Monday, October 13, 2014

Home for a minute...

Well, I'm writing this post in between the end of the Legendary Blues Cruise and my flight to Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, for the first annual Yukon Roots & Blues Festival.  Since I last posted I have played the excellent Hot Springs Blues Festival in Arkansas ( a town with a crazy history...go check it out), where I had a chance to touch base with IBC Band winner Mr. Sipp, and runners -up Ghost Town Blues Band; driven to the West Coast and taken 2 ferries to chill in a lovely waterfront house on Gabriola Island; and played (among others) a wonderful show at the 100-plus year-old Empress Theatre in Fort Macleod, Alberta.

The Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise was a blast, catching sets by Taj Mahal (and daughter Deva Mahal, a gorgeous singer), Los Lobos, The Royal Southern Brotherhood, Low Rider Band, and numerous others.  My four shows were very well attended and received, as was the workshop I sat in on with the great Doug Macleod, plus I sat in for a few tunes with friend (and wonderful pianist) Leon Blue, and caught two sets by my friend Carolyn Wonderland (both excellent).  Basically a giant festival on a cruise ship with a bar around every corner, it gives the fans a chance to be "up-close" with the musicians, and makes for a great sense of community among the players...informal chats in the coffee and food lines with Cesar Rosas of Los Lobos and Cyril Neville of Royal Southern Brotherhood, praise from Lloyd Jones, Curtis Salgado, Mike Zito and Bernard Allison, and a crew of very dedicated and competent organizers and sound techs made for a fun week.

I'll be in Whitehorse Oct. 15-22 for a few gigs, then the 23-26th in Saskatchewan.  About as big a change from the West Coast of Mexico as one could imagine.  Southern Ontario November 6-12th, then putting my feet up in Calgary for a spell (with the exception of Blues At The Bow, in Bow Island, Alberta, on November 29th).  You can get specific dates from the calendar at .