Well, here I am, still in Montreal, still having a big heap of fun. Sadly, I’ll be leaving for my home in central Pennsylvania tomorrow morning. But before I go, I have one more evening of music ahead. On the agenda tonight is a Janis Joplin-influenced blues and R&B singer named Joss Stone. You’ve probably heard of Stone. She’s quite popular.
I’ll pen a few words about Stone tomorrow morning. For now, about last night …
I sauntered from my hotel room across the plaza to the Maisonneuve Theatre to see famed Chicago cabaret artist Patricia Barber. She performed on a stage so darkened that I could hardly see her or her three accompanying musicians. I’m sure she was there, though, because I clearly heard her dulcet tones ringing throughout the room. Barber’s a fine pianist and a formidable jazz singer. Her vibe is mellow and hip. She charmed the room. On the whole, she played a good show.
Afterward, my friend and I procured a bottle of wine and made for the blues stage, where The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band was holding forth. In fact, Peyton’s band isn’t so damn big; it includes himself on guitar and 3-stringed cigar box, his wife Breezy (pictured with Reverend Peyton) on washboard and his cousin Ben “Birddog” Bussell on drums. These three managed to savagely rock a large crowd that had gathered near the stage on yet another gorgeous evening north of the border. After the show, I met Breezy near the backstage area and gave her a copy of the Summer issue of JAZZIZ, which includes a sizeable feature on her husband’s not-so-Big Damn Band. (For you readers of the magazine who haven’t yet seen or read that article, I highly recommend doing so. It was written by JAZZIZ associate editor Bob Weinberg. Like all of Bob’s stories, this one is insightful, colorful, well-researched and entirely well-done. And the accompanying photos are cool, as well.)
After the show, I meandered slowly and happily through the many festival attendees milling about the plaza and finally ended up back in my room, where I finished off a bag of Doritos and settled into six blissful hours of sleep.
More tomorrow morning. For now, happy Sunday. —David Pulizzi