Professionalism, Experience, and Talent! It's Time You Knew... Detroit Blu!” - Steve Soviak

— Blues Society Radio Network, & Festival Radio

Press Photos

Sample Track


Detroit Blu is a collection of dedicated professional musicians, committed to and passionate about making good music. Founders Christopher Leigh and Fred Crandal are joined by bassist Duane Larkin and percussionist Donny Burton.

Christopher Leigh, Guitar/Vocals

Front man, singer/songwriter, guitarist, and recording artist, Christopher cut his blues teeth hanging out with local artists at nightclubs like The Attic, Moby Dick's, Sully's, The Soup Kitchen, & The Famous Holly Hotel. He has performed with many blues artists from the Motor City, including John Goins and the Motor City Big 4, Joe Saliz, Jeff Maylin, Nikki James and the Flamethrowers, Odell Bailey & Louisiana Heat, The Shirley Franklin Blues Band, Dave's Not Here, Lil’ Mac Collins and the Party Makers, The King snakes, Uncle Jessie White and the 29th Street Blues Band, Johnny Yardog Jones, The Battle Alley Blues Band, The Blue Collar Blues Band, The Light Fingered Four, The Butler Twins, Mr. Bo, Cathy Davis, & Lou Rye, 

He’s worked with Chicago recording artists Junior Wells, Koko Taylor, Big Time Sara, Queen Audry Roy, Larry Burton and Detroit recording artists Catfish Hodge, Robert Pen, Peter Mad Cat Ruth, The Alley Katz, The Broken Arrow Blues Band, The James Cloyd Jr Band, Tosha Owens, and Zoom.


Going Alley On Your Mind - The Ally Katz

Blues at Midnight -Lou Rye

Blue Mood - No Cover Records

Blues For Katrina - Hurricane Relief Project

I Don’t Know - The Boogie Chillens

GottaBoogie - The Christopher Leigh Band

Fred Crandal, Harmonica

Fred received his first harmonica in 1972 and performed his first professional gig in 1975 and has participated in a five recording projects.   Fred’s worked with country rock bands, blues bands, bluegrass, and folk artists across the country.  He has performed with some greats, including Free the Honey and the Stacey Michhart Band and has sat in with blues giants Smoky Greenwell and Mark Wenner. 

Fred has studied with Jason Ricci and Richard Salwitz (Magic Dick).

Duane Larkin – Bass and backup vocals

A native Detroiter, Duane (also known as ‘Dewey’ in the local music scene) has been a low-end devotee since his earliest days. As a child, he wanted to learn the bassoon…but there wasn’t one available in Detroit public schools and his parents weren’t convinced of his sincerity. Duane turned to chorale singing into his teens. In high school he attempted to master the electric guitar, but found his left-handed picking hand style was too aggressive and soon grew tired of replacing strings. A friend lent Duane his bass guitar and it was love at first note. He soon acquired a lefty Hofner ‘Beatle bass’ copy and the musical die was cast. He discovered, to his delight, that bass players were scarce and found himself playing in a variety of bands: garage bands, wedding bands, blues bands, rock bands, even a brief stint in a polka band. Duane discovered that, over time, he could play most any song that he heard…a gift that enabled him to work as a ‘substitute’ for any bass players that couldn’t make it to their band’s gig.

Dewey cut his musical teeth on these ‘pickup’ shows and worked with a wide variety of rock and blues bands; he also was introduced to many of the local Detroit-area musicians through frequent ‘jam sessions’ and some recording studio work.  Although he held down a full-time job, he always set aside enough time to keep his bass ‘chops’ up to par. In lean times, Dewey was able to persevere by booking more dates to get by until the employment situation improved. The goal has always been to reach a point where he could retire from the ‘day gig’ and play as a full-time musician, and that goal will be met in spring of 2024.

Duane lives in Macomb Township with his wife of 27 years and a pair of rescue cats, who provide entertainment and comic relief 24/7.

Donny Burton, Drums

Donny fell in love with the Blues in 8th grade. He began with pantomiming to Beatles songs, joined the Orchestra, then the Drum & Bugle Corps, and then moved on to rock bands.  Donny was a member of The Case, Port Huron’s first heavy metal band, and opened for Bob Seger, Iggy Pop, SRC, Savage Grace, and others.  In 1971 he hit the road, joined Lion in South Carolina, and toured the Southeast US for a few years.  In the mid 70’s he formed a new band, Rat (his nickname and the name of his first band) and hung out in the Tampa area with The Chamber Brothers, worked with Jay and the Americans and even jammed with Nazareth. 

5 years later Donny joined Motown artists My Friends, a career cut short when their manager was killed in a car crash.  Since then, it has been blues, blues, blues with the likes of CJ Morris, Two Blue Feet, and The Jeff Hoagland Blues Band.  Today he is all in with Detroit Blu, working hard to bring you the best blues on the planet.

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