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TBS Birthday Party

Mark your calendar for TBS 33rd Birthday Party on Ward’s Island on Friday, June 15. Come celebrate with us!

May 2018 – Jay Sewall

Jay Sewall is a Quebec City-based harmonica player, the first bluesman to play the Montreal International Jazz Festival, in 1983, and the recipient of the Lys Blues Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. With his seventh album, he’s celebrating 50 years of performing with songs he’s performed over the years but never recorded along with some vintage tunes from the archive.

May 2018 – Dan McKinnon

Toronto native Dan McKinnon won our Talent Search last summer and has been very busy ever since, being the winner of the artist development prize, the Amy Louis Grossman Music Scholarship, as well. He was also one of the runners up for our IBC nominee and introduced a couple of the new songs at that memorable playoff evening at Hugh’s Room. His new disc will raise his profile much further.

May 2018 – Michael Kaeshammer

Something New is a very appropriate title as Michael Kaeshammer shows himself to be a very good practitioner and composer of New Orleans pop & jazz but he has a number of guests that you know and enough blues to include it here. The opening “Scenic Route” surprises with a boogie piano break among its jazzy sections.

May 2018 – Carlos del Junco & The Blues Mongrels

Carlos del Junco says that it’s seven years since his last Mongrels album, where does the time go. A gorgeous acoustic album is what we get here, with Eric St. Laurent on guitar and Henry Heilig on bass, both longtime accompanists. He calls the program ‘an eclectic potpourri of styles’ with five vocals followed by five instrumentals.

May 2018 – David Vest

Veteran piano man David Vest recorded his last two albums here with the Willing Victims, Teddy Leonard, Gary Kendall and Mike Fitzpatrick. This time he decided to record on Vancouver Island with a West Coast band: Peter Dammann was the guitarist in the late Paul deLay’s Band when Vest was its pianist.

Loose Blues News – May 2018

Duke Robillard will be sharing his blues licks & tricks at The Toronto Session of Guitar Workshop Plus on July 23 – 28, 2018 at the York University campus. This seminar is designed for players who love the raw energy, feel, and power of Blues music in all of it’s forms from Swing, Delta and Chicago to Texas and electrifying blues/rock sounds. The course will work on improving each participant’s playing and help with soloing from the ground up. Topics include various blues progressions, chord voicings, various rhythm patterns, turnarounds, phrasing, scale and arpeggio usage, double stops, developing solo ideas, and how to achieve a good blues tone and plenty of jamming as well as group development (entire bands will sometimes attend) and the family experience (father and son, mother and daughter, brothers and sisters, etc.) More info at

Top Blues – May 2018

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

May 2018 – Alana Bridgewater

Alana Bridgewater as May Rainey at Soulpepper

April 2018 – James Harman

To quote the press release, James Harman’s last one on Electro-Fi, Bonetime, hit #1 on the Living Blues magazine’s radio chart and received 5 BMA nominations. I see no reason why this one should not do even better. But then I’m biased, I think Harman is one of the best blues songwriters around and Fineprint has thirteen more treasures.

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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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