Steve's Blog
Wednesday July 21, 2010

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Hi everyone

This is an incredibly busy week! Make that month!

1. Debashish Bhattacharya, Thursday July 29th, 8pm, CBC Studio 700 (700 Hamilton Street)

Debashish Bhattacharya demonstrated again last weekend at Jericho park that he is one of the world's most remarkable musicians, combining the evocative sounds of Indian raga with the slick and soulful sounds of western jazz and blues on a range of guitars seldom seen outside the sub-continent. As he explains, slide guitar was taken to India from Hawaii about 70 years ago. It chimed with the local musical tradition and a whole new art form was developed in Calcutta slide-Guitar.

Debashish began playing Hawaii lap steel guitar at the age of three and gave his first major concert on All India Radio when he was four. All his guitars are unique instruments designed by Debashish - the Chaturangui, the Gandharvi and the Anandi - all accompanied by his brother Subashish on tabla. These slides represent three generations of instruments and a 1,000 years tradition of Indian music performed in a hypnotic and stunning style.

The brothers will team up with Bob Murphy - last seen at The Rogue playing Hammond organ with The Sojourners in June. Bob is also a piano virtuoso, and a few years ago he met Debashish and they formed a mutual appreciation society, vowing one day to work together. That day has come! Tom Keenlyside, a stalwart member of the local jazz scene, will add flute and sax to the mix.

We invite you to experience this unique musical fusion and revel in the majesty, grace, and power of one of the world's oldest musical traditions washing up and over and around western music in the air conditioned comfort of the new CBC Studio 700 theatre. Tickets are available at Highlife Records, Rufus' Guitar Shop, and online.

2. Island Musicfest was a blast! Highlights? Joan Osborne w/ The Holmes Brothers stole the show for me. Peatbog Faeries closed Saturday night in spectacularly trippy fashion! The Unthanks from Newcastle on Tyne were amazing. Dan Hicks and His Hot Licks, Nanci Griffith, David Lindley were all in stellar form. Nathan Rogers, Annie Lou, The Gertrudes, Breabach, and Dala also impressed, while veterans like Roy Forbes, Tannahill Weavers, Red Clay Ramblers, and Brian Bowers showed that they stlll have heaps to offer. I had the honour of doing a bit of MC-ing, which was a blast! Thanks to Doug Cox and his amazing staff and volunteers for a wonderful festival experience!

3. The Vancouver Folk Music Festival was - for me - the best one yet. What a great line-up! So many highlights: Bassekou Kouyate, Calexico, Betty Lavette, Bob Brozman, Debashish Bhattacharya, Crooked Still, The Deep Dark Woods, Carlos del Junco, Fribo, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Madison Violet, Pacific Curls, Peatbog Faeries, Playing For Change, Janusz Prozinowski, Raoul Bhaneja, Ta Ravao, Nathan Rogers, Tao Seeger, Ricky Skaggs! They were all stunning. CiTR broadcast live from the park. The weather and the food were incredible. A truly memorable weekend - for all the right reasons. Linda Tanaka has pulled off another miracle! We are truly blessed to have her at the helm. I'd also like to thank Bronwen Loden and Linda Bull - CiTR's Brisbane girls - for making the live broadcast such an enjoyable and successful event. Even though I say so myself, this was one of the best editions ever of The Edge On Folk. You can download the podcasts on and hear what I mean!

4. This week, Shorefest kicks off. Tonight, in fact, with three great bands: Ladies of the Canyon, Jets Overhead, and Lee Harvey Osmond. All playing. For free. At the Bathhouse Stage at English Bay. this year the stage is at beach level. If you don't want to join the crowds, tune in to Shore 104.3fm and hear these Canadian bands and then the music that accompanies the fireworks. The music starts at 6pm.

On Saturday 24th there are short sets from 5 of Shore's Summer Songsearch winners, followed by full sets from the likes of Spirit of the West, Wil, T. Nile, Leeroy Stagger, and Kuba Oms. This show starts at noon and runs to 9pm. Live, on Shore 104.3. On our website we still have the original info we were given, and it looks like there are two stages. This has been revised. There is only the Bathhouse Stage on the 24th.

Next Wednesday 28th, Dan Mangan, Jon & Roy, and Kendel Carson (with Dustin Bentall's band) play from 6pm.

And to cap it off, Saturday 31st features Jim Cuddy, Patrick Brealey and Yukon Blonde on the Bathhouse Stage from 6pm, and The Rogue has its own stage at Sunset Beach (near the Aquatic Centre) with Jim Byrnes and his R&B Combo topping the bill, which also features The Shari Ulrich / Barney Bentall / Tom Taylor Trio, Headwater, Reid Jamieson and more (from 12 noon to 5:30pm) This will also be the stage used for The Pride Festival on Sunday August 1st. Then it's a 10 minute stroll along the promenade to the Bathhouse Stage for the remainder of the evening.

We need volunteers to hand out flyers and spread the word about The Rogue. We will have a tent / booth on site, so if you're in the vicinity, please stop by and talk to the good people of Vancouver about The Rogue.

More details about Shorefest, the fireworks, and the broadcast Schedule are on

5. The Mission Folk Music Festival starts on Thursday 22nd with a concert at the Clarke Foundation Theatre (at the top of the hill, behind the festival site). The Gala Opening Concert features Batata Y Los Alegres Ambulancias (Colombia), Charbonniers de l'Enfer (Quebec), Al Andalus (Spain / USA / Morocco / Palestine), Karoliina Kantolinen (Finland), Iskwew (BC First Nations), and Pacific Curls (NZ / Scotland.) It's a great smorgasbord with something for everyone, and the perfect appetizer for the weekend.

Friday's concert features five Francophone bands from Quebec and one from PEI, plus David Francey, and then Los Paperboys! Saturday's concert is a World Music Extravaganza, with traditional music from Kenya and Colombia, contemporary Latin music from Cuba's Wil Campa and Canadian/ Venezuelan singer Amanda Martinez, plus the stunning Brazilian accordion maestro Renato Borghetti and the exotic, highly danceable sounds of Te Vaka (Polynesia / NZ / Australia) - amongst others!! On Sunday, Canadian legends Ian Tyson and Murray McLachlan will close the festival under a Full Moon. Also playing that night are wonderful Canadian chanteuse Jill Barber, Scotland's Findlay Napier & The Barroom Mountaineers (mostly former members of Back O' The Moon) and Aboriginal Canadian blues band Gerald Charlie & Black Owl.

I'm hoping to broadcast The Edge On Folk LIVE from Mission from 8am to 12 noon on CiTR fm 101.9 and

There are workshops and day stages from 11:30am on Saturday and Sunday. This year the site has more shade, more flush toilets and more showers, and there's even a Campsite Cafe. More info on