Brian Lupo


Brian Lupo was born November, 18th 1976 on the northwest side of Chicago. A musical late bloomer, Lupo didn’t pick up the guitar until age twenty while attending Eastern Illinois. He became interested after watching dorm room friends play and soon purchased a guitar at a pawn shop on Belmont and Sheffield in Chicago. Practicing for eight hours a day, he found his calling and realized he wanted to be a professional musician. Influences include Johnny “Guitar” Watson, Albert Collins, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Albert King, and Freddy King. Lupo says, “The way I think about music and what I listen to is more than just these guys. My musical influences are Blues, Funk, Soul, Jazz, Jam-band, and Latin music. I love all music if I think it is good.”

After college, he moved back home and started going to West Side Clubs in Chicago to pursue a musical education. After only a few years of playing guitar, Lupo caught his break and was given the opportunity to play with Wille D. and The All Stars where he performed every Friday and Sunday at the 290 Sport & Juice Bar. Lupo recalls, “I viewed this opportunity as my chance to go to school and that kind of shaped my sound and style as it is today. It was a nine-piece band when I first started so I learned the importance of rhythm guitar playing, which is actually my favorite thing to do. Soloing is fine but rhythm is what I love to play the most.” Through the 290 Sport & Juice Bar, he met vocalist Nora Jean Wallace who hired him to play festivals across the U.S./Canada and played on Wallace’s recordings “Sing’s The Blues” and Going Back To Mississippi.”  

In 2006, after years of playing the clubs, Lupo became disillusioned with the music scene and moved to Las Vegas, Nevada to pursue a career as a professional poker player. In 2014, family obligations brought Lupo back to Chicago. In 2022, he released his first solo album “Into The Sun.” Speaking about the album he says, “I am proud of the messages in the songs but I am not a person who can listen to my music. The record is about being positive and staying hopeful. I would describe my music as the upbeat funkier side of Blues with a Jam-band like feel.” Lupo has worked and shared the stage with Koko Taylor, Buddy Guy, Jimmy Johnson, Omar Coleman, Big James, Eddie Shaw, James Wheeler, Vance Kelly, Toronzo Cannon, Mike Wheeler, Willie Kent, Lindsey Alexander, Bob Stroger, and Joe Moss. He has even performed at The Chicago Blues Festival. You can catch Brian performing at Kingston Mines, Fitzgeralds, Buddy Guy’s Legends, Rosa’s Lounge, House of Blues, Harlem Ave Lounge, or Johnny’s Blitz. Lupo currently plays a Gibson 339 through a Peavy Special 112.

Into The Sun

"I released my first record, Into the Sun, last year in March. We had the record release party at FitzGerald’s, and to my surprise it sold out. After speaking to a few of my friends immediately following that night, we thought it might be a good idea to put one show a year of mine in the calendar every spring at FitzGerald’s before everyone starts getting busy with their lives in the summertime."

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