Robert Cray Band announced for Alys Stephens Center’s 25th anniversary season

Enjoy a night of great music — new songs and classics — when Cray returns to the Alys Stephens Center, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9.

Outdoor photo of Robert Cray with a guitar. UAB’s Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center has announced the second artist for its 25th anniversary season, the Robert Cray Band.

Enjoy a night of great music — new songs and classics — when fan favorite Cray returns to the Alys Stephens Center. The concert is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 9. Enjoy an inside look into the history of blues music shared by a local blues expert during a free pre-show talk at 6:30 p.m. General admission tickets are $49 and on sale now. Call 205-975-2787 or visit AlysStephens.org to purchase tickets or for more information. 

At this time, 312 tickets are available; the Alys Stephens Center is currently operating at 30 percent capacity until it is able to safely accommodate more.

The Alys Stephens Center will celebrate its 25th anniversary season beginning this fall. The full season of performances and events will be announced in August. Alys Stephens Center members are given first priority for concert and artist announcements and tickets. For more information or to become a member, click here.

Open ears and an open mind are the essence of singer, guitarist and songwriter Cray’s approach to writing, recording and playing music, according to his artist’s statement. He has created a sound that rises from American roots and is yet fresh and familiar today. In just more than 40 years, Cray and his band have recorded 20 studio releases, 15 of which have been on the Billboard charts, and played in bars, concert halls, festivals and arenas around the world. There are five Grammy Awards with Cray’s name on them. “In the Eighties and Nineties, Robert Cray was widely considered B.B. King’s heir to the blues crown,” Rolling Stone magazine wrote.

In February 2020, Cray released his latest album, “That’s What I Heard.” Cray and his band came in hot from the road to begin work on the album. 

“Hearing is a funny thing,” wrote J.D. Considine about “That’s What I Heard.” “It’s not just receiving sound — it’s understanding and interpreting it, making sense of the various vibrations swirling around our heads. That’s how two people can listen to the same thing and come away with opposite impressions. The sounds may be the same, but the comprehension isn’t. 

“The first time I played the album, I was struck by what seemed to me to be a distinct Sam Cooke vibe to the music, an impression initially sparked by the rollicking gospel groove of ‘Burying Ground,’ but also by the sweet singing and classic 6/8 feel of ‘You’ll Want Me Back.’ It wasn’t just the churchiness of the former, nor the tuneful sophistication of the latter; it was the way those two elements intertwined to create a feeling that was just as evident in the other songs.” Read more at RobertCray.com.