NOTES FROM THE ‘PORT Vol. 75 for The Review-Mirror May.11.2016


Petunia. Wow. If you have an insatiable desire to experience authentic Wild West bar and saloon music, I certainly hope you get to see him someday. Solo or with his band, The Vipers. It was almost like a Quentin Tarantino movie, no joke. And I think the reason I say that is because of the sheer dynamic of the show. From an almost, sedated dance with the American Songbook classic Stardust, to a spirally psychobilly jam on his Gitterbug, I almost felt like I didn’t know where I was. And did the trio get that crowd rowdy? Seemed like people didn’t really know how to conduct themselves! This man and his music travels from all corners of the rock and roll highway to preach. And by he sounds of it, there are believers in many a congregation far and wide. Fellow McGill Alumnus Eddie Blake was tasty as ever on the bass and Jean-Philippe had as much vibe as Marc Ribot on a Tom Waits record. Very surprising and happy to have this concoction in the house.
Ali McCormick opened with her folky mastery. She will soldier on with her CD release tour of Canada in June.

In the hometown touring vein, Tom Savage will beĀ  on his first USA tour in June. Keep him in mind for all of your southern friends.

Fri.May.13 at The Cove is the last Blues on the Rideau series show of the 11th Season with 2016 Juno Award winner for Best Blues Album, the funky soul blues of Harrison Kennedy! Come and get a dose of his new record’s sound produced by the raw, rich rootsy soundscape of Colin Linden. Harrison had a major hit called Give Me A Little More Time with Chairmen of the Board in the seventies. This group was formed when the Motown songwriting team Holland-Dozier-Holland left to form their own label and put Kennedy and friends at the helm of the roster. Really amazing that this series continues to fly high as it does. How many Blues fans can a small town in rural Ontario attract? Well over ten thousand over the last 11 years! Way to bring ’em James! Show and buffet is from 7-11pm. $65 Resos only
If you want to hear about the latest news of this popular series, visit the site,!

Sat.May.14 at The Cove, the soulful voice Colleen Brown and the Elijah Abrams. Without sounding like the woman has a sound her own, something that strikes you about her sound is that she manages to hold a note and phrase like the one and only Joni Mitchell. Quite. A. Compliment. Her songwriting sensibilities are almost ECM jazzy supported by her wonderful piano powers. Peculiar almost. Her records have a wicked gear changing groove within songs and from tune to tune with lush harmony both vocally and chordally. Her voice soars. Poignant and decisive. A lot of left turns but comforting melodies. I’m happy listening to this stuff. Takes you on an adventure, doesn’t just give you a ride. Lots of cranky horns too. Elijah Abrams of The Abrams Brothers fame is on guitar. Always a healthy dose of vim and vigour with him on the stage. PS Hate to mentions cover but she does one of my fav ballads, Bonnie Raitt’s I Can’t Make You Love Me. 7-10pm $10

Back to Canada is The Balkan String Trio, also playing on Sat.May.14! This trio of virtuosic guitar players has a way of getting around their axes and even playing on each other’s! A family band, Zoran Starcevic and boys play a brand of northern Mediterranean gypsy folk music. They will be at North Crosby Community Centre. Really an anomaly in our area. Will be a spectacle for the eyes and ears. Verging on uncanny. Trills and thrills in synch to the absolute max, the way only family can manage. Tickets at Wordsmith in town. 7:30pm $20 advance, $22 at the door, cash only. Limited Seating, come early. Nice to see this happening and that the space is being used for it!

Sun.May.15 Allison Brown and Uncle Dan Henshall open up the music scene on The Cove Patio from 1-4pm. Allison has a bright and sunny Sunday Blues Skies sound. Airy folk ditties and a frank, clear vocal. She will be joined some mandolin picking from Dan Henshall. Should be an excellent addition to this coming warm afternoon.

Also on Sunday, Freeman Daigle is playing at the Legion. He has been playing guitar and singing for 40 years and has produced 3 classic country albums called Country Memories which are played on 93.5 fm and Cool 100 fm Belleville. He also played in a band called Southern Comfort and has also shared the stage with country’s luminaries, Johnny Cash, Ray Price, Jack Green, Waylon Jennings, Lucille Star and many others. What??? Yes. All in Westport! 3-6pm light lunch $10

This week’s shout out goes to Fort McMurray and this coming Thu.May.19 is a special day. A day to remember. A day for Westport to be proud of and it hasn’t even happened! The ‘Port for The Fort will take place at The Cove, supporting the displaced and affected of Fires and devastation in Fort McMurray, AB. With the help of many local volunteers and generous citizens, donations will be directed to the noble force of the Canadian Red Cross. A silent auction will also be held from 7-8:30pm with an opportunity for magicians and speakers to take the stage in ways of tribute of their choice. At 9pm, the Spencer Evans Trio will then take the stage entering their 19th season as Jazz Night. Who knew? I speak for all saying that we hope for a great turnout.

Catch you at the music sometime…