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Odds and sods from the Toronto blues community and beyond.


February 2021 – Loose Blues News

Winter Blues: Toronto roots music fans have enjoyed the annual appearance of Winterfolk and last year, a new February festival appeared on the scene, the “Be Kind” festival. Both were based out of the Tranzac last year but this time they’ll be online, like everybody else. Winterfolk is happening February 19 & 20 and has plenty of blues content: Donne Roberts, Ken Whiteley, Jack de Keyzer, Suzie Vinnick, Diana Braithwaite & Chris Whiteley and Julian Taylor among other blues-friendly roots artists.

Jan 2021 – Loose Blues News

The annual Blues Booster Award determined by the TBS Board of Directors has been renamed in honour of John Valenteyn the late co-founder of the organization. John’s untimely passing in October continues to reverberate in the community as he left a huge legacy. As you can see in this publication we have recruited a pool or scribes to cover off his monthly “John’s Picks” review column, a group that includes Richard Flohil, Sandra Tooze, Eric Thom, Terry Parson and others including the recipient of the the booster, Cindy McLeod.

Dec 2020 – Loose Blues News

Congrats to Blues Grammy Nominees, Canadian Folk Music Award Nominees

Nov 2020 – Loose Blues News

Introducing the Calgary Bluesfest Channel: The Calgary Bluesfest folks have launched their new Calgary Bluesfest Channel on Public Place Network! They will be offering live streams of their events and a library of blues videos from their festivals. The Calgary Bluesfest Channel offers hours of viewing and listening joy! Subscribe for an entire year for $60 ($5/mo.) or select as many songs as you like and create your own Bluesfest in your own home!. More info at www.calgarybluesfest.com

Oct 2020 – Loose Blues News

Save the Moonshine: The Moonshine Cafe in Oakville is an excellent venue for live music, and deserves some extra support during these tough times. Check out their GoFundMe campaign.We need live music venues to survive, run by people who love music and support musicians.

Sept 2020 – Loose Blues News

Something in the Water? What do Dione Taylor, Brian Blain and Michael Schatte have in common? They’re all releasing new CDs this month and all three of them have a strong focus on water. Dione Taylor’s new album is called Spirits in the Water, Brian Blain’s first single from his new album is “The Water Song” and “Water In the Kettle” is the opening cut from Michael Schatte’s new album. All three releases will be premiered on TBS channels and socials this month (see “Mark Your Calendar” for details).

August 2020 – Loose Blues News

Virtual Blues: TBS Musicians Advisory Committee (MAC) members Gary Kendall and Dan McKinnon have been hard at work assembling and editing performances from last year’s Maple Blues Awards, adding interview sessions. Visit the TBS YouTube Channel and Subscribe to receive notifications of upcoming performances by Big Dave McLean, Michael Jerome Brown, Miss Emily.

July 2020 – Loose Blues News

“Almost Live” Blues: A solid offering of live Blues in Covid came from the stage at Donnelly’s Pub in the city of Thorold, a long-time hub for the genre in the Niagara Region. Most are familiar with Thorold (which banks on the Welland Canal) as home of The Canal Bank Shuffle, a 3-day festival in October featuring Blues performances big and small, with Donnelly’s stage being a festival staple. A solid stop on the Ontario blues map.

 

Raoul Bhaneja

June 2020 – Loose Blues News

Streaming the Blues: The TBS has partnered with the City of  Toronto to provide some opportunities for local blues artists. Raoul Bhaneja (pictured) kicks it off with a performance on June 4 at noon. Funds will be raised for Unison Benevolent Fund. Live on @CityHallLiveOnline & @TorontoBluesSociety Facebook page. Meghan Parnell & Dave Barnes (of Bywater Call) return on Monday, June 15, Live on @CityHallLiveOnline & @TorontoBluesSociety Facebook page.

 

May 2020 – Loose Blues News

Streaming the Blues:  The premiere event in Bluesworld,  Blues Music Awards will proceed (virtually) on Sunday, May 3 (5pm ET) on Facebook and YouTube. Enjoy special performances, award presentations, and a few surprises as part of a global watch party. Multi-BMA winning and GRAMMY® Award nominated artist Shemekia Copeland (pictured) will host the event from her living room and BMA nominees will contribute exclusive performances recorded in their homes. Like prior BMA ceremonies, this online event will also feature announcements of all nominees and award winners, along with some special guest appearances. This online experience will give Facebook viewers a chance to share their enthusiasm and comments with fellow blues fans watching around the world as they celebrate blues’ biggest night together.

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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.

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