Celebrating the legacy of Rock Falls native Louie Bellson

Bellson Music Fest

This is a free event!
Food vendors on site.

Schedule of Events for June 10, 2023

11am to 12noon - Walfredo Reyes, Jr. Drum Clinic at the
McCormick Event Center (205 E. 3rd St., Rock Falls)

Bands performing at the RB&W District Amphitheater
(201 E. 2nd St., Rock Falls)
12:00pm to 1:30pm - BAJA Band
2:00pm to 3:30pm - Josh Duffee & His Orchestra
4:00pm to 5:30pm - Michael Conrad Trio
6:00pm to 7:30pm - Starlight Theater Blues Band
8:00pm to 9:30pm - Walfredo Reyes, Jr. Trio

Incase of inclement weather, event will move to the
McCormick Event Center (205 E. 3rd St., Rock Falls)

World-famous big-band drummer Louie Bellson was born in Rock Falls in 1924

Bellson was once referred to by Duke Ellington as “not only the world’s greatest drummer…(but also) the world’s greatest musician!” Louie Bellson has expressed himself on drums since age three. As an internationally-acclaimed artist, Bellson performed in most of the major capitals around the world. Bellson still holds, along with his late wife, actress and singer Pearl Bailey, the second highest number of White House appearances behind only Bob Hope.

He performed on more than 200 albums with such greats as Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, Tommy Dorsey, Harry James, Woody Herman, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson, Dizzy Gillespie, Louie Armstrong, Lionel Hampton, James Brown, Sammy Davis Jr., Tony Bennett, Mel Torme, Joe Williams, Wayne Newton and Bellson’s late wife Pearl Bailey.

As a composer and author, Bellson wrote more than 1,000 compositions and more than a dozen books on drums and percussion. He was a six-time Grammy nominee and received the prestigious American Jazz Masters Award from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1994.

Bellson music fest
june 8, 2024
at the RB&W District

Skip to content