Steve's Blog
Thursday February 26, 2009

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Hi everyone

Rogue Folk Review

We had a marvellous time in Memphis for the Folk Alliance Conference last week. Heard some very fine music and ate some excellent soul food. Stayed up too late, and revelled in the music and the community. I'll have a full report on the website in the next few days - once I've put the March issue of the Rogue Folk Review together. It's going to be a Bumper Issue, with a stunning array of concerts, and we'll have the mailing party next Tuesday, March 3rd. It will be available for download from our website on Monday afternoon, March 2nd - all being well.

Julie Fowlis Show

While we were away there was a wonderful concert at the Rogue, of course, and I wish we could have been there. Julie Fowlis and her band put on a glorious concert of Celtic music and songs in Scots Gaelic. It was a full house, and they sold heaps of CDs (and the bar sold a great deal of tea to the old ladies in the audience, it seems!) Julie graciously allowed us to record the show, so I've just been listening to it. Wow! Thanks to Dan and Ursel Bowditch, Michelle Phillippe, Linda O'Connell, Peter Brunner, Emerson and Ger, Rob Nelson, and all the other volunteers who made it possible - and of course to Brian Jones, Crews Controller, for assembling the crew. I'm hoping that Genia Ainsworth took some photos so we can put them up on the website.

Elevator Back In Service

There will be a new elevator installed at St. James Hall this Spring. The installation might take a few weeks, during which time access to our concerts will only be via the stairs. Meanwhile, pending the receipt of the required permits and the scheduling of the work, the old elevator is back in use until further notice. So our concert are once again open to all.

David Essig & Rick Scott, with Shelley Brown & Trish Clair-Peck, Friday February 27th, 8pm, at St. James Hall, 3214 W 10th Ave

"One of the finest blues guitarists and songwriters in the world," David Essig was introduced to Canadian audiences in 1971 as a "talented newcomer" at the legendary Mariposa Folk Festival. Now, over 30 years later, he is considered one of Canada's finest interpreters of original, contemporary folk music. Always paying homage to his roots in Bluegrass and Country Blues, David uses these traditions to create new songs that are both timely and timeless. His intense energy and incisive wit have made him a favourite with audiences around the world.

David is highly respected as a thoughtful and intelligent songwriter, with Canadian folk standards like "Albert's Cove" and "High Ground" to his credit. His work moves from pieces as contemporary as today's news, to songs that sound as if they were rediscovered from old country blues 78's. These are songs that tell stories and paint portraits that will start you laughing and leave you crying.

Equally renowned as an instrumentalist and traditional performer, David is a master of the blues and slide guitar. Whether on the lap-style Weissenborn or the electric Godin guitar, his spontaneous style crosses all the borders between country, blues and the avant-garde. And with his 5/8" socket and a sound that could peel the petunias off your mother's porcelain, he is considered one of Canada's great slide guitarists.

David's masterful songwriting is the theme of A Stone in My Pocket, the milestone double CD project released in 2004 by Pacific Music in Canada and IRD in Europe. For this album, David recorded fresh new versions of 30 of the most popular and moving songs from his 35 years of writing, including 2 new songs recorded here for the first time. He was joined on this project by renowned musicians Oliver Schroer on violin and Tobin Frank on bass. With David adding nearly 100 guitar parts to the original trio sessions, A Stone in My Pocket has received critical aclaim as a landmark in Canadian roots music.

David joined forces with roots veteran Rick Scott last year to record "Double Vision" - a dozen songs of life, love and loss seasoned with literate wit, the grace of grief and considerable kindness. Acoustic roots music in the tradition of the Canadian singer/songwriter, with one foot on the mountain and the other in the swamp. Influences include Delta blues, R&B, bluegrass and old time country music.

Rick Scott is an award winning singer, songwriter and actor who combines music and laughter in lively, participatory concerts for all ages. He is Canada's leading proponent of the Appalachian mountain dulcimer, known by kids around the world as 'The Electric Snowshoe.' Over 35 years he has released 17 albums and performed his lively, original music in nine countries. His gift for combining wacky humour and poignant human commentary has earned him a devoted following around the world.

Over the past 20 years he has performed more than a thousand family concerts throughout Canada, the U.S., Australia and Southeast Asia. He is Goodwill Ambassador for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation and performs inspirational keynote concerts for families, educators and caregivers, and MUSIC AS A SECOND LANGUAGE song writing workshops for people who don't think that they're musical.

Rick first rose to prominence in the Canadian folk scene in 1974 playing with Joe Mock and Shari Ulrich in B.C.'s legendary folk trio PIED PUMKIN who pioneered independent folk music in BC and sold 30,000 LPs from the stage. After a 25 year hiatus and successful solo careers, Pied Pumkin reunited in 1998 and released two CDs: the retrospedtive Plucking Devine and the live recording Pied Alive. As guitarist Joe Mock lives in France they tour once or twice each year.

David & Rick will be joined by the two young Nanaimo musicians who joined them in recording the new CD: Shelley Brown on acoustic bass, and Trish Clair-Peck on violin and viola.

This concert will be a real treat for fans of Canadian music, acoustic music, deeply-felt music with strong roots in the Blues and Soul music, and with a refreshing blend of seasoned voices, scintillating slide guitar, funky dulcimer, solid bass, and soaring fiddle.

Tickets are available at Highlife Records on Commercial Drive, Rufus' Guitar Shop at 10th & Alma, and on-line (up to 1pm on the day of the show.) You can also reserve tickets on our Hotline 604-736-3022 up to that time. Tickets will also be available at the door.

Coming Soon

  • Tom Russell & Michael Martin, Friday March 6th, St. James Hall
  • Quebec's stunning traditional trio De Temps Antan, Sunday March 8th, St. James Hall
  • More details of these and all our shows are on the concert calendar.

    Radio Waves

    I'll be back on The Edge On Folk on Saturday from 8am to 12 noon on CiTR fm 101.9 and Cable fm 101.9 - also streamed Live to the web on and available later as two 2-hour podcasts on the iTunes Music Store and also on I'll have some new releases, plenty of gems uncovered in Memphis last week, and a few surprises! Please join me for four hours of the best in World, Roots and Folk Music, every Saturday morning.

    Thanks to Heather Kitching for filling in for me last week! (I think I owe her two episodes of Queer FM now. Hmmm. I wonder how that would go ... ?!)

    I've just updated the music on Radio Rogue, our streamed radio broadcast. There are new songs from Romi Mayes, De Temps Antan, and plenty of music by all the performers coming to the Rogue - as well as some hot new releases and some perennial favourites, too. Details of how to tune in can be found on our home page.

    See y'all at The Rogue!
    Steve Edge, Artistic Director