Steve's Blog
Roots Music Heats Up The Rogue this week!
Friday July 3, 2015

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1. Anna & Elizabeth, Sunday July 5th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

 Anna (right) and Elizabeth, with the Lord Bateman crankie!

“There's something truly inspiring about this collaboration between 25 year olds from southwest Virginia...  and a very special treat for lovers of pure traditional singing and playing, afficionados of the great ballad, and anyone that gets excited witnessing culture carried forward with mastery, love and a profound and real understanding of what makes old material great.” - Sing Out Magazine

Their show is a captivating mix of ballads, foot-stomping dance tunes, stories and visual art. It’s a throwback, honouring the cultural and musical heritage from the hollows and old-time musicians gone but not forgotten. Their performance is unique and unforgettable. They sing and play stringed instruments: banjos, guitars, fiddles. Their harmonies are spellbinding. Elizabeth LaPrelle's voice cuts through you like a breath of fresh mountain air. They add a unique dimension to their performance: crankies - visual art on a box-framed screen with a wooden crank on the top. The scenes from a ballad appear as the song progresses. They make these scrolls with dolls and images sewn in. Watching them is absolutely enthralling. You can view one of them here. It's a compelling Appalachian version of the traditional ballad Lord Bateman.

They released their first CD together earlier this year. I picked up a copy at the Folk Alliance in Kansas City. I had no idea just what a fascinating and powerful disc I had in my hands! I came back with a lot of new CDs. There was no way I could listen to them all. After loaning it to Parcel O'Rogues holder Stewart Seidel I was pleasantly surprised when he told me his wife had become a huge fan from the first note. When I listened to the CD I could understand why! When Altan came to town in March I found a song on my iPhone and Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh, the fiddler and singer and band leader, had a listen. She too was immediately captivated by those voices. I started playing songs from the CD on the radio. Orfeo, a ballad based on the Greek legend of Orpheus & Eurydice, grabbed me. It seems that Orpheus was a piper. So they added a guest piper on the CD. It's a remarkable song in all its versions. Theirs is my favourite! I had to find a way to bring them to town. 

Now this is not my normal M.O. Usualy artists or their agents contact me when they want a gig. Seldom do I feel the need or the compulsion to go after a band. Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill would be the most recent example of this. I can't remember many others: Eliza Gilkyson, Vasen, Martin & Eliza Carthy (unsuccessfully)and Ollabelle a few years back come to mind. Anna & Elizabeth had smitten me; they are a must-see. And they were in the neighbourhood. 

Of course, I had no idea that we would be experiencing the biggest heatwave in recent memory, with Sunday predicted to be the hottest day of the year so far. We thought long and hard about moving the show to a cooler venue - but couldn't find one. Last week for the Tom Russell shows we rented two enormous air-mover fans . They helped reduce the temperature a little, but the capacity crowds soon had the hall back up to boiling point again. This weekend we don't expect a full house, and we'll try to find a more effective way of cooling the place down. All constructive suggestions welcome! Meanwhile we have made some special handheld fans, so the hall will resemble a southern church on a hot day!

This concert promises to be so amazing that we think it's well worth putting up with the heat. Everybody has to be somewhere on this hot evening, so why not experience some incredible music at The Rogue with these exceptional young women? An added bonus is that they will be joined by the brilliant Seattle guitarist and singer Eli West, who has played here with Cahalen Morrison, and in John Reischman's band on his CD release last year. For more information visit 

Tickets are available online and at the door up to show time.

2. Maggie Bell & Dave Kelly, Thursday July 9th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

One of the all-time great hell-raising British blues singers resurfaces revitalized. Maggie Bell hails from Glasgow and made her name with the band Stone The Crows, as well as being the guest vocalist on Rod Stewart's LP Every Picture Tells A Story and Long John Baldry's cover of Leadbelly's Black Girl. She is a remarkably soulful singer, but the music scene "lost" her for over two decades after she released some stunning solo CDs in the 1970s, including Queen Of The Night and Suicide Sal. She came roaring back in 2008 as the surprise hit at the Led Zeppelin reunion tour, and we are thrilled to be able to present her first ever Canadian gig before she takes the ferry over to Courtenay for the wonderful Island Musicfest. There's a great interview with her in the latest issue of that extremely fine publication Penguin Eggs, Canada's Folk & Roots magazine. Maggie is not only an amazing singer, she's also quite the raconteuse, it seems!

Maggie will be accompanied by English slide guitarist Dave Kelly. Dave cut his teeth in the Blues Boom of the 1960s in England, when all the great Blues artists came over from the States and needed a backing band. Son House, Howlin' Wolf, Junior Wells, John Lee Hooker and Buddy Guy are just 5 that come to mind. Dave will be able to team up again with Buddy Guy at Island Musicfest. Dave's sister, the late, lamented Joanne Kelly was one of the first artists I worked with back in my college days in England. I was part of the Entertainment Committee at North Staffs Poly and she, along with bands like Scotland's JSD Band, and Berkshire's G.T. Moore & The Reggae Guitars - plus a certain Bob Marley and The Wailers (including Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer) were my introduction to the wonders of live Roots music. I had no idea then that I would be hosting so many amazing artists 6,000 miles west in Vancouver for 3 decades, but I digress! Dave Kelly has been a stalwart performer on the Blues and R&B scene for many years, and is a member of The Blues Band, alongside Paul Jones - the first vocalist with Manfred Mann. He has recorded and toured with the likes of Christine Collister and is also a fine singer and versatile solo performer - and one of the most respected guitarists in Britain.

This is another must-see show if you're a fan of the Blues, R&B, Soul, or just well played and well sung acoustic music. You can find out more on

Tickets are available online and at our usual outlets: Highlife Records, Prussin Music, Red Cat Records, and Rufus' Guitar Shop. They will also be available at the door up to show time. (let's hope it's a bit cooler by Thursday....)

3. Mission Folk Music Festival Tickets

The Mission Folk Festival takes place July 24th - 26th at Fraser River Heritage Park in the town of Mission BC, 80km east of Vancouver on Hwy 7. This is one of our favourite festivals, always full or surprises and unexpected delights! The lineup is unique to Canadian festivals, with many artists from abroad complementing the fine array of local and regional performers. You can check out the festival lineup here (expect some additions too!)

We have a special deal for members on advance tickets: 

There is onsite camping ($30 per adult for the whole weekend) with hot showers and flush toilets - and a campers' breakfast every day! No camping fee for kids 12 and under. 

This year's Rogue prices are unchanged from last year:
Adult .........................$78.75
Senior (over 60) .........$57.75
Youth ........................$52.50

Only current Rogue Folk members can purchase tickets so make sure your membership is up to date before trying to purchase your tickets online. The website will only allow you to buy them if your membership is current. You can buy as many tickets as you like for your friends and family.

Click on this link to go to the page where you can buy Mission Tickets without Camping: BUY MISSION FOLK FEST (No Camping) TICKETS HERE!

Click on this link to go to the page where you can buy Mission Tickets with Camping: BUY MISSION FOLK FEST (with Camping) TICKETS HERE!

You will be able to pick up your Mission Folk Music Festival tickets at the Will Call festival gate from 5pm on Friday July 24th.

4. Shorefest at The Rogue Stage on English Bay, July 25 & 29, August 1

This FREE festival of Canadian music is sponsored by our good friends at LG104.3fm, who have supported The Rogue for the past 7 years or so. This year there's a Beer Tent at our stage for the first time! Here's the line up:

Sunset Beach Stage
2pm - Sadie Campbell
3pm - Tonye Aganaba
4pm - Bros Landreth
5pm - Ben Rogers
6pm - Harry Manx

English Bay Stage
7:30pm - Bend Sinister
8:30pm - Platinum Blonde

Sunset Beach Stage

2pm - Skye Wallace
3pm - Dawn Pemberton
4pm - Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer
5pm - Steve Dawson
6pm - Colin Linden

English Bay Stage
7:30pm - Dustin Bentall & Kendel Carson
8:30pm - Randy Bachman

Sunset Beach Stage

2pm - Paul Pigat
3pm - Wes Mackey
4pm - Chin Injeti
5pm - Colleen Rennison
6pm - Daniel Wesley

English Bay Stage
7:30pm - Kuba Oms
8:30pm - Chilliwack

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

This week will be my first show from the brand new studio at CiTR! I hope I can figure out how to use the new Board!! Please tune in and turn on to sounds by the likes of Barrule from the Isle of Man, Declan O'Rourke from Ireland, Souad Massi from Algeria, Mbongwana Star from Congo, Bumper Jacksons from Louisiana, Emily Portman, Jackie Oates, and Martin Simpson with Nancy Kerr & Andy Cutting from England, Finbar Furey from Ireland (the esteemed piper and singer will play a Rogue gig on August 15th at St. James Hall!), Richard Thompson (coming to the Vancouver Folk Fest this month), young Irish band Moxie, plus music by Anna & Elizabeth, Maggie Bell, Dave Kelly, Oysterband, and more festival performers than you can shake a stick at!

6. Radio Rogue

Broadcasting a fascinating stream of music 24/7 from our website, Radio Rogue has a new playlist of over 1,200 songs - to be uodated later this weekend too! You can tune in by pointing your browser here and your favourite music player will take it from there. Sit back and enjoy some of the best sounds from around the world.