What is it about the Blues that gets us in the mood to groove? Whether it’s the lyrical panacea it provides when life gets you down, or the sound of a guitar in the hands of a musical maestro that strums your life story, Blues has come a long way from its African-American roots in the USA’s Deep South.
A close cousin of Jazz, Blues grew up in the Mississippi Delta just upriver from New Orleans. While Blues and Jazz have always influenced each other and still do in countless ways, Blues did not expand across the country until the 1930s and 1940’s. Once the Delta Blues made their way up the Mississippi to urban areas, the music evolved into the multi-faceted genre it is today: electrified Chicago blues, other regional blues styles, and various hybrids like Blues-Rock.
To satisfy Kitchener’s “Blues cravings”, The Centre presents a great line up of artists this year.
We start off with the talented Boz Scaggs who will kick off the Blues party when he performs at Centre In The Square on September 28. Known for his explorations in the genre and mixing it up with R&B, Rock and Jazz, Boz Scaggs has produced hits that have earned his acclaim and a loyal fan following. With his latest album Memphis, he puts his distinctive touch on classics like “Mixed Up, Shook Up Girl”.
In November, The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer will be OnStage with their signature ‘Blues-that-gets-you-in-the-crotch’ style. The Vancouver-based duo made the choice to limit their sound to whatever they could play between them, using only their mouths, hands and feet – and they do it with no programming, no pre‐recording, and no looping. Their willingness to get dirty pays off in the connection they have on stage: with only two people sharing all of the duties, the groove between rhythm section and vocalist is unquestionable.
In Spring, we will also feature legends Charlie Musselwhite, James Cotton and John Hammond in The Blues Hall of Fame Tour as they perform their classic hits on April 22.This package tour features a rare opportunity to see three living Blues legends and Hall of Fame inductees together on one stage!
Can’t wait until September to get your Blues fix? Visit the TD Kitchener Blues Festival from August 7-10. We’ll be there too – drop by our tent and say hello – and you may score tickets to these shows too!