Red, Whyte & Tollar, the jazz trio consisting of vocalists Carin Redman (former co-owner of Ten Feet Tall), Thyron Lee Whyte and Yvette Tollar, will be appearing at Castro’s Lounge, 2116 Queen St. E., on May 20 from 4 to 7 p.m.. Accompanying the trio will be pianist Mark Kieswetter and bassist Ron MacIntyre. There is no cover.
For more information call Castro’s at 416-699-8272.
The eighth annual Waterfront Blues Festival returns to Woodbine Park, June 1 to 3. For Toronto blues fans – and fans of this genre across the province – this is the big event of the year. Award-winning bands and solo artists will take to the stage over the three days of the festival and delight audiences with music guaranteed to knock the blues right out of you.
Not only great music awaits you at the Waterfront Blues festival. There is also a continuously running barbecue, as well as the Don’t Lose the Blues contest. And the three-day festival is free!
Making a return visit this year is W.C. Handy Blues Award nominee Tad Robinson. Considered to be one of the best blues and soul vocalists around, Robinson is bringing his touring band that features guitar wizard Chris Vitarello.
Local blues sensation, Maple Blues Female Vocalist of 2011, and Indie Blues 2011 Artist of the Year Shakura S’Aida is also on the bill. Her two CDs – Blueprint and Brown Sugar – established this multi-faceted singer’s reputation as a solid performer. Expect to hear songs from her upcoming CD Time, as S’Aida mixes originals with blues standards.
All the way from Colorado comes the 2011 International Blues Challenge winners, The Lionel Young Band. Young is a classically-trained violinist who devotes his energies these days to the music of Willie Dixon, Ledbelly and Stevie Ray Vaughan.
John Primer is considered one of the last of the great traditional Chicago bluesmen. At 63 Primer brings a rich history of the blues to the festival. His CDs Stuff You Gotta Watch and The Real Deal showcase his “concise guitar work, and gruff no-nonsense vocals.” He has accompanied such blues legends as Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon.
MonkeyJunk won the 2012 Juno Award for its mix of “swamp rhythm and blues, soul boogie and bedroom funk” on its CD To Behold. This Ottawa-based band features Steve Marriner, Tony D and Matt Sobb.
The Johnny Max Band is renowned for its mix of exceptional music mixed with a dynamic and humourous stage presence. The band’s latest CD It’s A Long Road has continued in the groove of mixing traditional blues with “gumbo R ‘n B, rock ’em sock ’em soul and flat-out boogie.” Other performers include Eugene Hideway Bridges, Erin McCallum, Chris Antonik, and Dylan Wickens and the Grand Naturals.
The Don’t Lose the Blues Contest gives you a chance to purchase tickets to win seven Top Shelf Blues CDs each day, and be entered to wind an aqua-coloured D3 Danelectrro guitar valued at $600. You can find out more about the Waterfront Blues festival at waterfrontblues.ca.
Beach jazz piano great Mark Eisenman will be at Chalkers Pub, 247 Marlee Ave., on May 26 from 6 to 9 p.m. Eisenman will be presenting an evening of personal interpretations of the Great American Songbook collection, as well as original numbers from his CDs Double Double and Apparition.
“Real jazz created the way it should be,” says Mark of his approach to the piano. “Great players counting on their experience, talent, listening ability and some measure of telepathy.”
Joining Eisenman will be drummer John Sumner and bassist Pat Collins. For more information visit jazzpiano.ca.
For more information about the gig call Chalkers at 416-789-2531, or visit chalkerspub.com.
The Lish (formerly known as Relish Bar & Grill), 2152 Danforth Ave., continues its New Music Nights, featuring up-and-coming singer/songwriters, every Saturday night from 9:30 to 11:30 p.m. May 19 is Jessica Mondello; May 26, Mary Stewart (with a video release); June 2, Nicklas Balkou, and June 9 sees Clara Engel take the stage.
Don’t forget the Stir It Up Sundays open mic, from 10:30 to 2 a.m. There is never a cover. For more information call 416-425-4664.
Organizers have just announced the selections chosen to be at the first annual Toronto Beaches Film Festival, June 29 to 30. They include Surf, Sand and Silversides by Karen Martin; A Strange Day In July by Shantal Reich; Breathe Life by Antje Beyen; Shag Nation by Brittany Brothers; To Rest In Peace by Fawaz Al-Matrouk; and If I Should Fail by Brendon Culliton.
Stay tuned for more information about dates, times and location of screenings.
The call has gone out for entries for the 2013 Toronto Beaches Film Festival. Visit torontobeachesfilmfest.com for more information.