Posts tagged ‘Muddy waters’

Rick Keene Music Scene – A Song for Markov, The ‘Mooch’ and Jack Black Recites Carl Sandburg

Everyone needs a break once in a while. Noise pollution is not good for the musical soul.  



Please enjoy some real tunes in the meantime. Rick Keene Music Scene will be back before you can say Andrei Markov !




Listen to my interview with Lawrence Gowan of Styx below !




Visit Styx Here !

Visit Strangers in the Night Here !



Visit Jarrett Lobley Project Here !



Rick Keene Music Scene – Montreal Jazz Festival Preview. Men without Hats

You can dance if you want to …

How many songs in Canadian music are recognizable by a few words? How many Canadian tunes are responsible for creating a non – dance dance craze?

Say what? 

Please listen below to  my chat with Ivan Doroschuk – the writer and composer of ‘The Safety Dance’  and every song released by ‘Men without Hats’. 

Ivan? What’s up?




Part Two



Men without Hats are part of The Montreal International Jazz Festival. 


The Montreal International Jazz Festival 

Click Here for Tickets










Rick Keene Music Scene – What’s Going On ?

As usual – a lot going on …

From 80’s Pop to R&B and Soul – Montreal and The Montreal Jazz Festival has a lot to offer.

Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir


Please listen below for some upcoming shows and some great tunes.

Thank You !



Listen to my interview with Cliff Stevens Here !



Visit Cliff Here !


The Montreal International Jazz Festival 

Click Here for Tickets










Cliff Stevens – The Prodigal Guitarist Returns to Montreal to Prove ‘Grass Won’t Grow’.

Cliff Stevens’ hands aren’t slow.


Despite many years portraying Eric Clapton as means to meet the ends, Stevens’ is on his way to ‘bucking’ the label.

‘Grass Wont Grow’ – Stevens’ new album, is an accumulation of years of practice and years of being on the road. Easy going riffs compliment easier going melodies as Cliff reaches into his soul to evoke feelings which most musicians can relate to.

Please listen below to my chat with Cliff Stevens on the eve of his album launch at Bistro a Jo Jo  June 8th. 

Cliff? What’s Up?




Visit Cliff Here !


The Montreal International Jazz Festival 

Click Here for Tickets










Rick Keene Music Scene Jazz Festival Preview – An Extensive Chat with Dr. Trevor Payne

Dr. Trevor Payne is a Montreal institution. He may only be realizing it now.

Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir


Dr. Payne and his Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir have soared to heights not imagined by anyone. Considered to be one of  the top choirs in the world, Trevor Payne is ending his tenure as their leader. Something which is causing great angst inside him.

Please listen below to my extensive interview with Dr. Payne as he opens up on many subjects.






The Montreal Jubilation Gospel Choir is performing on July 2nd as part of The Montreal International Jazz Festival 

Click Here for Tickets










Bonnie Raitt in Montreal – Like a Fine Wine …

Sometimes – people require a good slap in the face. A shock to make them understand what is purposeful and what is not.

Bonnie Raitt, her music and her band are purposeful. And then some …

Raitt was in town last night in support of her new disc; ‘Dig in Deep. The tour ( named for the record) kicked off it’s Canadian leg in Montreal. Ontario – born, musically- raised Royal Wood was the opening act and will continue that role until the Canadian portion winds down on June 19th in Vancouver. Judging by last night’s performance , Westerners in B.C.  should be in for one heck of a hoedown. After all – Raitt, her band and Wood are just ‘warming up’.

Modern music derives primarily from Blues, Jazz and Country. Three chicken-before-the-egg scenarios which built the foundations of everything good ( and bad ) escaping through speakers everywhere. Listening to Raitt and her mates at L’Olympia before a sold out audience gave argument that Raitt could very well be ; the definitive Mother Hen.

Combining two of three genres listed above along with an offspring named Rock n’ Roll – the sixty-seven year old Raitt ‘slid’ her way back and forth through time and arrived truthfully ‘on top’ of the present.

James ‘ Hutch’ Hutchinson (bass), Ricky Fataar (drums), George Marinelli ( guitar) and Mike Finnigan (keyboards ) were Raitt’s usual gang of suspects. The foursome without Raitt?  Worth the price of admission. Worth their weight in gold. Worth the wait …

Happy to be here ‘ is a term ubiquitously overused. Polite and with purpose. When Raitt uses it as a welcome back slogan, her band and herself are truly  ‘in tune’ and content to be ‘back on the road’.

The evening commenced with an interesting version of INXS’ ‘ Need You Tonight ‘. Shocking some and elevating others to a zone within Raitt’s zone. Marinelli and Raitt from the get – go, dueling and glancing with riffs both cutting and feathery soft. Exchanging slide roles yet never lending their personal gifts to one another. Similar styles yet uniquely​ individual. 

Many artists visiting from the States these days are vocal and apologetic towards the craziness which politicians in their country seem to be inflicting us with on a daily basis. Raitt? No different ..

‘The Coming Around is Going Through’ from the new disc ripe with a message and ripe with power. Added to ‘ I Knew and Undone’ , also new, Montreal quickly aware of Raitt’s neverending songwriting skills.

John Prine’s ‘Angel of Montgomery ‘ was heavenly. Raitt’s vocals strong, soft and heartfelt. Notes and tones touching and pushing hearts into dimensions reserved for few. A song covered by many yet somehow it belongs to Raitt. A showstopper leaving everyone wanting more.

The Blues would not currently  exist without people like Raitt and her band carrying on the tradition with such integrity. Elements of the Blues were displayed all night with soul yet it was a version of B.B. King’s ‘Dont Answer the Door’ which gave the audience ‘ something to talk about’.

Mike Finnigan, keyboardist for the ages – put on a lesson.

Through soulful powerful vocals and an expertise created through fifty plus years of experience ( he played with Hendrix) on Hammond B3, piano and keyboard, Finnigan almost stole the show. Alone with occasional compimenting riffs from Raitt, Finnigan tingled spines musically and vocally. Finnigan the real deal and a professor in music.

Raitt’s ‘ pirates’ also paid tribute to Chuck Berry in a roundabout kinda way …

‘I Believe I’m in Love with You ‘, a tune penned by Kim Wilson of The Fabulous Thunderbirds – an obvious fit for Raitt. Hard rocking with a wisp of Country; the tune all parts Berry. The song – all parts Bonnie Raitt.

‘I Can’t Make You Love Me’, the icing on the evening’s proverbial cake.

If one song represents Raitt’s soul, if one song must be representative of all her pain and joy housed inside her road wary ‘traveller’ – this ballad is it. ‘ Pin drop ‘ material matters in a world where human emotions sometimes are hidden by atrocities.

Humanity needs a slap in the face every once in a while …

Visit Bonnie Raitt Here !









Matt Dusk – Bringing Back Christmas in a Big Way !

There is nothing like the good ol’ days.



Especially when Christmas comes to mind. Most people have fond memories of the Holiday Season and Matt Dusk is one of them.

In fact – Matt’s memories are so great, he decided to put together a Christmas album with a couple of guests. Traditional combined with new. A love affair with the past …

Trust me – this is your Father’s Christmas album!


Matt Dusk and Florence K. will be at L’ Astral on Dec. 19th

Visit L’Astral Here !

Visit Matt Here !

Visit Florence K. Here !


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Simon Daigle – Quebec’s Premiere Bass Player Talks Groove

Bass players unite !


Rarely are Bass players featured prominently on albums for promo. Once in a while – their pictures are front and center, on the back cover of CDs.

Simon Daigle – a Granby, Qc. resident, is shaking the normal world to it’s preconceived core.


Daigle is one of Quebec’s and Canada’s premiere Bass players. Collaborating with the likes of Victor Wooten, among others.

Please listen below to my chat with Simon.

After all – it is all about the Bass …

Isn’t it?


Visit Simon Here !


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The League of Rock Montreal – Cold Shot in The Final Showcase

No longer, deer in the headlights …


Cold Shot

This was the transformation which took place within the League of Rock Montreal in the past two and a half months. An alteration of Rock n Roll clothes into Rock n Roll tuxedos.

Figuratively and literally …


Cold Shotthe band.

A mixture of Blues, Funk and Pop. A potpourri of versatility. A ship led by an entertainment scholar with a natural ease on stage and buoyed by a guitarist ( Gregory Gallagher) with one year experience under his strings. Martin Jaz on Bass along with Jordan Gosselin on drums – a battery section capable of slow trances and lightning fast beats.

Texas Flood ( Stevie Ray Vaughn), Billie Jean ( Micheal Jackson) Uptown Funk ( Mark Ronson) and Snuff ( Slipknot). The staples of a dynamic set in the last showcase and except for Snuff, the staple of the band’s involvement in The League of Rock Montreal.


These tunes were hashed, rehashed and hashed again in rehearsals, gigs and the recording studio. Like any band, practice creates creativity, discipline  and next to perfection. Like any band – the journey to ‘the show’ is filled with arguments, agreements and bonding.

Cold Shot was no different. 


Martin Jaz on Bass. A twenty year player who cites John Myung of Dream Theater as his go to guy.

Jaz uses a Music Man Bongo 6 Bass and incorporates patience and a calmness to the songs at his fingertips. Bass players are the unsung hero in most bands and Martin’s personality suits the role like a round peg in a round peg hole. No squares allowed on Bass if a band is to succeed.


According to Martin – himself and Gallagher brought The Blues to the band, Slipknot was for drummer Gosselin and Billie Jean and Uptown Funk was to fit the versatility and dynamics of singer Apos’ performances. Jaz does concede it was difficult to make the song arrangements since the guys were together for a short time.  They decided as a unit to have a great time and put aside anything which was non beneficial to the sum of the parts.


Apo D. Kali

As far as the future goes, Martin would like to work together with Gallagher. Jaz believes Gallagher is a very talented kid and can’t wait to see how Gregory  grows as a guitarist.

Jaz also plays in a corporate band named Unison Band . They are currently seeking a male singer. Apo was approached and the future may or may not see Martin and Apo together again.

As far as Martin’s involvement in The League of Rock Montreal? 

“I grew as a musician and was very surprised how the band came together in such a short period. It was an awesome experience and I got to meet people in the industry”.

Gregory Gallagher, the ‘new kid’ on the Montreal music block, used a Gibson Flying V and a Fender Strat for his time in The League of Rock Montreal. Gregory sums up his learning curve …

“For me, being new to playing in a band, I learned a lot. ” Admits Gallagher. “The most important thing was I learned when to step up and when to step back. To not take away from a song but add my element. Everyone has a different part and makes a different noise but at the end we all come together to make one giant noise. “

Gallagher is a big fan of  Albert King, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Muddy Waters. Being part of The League of Rock Montreal exposed him to different genres which he realized he is able to play. The musical world opened up in a big way for Gregory.

The future for Mr. Gallagher?

“I want to study music here and hopefully actually work in Korea later on but right now I learn from guys like Dwane Dixon and Corey Diabo who I know on a friendly basis and hang out with. I get a lot of tricks of the trade from them…  The music industry in Korea has a huge demand for musicians of all genres. I will do another League of Rock when the next session starts. It gave me a taste of what it is like to be a working musician from going to rehearsal to recording to gigging with a band you play and practice with for a good amount of time.  It differs greatly to going to jams so at first I was scared but I found that I could keep up with my fellow musicians and you learn each other’s strengths and weaknesses and use it to your advantage as a band.

Overall it’s a great experience and it’s given me the idea of what I’m kind of going for in my future. I learnt a lot and the price you pay to do this cannot even compare to the amount of experience you get at the end. It’s worth the money and time. “

Please listen below to Texas Flood / Billie Jean by Cold Shot.

Visit The League of Rock Here !



Visit Cliff Here !

Visit Cliff Here !


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Don Henley – That’s Why You Pay the Big Bucks ! Montreal Concert Review

 Welcome to the Hotel Bell Center…


It took the entire show and practically Henley’s entire back catalog to arrive at Hotel California. Don’s and his former band – The Eagles, piece de la resistance ( music by Don Felder). Luckily for the punters, it was not the final nail in the coffin at Le Centre Bell. After all – ‘ you can check out any time you want but you can never leave …’

Such is the legacy of Henley’s and The Eagles’ very ‘Long Run’. They don’t write songs like these anymore and inevitably, tears may fall from the eyes of all those who attend Henley’s recent tour.  

Sadness for Glen Frey’s death, sadness for The Eagles’ passing and definitive melancholy for the lack of ( general) songwriting skills in today’s music.

Ironically – it was a cover song which started the whole Bell Center crying in a very good way.  Steve Young ‘s Seven Bridges Road set the table for the evening’s dinner. A perfect meal before Henley et al aired their ‘Dirty Laundry’. Arguably, the song which kinda, sorta, separated Henley from his Eagles’ roots and established Don as a bona fide solo artists in the  … ahem … eighties. The crowd at The Bell Center (the majority over the age of forty) – huge fans of the eighties judging from the reaction to the second song of the evening.


As nostalgia kicked into full gear with ‘Witchy Woman’ – it was easy to tell Henley has equipped himself with a top notch backing band. The official fourteen member group instilled everything needed (and then some) within Henley’s set list. Henley himself, vocally –  in vintage 1970’s form.

Sunset GrillWhen I Stop DreamingNew York Minute and Shangri-La, all songs compiling the efforts of backing vocals, violins, mandolins, synthesizers and guitars ( Henley with a Telecaster) into a potpourri of over five decades of Henley experience. Harking easily into the magic which took place between himself and his late songwriting partner, Glen Frey.

Bramble Rose ( Tift Merrick ) off Henley’s 2015 album ‘Cass County ‘ ( Henley’s first in fifteen years) – a lesson in harmonization as Henley dueled with his back – up female singers. That lovely trend carried throughout the evening with the entire band sounding tight within the harmonies. The stars were out and lighting the stage at the Bell Center.  Very brightly …


It can be difficult at times to distinguish The Eagles and Henley’s solo efforts if not a huge fan of either. The Last Resort, a seldom played  Eagles’ live tune, was one of those moments. Henley’s solo career; Eagle- esque to a tee. Vocals are a brand for any band and Henley ( the fourth richest singing drummer of all time ), left his brand firmly on The Eagles.

Train in the Distance, a Henley tune – gave insights into Henley the person in a rare glimpse  of growing up in Gilmer, Texas. Henley, front and center and very lifelike (human), spun tales of placing pennies and nickels on railway tracks as a boy for no reason other than  ‘ lack of anything else to do.’  Complete with train sound effects, that specific train was far away in the distance last night as Henley fast approaches the age of 70. Inflation affects pennies on tracks after all …

The End of The Innocence and The Boys of Summer, two massive hits for Henley (the solo artist) , were the bread for a meaty piece of fun. Sandwiched between the pair of mega hits was another mega hit. ‘ Everybody Wants to Rule the World’ . The smash hit from Tears for Fears, stunned and pleasured the Bell Center faithful. The song was a perfect wake up call within Henley’s mostly soft  (Country – ish) song list. What Joe Walsh does with The Eagles, Tears for Fears did for Henley. Henley introduced the song as ‘ therapeutic’ following a brief summary of   ‘ ‘ ‘ the circus ‘  that is – American politics.

Encore number one brought out the big guns.Life in the Fast Lane carried the satisfied and exuberant crowd( hitchhikers) right into the driveway of  Hotel California. Both songs raising the baby boomers into an orgasmic state of bliss. For those in attendance never having the opportunity to witness The Eagles live – ecstatic to be sooo close … with Mr. Henley at the helm.


The second encore provided the ‘grab a box of Kleenex’ ( make that two ) moment of the show, Henley telling the crowd; ‘ this one is for Glen ( referring to recently deceased Glen Frey). Desperado, the first official tune written by Henley and Frey aimed at the heartstrings and connected on so many levels. The Grinch’s ( in attendance) hearts grew ten times last night.

Wasted Time was the final song of the evening in the third encore proving that on September 14th – time was not wasted by anyone. 

 Not by the punters, not by the band and not by Don Henley. It took the entire show, three encores and practically Henley’s entire back catalog to arrive at the fact that Henley is not finished the ride away from Hotel California.




Sign Up for The League of Rock Here !

Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 discount !


Visit Dwane Dixon Blues Here and Buy the New Album;

Working Man Blues




Nanette Workman – ‘You Can Always Get What You Want ‘ – Part Two

Nanette Workman is real …

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A singer who has been there – done that. A seasoned professional who has not lost her ability to know the true reasons behind music. Passion and integrity, beauty and soul.


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Please listen below as Nanette explains her philosophy behind the nurturing of both young and ‘old’ musicians. Something which is fragile and exciting for Nanette.

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Thanks for Listening !



 Visit Nanette Here !




Sign Up for The League of Rock Here. Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 discount !


Visit Dwane Dixon Blues Here and Buy the New Album;

Working Man Blues




Nanette Workman – ‘You Can Always Get What You Want ‘ …

Nanette Workman is not a born Quebecer. A fact which some people know …

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Nanette was born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. She was inducted into The Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame in 2000. Not bad for a Quebecer … eh ?

The now 70 year old singer / musician / composer and actress moved to Montreal with her Pop Idol boyfriend and recorded her first album in French in 1967. Pretty cool since at that time – Nanette did not speak a word of that language.

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Nanette has worked with practically everyone in the music business over the years but perhaps, her most famous session was with The Rolling Stones. Lending her voice to a couple of songs which are part of the cornerstones of Rock music. Part of Rock history …

Please listen below as Nanette explains part of her early career and what songs she sang back -up in The Rolling Stones; vast catalogue. Nanette will be a coach in Montreal’s first edition of The League of Rock. Stay tuned for PART TWO and hear how Nanette will be approaching her gig as a coach.

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Thanks for Listening !


 Visit Nanette Here !


Sign Up for The League of Rock Here. Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 discount !


Visit Dwane Dixon Blues Here and Buy the New Album;

Working Man Blues




Rick Keene Music Scene – The UnderGround Divas ! Somewhere Gram Parsons is Smilin’ …

Take Lou Reed and The Velvet Underground. Add Tom Waits. Add Gram Parsons.

Mix ’em all together and you get …

The Underground Divas. 



Singer / songwriter / multi – instrumentalist Rick Murrin is the mastermind behind The Underground Divas.

A man with a vision and a man with soul.


Please listen below to my chat with Rick and listen to some of the fifty – two songs he wrote during his personal fifty – two week challenge !

Say What ?


 Thanks for listening …talk soon !

Visit The Underground Divas Here !


Visit the League of Rock Here !

Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 Discount !

Visit Dwane Dixon Blues Here !

The CD – ‘Working Man Blues’ on Sale Now !

Rick Keene Music Scene – The Underground Divas, Raisin’ Cain, Lisa Simone and Gov’t Mule … or… Mule (If You Prefer)

The Underground Divas. A perfect name for a band. 


Underground as in rebel and Divas  – as in Rock Star mentality. Just one of the bands from Montreal with a new album coming.

Please listen below to a preview of the songs AND INTERVIEWS coming this week on Rick Keene Music Scene.  Stay tuned for Paul Ierrera from Raisin’ Cane and Rick Murrin from The Underground Divas. 

Check out Paul and Raisin’ Cane at

The House of Jazz on Aug. 17th.

Thanks for listening …talk soon !


Visit the League of Rock Here !

Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 Discount !

Buy Working Man Blues Album Here !

Buy Dwane Dixon’s Working Man Blues Album Here !

Rick Keene Music Scene – Messin’ with Paul Arthur and Raisin’ Cain !

Paul Arthur and Raisin’ Cain make their long awaited debut at

The House of Jazz 


Paul Arthur has long been a staple in the montreal Blues scene going back to the days of the Rising Sun. Originally from Boston but raised in Montreal – Paul and his band recently won a contest as best Blues band which saw the group head to New Orleans during Mardi Gras.


Please listen below to my chat with Paul Arthur and listen to some great tunes by him and his band – Raisin’ Cain.

Check out Paul and Raisin’ Cain at

The House of Jazz on Aug. 17th.

Thanks for listening …talk soon !


Visit the League of Rock Here !

Mention Rick Keene Music Scene and Receive a $150.00 Discount !

The Wainright Sisters; Laughing All the Way to The Jazz Festival !

Martha and Lucy Wainright Roche are a lot of fun …


 Martha and her half-sister Lucy have written and performed with most of their family. Kate and Anna McGarrigle, the Roches, Victor – the list is long and musical.  For reasons which are comically dark, Lucy and Martha collaborated on their first project ‘ Songs in the Dark’ in 2015.

Fast forward to July 8th, 2016 au Theatre du Nouveau Monde at the 37th Edition of The Montreal Jazz Festival. 

FIJM-d10-328With Martha in cast and Lucy cast as the straight man ( woman) – the duo explained, carried on, told jokes and sang songs from their debut album. Lullabies from the Devil would be an apt ‘ulterior’ title for the evening’s setlist. A stomach for Hitchcockanother …

Themes of despair, death and disappointment thick with the lyrics of songs sung for kids. Harmonious lullabies written with Martha’s kids in mind.’Mother’s Little Yellow Pill’  kind of stuff.

 ‘Long Lankin‘- the murderous tale, all the way to Richard Thompson’s literal  ‘End of the Rainbow’, performed tongue in cheek (hopefully) by The Wainright Women. In between – the self deprecating humor of poor Martha’s cast and crutches to Lucy’s brilliant deadpan delivery on everything – the pair were delightfully entertaining.  Even with a  Baby Rockin’ Medley instructing the crowd how to dance a baby to sleep while planning his / her departure as ‘a gift’.

Not all songs were about ‘haunted lullabies’.

 FIJM-d10-330Two of the evening’s most charming moments, insights into the childhoods of Martha and Lucy. ‘Lullaby for a Doll’, sung beautifully and wistfully by Martha as she covered her Mother’s song about the games Martha played as a child. Acoustic guitar providing the car as Martha took the audience on a trip backwards. Lucy grabbed the wheel ( and acoustic)  and issued her own tale of childhood.  ‘Screaming Issue’, a cover of a handcrafted tune to a younger version of Lucy carried out originally by her Father –  Loudon Wainwright III.  It was a children’s party and easy to decipher where Martha and Lucy obtained their musical prowess.


Throughout the evening – Martha and Lucy raised eyebrows and smiles. The chemistry between them filled with love, admiration and a wicked sense of humor. An impeccable sense of timing. Abbott and Costello would be proud …

‘Songs in the Dark’, the name of the album and tour – not without logic. In the olden days with medicine and means not always available, more kids died. Lullabies were created and sung to stomp and sooth the negativities associated with death and disease.

Martha and Lucy, aka The Wainright Sisters, more or less did the same thing  during a three night run au Theatre Du Nouveau Monde.  


In short …

Martha and Lucy Wainright Roche were a lot of  fun !

Visit Martha Wainright Here !


Buy The Album Here !

Buy The Album Here !

Rick Keene Music Scene – You Want a Jazz Festival Preview?

There is a lot of talent coming to the Montreal International Jazz Festival in 2016 …

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The Festival gets underway on June 29th with Sharon Jones and The Dap Kings doing a free blow-out show to open the Festival. Jones, one of the best performers on the scene today –promises to deliver a opening showstopper for the ages.

Susie Arioli performs on July 2nd at Club Soda. On the heels of a tour to support her first album without Jordan Officer on guitar, ‘ Spring’  is a year long thing now. The show and tunes will be Susie’s coming of age …

Please enjoy my interview with Susie !


Lisa Simone, the daughter of Nina Simone, will be performing two shows as an opening act for Melody Gardot on June 29th and 30th at Salle Wilfrid Pelletier. Lisa, like her famous Mom – blessed with amazing vocals and a way with words. Just may be the hidden gem of the Festival !

Enjoy my interview with Lisa !


The stages will be busy this year ! Most of Montreal and Quebec’s top players will be on hand to ‘sing the Blues’ to anyone who will listen ! From The Paul DesLauriers Band at Metropolis to Dawn Tyler Watson at L’Astral – there is something for everyone both indoors and outdoors ! Free and Paid !

Here are some of the performers ….

Pat Loiselle

Dawn Tyler Watson

Paul DesLauriers

Adam Karch 

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Please keep coming back for all the news, reviews and interviews as part of The 37th Edition of

The Montreal International Jazz Festival !

Visit the Festival Here to Buy Tickets and Check Out The Schedule !


Visit The House of Jazz here !


Working Man Blues CD Cover

Dawn Tyler Watson – A ‘Jawbreaking’ Interview !

Montrealers know Dawn Tyler Watson. Or – do they … ? 



Dawn Tyler – Watson has been entertaining Montrealers and Canadians for what seems like an eternity. In a good way …

Hard to believe her latest release ‘JawBreaker’ is only Dawn’s fourth solo album. Her small-ish output is not for lack of talent or opportunity, it is based on …

Please  listen below and Dawn will explain the reasons! Hear some tracks from ‘JawBreaker’ as well.

Dawn? What’s Up?



Visit Dawn Right Here !



Working Man Blues CD Cover

Dawn Tyler Watson – Experience is a ‘Jawbreaker’ ! Album Review

Montrealers know Dawn Tyler Watson very well …


One of this city’s brightest diamonds has shone bright for a few decades. In her latest offering; ‘Jawbreaker’, Dawn exudes passion with experience.

They say practice makes perfect yet musicians are all aware, perfection is as unattainable as The Holy Grail. Perfection is the hunger which, more times than not – sustains a career.

In ‘JawBreaker’, Tyler comes close with a little help from her friends.

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On the first track, ‘Can’t Nobody’, the beacon to the shore of a grounded habited island, guitar great Paul DesLauriers lends a pick. The Rock tune heavily infused with Bluesy- soul, opens the senses and dictates this will not be ‘ just another Blues record’.
DesLauriers, the seasoned veteran – lays the juice on and off. A perfect combination – a perfect fit to Tyler’s schizophrenic ability to power through or seduce with her voice. Montrealer Patrick Lehman lends his voice for the first time on the disc and yes, JawBreaker is about to be something juicy to bite into.

Patrick Lehman, the Juno nominated ‘Soul brother from another mother’, makes another appearance on ‘Shine On’. Whatever energy DesLauriers brought in the opener,  Lehman and Watson counter with a Gospel -inspired influence. Lehman and Watson dueling in an R&B cage. Grounding the sound and creating diversity. Another Jawbreaker straight from the church. The cornerstone of Soul.



‘A Little Bit More’ makes us comfortable. Watson – the singer we all know, appears with a ballad. Sultry, no nonsense. Dawn’s true self reflects off of Ben Racine’s shadow. The entire soul searching experience framed nicely by ‘Little Frankie Thiffault’s saxophone. The tune will make your heart melt.

“Son of a Gun’ jolts the wispiness away. DesLauriers returns and duels with Racine in a Rock n’ Roll Boogie Woogie high calibre fashion. Combing Berry- type riffs with Watson’s easy vocals. No rocket science here but ‘a rocket ‘ to balance JawBreaker. A missile to the good old days of Bill Haley and The Comets.

‘Tootsie Roll Blues’ is a return to the roots. Upright bass, harmonica and a smoke-filled Jazz club in a basement. Guy Belanger (Harp) and Morgan Moore (Bass) creating an atmosphere to forget troubled times. A tune to dismiss blues while wading firmly through the Blues. Dawn-Tyler is in her element and her ease within the melancholy structure holds a lantern to the underlying darkness within.

Festiblues Ahuntsic 2010 les 40 ans de Martin Deschamps

Festiblues Ahuntsic 2010

‘I Don’t Live Here Anymore’ is the gem. Montreal legend Rob MacDonald adds acoustic and Dimitri Lebel-Alexandre instills pedal steel on a heart-breaking delivery.  The opening riff, reminiscent of the 1970 – inspired Country balladry.

A ‘Desperado’ type song which enters into Blues -y despair in a fashion which only Tyler could deliver. Watson’s haunting vocals as fresh as a teenager trying to make her break. Watson inspires on this inspirational tune while MacDonald and Alexandre ply their craft brilliantly. Wow!

‘Rotten’ is Watson and the band. It is important to mention ‘ the band’ especially the nimble-fingered John Sadowy on piano and organ. Often, the piano player – the ‘filler’ on stage, is forgotten by the audience and sometimes the singer. Sadowy, throughout JawBreaker is the saving grace. Providing Boogie Woogie, grace and ‘the meat’ to the potato salad of guests. Nicky Estor holds the beat throughout and is a solid metronome providing rolls and fills at the most important moments. Francois Dube, Estor’s better half on Bass, grounding the songwriting and allowing the ‘cats to play’. Mathieu ‘Moose’ Mousseau on Baritone Sax – balancing Little Frankie on Tenor. Both players, part of The Ben Racine Band. Racine himself, integral to the complete sound on JawBreaker.

As cheesy as the title track may suggest, ‘Smoke Meat’ is the hidden gem on the album.

Dawn Tyler Watson - Ben Racine

Dawn Tyler Watson – Ben Racine

Starting off as ‘ just another song’, suddenly – following the first verse, substance rears it’s beautiful head. Estor and Sadowy setting the Jazzy tone. An intro to a Funky jam which allows all the players to shine. Watson paying homage to Montreal’s number one food delicacy and ironically – a staple of Montreal musicians’ diets. A red-hot song to go with red hot meat!

‘Greenbacks’ and ‘I See’ are R&B and funk fan’s guilty pleasures. Once more the sax is prominent as in any good funk/ R&B tune. The horns on the album providing a feel good mentality and transporting the listener to the days before record companies ruined everything. Foot-tapping type stuff yet compared to most tracks on JawBreaker – more generic and not quite up to Watson’s creative standard.

‘Forever Young’ – the Bob Dylan tune returns the album and Watson to glory. The vocals alone, worthy of several awards. Think KD Lang singing Hallelujah. At times, Watson hitting the spine tingling moments associated with Lang. Just one of those special moments which cannot be defined. Certainly to become a fan favorite on disc and off.


‘It Ain’t Elvis’ returns JawBreaker to generic territory. The album contains thirteen tracks and would have been more suited to ten. Adding similar sounding tracks diminishes the brilliance of the album. Watson is well know and everyone is aware of what she can do. All musicians are solid throughout yet generic can border on boredom within a complete album listening structure. Each generic track great within a playlist including different acts.

JawBreaker concludes with ‘Shine On / Rise’. A bookend for the album’s second track ‘Shine On’.  Once more – Lehman lends his backing vocals and the song is a tribal chant. An interesting way to end the disc. A statement sung with conviction by Watson and Lehman. A tease which starts to rise and disappears leaving the listener thirsty for more.

All in all – JawBreaker is a must buy album. A return of sorts by Dawn – Tyler Watson to the throne of Quebec female singers.

Ear candy if you will …


Visit Dawn Right Here !

Stay tuned for my Interview with Dawn !


Working Man Blues CD Cover

Click to Buy Album !

Watch Elvis Leave the Building !

Presented for the first time in Montreal!

Premiere on June 15  8 p.m.

 Place des Arts


evenko presents for the first time in Montreal, RETURN TO GRACE from June 15 to June 19, at Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier.

A  glorious, heartfelt tribute to Elvis Presley’ s music featuring Steve Michaels,  and over 30 singers, dancers and musicians on stage, RETURN TO GRACE flawlessly delivers some the greatest musical moments of a generation with song favorites that include Heartbreak Hotel, Suspicious Minds, Love Me Tender, and more!



From the King’s beginnings in Memphis, to the amazing ’68 Comeback Special, to the historic Aloha from Hawaii concert, audiences experiencing RETURN TO GRACE re-live the music that changed rock and roll forever.

Enjoy the BEAUTY of the voice, the GRACE of the spirit and the JOY of the memory when you …

The concert of a lifetime

Wednesday, June 15
Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, Place des Arts
8 p.m.Curtain


Click Here to Buy Tickets !

Please help to encourage musicians everywhere.

Click here to support the growth of Rick Keene Music Scene. 

Thank You.


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Buy Tickets for Strangers in the Night 12 Here !

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