Moondog’s, founded and managed by Ron Esser, has presented national and local blues and rock artists for over 20 years in its small intimate club setting. The National Blues Foundation honored Ron Esser with the “Keeping the Blues Alive” award in 2005. In addition to Moondog’s Ron has promoted and supported blues artists as a founder and booker of the annual Pittsburgh Blues Festival and by financing blues recordings on his Moondog Records label.
At Moondog’s, Pittsburghers have enjoyed the live performances of Susan Tedeschi, Keb’ Mo’, Derek Trucks, Koko Taylor, Luther Allison,Junior Wells, Jimmy Vaughn, Tommy Castro, the Nighthawks, Jimmy Thackery, Maria Muldaur, Pat Travers, Candy Kane, Ana Popovic, former Beatle Pete Best, Johnny “Clyde” Copeland, Walter Trout, Tinsley Ellis, Shemekia Copela, Lil Ed and the Imperials and Long John Hunter. Moondog’s has hosted several generations of Pittsburgh area musicians including Norman Nardini, Bill Toms, Guitar Zack, Glen Pavone, Billy Price, Gary Belloma and the Blue Bombers, Jill West and the Blues Attack, the Jimmy Alder Band, Patty Spadero, the SPUDS, Nieds Hotel Band, Good Brother Earl, Bill Deasy and many more.