2017 Artist Schedule

Jun
3
Sat
Stan Chang and Erick Bruck @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 3 @ 12:00 pm

stan chang erick bruck

Both accomplished musicians in their own right, Stan and Erick made their debut playing together opening The Opera House for the Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival in June, 2015 and have continued to play together since. Current gigs have them traveling all over Southern Ontario from as far west as Kitchener Waterloo and Guelph to the east end of the GTA. Their combination of piano and drums matched with Stan’s vocals compliment each other well for both large and small venues. With the ability to play Blues, Jazz and Contemporary Pop as well as Original Songs, their versatility allows them to play at all events and occasions ranging from corporate functions and weddings to music clubs, bars and private parties.

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Carol McCartney @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 3 @ 1:20 pm

carol mccartney

Vibrant and dynamic jazz vocalist Carol McCartney was born and raised in North Toronto – in fact, in the Fall of 2013, the City of Toronto named a street after her “McCartney Street” located in the Weston area where she grew up. (Link to the Emery Village BIA Announcement)

Carol’s impeccable vocals and finely tuned musicianship have made her a favourite among musicians and audiences alike. She has shared the stage with a virtual “Who’s Who” of jazz including Guido Basso, Bucky Pizzarelli, Slam Stewart and the late great Peter Appleyard, who Carol worked with as his singer for 30 years. (She was one of the top ten Canadian jazz vocalists to be featured on Mr. Appleyard’s last CD “Sophisticated Ladies” in 2013.)

Other recordings that feature Carol include Chase Sanborn’s “Good to the Last Bop”, Bob Brough’s ” Like a Spring Day” and popular jazz big band “Freeflight’s” JUNO nominated recording “Taking Flight”.

Carol has recorded two solo CD’s of her own. “A Night in Tunisia” in 2007 and the just released “BE COOL” in 2014.

Edward Blanco of eJAzz News.com reviewed the first CD and commented, “From Ontario Canada comes the latest terrific jazz vocalist from what seems to be one excellent crop of singers from these northern parts … McCartney delivers with spice and electricity … a heck of a vocalist …(she) possesses a sexy voice that projects and reaches high notes with effortless ease. Dizzy Gillespie would have been proud to hear this version of his classic tune.”

Awards
Nominated for a JUNO Award with Big Band Freeflight
Received a MARTY Award for Established Artist from the Mississauga Arts Council in 2014

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Sean Pinchin @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 3 @ 2:40 pm

sean pinchin

Monkey Brain is a guitar tour de force, a gritty mash-up of the history of roots guitar music torn down and built back up again. The title track is a grimy ode to our inner, more basic impulses: “When life gets to me. My head starts to change. I give in to my Monkey Brain”.

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Vince Maccarone’s Los Variants @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 3 @ 4:00 pm

los variants

Vince Maccarone is a performer, producer, composer and educator with over 25 years of playing, teaching and writing experience. Originally from the mining town of Sudbury, Ontario, he has been based in Toronto, Ontario for the past 30 years and formed Los Variants in 2013. A Los Variants performance represents an unbreakable link between traditional music and cutting-edge contemporary. Reggae, Jazz, Afro-Cuban and Brazilian influences are blended into a unique “world music” approach which is the Los Variants ethos. On the upcoming 2017 CD Vince has collaborated with artists from Spain to Jamaica to produce a unique collective known as Vince Maccarone’s Los Variants. Vince and the band members have won and been nominated for many JUNOS,Maple Blues Awards, DORAs and other awards and will be bringing all of their rich musical history to Orangeville 2017.

Be prepared to move and groove at a Los Variants show!

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Jun
4
Sun
Manitoba Hal @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 4 @ 12:15 pm

manitoba hal

Manitoba Hal is a consummate blues man, having toured Canada extensively with a ukulele. Picturing him in his 100 year old cottage in Nova Scotia, one can’t help wonder how someone can sound like he grew up in the Deep South of the States and play raw, swamp, delta, Cajun and zydeco style blues. Hal developed the blues sound when he lived in Winnipeg Manitoba (where he also got his name).

“Winnipeg, often referred to as the Chicago of the north, is situated in a delta between the Red and Assiniboine rivers. I was born at the blues and when I found that music inside me, I came alive and my soul started expressing itself in songs that flowed with that music. The blues is where my soul came into this world. Where it will end up I don’t know but I’m ready for the journey”.

http://www.youtube.com/ukebluesman
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Michael Pickett @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 4 @ 1:40 pm

michael pickett

In the 70s, 80s, and 90s Michael Pickett established himself as a musically ground-breaking, electrifying singer/songwriter/harmonica player, [Whiskey Howl, Wooden Teeth, Michael Pickett Band], surrounding himself with some of the top musicians in the country. He’s received two JUNO nominations and won several Jazz Report, Real Blues, and Maple Blues awards including the coveted Maple Blues ‘Blues with a Feeling Award’ for his passionate lifelong commitment to the blues.

Pickett has shared the stage with Big Mama Thornton, John Lee Hooker, James Cotton, Jeff Healey, Bo Diddley, Koko Taylor, John Hammond, Sunnyland Slim, Lazy Lester, Matt Minglewood, Hubert Sumlin, Taj Mahal, Muddy Waters, Son Seals, Robert Cray, Buddy Guy, Tea Party, George Porter Jr., Lee Oskar, Jerry Portnoy, Watermelon Slim, Guy Davis, and more.

Today his solo acoustic performances elicit standing ovations in venues like Toronto’s Massey Hall, Olympia’s Washington Center for the Performing Arts and Spain’s Teatro Marbella.

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Guy Davis @ Orangeville Opera House
Jun 4 @ 3:00 pm

guy davis

When Guy Davis plays the blues, he doesn’t want you to notice how much art is involved. “It takes work making a song that’s simple, and playful, and easy to do,” he says. “And I don’t want people to see that. I want to uplift and create something that causes delight. And I want some little eight-year-old kid in the front row to have big eyes and say, ‘Hey, I want to do that!’.”

Davis’ much-praised 1995 debut, Stomp Down the Rider on Red House Records, marked the arrival of a major talent, earning acclaim for his deft acoustic playing, his well-traveled voice and his literate, yet highly accessible songwriting. He’s barely rested since then, taking his music to television (the Conan O’Brien and David Letterman shows) and radio (A Prairie Home Companion, Mountain Stage, World Cafe, E-Town), as well as performing at theaters and festivals. And he’s played the four corners of the world, with a recent tour taking him from the Equator to the Arctic Circle. He played the Ukraine in summer of 2014, just a week or so before the statues of Lenin were torn down. He even played for the visiting Queen of Denmark when he performed at a children’s home in Greenland.

“I feel like I’ve only hit three corners of the world, with a lot more to go,” he says. “I seek to communicate no matter where I go. When I play in non-English speaking countries I play more of the classics—Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell. And I may tell fewer stories, but sometimes I can get away with it because the words sound like music.” Above all he’s looking to bring people together through music. “With the world falling apart it’s up to all of us to be ambassadors and to spread the music everywhere we can. There’s nowhere that I don’t want to play.”

His parallel careers– as a musician, an author, a music teacher and a film, television and Broadway actor—mark Davis as a Renaissance man, yet the blues remain his first and greatest love. Growing up in a family of artists (his parents were Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis), he fell under the spell of Blind Willie McTell and Fats Waller at an early age. Guy’s one-man play, The Adventures of Fishy Waters: In Bed With the Blues, premiered Off-Broadway in the ’90s and has since been released as a double CD. He went on to star Off-Broadway as the legendary Robert Johnson in Robert Johnson: Trick The Devil, winning the Blues Foundation’s “Keeping the Blues Alive” award. He followed the footsteps of another blues legend when he joined the Broadway production of Finian’s Rainbow, playing the part originally done in 1947 by Sonny Terry. Along the way he cut nine acclaimed albums for the Red House label and three for his own label, Smokeydoke Records; and was nominated for nearly a dozen Blues Awards.

So it’s no wonder that Davis is reluctant to define himself simply as a bluesman. “To me, a bluesman is somebody who has to carry a knife or a gun and enter dangerous situations and sometimes fuel it with alcohol—That’s not who I am. I call myself a blues musician, and to me the blues is a broad title. I include some ragtime, I make a nod to New Orleans, and a nod to the fife and drum players. And I always include things that make you want to dance.”

All that and more can be heard on Kokomo Kidd, Guy’s twelfth studio album and his follow-up to the stripped-down, critically acclaimed 2013 release “Juba dance”, produced in Italy by Fabrizio Poggi. As always he combines modern with traditional blues, the somber and the celebratory. And for him it represents a jump into new territory. “It’s the first time I’ve produced myself,” he points out. “I stepped up to the plate, put the cash on the barrelhead and said ‘Let’s make this happen.’ What I’m showing here is a side of me that’s deep inside. It’s needing air and light, and here it comes!”

The rollicking title track, featuring Ben Jaffe of New Orleans’ Preservation Hall Jazz Band, might be called a short story that you can dance to, featuring a rascal character who starts as a bootlegger and winds up a Republican advisor. “It’s sort of a demented celebration of corruption,” Guy says. “The Kidd represents all the forces that operate on the margins of society. That song says something about who I am, because I just don’t follow blues musicians, even though they’re very dear to me. But another one of my influences is someone I’d consider America’s modern Shakespeare, and that’s Garrison Keillor.”

The song’s New Orleans connection harks back to a formative visit he made to the Crescent City in 1979, a trip that convinced him to follow his muse as a performer. “I was playing the streets and Al Jaffe [Preservation Hall founder and Ben’s father] came out and saw me. Not only did he take me inside to meet all the players, he gave me the official Preservation Hall uniform tie, which I have to this day. And I ran into [legendary jazz bassist] Milt Hinton, who’d been my professor at Hunter College. He saw me playing on the street and thought, great—I’d finally made something of myself!”

Another of Davis’ mentors, folk legend Pete Seeger, inspired a song of loss, “I Wish I Hadn’t Stayed Away So Long.” He explains, “I was on Pete’s last official tour in 2008, witnessing with my own eyes something I’d heard since I was a child. Folk music was the doorway that I came into the blues from. And I want people hearing the song to know that life is precious, and that the road is not always an easy place to be.”

Other songs cover the more familiar territory of love and sex—or in the case of the sly “Blackberry Kisses,” both at once. “God knows I’ve written plenty of double and even single entendres about the sexual side of love,” he notes. “But the kiss is something different, that’s what elevates and energizes you—and I wanted this to be very elevated and energized! And I don’t know a lot of blues songs that break into waltz time in the middle.”

The most surprising of the album’s four cover tunes has to be “Wear Your Love Like Heaven,” the slightly trippy Donovan hit from 1967. “I loved that song back when I was a kid, and I wasn’t even sure why—It wasn’t especially rhythmic, more on the acoustic psychedelic side of things. Growing up as an African-American, for me it was always about James Brown, soul music. So it comes from a more courageous part of myself to show how much I love that song. Same with the Bob Dylan song, ‘Lay Lady Lay’– There was a time when I wouldn’t have had the self-confidence to do a song like that.”

Closer to home is “Little Red Rooster,” the Willie Dixon classic first recorded by Howlin’ Wolf. The song teams Davis with another old friend, harmonica ace Charlie Musselwhite. “I play the harp myself when I do that one live, but Charlie brings something special to it. In his blood he feels the harmonica and its sound, just as they did in the days of Little Walter and Howlin’ Wolf.”

Continuing his mission to spread the blues around the world, Guy has lately been doing more teaching. “I’ve had beginning and intermediate students, and I try to give them enough of the basics that they can go into a jam session, and create more licks out of the ones they know. And I try to give them a bit of my philosophy. To my mind you can treat these songs as recombinant DNA, you can own it and you can create something new with it. And I didn’t sign any papers, but I can claim an ownership to the blues.”

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