Steve's Blog
Celebrate the Roots of The Beatles! Celtic Colours photos!
Wednesday October 14, 2015

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1. Beatles Night w/ Rod Davis (Quarrymen), and The Aggregates (Jim Byrnes, Paul Pigat & co.), Friday October 16th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

That band The Beatles may not have been the first rock and roll band in history, but they are certainly the most celebrated and influential band in my life - and probably yours, too. Back in 1963 I was at Friarswood School in Newcastle under Lyme. I was 10 years old. I was part of the school play. I was - funnily enough - chosen to be the MC (I had no idea this was to be my "calling" back then, I tell you!) I remember wearing a white coat with a stethoscope around my neck, introducing the first skit. A "hospital drama" involving a light projected from behind onto a white sheet, with the silhouettes of doctors and nurses and a prostrate patient having all sort of things "removed" from his body! Next up were four young lads - three of them bearing cardboard cutout guitars, and one seated behind a cardboard bass drum. They mimed "She Loves You" and shook their fringes and "woo-ed" passionately. I don't recall what I said about them, but this memory only recently resurfaced. I think it says a lot about the impact of The Beatles, that a bunch of 10 year old kids in 1963 were so into the music even then. 

On Friday, we delve back even further. To a Liverpool suburb where 6 teenage lads were led by John Lennon into the world of skiffle and early rock and roll. Rod Davis was one of those lads. He played banjo in The Quarrymen. They had a washtub bass, a bass drum, washboard, and a couple of guitars. They weren't very accomplished, but they made a big impression on the locals, including Paul MacCartney and his young friend George Harrison. The Quarrymen went on to become The Beatles, of course, but the first half of this concert will consist of Rod Davis singing songs, telling stories and anecdotes about those early years, and showing his unique collection of slides to further illustrate the story. After the break, Jim Byrnes, Paul Pigat and his backing band will treat us to some early rock and roll classics like 20 Flight Rock, Honey Don't, Anna, and many more. 

Don't miss this once in a lifetime chance to celebrate the Roots of The Beatles, and share the night with one of John Lennon's school buddies, and with one of the finest rockabilly bands on the planet - with the masterful Mr. Byrnes at the helm! Click here for tickets and information Beatles Night! (A Celebration of the Roots of the Beatles)

As McCartney sang on the Little Richard classic, "Long Tall Sally" - "We're gonna have some fun tonight!" Oh yeah!!

2. Celtic Colours Festival, Cape Breton
Margaret & I are in Cape Breton for one more day before flying back to prepare for the Rod Davis show. It's been an incredible week, and we have one more concert tonight in the new auditorium at the University of Cape Breton in Sydney. We're going to drive the Cabot Trail before that, so I'll have to get me skates on! You can catch one live streamed concert every night on

I'll have a full report in next month's Celtic Connection newspaper. Meanwhile check out some photos I took at the opening concert with Loreena McKennitt and The String Sisters, the We Banjo 3 / Old Man Luedecke show the next night, and the amazing show in the chapel at the fortress in Louisbourg on Sunday! Here is the link:

3. Future Shows at The Rogue
Dar Williams & Lydia Hol (Oct 24)
Red Moon Road & The Wahs (Oct 30)
Sean McCann of Great Big Sea (Nov 6)
Jocelyn Pettit CD Launch (Nov 14)
Cannery Row (Nov 20)
Linda McRae CD Launch plus Tom Russell's guitarist Thad Beckman (Nov 27)
and more! Full details on

4. Radio Waves
On The Edge On Folk this Saturday I'll have some new music from Celtic Colours, and a whole lot more! Please join me on CiTR fm 101.9 and from 8am to noon.

See you on Friday!!