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Peter "Hi-Fi" Ward grew up in Lewiston, Maine, where he went to school and worked in a sneaker factory and textile mill. He listened to blues records, formed a band with his brother, Mudcat, and attended concerts by Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal, Junior Wells and other blues artists when they performed nearby.

 

After moving to Boston, Ward worked in various bands and sat in with Sugar Ray & the Bluetones, who then featured Ronnie Earl on guitar and Mudcat on bass. He backed artists such as Jimmy Rogers, Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson, Sunnyland Slim and Lowell Fulson when they appeared locally.  On a trip to Chicago, he saw many of his musical heroes perform, ate ribs with drummer Fred Below and visited with Tampa Red in a nursing home.

 

In New York, Peter was honored when Otis Rush, after performing together, told him he played chords "like an old man/." In 1978, he drove each week from Boston to Rochester, N.Y., to play blues with guitarist-vocalist Joe Beard. Joe's neighbor had once been Son House. In the 1980s, Peter toured with the Legendary Blues Band whose members — Joe Willie "Pinetop" Perkins, Willie "Big Eyes" Smith, Calvin "Fuzz" Jones and Jerry Portnoy — had backed the great Muddy Waters. The experience reinforced in Peter the desire to play blues in a conversational, unhurried and to-the-point way. With Peter the band recordedRed Hot and Blues on Rounder Records, also featuring guitarist Duke Robillard. 

 

Peter was married for 20 years to Mai Cramer, who hosted a popular blues program on Boston's WGBH-FM for 24 years. She died of breast cancer in 2002. Each year Peter and Mai's fans stage a fundraiser in her honor for charity at the Regent Theatre in Arlington, Mass. Headliners have included Ronnie Earl, Duke Robillard, Jody Williams, Luther "Guitar Junior" Johnson, Lurrie Bell, Jody Williams, Ron Levy and Eddie Taylor, Jr. In 2010, he produced Goodbye Liza Jane: Hello Western Swing, a CD of western swing songs featuring Herb Remington, an original member of Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys. 

In recent years Peter has penned a bevy of original songs, some of which appeared on his well-received debut release, Blues on My Shoulders. The 13-song CD paid tribute to his musical influences such as Robert Jr. Lockwood, Lonnie Johnson and Chuck Berry. Supporting artists included Mudcat, Ronnie Earl, Sax Gordon Beadle, Sugar Ray Norcia and Monster Mike Welch.

 

A follow-up release, Train to Key Biscayne, due to be released in the Spring of 2019,  showcases 12 original songs. It features Luther Johnson, Ronnie Earl, Johnny Nicholas, Michelle Willson, Sugar Ray Norcia, Anthony Geraci and Mudcat Ward. A second western swing CD is also in the works. It could feature Bobby Koeffer, the steel guitarist and former member of Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys.                                       

 

 

                      

 

"Killer disk!" WBRS-FM

"Warm, winning stuff from a white boy with the blues that's been slinging his guitar for 40 years as a sideman and now steps out in to the light. ... This is one sweetie of an after-hours set that brings the blues without bringing you down. Contemporary while being traditional, this is a set that'll get you paying attention and not wanting to miss a beat" —  Midwest Record of Chicago. 

 

 

"Wholeheartedly recommended"

"A veritable super session" — Mike Greenblatt, Aquarian Weekly, New Jersey.