American album entitled “Dynamic” was released in August 2014. As a truly international blues artist Arsen currently continues to perform at blues festivals throughout Europe, USA and Canada.
photo by Pierre Menard