Thursday, July 2, 1992

Montreal Jazz Festival

A couple of days after trying to catch a couple of tunes by Danny Gatton at the “Shoe” (without paying the $18. cover) I find myself walking down de Maisoneuve Street in Montreal as the sound of his signature tune “Elmira Street” is wafting in the air. Danny is know as the world’s greatest unknown guitarist (a title formerly held by Roy Buchanan). Before Danny, I had the opportunity to see a Montreal guitar legend, Jorn Reisner but he was a bit of a disappointment. He was quite cantankerous with the audience, stopping a song in the middle because he was tired of singing it, and then subjecting the blues audience to a series of Dylanesque depressing songs about being a “railroad bum” and living at “the bottom where the sun don’t ever shine”. I turned to the person next to me and said “I think we’re about to see a living legend self-destruct right before our eyes”. He didn’t, but halfway through the set his old Fender amp began screeching. It segued nicely into the deliberate screeching of Gatton’s guitar an hour or two later. Gatton was phenomenal, and his horn/keyboard player was the ultimate utility man. An incredible showman in his own right. I also saw Wild Child Butler performing with a bunch of white kids struggling to keep up with this old black guy.