Toronto Blues Society | » December 2023 – Loose Blues News

December 2023 – Loose Blues News

Published December 1, 2023 in Loose Blues News

Jackie Shane Documentary: The Paradise on Bloor will replay the documentary on Jackie Shane on Monday, December 18 (7:00 pm). My Name Is Jackie – Tribute to Jackie Shane is a moving tribute to Jackie Shane, the boundary-shattering 1960s music icon and pioneer. Director/actor/vocalist/multi-hyphenate Nicky Lawrence, whose sold out show Ugly Black Woman rocked and amazed Paradise Theatre audiences, has partnered with Ravyn Wngz for a special evening of music, film and expression. After a triumphant first screenng My Name Is Jackie is back by popular demand! Join Ravyn Wngz as she host an intimate fireside chat with the entire cast of My Name Is Jackie as they celebrate the inimitable Jackie Shane, her life, music and impact on the Black and trans community.

Remembering Kenny Brown: 47 Records, Gary Kendall`s indie label has released a remastered digital only reissue of Kenny Brown & The Pervaders’ 1981 single. The two tracks, both covers, are Ike Turner’s “The Big Question” and Ray Smith’s “Willing And Ready”. The original sessions took place in Vancouver B.C at the late Wille MacCalder`s recording studio. MacCalder, well known for his work with Powder Blues produced and guested on piano.
Band members, Kenny Brown guitar/vocals, Jim Milne bass and Ted Harrison drums all passed away in recent years. The surviving Pervader, John Doheny relocated to New Orleans and is active in that city’s jazz scene. Jim Milne would be known to Torontonians as a founding member of The Downchild Blues Band.
After spending a decade plus living and performing on the west coast, band leader Kenny Brown moved back to his home town of Toronto in 1984 and formed an eastern version of the Pervaders with a revolving lineup of the city’s best bluesicians. The reissue was digitally remastered by studio wiz, L. Stu Young at his El Studio location in Toronto.
Kenny Brown & The Pervaders, The Big Question-Willing And Ready is available on Bandcamp, iTunes, Spotify and all streaming/download platforms.

Keeping the Blues Alive: Two great friends of the Toronto Blues Society were included in the list of 2024 Keeping The Blues Alive award recipients. Photographer/presenter Laura Carbone and radio personality Mark Stenzler should both be honorary Canadians considering all they’ve done to promote Canadian blues artists in their respective areas (Laura is in Plattsburg, NY and Mark is in Bern, Switzerland). Laura has captured the essence of the blues for global publications. Her promotion efforts have brought artists to new regions and supported educational initiatives like Blues in the Schools. Carbone’s philanthropy includes donating her photos to fundraisers and supporting aspiring young musicians. Her dedication to the blues, often without seeking recognition, showcases her commitment and warrants her recognition with a KBA Award.
Mark Stenzler’s career in radio broadcasting has been marked by his love for the blues. His show, Blues Zeppelin, has become a staple for blues enthusiasts and has been instrumental in promoting blues musicians and festivals. Stenzler’s role in the growth of the blues genre and his support for artists’ careers make him an exemplary recipient of the KBA Award. Other KBA recipients include John Hall, Jacques Garcia, Larry Chambers, Lee Oskar, The Columbus Blues Alliance, and Blues Association Turkey. The 2024 honorees will be celebrated for their contributions at the Keeping The Blues Alive Awards brunch on Friday, January 19, 2024, at 10:30 AM, located at the Hyatt Centric in Memphis. The awards ceremony is a highlight of the Blues Foundation’s 39th Annual International Blues Challenge, which begins on Monday, January 16, 2024.

GK’s Trio winds up: When Downchild’s 2023 leg of The Happy Trails tour wrapped at The El Mocambo, November 25th, bassist Gary Kendall scaled it back to his trio featuring Teddy Leonard guitar and Tyler Burgess drums, bringing his East End Blues to Castro’s Lounge in the Beach area of Toronto, Sunday, December 3, 3-6pm

Mohawk College discontinues Music Program: Just when Hamilton has an influx of musicians looking for cheaper rent and is getting a reputation as a “music city,” Mohawk College has decided to suspend their highly acclaimed music program. With the announced suspension of the Applied Music program, no new students will be accepted into the program. Existing students will be fully supported as they continue their studies until the completion of their three-year diploma.
Mohawk College says, “…the program has not been financially viable for several years, with declining enrolment and increasing costs. It is no longer financially possible to offer the depth and quality of courses required to provide students with the high-quality training that has made the Applied Music program so successful.”
Though the music program was more focused on jazz, the entire music community is up in arms and encouraging anyone who believes in music education to raise their voices to Mohawk College and the local politicians.

Guy Davis Arts Outreach: American Blues guitarist Guy Davis brings his unique blend of music and storytelling to elementary school students at The River Run Centre in Guelph for 3 performances on February 20-22.
The arts outreach program “Linamar for the Performing Arts”, now in its 21st season, is dedicated to building wisdom and understanding of life’s broadness and diversity through exposure to professional arts performances of music, dance and theatre. Admission is free so that every child has the opportunity to attend. The program sees an attendance of 32,000 to 34,000 children each year.
Guy Davis has been offering his children’s program called “Routes of the Blues” for years at home in NYC, via Lincoln Center Education. It takes children on a fascinating journey through storytelling and music, and explores two prominent styles of the Blues, Mississippi Delta and the Piedmont/East Coast forms. Davis will then tour Ontario, Quebec and the East Coast through February and March, including nearby stops in London, Scarborough, Greenbank and Ottawa.

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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.