Blues Summit 6 Archive


About Delegates Schedule Showcase Artists Keynote Sponsors



The bi-annual Blues Summit 6 conference at the Delta Chelsea Hotel brought together the blues industry from around Canada and beyond during the weekend of January 18-21, 2013

The conference was be extended to include an additional evening of showcases on Friday Jan 18, featuring a line-up from Electro Fi Records and additional showcasing artists in Monarchs Pub as well as the Market Garden. Saturday Jan 19 featured an opening reception in Monarchs Pub followed by SOCAN Songs and Stories, which was preceeded by the showcases scheduled for later that night. On Saturday and Sunday, there was an additional acoustic showcase room on the 27th floor of the hotel (Deck 27). The keynote brunch on Sunday featured a speech by Holger Petersen followed by a festival speed pitch for artists to speak directly to festival directors, and then an afternoon of panels. There were additional panels on Monday, leading up to the 16th annual Maple Blues Awards which took place at Koerner Hall at 7pm (ticketed separately from the conference). The weekend was a valuable opportunity to network with the blues industry inside the walls of the Delta Chelsea Hotel in the heart of downtown Toronto.


Delegates

Maggie Almond CFBX Kamloops, BC
Vince Almond CFBX Kamloops, BC
Lance Anderson Orillia Spring Blues Festival / Shakura S’Aida Orillia, ON
Derek Andrews Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Chris Antonik Artist Toronto, ON
Mike Archer The 24th Street Wailers
Francine Aubrey A Portrait of Blues in Canada Ottawa, ON
Drew Austin Irene Torres & The Sugar Devils Toronto, ON
Norma Bailey Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival Orangeville, ON
Brent Bain FACTOR Toronto, ON
Ann Barker Ticketpro Barrie, ON
Velma Barkwell East End Music Productions Oshawa, ON
David Barnard Department of Canadian Heritage Toronto, ON
Richard Barry Big Trouble Band Toronto, ON
Tim Bastmeyer Artist Toronto, ON
Chris Bennett Indie Soul Records Toronto, ON
Raoul Bhaneja Artist Toronto, ON
Dave Booth Whistle Radio Stouffville, ON
Diana Braithwaite Artist Toronto, ON
Dave Brennan Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa, ON
Michael Jerome Browne Artist Montreal, QC
Melanie Brulee Artist Toronto, ON
Natalie Buckley Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Stan Budgell Saskatoon Blues Society Saskatoon, SK
Steve Butler Paquin Entertainment Toronto, ON
Laura Carbone Photographer New York, NY
Rita Chiarelli Mad Iris Music Inc Hamilton, ON
Nicole Christian Artist Hamilton, ON
Marilyn Clarke Bruce County Blues Kincardine, ON
Rick Clarke Lighthouse Blues Festival Kincardine, ON
Michael Cloeren Pennsylvania Blues Festival Philadelphia, PA
Claude Cloutier Kitchener Blues Festival Kitchener, ON
Dave Cool Bandzoogle Montreal, QC
Peter Dammann Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival Portland, OR
Morgan Davis Artist Halifax, NS
Jack de Keyzer Artist Hamilton, ON
David DeWolfe Dutch Mason Blues Festival Truro, NS
Traney De Vries Toronto, ON
Brent Diab Gatineau, QC
Cecile Doo-Kingue Musician Montreal, QC
James Doran Choose the Blues Productions Kenmore, ON
Don Dore Roslin, ON
Shawn Dore Frankford, ON
Lucie Dufault Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Bill Durst Artist St. Marys, ON
Jennifer Eisler Jane Harbury Publicity Toronto, ON
Sharon Evans Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Roberta Faria Mad Iris Music Inc Hamilton, ON
Rick Fenton Winnipeg BBQ & Blues Festival Winnipeg, MB
Rico Ferrara Blues For A Big Town Toronto, ON
Todd Fitzsimmons New York State Blues Festival Syracuse, NY
Sarah French Sarah French Publicity Stratford, ON
Kristin Fung The Distillery Vancouver, BC
Andrew Galloway Electro-Fi Records Toronto, ON
Kathy Gillespie Terry Gillespie Vankleek Hill, ON
Terry Gillespie Artist Vankleek Hill, ON
Maurice Ginzer Calgary International Blues Festival Calgary, AB
Jerome Godboo Artist Toronto, ON
Josh Gordon The Blazers Toronto, ON
Lise Goyer Montreal, QC
Dan Greenwood SOCAN Toronto, ON
Luc Guilbaut Carolyn Fe Blues Collective Montreal, QC
Bruce Hall Grand River Blues Society Kitchener, ON
Shawn Hall The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer Nanaimo, BC
Thomas Hanes Music Africa Toronto, ON
Daisy Hanna Montreal Blues Society Montreal, QC
Jane Harbury OCFF Toronto, ON
John Harrison West Coast Blues Festival Goderich, ON
Neil Hendry The Distillery Saskatoon, SK
Mike Hilliard Sabrina Weeks & Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
Scott Hilliard Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
Scott Honsberger Music Ontario Toronto, ON
Holmes Hook Hugh’s Room Toronto, ON
Rene Huard Rene Huard Music Toronto, ON
Coralie Hummel SOCAN Toronto, ON
Irene Ippersiel Montreal Blues Society Quebec
Tom Jardin Victory Communications Oshawa, ON
Jman DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Bill Johnson Artist Victoria, BC
Donald Ray Johnson Artist Calgary, AB
Linda Johnson Donald Ray Johnson Calgary, AB
JW Jones Artist Ottawa, ON
Raven Kanatakta Digging Roots Barrie, ON
Tamara Kater OCFF Toronto, ON
Keely Kemp OMDC Toronto, ON
Harrison Kennedy Artist Hamilton, ON
Bill King Beaches International Jazz Festival Toronto, ON
Barbara Klunder Visual Artist Toronto, ON
Jon Knight Jon Knight & Soulstack Kitchener, ON
Steve Kozak Steve Kozak’s West Coast All-Stars Burnaby, BC
Susan Kozak Steve Kozak’s West Coast All-Stars Burnaby, BC
Earl Krushelnicki EGK Promotions Prince George, BC
Larry Kurtz Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival Orangeville, ON
Yannick Lambert Donnacona Blues Festival Donnacona, QC
Frederic Lamoureux Montreal Jazz Festival Montreal, QC
Michele Langlois Downtown Kingston Kingston, ON
Rene Lavoie Canada Council for the Arts Ottawa, ON
Bob LeDrew OCFF Ottawa, ON
Diane Leduc Doran Choose the Blues Productions Kenmore, ON
Treasa Levasseur Slim Chicken Enterprises Toronto, ON
Patricia Lever DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Dan Livingstone Artist Montreal, QC
Jamie MacDonald Aurora Winter Blues Festival Aurora, ON
Jan MacDonald Downtown Kingston Kingston, ON
Peter MacDonald Folk Music Ontario Ottawa, ON
Randy MacNeil Home Routes / Chemins Chez Nous Ottawa, ON
Chris Martin CBC Radio Edmonton, AB
Jenn Martin JL Martin Management Toronto, ON
Robert Mauries Cahors Blues Festival Cahors, France
Ken McColm Frankford Island Blues Festival Carrying Place, ON
Dave McDonald DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Dan McKinnon Musician Toronto, ON
Sandi McMurray Johnny “Piano” Russel / A Portrait of Blues in Canada Winnipeg, MB
Frank McNulty JBG Productions Collingwood, ON
Barry Mell Carolyn Fe Blues Collective Quebec City, QC
Fraser Melvin The Fraser Melvin Band Toronto, ON
Rene Moisan Productions Bros Montreal, QC
Brian Mortimer Karma Productions London, ON
Susan Moses Bill Durst Winnipeg, MB
Ross Muir Job’s Blues: A Blues Opera Ontario
Kim Munro Dutch Mason Blues Festival Truro, NS
Joe Murphy Artist Halifax, NS
Rodney Murphy SOCAN Toronto, ON
Michael Murray Ontario Arts Council Toronto, ON
Kap Palmer Blues Nite Entertainment Winnipeg, MB
Denis Paquin Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa, ON
Gary Paradis Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa, ON
Vickie Paradis Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa, ON
Ed Parsons Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Jordan Patterson Groove Suite Music Toronto, ON
Holger Petersen Stony Plain Records / CBC Edmonton, AB
Ron Proulx Arpix Media Toronto, ON
Ben Racine Artist Montreal, QC
Matthew Rogers The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer Vancouver, BC
Steve Rowe The Steve Rowe Band Montreal, QC
Tom Rowe Sweet and the Back Beat Ontario
Johnny “Piano” Russell Musician / A Portrait of Blues in Canada Winnipeg, MB
Jordan Safer Toronto Blues Society Toronto, ON
Shakura S’Aida Artist Toronto, ON
Paul Sanderson Sanderson Entertainment Toronto, ON
Lily Sazz Groove Corporation Ontario
Dale Schimpf East Coast Blues Society Halifax, NS
Rott’n Dan Shinnan Boogie Patrol Edmonton, AB
Jean Sicotte Kazou Productions Sutton, QC
Phyllis Sigal Heritage Music Bluesfest Wheeling, WV
Thomas Silvani Musician Toronto, ON
Alex Sinclair OCFF Toronto, ON
Tim Sinnett Canal Bank Shuffle Thorold, ON
Brian Slack Tremblant International Blues Festival Montreal, QC
Ashley Sperling Luminato Toronto, ON
Brent Staeben Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival Fredericton, NB
Mark Stafford Musician Toronto, ON
Mark Stenzler Blues Zeppelin Radio Bern, Switzerland
Wayne Stoute Terry Gillespie Ontario
Steve Strongman Artist Hamilton, ON
Terry Strudwick Sabrina Weeks & Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
Liz Sykes Ottawa Blues Society Ottawa, ON
Rob Tamblyn Downton Kingston Kingston, ON
Bud Tangney Toronto, ON
Liz Temple Grand River Blues Society Waterloo, ON
Debra Thornington Ottawa Blues Society Quebec
Brent Tingley A Portrait of Blues in Canada Ottawa, ON
Ed Torres DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Kate Torres DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Greg Torrington Galaxie Montreal, QC
Carolyn Fe Trinidad Carolyn Fe Blues Collective Montreal, QC
Yves Trottier DAWG FM Ottawa, ON
Jerome Tucker Toronto, ON
Linda Turu Borealis Records Toronto, ON
John Valenteyn CIUT Toronto, ON
David Vest Musician Vancouver, BC
Suzie Vinnick Artist Wainfleet, ON
Peggy Voigt Loyal Blues Fellowship South-Eastern ON
Rachel Voigt Fenelon Falls Chamber Fenelon Falls, ON
Beth Ward Toronto, ON
Dawn Tyler Watson Artist Montreal, QC
Sabrina Weeks Sabrina Weeks & Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
James Weyman OMDC Toronto, ON
Bruce Wheeler Heritage Music Bluesfest Wheeling, WV
Bill White Sabrina Weeks & Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
Chris Whiteley Artist Toronto, ON
Jesse Whiteley Musician Toronto, ON
Kathy Wolf Howlin’ Blue Productions Montreal, QC
Al Wood Saskatoon Blues Society Saskatoon, SK
Al Wood Artist Ottawa, ON
Michael Wrycraft A Man Called Wrycraft Toronto, ON
Brant Zwicker At the Crossroads Kamloops, BC

Schedule

Fri Jan 18

Gerrard Room, Main Floor

 

3:00-9:00 Registration Office Open
Monarch’s Pub, Main Floor – Electro Fi Records Showcase, Curley Bridges’ 79th Birthday Bash   Market Garden, Main Floor
8:00

Curley Bridges

9:30-10:10

Jerome Godboo

8:30

Fraser Daley

10:30-11:10  Fraser Melvin Band
8:50

Morgan Davis

11:30-12:10  Dan Livingstone
9:20

Julian Fauth

12:30-1:10

The Kat Kings

10:00

Diana Braithwaite & Chris Whiteley

10:30

Harrison Kennedy

11:05

Shakura S’Aida


Sat Jan 19

Gerrard Room, Main Floor

9:30-7:30 Registration Office Open

Monarch’s Pub, Main Floor

2:00- 4:00 Welcome Reception.Performance by The 24th Street Wailers – 3pm
4:00-6:00 SOCAN Songs & Stories. David Gogo (host), The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer, Shakura S’Aida, Michael Jerome Browne
Monarch’s Pub, Main Floor Market Garden, Main Floor

Deck 27, 27th Floor

9:00-9:40

Donald Ray Johnson

8:30-9:10

Cecile Doo-Kingue

8:45-9:25

Steve Strongman

10:00-10:40

David Vest

9:30-10:10

Jon Knight and Soulstack

9:45-10:25

Nicole Christian

11:00-11:40

The Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer

10:30-11:10

Carolyn Fe Blues Collective

10:45-12:25

Morgan Davis

12:00-12:40

Sabrina Weeks and Swing Cat Bounce

11:30-12:10

Joe Murphy

12:30-1:10

Bill Johnson


Sun Jan 20

Gerrard Room, Main Floor

9:30-7:30 Registration Office Open

Mountbatten Room, 2nd Floor

11:00-1:00 Keynote Brunch. Holger Petersen, Introduction by Derek Andrews
1:30-3:00 Blues Festival Speed Pitch. A new conference feature offering an opportunity for face time opportunities with the talent buyer delegates. Sign Up Required.

Seymour Room

Stevenson Room

3:00-4:15 Sync Rights Royalty.  Rodney Murphy (SOCAN, Moderator), Velma Barkwell (East End Music), Ron Proulx (Arpix Media), Suzie Vinnick (Artist) Spotlight America. Bruce Wheeler (Heritage Music Bluesfest), Michael Cloeren (Pennsylvania State Blues Festival), Peter Dammann (Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival)
4:15-5:30 Radio Roundup.  Holger Petersen (CBC / CKUA, Moderator), Greg Torrington (Galaxie), Mark Stenzler (Blues Zeppelin Radio), Brant Zwicker (At the Crossroads), John Valenteyn (CIUT) Branding, Marketing, Packaging.  Linda Turu (Borealis Records, Host), Michael Wrycraft (A Man Called Wrycraft), Barbara Klunder (Visual Artist), Paul Reddick (Artist)

Monarchs Pub, Main Floor

6:30-7:00 A Portrait of Blues in Canada. Book Launch, Intro by Holger Petersen
Monarch’s Pub, Main Floor Market Garden, Main Floor Deck 27, 27th Floor
9:00-9:40

Bill Durst

9:30-10:10

Jack de Keyzer

8:45-9:25

Dawn Tyler Watson & Paul Deslauriers

10:00-10:40

Digging Roots

10:30-11:10

Paul Reddick

9:45-10:25

David Owen

11:00-11:40

JW Jones

11:30-12:10

Ben Racine

10:45-11:25

The Distillery

12:00-12:40

Boogie Patrol

12:20-1:00

Irene Torres & the Sugar Devils


Mon Jan 21

Gerrard Room, Main Floor

9:30-5:00 Registration Office Open
 

Seymour Room

Stevenson Room
10:00-11:15 Grants for Recording, Touring and Other Activity.  Brent Bain (FACTOR), Rene Lavoie (Canada Council), Michael Murray (Ontario Arts Council), Christy DiFelice (TAC) Film Screening. Rita Chiarelli’s – Music From the Big House (Starts at 9:30am)
11:30-12:45 Hubs and Spokes; Facebook, Twitter, Email, Web Sites.  Dave Cool (Bandzoogle, Moderator), Sarah French (Sarah French Publicity), Ashley Sperling (Luminato), David Gogo (Artist), Chris Martin (CBC) Label Pow Wow. Richard Flohil (Moderator), Holger Petersen (Stony Plain), Rene Moisan (Bros Records), Andrew Galloway (Electro-Fi Records)
2:00-3:15 How to Pitch for a Gig. Brian Slack (Zeb Productions), Derek Andrews (Global Cafe), Holmes Hooke (Hugh’s Room), JW Jones (Artist), Steve Butler (Paquin Entertainment) Blues Societies Unite. Al Wood (Saskatoon Blues Society), Brian Mortimer (Great Lakes Blues Society), Gary Paradis (Ottawa Blues Society), Irene Ippersiel (Montreal Blues Society)
3:30-4:15 Spotlight Quebec. Brian Slack (Tremblant International Blues Festival), Yannick Lambert (Donnacona Blues Festival), Yves Trottier (DAWG FM), Randy Renaud (CHOM FM), Frederic Lamoureux (Montreal International Jazz Festival) War Stories with Richard Flohil. Veteran Publicist Richard Flohil is writing a book about his experience in the industry. Alongside some friends, Richard will tell a series of true stories from his career.
7pm

The 16th Annual Maple Blues Awards at Koerner Hall


Registration Office, Information & Drop Boxes

Gerrard Room (directly next to Monarchs Pub)

The office phone number will be posted as soon as it is available. There is no answering machine, so the phone will only be picked up during the conference office hours:

 

Fri Jan 18: 3pm-9pm

Sat Jan 19: 9:30am-7:30pm

Sun Jan 20: 9:30am-7:30pm

Mon Jan 21: 9:30am-5pm

Registration Office, Information & Drop Boxes

Gerrard Room (directly next to Monarchs Pub)

The office phone number will be posted as soon as it is available. There is no answering machine, so the phone will only be picked up during the conference office hours:

Fri Jan 18: 3pm-9pm
Sat Jan 19: 9:30am-7:30pm
Sun Jan 20: 9:30am-7:30pm
Mon Jan 21: 9:30am-5pm

 

FRIDAY JANUARY 18

Registration Office (Gerrard Room next to Monarchs Pub on the main floor) 3pm-9pm

MONARCHS PUB (main floor)
Electro-Fi Showcase for Curley Bridges’ 79th Birthday Bash
8pm Curley Bridges
8:30pm Fraser Daley
8:50pm Morgan Davis
9:20pm Julian Fauth
10pm Diana Braithwaite & Chris Whiteley
10:30pm Harrison Kennedy
11:05pm Shakura S’Aida and Donna Grantis

MARKET GARDEN
Evening Showcases TBA

SATURDAY JANUARY 19

Registration Office 9:30am-7:30pm

MONARCHS PUB
3pm-4pm Opening Reception

4pm-6pm SOCAN Songs & Stories
David Gogo (host), Michael Jerome Browne, Shakura S’Aida, and The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer

Evening Showcases TBA

MARKET GARDEN (main floor)
Evening Showcases TBA

DECK 27 (27th Floor)
Evening Acoustic Showcases TBA

SUNDAY JANUARY 20

Registration Office 9:30am-7:30pm

MOUNTBATTEN ROOM (2nd Floor)
11am-1pm Keynote Brunch with Holger Petersen (Details on this complete buffet breakfast upon request)
1:30pm-3pm Blues Festival Speed Pitch

STEVENSON ROOM (2nd Floor)
Daytime Panels TBA

SEYMOUR ROOM (2nd Floor)
3pm Sync Rights Royalty
Daytime Panels TBA

MONARCHS PUB
Evening Showcases TBA

MARKET GARDEN
Evening Showcases TBA

Deck 27
Evening Acoustic Showcases TBA


Showcase Artists

The Kat KingsThe Kat Kings – Toronto, ON
The Kat Kings as a group, are yet another excellent addition to the multitude of talent that Canada consistently is able to produce and offer. For a Debut Album, “The Winning Hand” is about as good of a start as any band could hope for, and it is certainly one that leaves you with a sense of more great things to come. – Blues Underground


Jerome GoodbooJerome Goodboo – Toronto, ON
Jerome Godboo is a singer, songwriter and harp player extraordinaire who has released twelve albums over twenty years. He has recorded and toured with The Phantoms, Alannah Myles, Dutch Mason, Jeff Healey, Ronnie Hawkins, Jack de Keyzer, Jimmy Bowskill and Suzie McNeil, and has performed on stages across Canada, the U.S., France, Finland, Portugal, Ukraine, Israel and beyond, with artists like Prince, Pinetop Perkins, James Cotton, the Tragically Hip, Levon Helm, Billy Ray Cyrus and many more.


Morgan DavisMorgan Davis – Halifax, NS
Originally from Detroit, Morgan Davis has been on the road travelling across Canada, the United States and Europe for nearly four decades. His multi- award winning release “Painkiller” won an impressive four awards at the 2004 Maple Blues Awards and not long after took home Canada’s top music prize…the Juno for Blues Album of the Year.


Ben Racine - Montreal, QCBen Racine – Montreal, QC
Ben’s soulful voice is reminiscent of the greatest Rhythm and Blues vocalists of the ‘50s and ‘60s. From the moment he hits the stage, his contagious energy and charisma combine for a sound that is truly original.


Dawn Tyler Watson & Paul Deslauriers - Montreal, QCDawn Tyler Watson & Paul Deslauriers – Montreal, QC
Montreal’s own “Queen of the Blues”, Dawn Tyler Watson has teamed up with virtuoso guitarist and singer/songwriter extrordinaire Paul Deslauriers (Paul Deslauriers Band, Black Cat Bone, Amanda Marshall, France D’Amour, Garou) to create a very unique partnership. With the simple honesty of two voices and a six-string guitar, they have been creating a buzz on both the national and international Folk and Blues scenes, touring across Canada, France, and into the US.


Steve Strongman - Hamilton, ONSteve Strongman – Hamilton, ON
There are reasons why Canadian blues artist Steve Strongman was the 2011 Maple Blues Award winner for Guitar Player of the Year.  There are reasons why in the last three years Strongman has performed at major blues festivals in Rio de Janeiro, France, Switzerland, Mexico City, Memphis and Canada, including two appearances at the famed Montreal International Jazz Festival, four appearances at the Mont Tremblant International Blues Festival, and the Ottawa Blues Festival. Charisma. Verve. Passion. Unbridled talent.


JW Jones - Ottawa, ONJW Jones – Ottawa, ON
Canada’s Top Touring Bluesman, JW-Jones is on the move and has a boundary breaking new CD.  His last few CDs have hit #1 on B.B. King’s Bluesville on Sirius-XM Radio in the U.S.A., and Jones continues to win over audiences across the globe with his high-energy live performances.


Bill Johnson - Victoria, BCBill Johnson – Victoria, BC
As of February 2012, Bill Johnson’s Still Blue has won two Blewzzy Awards, and been nominated for one Western Canada Music Award, three Maple Blues Awards, and made numerous “Best of 2012” music reviews, and lists world wide. Most recently, Still Blue was nominated for the 2012 Juno Award for “Blues Album of the Year”, Canada’s highest honor.


David Vest - Victoria, BCDavid Vest – Victoria, BC
David Vest was raised in Alabama and in juke joints all along the Gulf Coast, playing with the likes of Big Joe Turner. David is a two-time Maple Blues Award nominee for Piano Player of the Year, touring almost nonstop.


Boogie PatrolBoogie Patrol – Edmonton, AB
Boogie Patrol have headlined at North Country Fair, Pembina River Nights, Beaumont Blues Festival (Alberta, Canada; 2009 & 2010), Sasquatch Gathering (Alberta, Canada; 2010) and Wild Oats & Notes (Alberta, Canada; 2010, 2012), opened for The Fabulous Thunderbirds and Buddy Guy, and recently won the Memphis Bound Blues Competition, sponsored by the Edmonton Blues Society, which will send the band to Memphis to represent Edmonton and Western Canada at the 29th Annual International Blues Challenge. The band is a nominee for this year’s Maple Blues Award for “New Artist or Group of the Year”.


Donald Ray JohnsonDonald Ray Johnson – Calgary, AB
In 1979, Donald Ray Johnson’s band “A Taste of Honey” was the first Afro-American Band to win and be presented with the Grammy Award for “Best New Artist”.  Named “Best Canadian Male Blues Vocalist” in 1997 by Real Blues Magazine, Don was also nominated for “Best Blues Drummer” in 1997, Best Male Blues Vocalist in 1998 at the Maple Blues Awards, and was recently nominated for “Best Blues Artist” by the Alberta Recording Industry Association (A.R.I.A.)


Nicole ChristianNicole Christian – Hamilton, ON
Nicole Christian is a multi-instrumentalist who specializes in lap-style slide guitar, flute, bass guitar and kick drum. Nicole’s newest release, Run Rabbit Run, was voted the Best Debut Blues and Roots Album of 2010 by the Underground Blues Network, in 2011 she was a finalist in the Toronto Blues Society’s Talent Search, and in 2012 she was nominated for two Hamilton Music Awards, one for Best Blues Album of the Year and one for Best Female Vocalist of the Year.


Joe MurphyJoe Murphy – Halifax, NS
Joe Murphy (harp and guitar) has played with most of the blues acts who have come east in the last thirty years including Dutch Mason, Garrett Mason, Otis Rush, Johnnie Johnson, Johnny Sansone, Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne, Pinetop Perkins, Sunnyland Slim, and John Lee Hooker.  Joe and his band also have one of the longest running blues matinees for the last 21 years, every Saturday at Your Father’s Mustache in Halifax.


Jon Knight & SoulstackJon Knight & Soulstack – Kitchener, ON
There is an intensity and urgency in the vocal style of Jon Knight, guitar player, songwriter and front man of Soulstack. Based in Ontario, Soulstack was formed from the ashes of the popular Toronto blues band Wickens-Knight and features multiple award-winning members Jonathan Knight (vocals/guitar) and Tom Bona (vocals/drums) with the addition of Mark Wessenger (vocals/keys) and Josh Knight (vocals/bass).


The Harpoonist and the Axe MurdererThe Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer  – Nanaimo, BC
Shawn Hall and Matt Rogers have played festivals all over Western Canada, including The Beaumont Blues FestThe Powell River Blues Festival, and The Gastown Blues and Chilli Festival and along the way, they’ve shared the stage with some of the world’s finest blues acts, including Jim Byrnes, Dick Dale and MonkeyJunk. You’re not supposed to pull this off with only two people, but early on, Hall and Rogers made the choice to limit their sound to whatever they could play between them, using only their mouths, hands and feet.


Carolyn Fe Blues CollectiveCarolyn Fe Blues Collective – Montreal, QC
Carolyn Fe Blues Collective band members have played with the likes of Percy Sledge, Fat Boy Slim,  Seal and many more. The band has had the following achievements: winner of the 2012  Quebec’s Lys Blues Best Blues & Associated Styles Album for « Original Sin » (Canada), 2012 Quebec Lys Blues Nominee for Best Female Artist by (Canada), 2012 Finalist in Toronto Blues society’s Talent Search, 2011 Regional Finalist Montreal IBC, 2011 Nominee for Best International Release by Blues 411(USA).


Bill DurstBill Durst – St. Marys, ON
After the early success of his band Thundermug in North America and Europe, Bill was acclaimed as one of the top songwriters in Canada, signing with CBS (now Sony) Publishing, and releasing his first two solo albums in 1984 and 1989. Bill has opened for Aerosmith, Rush, Bob Seger, The Yardbirds, Sly and The Family Stone, George Thorogood, Bad Company, Jeff Healey, Edgar Winter Group, The Tubes, David Clayton Thomas, Savoy Brown, Little Feat and more.


Sabrina Weeks & Swing Cat BounceSabrina Weeks & Swing Cat Bounce Kamloops, BC
Sabrina Weeks and her band Swing Cat Bounce were named the best new blues act at the 2012 Maple Blues Awards. Sabrina Weeks has shared the stage or opened for such performers as Colin James, Tom Lavin and Powder Blues, Steppenwolf and the Downchild Blues Band.


Irene Torres & The Sugar DevilsIrene Torres & The Sugar Devils – Toronto, ON
Shortly after winning the 2012 TBS Talent Search, Irene Torres & The Sugar Devils were nominated for a Sigy Born award and nominated for a Toronto Independent Music Award. Sultry Peruvian born Irene Torres’ voice and lyrics can be heard on worldwide radio stations, radio commercials, television, soundtracks and fashion shows.


Keynote Speaker: Holger Petersen

Holger PetersenDr. Holger Petersen, C.M., D.Litt. is a record producer, label owner, broadcaster, author, educator, festival producer, album collector – and serious music fan.

Born on Pellworm Island, Germany on November 23rd, 1949, Holger immigrated to Canada with his parents in 1955. Initially living in Manitoba for three years, the family relocated to Edmonton. Holger played drums with various Edmonton garage bands during his teenage years. After attending Bonnie Doon High School, Holger graduated from NAIT’s, two year Radio And Television Arts program in 1971.

Since 1969, Holger has hosted Natch’l Blues on CKUA, Canada’s longest running blues program. He also hosts Saturday Night Blues on CBC Radio One and Two, now in it’s 25th year. In 1975 he co-founded Stony Plain Records, Canada’s best know ‘Roots and Blues’ record company with Alvin Jahns. The label has won eleven Juno Awards and has been nominated for six Grammy’s. Stony Plain artists include MonkeyJunk, Kenny ‘Blue Boss’ Wayne, Eric Bibb, Ian Tyson, Maria Muldaur, David Wilcox, Long John Baldry, Jeff Healey, Duke Robillard, Big Dave McLean, Amos Garrett, Rory Block, Ronnie Earl, and many others.

Holger is also a Founder, past Board Chair (1979-85) and past Artistic Director of The Edmonton Folk Music Festival (1986-88). He was a Founder and Vice-Pres. of Summerfest 1980−84; the Alberta Recording Indus. Assn. 1982−84 and a member of various Canada Council music juries and Board Member of several music industry associations including SOCAN, CIRPA, CARAS and the CMRRA.

Awards for Stony Plain include Canadian Country Music Assn. Awards (CCMA) for Publishing Co. of the Year 1992, Record Label of the Year 1991, ’95, ’96, ’97, ’98, ’99 & 2000, ’01, ’02 and several Alberta Recording Indus. Assn. Awards and Western Canadian Music Industry Awards. Personal awards include Music Industry Person of the Year 1989 & Blues With A Feeling Award presented by the Toronto Blues Soc. In 1986. Holger was inducted into the City of Edmonton Cultural Hall of Fame 1992 and named Record Company Person of the Year, by the CCMA 2001. He was named to the Order of Canada in 2003 and is a recipient of two honorary ”Doctor of Letters Degrees” presented by the Universary of Alberta in 2012 and University Of Athabasca in 2004 in recognition of his contributions to Canadian Culture and Public Broadcasting. He was named ‘Best Public Broadcaster’ by the Blues Foundation in Memphis in 2009. The first time the award was presented to someone outside of the US.

His first book ‘Talking Music: Blues Radio and Roots Music’ was published in 2011 by Insomniac Press.


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TBS logo and WBR artwork by Barbara Klunder


The Toronto Blues Society acknowledges the annual support of the Ontario Arts Council, the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council and the Department of Canadian Heritage, and project support from FACTOR< and the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage (Canada Music Fund) and of Canada’s Private Broadcasters, The Canada Council for the Arts, the SOCAN Foundation, SOCAN, the Ontario Media Development Corporation, and the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.