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Maple Blues Archive

Mark Hummel – January 2020

Harmonica ace Mark Hummel sets the wayback machine to Chicago in the 1940’s to re-introduce us to the “Bluebird Beat”, the sound that producer Lester Melrose developed that was hugely popular at the time.

Durham County Poets – January 2020

Veterans all, the Durham County Poets hail from the Eastern Townships of Quebec and call themselves a ‘folk and roots’ band. For their fourth album, though, they have chosen to pay homage to the blues. To do that, they have come up with a set of seven originals by the band, separately and together, and several covers

January 2020 – Manitoba Hal

Manitoba Hal (Brolund) is a ukulele player based in Shelburne, Nova Scotia, although he was born and raised in Winnipeg. He has raised his profile recently with a couple of fine albums but if you check his web site you’ll find that he has some fourteen in his discography, so prolific is he as a songwriter.

January 2020 – Kevin Belzner, Big Dave McLean & Tim Williams

In much the same vein as last year’s Big City Back Country Blues with Brandon Isaak and Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne, Tim Williams has partnered with Big Dave McLean and inventive percussionist Kevin Belzner to bring you another example of the benefits of collaboration, within a mix of original and traditional blues.

January 2020 – Bad Luck Woman & Her Misfortunes

Having captured the sassy sounds of those early female R&B singers from the forties and fifties as shown on their first album, Cursed, Bad Luck Woman & Her Misfortunes have now incorporated that sound into some strikingly good original material plus a few more rarely heard covers.

Top Blues – January 2020

This month’s recommended listening by John Valenteyn, host of John Valenteyn’s Blues on, 89.5 and CD reviewer for Maple Blues. 

Jack de Keyzer

Loose Blues – January 2020

Winterfolk & Blues: More than 100 artists will be performing on 5 stages at Winterfolk, now relocated from the Danforth to the Spadina/Bloor area including the Tranzac. It takes place February 21-24. Buy early and the wristband price is a mere $15 for the entire weekend. Blues highlights include: Ken Whiteley, Heather Luckhart, Jack de Keyzer (pictured), Chris Whiteley & Diana Braithwaite, Jerome Tucker, Brian Blain, Donne Roberts, and more. Tickets for the Winterfolk Preview show on January 18th in Scarborough include a wristband for the February event. More info at

January 2020 – Michael Jerome Browne

Michael Jerome Browne will perform at the Maple Blues Awards, February 3rd at Koerner Hall.

December 2019 – The Bluesland Horn Band

It was beginning to look like blues horn players were an endangered species but the number of albums with guest horn sections is increasing rapidly and we are now once again seeing actual albums by working horn bands coming to the fore.

December 2019 – Emily Burgess

Emily Burgess rode her first album, Are We In Love?, to the New Artist MBA last year and was busily recording this one at the time of the awards.

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