PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — On the hottest day in Portland history, bluesman Curtis Salgado and his band practiced in the basement of a house, making music that was every bit as hot as the weather.

Like all musicians, Salgado lost his livelihood during the pandemic. Now he is honored to help raise money for local charities, including one that provided grant money to more than 150 Portland area musicians during the pandemic.

Waterfront Blues Festival 2021
Jeremy Wilson Foundation
Meals on Wheels People

The Jeremy Wilson Foundation has been helping musicians for 11 years. On Thursday, the Blues Fest Cares Concert — which will be televised live on KOIN 6 at 7 p.m. — will also benefit the Meals on Wheels People, who make and deliver about 8000 meals a day in our area to homebound older adults.

Jeremy Wilson of the Jeremy Wilson Foundation helps musicians, June 29, 2021 (KOIN)

“I was getting phone calls from the middle of the United States, people stranded in Europe, all this stuff,” Wilson told KOIN 6 News. “And we’re talking musicians who are basically paying to get to the next gig from the money they’re making from that gig.”

Suzanne Washington with Meals On Wheels People said, “Many of the people we serve, we are the only food they have.”

For Curtis Salgado, raising money for these 2 charities while doing what he loves in front of a live audience in his hometown again is a high honor. He knows Portland has been through a lot, too.

“This city, Portland, was the template for the United States. It really was,” Salgado said. “It can be again. We’ll get it together. It’s all about love.”

And nothing can spread that love to the masses like music.

The live concert at Zidell Yards is sold out. Watch it live on KOIN 6 at 7 p.m. Sunday.

Curtis Salgado and his band practice before the Waterfront Blues Festival, June 29, 2021 (KOIN)