“This show is remarkable and it really is what kicks off the Bluesfest. Families are there. People who getting started at the Festival are there. And it is a packed house. What a great experience it is to witness this.” – Claude Cloutier, Artistic Director,TD Kitchener Blues Festvial.
The Grand River Blues Society has adopted a mandate to educate young people about the blues. Since 2008 they have run this annual Grand River Blues Camp, a day-camp experience for young musicians from 12-18 years of age. For many years now, Blues Campers have benefited from instruction by and performance experience with local, working blues musicians. This is a unique learning experience for young musicians and a mentoring opportunity (providing additional revenue) for local blues musicians.
The Eighth Annual Grand River Blues Camp is planned for the summer of 2015, from August 4 to August 7; the week leading up to the Kitchener Blues Festival. The 2015 Camp will be held at Courtland Public School, Kitchener, ON.
Young musicians who play guitar, drums, bass, vocals, keyboards, horns or harmonica will find this a wonderful opportunity to learn about blues and meet other young musicians. Grand River Blues Camp will be of particular interest to young musicians who want to perform. During this exciting week campers will learn learn licks, a full set of blues tunes, how to jam and perform on stage.
The most exciting feature of Grand River Blues Camp is the Grand River Blues Camp Showcase. This will be a culminating performance by our Blues Campers on Friday afternoon, August 7, between 2:15 pm and 4:15 pm on BIA stage (downtown Kitchener at King and Benton Streets) at the 2015 Kitchener Blues Festival – an amazing opportunity to participate in the Festival and to perform for friends and family.
There is nothing I like doing more than writing about promising new musicians. It was KBF Mel Brown Award Recipient Cheryl Lescom who first spoke to me about this amazing concept several years ago. I remember seeing the Blues Camp show last year at the BIA stage with a capacity audience – one of my fave parts of this three day event.
It was my great pleasure to have both the students and several of the instructors from The Grand River Blues Camp (now in its eighth year) as my very special guests. Students Alexis Boudreau, Joshua David, and Braydon Kains performed several songs live in the Sound FM studios.
They were joined by Grand River Blues Camp instructors (all locally based working professional blues musicians) Cheryl Lescom, Mike McDonald, Alana Leonard, (2015 head instructor) Don Featherstone, plus Grand River Blues Camp co-director Dennis Cuomo.
Other teachers of the Blues Camp include John Lee, Chris Latta, Colin White, (former student) Matt Weidinger (former student), John McKinley, David Rodenburg, and Andy Gingerich, plus organizer Janet McKerron Wendell and Blues Camp co-director George White.
The Grand River Blues Camp show is Friday Aug 7 between 2:10 and 4:10 pm at The BIA Stage at King and Benton streets.
Blues Camp Podcast music – “Next to You” – waterstreet blues band – Got Mojo 2 – Grand River Blues; Conor Gains Band – “Lazy Boy” from Got Mojo 2 – Grand River Blues; Braydon Kains; “Pride and Joy” (Stevie Ray Vaughan cover); Joshua David; “I’ve Got Dreams to Remember (Otis Redding cover); Alexis Boudreau – “Little by Little” (B.B. King cover); Colin White – (former Blues Camp student) “Vacation to Nowhere” from Got Mojo 2 – Grand River Blues; Johanna Pavia (former Blues Camp student) and SoulDrive “Work It On Out” – from SoulDrive; Cheryl Lescom “Soul Shakin’ Romance” from 1953; Braydon Kains (Eagles Cover) “Witchy Woman” Joshua David; (original song) – “Am I Being Naive”; Alexis Boudreau, Braydon Kains, Joshua David – “The Letter” (Joe Cocker cover); Matt Weidinger – “Stick It Out for More” from Got Mojo 2 – Grand River Blues.
For more info go to www.kitchenerbluesfestival.com
For more on “Under a Blue Moon” go to www.thebluemoon.ca
**To the Grand River Blues Camp students … Go get Em! To all the Blues Camp teachers – Bravissimo! Thanks for encouraging and enlightening these artists and bringing them one step closer to their dream of playing the stages of tomorrow. – Coral FM.**
Here is my Grand River Blues Camp podcast.