LATE BLOSSOM BLUES – The Journey of Leo “Bud” Welch

When 81 year-old Leo “Bud” Welch from the Mississippi backwoods released his debut record “Sabougla Voices” in 2014, he took the Blues world by surprise: Where has this guy been for the past 60 years? Why has nobody ever heard of him before?
When he started playing 10-15 shows every month, even getting invitations to Europe and Africa, more questions arose: How is this possible for a guy his age? Who makes all these shows happen?

Answers are given in LATE BLOSSOM BLUES, a feature-length Documentary about Leo “Bud” Welch and his very late rise to stardom. It’s the quintessential Blues story – a story about poverty, about work in the cotton fields and the woods, about The Lord and The Devil, and of course a story about life that reminds us that it’s never too late to live your dream.

LATE BLOSSOM BLUES follows Leo and his manager Vencie Varnado, a Gulf War Veteran, as they balance the tight rope between business and geriatrics, between jet lag and sound check. It also paints a heart-warming portrait of Leo’s small hometown Bruce, MS where Leo’s daily life is still untouched by his late global fame.

Documenting the most exciting times in the life of one of the last real Bluesmen, LATE BLOSSOM BLUES is a film of historic dimension for all music-lovers. It’s a moving account of a hard working man, who, despite all the adversaries, never wavered from his passion and waited more than 70 years to finally live his dream.



  • Wolfgang Almer
    Wolfgang Almer Director, Producer

    Wolfgang is the driving force behind the movie. He is also the artistic director of an Austrian festival called LINZFEST and has a long track record of premiering incredible artists in Europe – just like he did with Leo.

  • Stefan Wolner
    Stefan Wolner Co-Director, Co-Producer, Editor

    Stefan has been working in the Austrian film business for the last 15 years, creating many works for film festivals, TV, commercial and online use as Director, Producer and/or Editor. He lives in Vienna.

  • Viktor Schaider
    Viktor Schaider Director of Photography

    Viktor is an established Cinematographer and Photographer with 10+ years of experience. His works have won many awards and have been shown all over the world. He lives in Vienna.

  • Lisa Zoe Geretschläger
    Lisa Zoe Geretschläger Editor

    Although Lisa is still very young, she already has quite an impressive track record as an editor and assistant editor. Three (!) of her latest films have been premiered at Berlinale 2016. Lisa is half-Canadian and lives in Vienna.

  • Andrea Unterweger
    Andrea Unterweger Assistant Editor

    Andrea’s work was to sync all the audio and video files we produced while shooting – quite the task, as it turned out. Andrea has worked as editor and assistant editor on many documentaries and feature films, both for cinema and TV.

  • Gerald Rauscher
    Gerald Rauscher Sound

    Gerald is a young Sound Engineer and Cinematographer who has worked on many TV- and film projects. He lives in Vienna and Wiener Neustadt.


  • Leo “Bud” Welch
    Leo “Bud” Welch

    Our man. A Legend.

  • Vencie Varnado
    Vencie Varnado

    Leo’s manager. Gulf War Veteran. Some call him the manager of the decade.

  • Bruce Watson
    Bruce Watson

    Boss of Leo’s Label Big Legal Mess.

  • Roger Stolle
    Roger Stolle

    Blues Expert, Author, Owner of Cat Head in Clarksdale, MS.

  • Mike Theodus Herrod
    Mike Theodus Herrod

    Leo’s best friend and long-time co-worker in the woods.

  • Dixie Street
    Dixie Street

    Leo’s drummer, owner of the Hambone Gallery in Clarskdale, MS.

  • Bill Luckett
    Bill Luckett

    Co-Owner of Ground Zero Blues Club (together with Morgan Freeman), Mayor of Clarksdale, MS.

  • Tim Duffy
    Tim Duffy

    Blues Expert, Author, Founder & Director of Music Maker Relief Foundation

  • Markus Riegler
    Markus Riegler

    Harp Player in Austrian Dillysburg Blues Band.

…and many more!