Friday, March 31, 2023

HBL Opens Unique Music School

The Hamilton Blues Lovers have decided to enter the education business in a big way!

Our first venture is Luigi’s House o’ Music Learnin’. We approached Principal April Fulcilli about LHML’s upcoming plans.

“Every music school teaches singing, guitar, drums, etc,” she explained, “We’ve decided to think outside the box with classes that’re a bit more unique.”

Here’s the first batch of courses

Becoming a Great Music Mascot
by Professor Trebleclef, the Music Loving Monkey


Pointy Dancing: Basic and Advanced (with bump) Classes
by Professors Lou and Linda

Perfecting Your Rock Star Moves
by Dr. Dave Rave


Techniques for Polishing Your Juno
by Professor Steve Strongman


Restringing a Guitar While Playing Harmonica
by Dr. Doug Feaver

“The new school will be located in the old Chuck’s Income Tax and Waffle Emporium building on Main Street”, Principal Fulcilli announced.

We'll keep you posted!

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Wednesday, March 29, 2023

GRBS Anniversary Party with Marriner, O'Brien & Bowskill in Brantford

It'll be a Grand Thursday on April 6, when the Grand River Blues Society continues celebrating their 20th anniversary at the Brantford Polish Hall. This fabulous party starts at 8pm when 3 award-winning artists will be rocking together: Steve Marriner (MonkeyJunk), Jesse O'Brien (Colin James, Sass Jordan) & Jimmy Bowskill (Sheepdogs, Blue Rodeo). For only $20 in advanced ($25 at the door) you get to experience a trio of incredible performers.

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Monday, March 27, 2023

Hamilton Guitarist Dylan Matthews Passes

It is with sadness that we announce the passing of Hamilton guitarist Dylan Matthews. He was currently in the band Doctor Tongue and was also a member of Torque Hound and Hammer of the Gods. Our condolences to his family, friends and fans. We'll post more information on this page as we learn more.

Social Media Reaction

George Panagopoulos (Doctor Tongue)

A little over a week ago, I recorded what I consider to be one of the greatest guitar performances I have ever heard from one of the most talented, soulful and caring people I have ever met.  I’m not sure why things like this happen to the best people, but I can tell you firsthand that Dylan Matthews was the best musician I’ve ever played music with. Above that, he was a best friend. Dylan had that quality. He made everyone around him feel counted and recognized. 

Dylan, I will never forget how you elevated a room, a rehearsal, a recording session, a party and our friendship. Love you, brother. 

Tom Bigas (drummer)

Today my heart and spirit is broken. Almost a year ago, this beautiful soul welcomed me into his band with open arms and an open heart. He crafted some of the most memorable musical experience’s that I had the honour of being a part of. Dylan Matthews, you are one of the greatest musicians I have ever worked with. You’re creativity was genius. My deepest condolences to all your family. You are my musical brother and friend… you are loved and I will miss you.

We met when we were so young. You were starting out at Mohawk College's elusive music program. Circa 2005. We were crossing paths. I was graduating and you were trying to get accepted into the program. 
I became your Mohawk mentor. I showed you Blue Monk and (probably) So What. Made you learn your triads up and down the neck. Taught you jazz voicings. You wanted to learn it all. Then I sat in on your audition. I remember it well. Dave McMurdo was doing the audition. He's tough on guitarists, but I was pretty close with him by then. Anyway, you nailed your audition and was accepted.
You moved in with me. Remember that apartment? Down the street from the Cat N Fiddle. I introduced you to JJ Cale. You couldn't get enough of Troubadour. You leaned all those country licks and taught me them, plus many other killer licks. Good times. 
However, we were on different trajectories: You we're just starting out, opening doors, I was closing doors, searching for new ones. 
Ultimately, you finished school, and I spent the next 6 years playing original heavy rock. 
Then it ended. By now it's Jan 2015, and I just announced I left RFU. After 4 intense years of single-pointed hard work, I was musically exhausted. I had nowhere to turn. I had no clue what was about to come my way.
The day after I made my announcement you reached out, inviting me to join Torque Hound. This would be the greatest favour anyone could've offered me. Suddenly, I was introduced to these funky exciting musicians. We played Frontier Town and opened for the Fatties on Halloween. Bucket List gigs. Everything that's happened to me since is a result of you throwing me a solid. 
Dylan, I've been thinking about you all night. Can't stop wondering what would've happened had you not reached out. Had you not invited me to join your band. Where would I be now? Anyway, I don't know how you died, but I hope it was with a smile on your face and a guitar close by.
Thanks Dylan. Thanks for everything.
Your smile was warm and infectious. You carried an energy that would radiate around a room. Always welcoming, always greeted with a big hug. 
Your presence will be missed by many in the Hamilton/Ontario music scene. 
Another real good human gone way too soon. 
Love ya buddy! I'm very sad to know that our last conversation last year was the last time we'd ever share a laugh.

Lou Molinaro (booker/promoter)

I met Dylan years ago via This Ain't Hollywood.  The 1st time we brought Johnny Winter into the club, Dylan FREAKED!  He asked me if I could hold two tickets for him until the week of the show.  Johnny Winter was an artist that both Dylan and his dad loved. 

So, the deal was that he was going to tell his dad that they were going to come to TAH to see watch "some band play".  I think Dylan's dad had no idea that we booked Johnny Winter. Imagine walking into the bar and then finding out that Johnny Winter was playing??  Nicely orchestrated! 

Over the years, Dylan, always thanked me for holding those tickets for him. That Johnny Winter show was a paramount moment for the both of them.  Having the opportunity to watch a guitar player that he and his father admired so much in a joint like This Ain’t Hollywood. Memories like these are forever precious and important.

I will always remember Dylan for having such a big heart and always being respectful.  I never got tired of his thanks because he always got so excited about telling me the Johnny Winter story.  Everyone knows that I am a huge Johnny Winter fan. Dylan and his dad attending the show is my greatest memory about having Johnny play This Ain't Hollywood twice.

Man.....So young and so talented

"You can't put your arms around a memory."

Links: Doctor Tongue, Video above courtesy of Doctor Tongue

Links: Torque HoundVideo above courtesy of Angelo NotoCampanella

Links: Hammer of the Gods, More Led Zeppelin Covers/Stories, Video above courtesy of Angelo NotoCampanella

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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Throwback Thursday! Al Lucas, The Kings on American Bandstand, Kazzer

Brantford's Al Lucas

From the Wikipedia
Albert Bennington Lucas (November 16, 1916 – June 19, 1983) was a Canadian jazz double-bassist.

Lucas took piano lessons as a child from his mother, Francis Bradley Lucas, a concert pianist, eventually switching to bass and tuba at age 12.[1] After moving to New York City in 1933, Lucas played with Kaiser Marshall, then joined the Royal Sunset Orchestra, where he played from 1933 to 1942.[1] During the 1940s, Lucas appeared on record with Hot Lips PageColeman HawkinsEddie Heywood (1944–45), Duke Ellington (1945), Mary Lou Williams (1946), James P. JohnsonJ.J. JohnsonBen WebsterErroll Garner, and Eddie South.[1]

He toured and recorded with Illinois Jacquet from 1947 to 1953, recording in Detroit with Jacquet's all-star band which included Sonny StittLeo ParkerSir Charles ThompsonMaurice Simon and Shadow Wilson before returning to play with Heywood again from 1954 to 1956. He also recorded in the 1950s with Ruby BraffCharlie Byrd, and Teddy Wilson. He worked primarily as a studio musician in his last two decades,[1] backing up groups at Apollo Theater performances, playing jazz only occasionally. Lucas died in New York City on June 19, 1983.

Links: Al LucasVideo above courtesy of R Yurman

Oakville's The Kings on American Bandstand

Hamilton's Kazzer

Links: Kazzer, Video above courtesy KazzerVEVO

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Saturday, March 18, 2023

March 2023 Episode of 'Sold on Hamilton with Judy Marsales' featuring Don Oakie

The March 2023 'Sold On Hamilton with Judy Marsales' radio show was broadcast on March 4, 2023 on CHML 900AM in Hamilton). This show features of James Meerveld of Danasy Lanscaping, Hamilton musician Don Oakie and Craig McLean from from Judy Marsales Real Estate Ltd

This wonderful program is generally broadcast on the first Saturday on the month between 11am and 12pm. It is hosted by Judy Marsales, owner of Judy Marsales Real Estate Ltd (a proud HBL sponsor) and an amazing local music supporter. The program showcases the best and brightest citizens of the Hammer, including many musicians. Judy also discusses the Hamilton housing market.

Links: Show above courtesy of Global NewsSold on HamiltonMore 'Sold on Hamilton' Stories

Links: Don Oakie, Video above courtesy of Don Oakie

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Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Throwback Thursday! Copperpenny, Teenage Head CNE Riot, Paul Langille Labatt's Commercial


From the Wikipedia

Copperpenny was a Canadian rock band from Kitchener, Ontario. They were formed in 1965 by Kenny Hollis and Rich Wamil, and were originally known as the Penny Farthings, to reflect the British Invasion. Not long after their formation they adopted Copperpenny as their new moniker, after a B-side by Toronto band The Paupers.

In 1968, the release of "Nice Girl" on Columbia Records garnered the group moderate success. They soon switched to RCA and enjoyed a minor hit with "Stop (Wait A Minute)." However, it was not until after they moved to Sweet Plum Records, a division of London Records, that they enjoyed their first major success.

"You're Still The One" was the band's first mainstream hit and the follow-up, 1973's "Sitting on a Poor Man's Throne," was recorded in Dearborn, Michigan, with Richard Becker.

Copperpenny continued to record as they toured the United States with Led Zeppelin, Bob Seger, The Guess Who and Uriah Heep.

1975 saw them sign on with Capitol Records. They made several appearances on television shows such as "Keith Hampshire's Music Machine". Copperpenny even had a short-lived variety show that launched the career of a then unknown magician named Doug Henning.

During this period, they had continued success with the singles "Disco Queen", "Good Time Sally" and "Suspicious Love". They toured Canada in support of the Fuse album opening for the Swedish band Blue Swede. Their touring line-up included Mark Stephen Gendel on guitar, Bill Mair on bass and Jim Minas on Drums.

By the time their final record, Fuse, was released, most of the original members had already left the band. Rich Wamil supported the effort as Rich Wamil & Copperpenny, but the remaining band split up in 1978.

1980 Teenage Head CNE Riots

Paul Langille's Labatt's Blue Commerical

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Tuesday, March 14, 2023

More 2023 Juno Winners

Below is the full Juno televised ceremony from March 13, 2023

Links: Juno AwardsMore Juno Stories, Video above courtesy of CBC Music

Here's the complete list of winners from that night:

Sunday, March 12, 2023

2023 Opening Night Juno Winners

The opening night of the 2023 Junos saw two local acts awarded with the coveted statuettes. The rest of the awards will be handed our at a televised ceremony on Monday, March 13 at 8pm on CBC.

Click below to see the Opening Night Ceremony.

Video above courtesy of CBC Music

Below is a complete list of winners. Local acts are bolded.

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Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Throwback Thursday! Forgotten Rebels, The Dik Van Dykes, The Killjoys on Breakfast Television

The Dik Van Dykes

The Dik Van Dykes were a garage punk sextet based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada who first formed in 1985 and folded in 1989.

They released two albums, Nobody Likes...The Dik Van Dykes (1987), and Waste Mor Vinyl (1989), on the Og Records label, preceded by a limited edition indie cassette, Live At the Gown and Gavel and countless compilation records such as the It Came from Canada series issued by OG Records (the Deja Voodoo guys).

Most of the Dik Van Dykes' songs were humorous in nature, often satirizing local and Canadian culture. Curling, Birthday Song and Adult Gumby were fan favorites. The band received significant airplay on McMaster University's CFMU-FM 93.3, Memorial University of Newfoundland's CHMR 93.5, and many other student-run radio stations.

They opened for the Ramones on three nights in 1988, and played with other great bands of the era such as Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, UIC, Wetspots, Heimlich Maneuver and Deja Voodoo.

In the 90s, Sarah Hodgson asked Mike (Dik) Johnson to join her band, Sinister Dude Ranch. He accepted, but with one condition, that the band change its name to I Love My Shih Tzu. The band's first song was actually a Dik Van Dykes song, Too Much Like Fun. The band broke up in the early 21st century.

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Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Happy International Women's Day! Videos by Bernadette Connors, Alysha Brilla, Lacey Hill

Links: Alysha BrillaMore Alysha Brilla StoriesVideo above courtesy of Alysha Brilla

More International Women's Day Videos

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New Album from Hamilton's Tim Gibbons and the Swampbusters Will Get Your Juices Flowin'

Boogalator, the newest kick-ass recording from Tim Gibbons and the Swampbusters should come with a warning: "Keep out of reach of bland, over-produced albums". It's so tough 'n' gritty, it'll send namby-pamby CDs crying home to mommy.

With the usual Swampbusters take no prisoners approach, Boogalator hooks you in with swampy, bluesy grooves and Tim's unmistakable vocals. Filled with rough and tumble numbers, as well as some funky and jazzy moments, it'll get your juices flowin'.

You can pick up a CD at any of Tim's unforgettable live shows. You can also pick it up at Dr. Disc in Hamilton.

Video above courtesy of Tim Gibbons

Links: Tim GibbonsMore Tim Gibbons StoriesVideo above courtesy of Tim GibbonsMore Releases

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Friday, March 3, 2023

Sue Foley, Artist Signed to Waterdown's Stony Plain Win 2 Austin Music Awards

Picture courtesy of Sue Foley

Ottawa-born Sue Foley recently received two Austin Music Awards on Sunday, February 26, 2023. Her current town voted her tops in both the Best Blues and Best Guitarist categories. Currently, she's signed to Waterdown's Stony Plain Records

Video above courtesy Austin Chronicle

Click here for the story from the Austin Chronicle.

Below is a complete list of winners

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Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Throwback Thursday! Tom Wilson Edition!

Picture courtesy of Ron Ferroni of Steelore-Hamilton Rock History 1970’s to 2010’s

Links: Florida RazorsVideo above courtesy of I Don't Wanna Cry



Lou, our blogger goes down memory lane: 
I remember seeing the mighty Junkhouse live for the first time in the late 90's at a festival in Spencer Smith Park, Burlington. The guys played a then-unreleased tune called Lean on Your Peers and I was really blown away by it and looked forward to hearing it on CD. Unfortunately, the band broke up not that long after.

A while later, I discovered the track on Blackie and the Rodeo Kings' 1999 album, Kings of Love and was grateful that this amazing song finally saw the light of day. Years after, I managed to experience a reformed Junkhouse rock the tune live again.

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Kitchener's Pete Temple and the Cornerstones Take You on a Sweet Ride With New Live Album

You'll definitely want to take Live at the Boathouse from Pete Temple and the Cornerstones, out for a spin. This astounding album takes you for a sweet ride through a ton of classic covers and one fabulous original: What is the Blues.  

The Cornerstones are firing on all cylinders here. They were all revved up at this concert and it shows. Guitars, harmonica and vocals lead the way through the musical twists and turns. This is pedal to the metal rockin' Blues at it's finest.

The album can be downloaded through the group's bandcamp page or bought at their spectacular live shows. It's also available many streaming sites.

You can stream the album below.

Links: Pete TempleMore Pete Temple StoriesAlbum above courtesy of Pete Temple & the CornerstonesMore Releases

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