21ST EDITION OF TREMBLANT INTERNATIONAL BLUES FESTIVAL Over 130 exquisite shows from July 4 – 13 offered to Tremblant vacationers free of charge
With its unique format and enchanting setting, the Blues Festival is sure to deliver pure magic. Shows are set on outdoor stages at the heart of a village where everything can be reached on foot, from artist-attended workshops to memorable late-night improv jams with that intimate, small-stage feel.
The Maple Blues Awards’ Female Vocalist of the Year Angel Forrest has been performing at the TIBF for many years. “Nowhere do musicians from our vast blues-playing clan perform in such close proximity to the audience. It makes for a very special ambience and a communion between artists and spectators. It is also a very family friendly event. One of the rare places where you can perform over a 10-day period with your children by your side.”
Beyond this year’s stellar lineup, festivalgoers are free to enjoy a full panoply of outdoor and leisure activities at the mountain, beach, golf course and at the heart of the pedestrian village. Excellent options for extending your stay in the area and the pleasures of summer.
The event gets off to an explosive start Friday July 4 with a concert by Finnish artist Erja Lyytinen. The queen of slide guitars, she excels at every aspect of this technique made famous by Blind Willie McTell, Robert Johnson and Elmore James. Corrosive Florida blues rocker and expert veteran resonator guitar player Eric Sardinas takes to the stage next with his Big Motor trio.
Saturday July 5, One of Canada’s top blues band Downchild returns to play the Festival. The Toronto band just won a 2014 Juno for Best Blues Album of the Year. Band members are the very same as guitarist Donnie Mr. Downchild Walsh’s band, 40 years ago. Next, Shemekia Copeland –daughter of the lengendary Johnny Copeland and former Grammy nominee last year – is gracing the Tremblant stage to show spectators why she’s nicknamed “the real blues mama”.
Sunday July 6 is another must-see show: JJ Grey & Mofro return to the Festivalwith their latest album, This River. Lead singer and guitarist J. J. Grey has produced eight blues-soul albums since 2001. He has shared the stage with B.B. King, the Allman Brothers, Jeff Beck and Black Crowes and loaned his compositions to TV series House, Crash and The Deadliest Catch. Shivers guaranteed! Completing the opening weekend repertoire is a Blues Festival first-timer, Markus James. Mixing blues with West African music, this American artist’s sound is fascinating. He opens for Juno winner and TIBF darling Steve Strongman who with his guest Guy Bélanger promise to take the stage by storm.
A gem of a show early in the week, Tuesday July 8 the California quartet Vintage Trouble presents numbers from its Bomb Shelter Sessions album showcasing the irresistible voice of lead singer Ty Taylor. A voice that captivated listeners on the international scene, he also won over television audiences during appearances on top-rated late night talk-shows with David Letterman, Jay Leno and Jimmy Kimmel.
Wednesday July 9, the evening begins with the Paul Deslauriers Band that is also earmarked to play a number of intimate shows at Tremblant’s different bars. Then, Tommy Castro who two years ago had Tremblant audiences on their feet, returns in full force with his band The Pain Killers. Party time guaranteed to a stellar mix of blues, swing and funk with numbers from their album The Devil You Know. Still on July 9 is the incandescent Texas guitarist Smokin’ Joe Kubek who, together with his accomplice Bnois King, delivers his searing notes that are sure to set Place St-Bernard on fire, playing their biggest hits drawn from their 25-year career.
The last TIBF weekend starts early Thursday July 10 with 2010 Felix award-winner Jordan Officer, a Montreal guitar player with a vintage sound who covers the golden age of blues. He performs tunes from his second solo album, I’m Free, that was recorded during a six-month hiatus in New-York City. The same day, discover THE new blues boy on the block according to specialized magazines – Jarekus Singleton, a 29 year-old Mississippi guitar player who blends traditional and modern blues with a touch of hip-hop, soul and rock. His first album, Refuse To Lose (Alligator label), has soared to the top of the charts everywhere. A must-attend show. The night draws to a close with two high octane shows: Bad Boyz Boogie and Friends,a Quebec band that has been a genuine rock blues ambassador since 1995, with guest performances by former Offenbach band member Breen Leboeuf and the sublime Lulu Hughes, and her powerhouse vocals. This show is followed by The Mannish Boys spotlighting their charismatic vocalist Sugar Ray Rayford, with the tireless Kirk Fletcher on guitar. The band’s latest album, Double Dynamite, won Top Traditional Blues Album at the Memphis Blues Music Awards.
Friday July 11 Doyle Bramhall ll occupies center stage. Nicknamed the musicians’ musician, he has played back-up for big names like Eric Clapton, Sheryl Crow and more recently Roger Waters, on his Flesh tour. He is celebrated as one of the most talented guitar players of all times. He intends to play excerpts from his Jellycream, Welcome and Arc Angels albums. The following day, Saturday July 12, make way for Frank Bey & Anthony Paule,winners of the Best Soul and Blues Album with Soul For Your Blues and Top Soul Artists at the last edition of the prestigious Blues Awards. Accompanied by six musicians well steeped in blues and soul, they are set to perform classic soul filled with deep brass sounds and emotion. Voices to (re)discover …
Details about the TIBF event programme: tremblant.ca/blues.