Blooming Grounds showcases local musician


Shannon Galliart

Local musician Jim Reineke performed “Blues and Bluegrass” music on his mandolin inside Blooming Grounds Coffee Shop on Wednesday, Feb 19. Jim Reineke, currently a member of the Wing Dam Jammers and Turkey Creek in Winona began performing in Minneapolis in the early 1970s as a solo performer.

Kelli Knobloch, Features Reporter

Blooming Grounds Coffee House allows musicians from around the area to showcase their talents. One of those local artists is Jim Reineke.

Reineke is a former professor at Winona State University who retired over two years ago to focus more on performing music.

After growing up in Faribault, Minnesota and he had surgery in the seventh grade, he started learning to play the guitar.

“I was stuck in bed for a couple of weeks and my brother had a guitar and a chord book.” Reineke said. “I sat there and played those cords forever and ever.”

After his recovery, Reineke got back on his feet and joined his first rock and roll band with a group of friends called The 26th Amendment.

“It was a rock and roll dream of mine,” Reineke said.  “My brother and I used to watch the Lawrence Welk Show, even though we hated the music, just to see the guitar players.”

After high school, Reineke went on to study classical guitar at the University of Minnesota.

“I play all kinds of different styles. I first started with rock and roll then learned classical at college. After that I played finger styles blues guitar,” Reineke said.

Reineke said after that he quit playing for about twenty years.

“When I started playing again, I played more folk music with a banjo. After meeting people in the area and being introduced to new things I started taking off with jazz,” Reineke said.

Reineke has played with many different local bands, but as of now, is just playing solo.

“Over my time here in Winona I’ve played with the Zephyr Valley String Band, The Beef Slough Boys, Turkey Creek, and the Wing Dam Jammers,” Reineke said.

Reineke focuses more on covers of songs that he knows, but has also written his own in the past.

“Back in the ‘80s I wrote a couple songs, but I haven’t written anything since. I keep telling myself I’d like to try it again but it’s not that easy,” Reineke said.

When it comes to what his favorite song out of the hundred that he knows, Reineke said it depends.

“I know over 150 songs, but I focus more on the ones I also know the lyrics to otherwise I can’t play them,” Reineke said. “My favorite one to perform depends on the song that I’m working on.”

Brittney Gums, a sophomore nursing major, was at Blooming Grounds doing her homework during Reineke’s performance.

“I really liked him, his music was very relaxing and helped keep me focused,” Gums said. “I would pay good money to have him sing me lullabies every night.”

Reineke said he enjoys playing in coffeehouses but plans on expanding and playing more.

“I’m trying to expand a little beyond the coffeehouse scene,” Reineke said. “I want to play at different venues and recently I have been playing a bit in the cities because I want to play more.”

Jim Reineke performs at Blooming Grounds from 6-8 p.m. every third Wednesday of the month.


The opinions expressed in this paper are not necessarily those of Winona State University, the Minnesota State Colleges and University system, or the Winona State University student body.