Steve's Blog
Wednesday October 9, 2013

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Hi everyone

The October issue of the Rogue Folk Review is out now and is available for download here Inside there are previews of the next few shows (up to and including Reid Jamieson on November 16th,) a review of the Edmonton Folk Music Festival, my latest list of recommended CDs, and information about volunteering - and how to view my latest Photo Gallery entries

We have an amazing show for you tonight, and it's a busy week at the hall with outside rentals for the next few days - including our co-sponsored fundraiser for the Yaffa Housing Society on Saturday night, and then Spookulele Night next Tuesday 15th with Ralph Shaw leading the assembled ukulele enthusiasts in fun renditions of your Halloween favourites - and much more. The hall will be decorated with scary stuff, so you can get in the mood for the official Halloween a couple of weeks later!

1. Dar Williams, Wednesday October 9th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Dar Williams has become a major force on the New England folk scene. An idiosyncratic songwriter who writes folk songs from a unique, often insightful perspective, Williams takes pains to avoid the coy and the quirky; her songwriting and performing style has been compared to that of Joni Mitchell and Joan Baez, but with a few acidic and at times hilarious twists. On one level, the sizeable body of work accumulated by celebrated writer/artist Dar Williams is a continuing narrative of her life — what she’s experienced and what she’s observed during her years of intensive touring. On another, it forms a detailed look at the course of modern-day existence in the decade and a half between 1993, when Williams released her debut album, The Honesty Room, and 2012, when her longtime label Razor & Tie released her eighth and most recent studio album, In The Time Of Gods. Throughout her career, Williams has employed a reporter’s keen eye and a fiction writer’s feel for nuance in the act of confronting what she’s described as “the big picture of how people approach life,” doing by examining and illuminating the minute details.

At the core of Williams’ work is a belief in the innate ability of people to make a better world, the product of countless observations in her travels and conversations with her fans. If anything, her optimism has intensified as she’s crisscrossed America during the tough times of recent years. “My big secret,” she says, with a twinkle in her eye, “is that we are gonna make it — but we’ll be the last to know.”

2. Lend A Hand: A Fundraiser for Yaffa Housing, Saturday October 12th, 7:30pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Live Music & Dance Benefit for Yaffa Housing Society - assisted living for mentally-challenged Jewish folks. Featuring: Wonderfully Talented Vocalist - Nancy Newman & Friends. Gypsy Swing Band - Swing 2 Beat (with special guests Michael Dunn & Alan Zisman); Balkan & Klezmer Ensemble - The Noodniks; MC Extraordinaire - Charles Kaplan; and Roving Magician - Joshua Friedman. Plus a Silent Auction. Tickets available for $20 in advance from Zulu Records: 1972 West 4th Avenue, Kitsilano. For more information contact: Co sponsored by the Rogue Folk Club

3. Spookulele Night, Tuesday October 15th, 7:30pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Whether you’re a ukulele novice or a seasoned strummer the Vancouver Ukulele Circle is for you! King of the Ukulele, Ralph Shaw, leads the oldest ukulele club on the American Continent. This month’s theme is Halloween, so embrace your fears, tie them up in four strings and sing them all to Hell!

You say you can’t sing and can barely play? NO PROBLEM! Quality is not an issue. We do this for fun. Sing as loud and free as you like because everyone else (over 100 people) is doing the same. We play from a 230 page book of classic songs. Want to perform? Our open-mic time is your chance to shine no matter what level you’re at. In fact the applause is all the louder for brave beginners.

So come and experience the folk music of the new millennium. Ukulele is where it’s at! Third Tuesday of the month “Rogulele” nights are at St. James Hall.

Costume prizes, Treats - and maybe a few Tricks - await you at Spookulele Night ...

4. Kat Danser with Steve Dawson, plus disappear fear - Friday October 18th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

In his book Mo Meta Blues, Questlove quotes Someone once said that blues and gospel were fraternal twins, close in spirit, neither one wanting to admit how similar they looked. With her new album Baptized By The Mud, Kat Danser gives birth to a set of those twins. And she knows how much they look alike.

Join Edmonton’s Queen of the Swamp Blues, Kat Danser, as she musically invites you to lay your burdens down with this set of ChurchBlues songs. On this current soundtrack to her storied life, songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist Danser collaborates with producer/ guitarist Steve Dawson; and as she does so, channels the spirit of keepers of the flames of roots, blues, and spiritual music. With this, her fourth album, she lights one herself as she effortlessly mixes her own fresh material with well and lesser-known gospel songs.

This CD is the summation of years of study, mentorship, and songwriting with legendary blues icons in Mississippi - birthplace of the blues - and her graduate studies at the University of Alberta, where she focused her Masters thesis on the representation of blues music over the past century. Baptized By The Mud is a musical journey through time, from the Canadian Prairies to the Mississippi Delta. Listening to it is like travelling with your ears.

The show is on the road, and coming to our town. Vancouver is special, as it is the former hometown of producer and MD Steve Dawson, who will be playing with Danser on the CD release show. This is a rare opportunity to see the prodigal son return, as his move to Nashville has precluded the Vancouverites from hearing him around there on a regular basis. Also on board on the album and live show are: Geoff Hicks on drums, Darryl Havers on keys, and Jeremy Holmes on bass.

5. The Edge On Folk, Saturday 8am to noon, on CiTR fm 101.9 and

We are off to the Celtic Colours Festival in Cape Breton this week, so Heather McCain will host the show on Saturday. She'll have new music from Kat Danser, and a whole lot of surprises! I'll be back next week with some new music from the festival - and an interview with English singer / fiddler / songwriter Bella Hardy. Tune in on Saturday from 8am to noon on CiTR fm 101.9 or Telus TV Channel 7023. The show is also streamed live online on

6. Little Miss Higgins robbed in Vancouver

The other day - after a spectacular concert at The Rogue - Little Miss Higgins had some gear stolen from her tour vehicle trailer. $6,000 worth of guitars, banjos and amps was stolen. She has her unique guitar back now - thankfully - but the following equipment remains missing.

[Global TV has an article on their website about the theft, you can also visit Little Miss Higgins Facebook page for more details and updates.]

Here are some of the instruments stolen with serial numbers:

  • Goldtone Bluegrass special W/Fishman Rare Earth Pickup (2706352)

    Banjo has a pretty unique wear pattern, through it you can see a foam insert. The strap is bound to the banjo and can't be removed unless it would be cut off. The drone (5th string) was removed and there was a little piece of moustache gaff tape on the tuner head. Pickup system is a Fishman Rare Earth Banjo pickup which mounts on the rods inside the banjo.
  • Epiphone ES-295 Gold Ser# R98E0554

    Distinguishing Features:
    -Paint chip on body front near strap button
    -3 of the tuning pegs are gold, the other 3 are silver
    -Gold strap locks
    -White tip instead of cream on the pickup selector switch
  • Fender 50th Anniversary Telecaster Ser# U032070

    Distinguishing Features:
    -Pealoid binding around the guitar body
    -Made in Japan
    -Silver neck pickup instead of gold
    -Gold 50th anniversary decal on back of headstock
    -Some paint cracking on the side of the guitar
  • Kemper Profiler Ser# KPAUUDcDodJ

    Distinguishing Features:
    -Has the name LMH and The-F-Holes displayed in Performance Mode
    -Kemper travel bag with strings, foot-switch and guitar stand inside