Tuesday, August 15, 2017

My Day at Kitchener Blues 2017

I didn't think I'd get to the Kitchener Bluesfest this year - there were some great African guitarists at Harbourfront so I would not be deprived of great music  - but thanks to my friend Laila's prompting, I decided we would make the trek and I'm glad I did.  I found out after that the Friday night got mostly rained out.  Lachey Doley (yes, Clayton's brother) had to end his set after only a couple of songs and Paul Reddick and Lucky Peterson didn't get to play.

A few tunes into Shawn Kellernan's afternoon set he invited a 13 year old called Avalon Fraser to sing a tune and get a taste for the big stage.  Right after, Lucky Peterson hit the stage and basically took over the show.  Shawn was glad to oblige - never being known as a powerful singer.  I missed most of David Wilcox set but caught this little moment when he acknowledged a young gal's birthday. Then over to the tent to hear Tarbox Ramblers (this was a band I had wanted to see for years but had a totally different idea of what their music).  It's rough and ready hill country tuning-optional blues a la R. L. Burnside.  Then Ann Vriend - a fabulous singer - with Rooster Davis. and finally the main attraction for me - Rick Estrin and the Nightcats.  I was excited just to hear Rick - a real eccentric bluesman - but before the set, my friend Larry said Kid Anderson was playing guitar.  I had never heard of Kid Andersen until Rockin' Johnny Burgin told me about him. I played bass for Johnny when he was in town and he gave me his recent CD - produced by, who else, Kid Andersen. He plays on it too and after seeing him live, I think he's my new favourite blues guitarist.