The Coldest Night of the Year: Tom Wilson at the Finlandia

Review by Hugh Briggs, Photos by Richard Gale

Tom Wilson took the stage at the Finlandia Hall as the fourth concert of the 2014/ 2015 season of the Sleeping Giant Folk Music Society or as Wilson renamed us for this night only the “Friendly” Giant Folk Music Society. Many recalled just a year ago when Wilson was last in Thunder Bay as one third of Canadian roots rockers Blackie and the Rodeo Kings. Once again, expectations were not only met, but exceeded.

The legacy of Willie P. Bennett lives on in the soul of Tom Wilson. A shy 15 year old kid from Hamilton, he first met Bennett, Stan Rogers and Brent Titcomb at the Festival of Friends. Wilson has not looked back. From being a member of Junkhouse to Blackie to Lee Harvey Osmond, he has continued to make music and perform live.

Wilson’s deep powerful voice and guitar playing filled the hall with a sound that can only be described as full, intense and melodic. A long time supporter of live music in Thunder Bay described the evening as “one of my best evenings in the hall.” Over two sets, his music enthralled the audience and his stories had everyone laughing. Somehow that cold February night was a little warmer after listening to Tom Wilson.

Hugh Briggs is a board member of the Sleeping Giant Folk Music Society. Don’t miss their next concert, featuring The Bros. Landreth on March 28.
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