Toronto Blues Society | » Loose Blues News – August 2017

Loose Blues News – August 2017

Published August 1, 2017 in Loose Blues News, News

Congratulations to Canada’s “Sweetheart of Swing,” Alex Pangman (pictured with hubby/bandmate Tom Parker), who has been inducted into the The Mississauga Music Walk of Fame. A fellow Women’s Blues Revue alumna, Liberty Silver and Canadian Music Industry pioneer Randy Lennox were also honoured at a reception at Port Credit Memorial Park. The event has traditionally been part of the Southside Shuffle weekend, and this is the first time it took place outside the Port Credit music festival weekend. The Juno-nominated Pangman has released more than a half-dozen albums throughout her career. She got her start at the tender age of 14 singing at the Suisse Marmite Restaurant and Tavern in Port Credit and has a passion for jazz of the 1920s and ‘30s. She was born with cystic fibrosis and has been a fierce advocate for organ donation. Past inductees into the walk of fame include luminaries such as Ronnie Hawkins, Gil Moore, Billy Talent, Oscar Peterson, Denny Doherty, Tommy Hunter and Jeff Healey, among others. For more, visit

And the Festivals Keep on Coming

As we sit in the middle of blues festival season, the best is yet to come. It’s certainly worth a drive to Kitchener Aug.10-13th to take in one of Canada’s largest blues festivals with top Canadian and International blues stars like The Harpoonist and The Axe Murderer, The Sheepdogs, Booker T., Steve Strongman Band, Bobby Rush, Paul Reddick, David Wilcox, Lucky Peterson, catl,Shawn Kellerman, Lurrie Bell and tributes to the “Last Waltz” and Etta James.

The Southside Shuffle features mostly Canadian talent (a nod to Canada 150 celebrations) like Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, Jack de Keyzer, and of course Downchild doing the traditional closing concert as well as a few “themed” events like a Canadian Blues All-Star Band featuring Chuck Jackson, Jack de Keyzer, B.A.R.K and Harpdog Brown, “Lady Sings The Blues” with Dawn Tyler Watson, Suzie McNeill, Suzie Vinnick, Jenie Thai and Ginger St. James. The “Piano Rama” workshop will feature Kenny (Blues Boss) Wayne, Tyler Yarema and Jenie Thai.

Keith Sharp of did a comprehensive overview of two of the biggies, Kitchener Blues and Southside Shuffle and spoke to both of the principal organizers. “Both Claude Cloutier’s TD Kitchener Blues Festival and Chuck Jackson’s Port Credit Ontario based Tim Horton’s Southside Blues Shuffle have been mainstays of the Canadian Blues Festival Scene and both report that interest in blues music is stronger than ever as they prepare to execute their events which both have a strong Canadian theme considering this country is currently celebrating its 150th birthday. Cloutier, about to celebrate Kitchener’s 17th year and his 11th year in charge is aware that it is a yearly challenge to inject his lineup with fresh talent but claims new artists are appearing annually as some of the established blues artists pass on.

“Our festival is always going to be a blues festival, there will always be a foothold in that musical style,” he noted, acknowledging that other existing blues festivals are blues in name only as they attempt to boost interest by adding Country, Pop and R&B artists. “There’s a definite pushback from our audience when we have tried to spice things up. But there is such a wide interpretation of what is blues. I mean every classic rock band contains some elements of blues in their material and many established rock artists are releasing blues records as a spin-off.”

Chuck Jackson, lead vocalist of Downchild Blues Band, and Artistic Director of the Southside Shuffle says, “I travel all over the world with Downchild and I have to say that Canadian Talent is just as good as anything else I have seen,” Jackson enthuses. “It’s always great to be able to showcase new talent like Paul Reddick (Juno award winner) these are the people that are going to allow Blues music to continue to grow.”

For more information on Kitchener Blues Festival link to www. and for Tim Horton’s Southside Shuffle link to

Introduce someone to the Blues…via their stomach:

Throughout summer and its passing into harvest time, collaborations between gourmands and musicians popping up around Ontario may prove the ideal platform to spark a love for live music in others.Undeniably, annual Ribfests have long since given Blues artists exposure; for many a fan they were a little taste which later developed into a healthy appetite for live blues music. Today, venues ranging from farming co-ops to winery concerts hosted by local culinary superstars, offer a wide appeal. Here are some highlights from our concert listings page: Aug 13 – Jack de Keyzer at Hy Hope Farms in Ashburn (farm fresh market and orchard, baked delicacies, live music patio); Aug 25 – Blackie & The Rodeo Kings at Jackson-Triggs Amphitheatre in Niagara (wine & light fare surrounded by vineyard); Oct. 29 – Ken Whitely Gospel Brunch Sunday at Hugh’s Room Live, Toronto. And of course there’s regular servings of Blues and delicious food at the Mississippi Queen’s Southern Suppers in Hamilton (Steve Payne – just in from UK plays on August 17th) and the Cove Inn’s popular Buffet & Show in Westport (kicking off their 13th season on September 22 with Angel Forrest).

Violet’s not shrinking

Blues fans in Barrie and environs are rejoicing at the return of high-profile blues shows in first-class venues. Bruce Maltby had announced last November that he would not be presenting any shows for a while but that he would be back and he was good to his word. Violet’s Venue is presenting British blues guitarslinger Matt Schofield at The Park Place Theatre on August 19 followed by Rick Derringer at Gayety Theatre on August 26, Roy Rogers at the Park Place Theatre on September 16 and the Alexis P. Suter Band at the Simcoe Street Theatre in Collingwood, on September 30. Details at

Amy Louis Grossmans Music Scholarship open for submissions

ALGMS is an artist development bursary created in memory of the late Amy Louie, a member of the family that has owned Grossman’s Tavern in Toronto since 1975.

Grossman’s, at the corner of Spadina Avenue and Cecil Street, has long been an “incubator” for a wide range of Toronto artists — including the late Jeff Healey, The Downchild Blues Band, Rough Trade and many more who began their careers there. The scholarship, in the amount of $2000 will be awarded to a group or individual from the GreaterTorontoArea with a winning proposal that would advance their career.The submission period is July17, 2017 to September 15, 2017.The submission information and guidelines can found at http:// Past ALGMS recipients have been The Responsables, Jerome Godboo, Chloe Watkinson & Park Eddy, and Bad Luck Woman & Her Misfortunes.

Harp Players Take Note

The first Global Blues Harmonica Summit, a day-long interactive webinar, takes place on Saturday, August 12, beginning at 8AM Pacific Daylight Time. If you have a good internet connection,you can participate from anywhere in the world. For a modest fee, you’ll get lectures on “improvisation” by four of the biggest names in contemporary blues harp distance learning: Ronnie Shellist, David Barrett, Adam Gussow, and, from the UK, Tomlin Leckie. Breaks for brief “jam sessions” will give you a chance to connect with blues harmonica players from all over the world! You can read all about it on Adam Gussow’s popular website, where you can subscribe to his monthly newsletter and see some amazing video clips of Roly Platt and Mike Stevens from the recent Harmonica Workshop at the Shared Harvest farm in Dunville. Adam (from the legendary duo, Satan and Adam) had some nice things to say about the Canadian harp players: “Beware of the Canadians, for they be true badasses, and modest men, too.” Gussow’s website offers custom-made harp-player T-shirts, video lessons and lots more.

All-Star Blues Jam

The Canada 150 All Star Blues Band will be assembled on Sunday August 20 at 6:00Pm at ArtsFest Waterdown. The top blues musicians in the country are gathering for a once in a lifetime musical performance to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday. With countless Juno Awards between them, this group of blues musicians include Downchild members Donnie Walsh, Chuck Jackson and Pat Carey, along with Michael Kaeshammer, Rita Chiareli, Danny Marks, Carlos del Junco, Bucky Berger & Terry Wilkins. These acclaimed musicians will be jamming their favourite blues tunes – with some special surprise guests- for what will likely be the live blues event of the year.


A word from Elwood Blues

Greetings Citizens, Elwood Blues, your musical chauffeur, here.

The BluesMobile began life as the House of Blues Radio Hour, way back in 1993. Over the years we moved from the house to the road, but the mission was always the same: showcase the best in blues, blues-rock, roots music, R&B, soul, jazz, straight up rock… and all points in between.

I put the spotlight on new releases from old favorites and newbies. I played the crusty, the fresh, the seasoned, and the raw, featuring wideranging interviews with the musicians themselves, and many live in-house concerts, recorded exclusively for the BluesMobile.

I now give thanks to the stations, the sponsors, affiliates, producers, managers, agents, and all those hard workers who put the “business” in show business, and bigger thanks to all the players and fans who keep the show going. This series, alas, has gone as far as it can go. Our final broadcast will be July 30, 2017.

There is a crossroads dead ahead. Twenty-four years is a long time without a turn. We may turn left, or right, but we will no longer go forward. Time for a new direction, a new road. For us, the end of this one.

And so we leave you to your journey. Please tip a cold one for us before you continue on your way. Watch our tail lights as we vanish in the distance, then get back to it.

Remember: The blues never dies. It will never run out of road. That road goes on forever. And thanks for riding along.

Yours, Elwood.

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