Bernie Pearl is a native Angeleno who learned the blues from the musicians who frequented the fabled Ash Grove (a folk and blues club run by Pearl's brother Ed), including Lightnin' Hopkins and Mance Lipscomb. The Bernie Pearl Blues Band originated in 1984, with Robert Lucas on harmonica. Harvey "Harmonica Fats" Blackston replaced Lucas in 1986, leading to the beginning of a long and fruitful partnership. Fats' witty songs and on stage radar magnetism is captured on Live at Cafe Lido, an album originally intended as a demo. The high demand for the Live at Cafe Lido album led Fats and Pearl to form Bee Bump Records, with its first release being I Had to Get Nasty. Pearl convinced Fats to work as an acoustic duo, releasing Two Heads Are Better in 1995. The following year, they released Blow Fat Daddy Blow!, dedicated to the memory of Fats' wife and civil rights activist Johnnie Tillman.