Organizers of the Thunder Bay Blues Festival have announced the full line-up for the 2015 Festival, and festival goers can prepare for one of the most exciting musical offerings to date. “We really tried to continue with the direction we’ve taken for the last couple of years with the Festival,” said Community Auditorium General Manager, Bob Halvorsen. “Anyone who enjoys live music performed in a great open-air festival atmosphere will find something in this year’s line-up that they will really enjoy.”
Notable headliners include multiple CCMA, Juno Award winner and Platinum recording artist Johnny Reid on Friday, July 3. There are many ways to describe Reid’s massive star power, but perhaps The New York Post puts it best… “Take a pinch of Bruce Springsteen, a dash of Bob Seger and enough Rod Stewart to give the mix vocal gravel, and you start to get the vibe of this Scottish-born singer/songwriter.” Reid is no stranger to Thunder Bay, and has sold out the Community Auditorium every time that he has performed there.
Saturday, July 4, features the return of Legendary Blues Rockers, The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band. Shepherd is widely acclaimed as one of the world’s top guitarists. He performed at the 2008 Festival, and was an instant fan favourite with organizers receiving many requests to bring him back for an encore performance. Shepherd has been nominated for five Grammy Awards, and has received two Billboard Music Awards, two Blues Music Awards and two Orville H. Gibson Awards. Since performing last in Thunder Bay, The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band has released two albums including How I Go in 2011, and Goin Home in 2014.
Sunday, July 5, features a true living legend of Rock and Rock/Blues music with Paul Rogers – lead vocalist for such superstar bands as Bad Company, Free and The Firm which saw him team up with Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin. With a slew of hits from Bad Company including “Bad Company,” “Feel Like Makin’ Love,” “Shooting Star,” “Can’t Get Enough,” “Ready for Love,” “Rock and Roll Fantasy,” as well as “All Right Now” with Free and Radioactive with The Firm, the evening will be jam packed with some of the biggest rock hits ever produced! And for those who just can’t get enough blues, Rodgers’ latest album, The Royal Sessions, is full of blues and soul covers. We are really pleased to be able to have an act of this
calibre headline on Sunday,” said Trevor Hurtig – Community Auditorium Manager of Marketing & Development. “It is going to be an evening of sensational rock and blues to close out this year’s festival.”
There is also incredible talent to be found deep within line-up that is sure to have strong appeal with festival goers. Friday’s line-up is rounded out with Alan Frew from Glass Tiger, and The Paul Deslauriers Band from Montreal. Saturday also features Alan Doyle—the charismatic front man of Great Big Sea, who is touring in support of his second solo album So Let’s Go. Doyle brings a mix of the celtic/rock sound that people love from him, along with a high-energy rock/roots sound that is brought to life by his incredible band that also features fiddle sensation Kendel Carson.
Saturday’s line-up is rounded out with The Walkervilles, who fans may remember as being an incredible opener for The Tedeschi Trucks Band
when they last performed at the Auditorium, along with Kelly Richey, Brother Yusef, 12-year-old Brandon Niederaurer, and perennial favourites The Groove Merchants.
Leading up to Paul Rodgers’ set on Sunday, July 5, are Doyle Bramhall II, who is best known as Eric Clapton’s guitarist and backup vocalist, along with Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real. Lukas is an amazing blues rocker who is also Willie Nelson’s son. Saturday also features The Sheepdogs, The Brothers Landreth, Jordan John, The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer, and The Krazy Kenny Project.
“We are very pleased with the talent that we have been able to book this year, and we are really looking forward to the incredible performances that each of these acts will deliver,” says Halvorsen. The local acts to perform at this year’s Festival include The Boardroom Gypsies on Friday, and Loose Cannon Saturday. “If the weather cooperates, we hope to have a couple of other surprise guests on the line-up this year,” says Halvorsen.
Weekend Passes and Single Tickets go on-sale on Friday March 13, at 11:30 am, and are available online at www.tbca.com, by phone or in-person only at the Community Auditorium Box Office ph: 807-684-4444. Ticket prices remain unchanged for this year’s Festival.
Complete biographies and photos of the artists will be posted to the Festival’s website at www.tbayblues.ca, in the next week.