Ottawa Bluesfest

greg greene gbgreene@SYMPATICO.CA
Mon Jul 7 13:11:39 EDT 1997


Patrick Hertel wrote:
>
> I was shocked to read Greg Greene's summary of the
> Ottawa Blues Fest, SHOCKED that he didn't mention the
> act that came between Deborah Coleman and Little Feat ....
> I refer to Long John Hunter who, to my VERY [editor's addition] tiny mind at least,
> was one of the best if not THE best so far. An act I might
> add, i missed in part due to Mr Greene's talking me into
> volunteering in the Blues Society tent. Greg if you
> missed it, you screwed up :)
--
My apologies to Mr. Hertel for failing to mention Long John Hunter (he
was indeed very good), and for SHOCKING him with that ommision, and for
"making" him volunteer and, therefore, miss the act, and for anything
else I've ever done or may do to cause him grief  =8^)
Sunday's lineup was great again.  The Montreal Jubilation Choir and
Guitar Shorty (not together fortunately) got things off to a lively
start.  There was a large crowd (church goers?) standing outside the
park at 12:30 or so listening to the choir.  Anson Funderburgh and Sam
Myer (together fortunately) followed with a good set, although I had had
my hopes built way up and was perhaps expecting something more.  Then
came one of my highlights of the whole weekend - Sherman Robertson.
This guy's got the whole package, I'll tell ya.  He played beautifully,
really really beautifully to us, he sang to us (love his voice), he
talked to us (very seriously sometimes), he walked among us playing and
singing.  In short, he blew me away!  I don't think he was very well
know in these parts but I'm sure that changed on Sunday.  He says he's
been compared to Robert Cray.  While I've seen and like Robert Cray, I
don't think that comparison does Sherman justice.  This is a "don't
miss" act if he comes near you.
I had to leave for a while and missed our local hero, Tony D.  People
(and the paper this morning) say he did very well and showed he belonged
in the lineup with these other stellar blues musicians.
Next up, Roomful of Blues.  I'll admit up front I'm not a horns fan.  In
fact, for my taste, most touring acts have about double the number of
instruments they need.  Having said that, Roomful are wonderful
musicians and the crowd loved them.  Surprisingly, another highlight of
the festival for me occurred in the middle of their set.  The horn
players made a brief exit stage rear, leaving the drummer, bassist and
guitarist alone.  Incredible - goose bump time.  If I was a horn player
in Roomful, I wouldn't let those other guys out of my sight.
Finally, the Night Tripper, Dr. John, closed the show.  He is one spooky
dude - knows a bit about the pianny too.  He had with him Sam Walls, an
80 something piano man, apparently from Montreal.  Sam seems bluesier
than John and so more to my taste.  A good act all round though.
Well, that's it from Ottawa for another year.  The promoters continue to
bill the event as the largest in Canada.  According to the paper this
morning, 25,000 attended the event.  I do know the park was sold out on
Saturday with a large number of people standing outside disappointed and
the place was packed on Sunday as well.  We had great weather for the 2
full days and not an ounce of trouble that I saw.
On a narrower note, I expect our still-youthful Ottawa Blues Society did
quite well.  (Poor Frances will be counting loonies and toonies for
weeks.) We raffled off a Strat (thanks Steve's Music) that was won by a
lucky lady from Toronto.  It had been autographed by all the guitar
players at the festival so it just may spend its life on a wall!  We
sold a load of T's and CD's and, perhaps most importantly for us at this
point, got a lot of interest from a lot of people in joining the
Society.
To all the Zellers heading for the Poconos (including you Ottawans, like
Liz and Mark), have a blast and keep us stay-at-home's "in the picture"
if that's possible.
#############################################################################
           "Well you know, my heart is full of sorry
            Oh man, my eyes are awful tired"
Name: Greg
E-mail: gbgreene@sympatico.ca
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