Friday, October 12, 2012

On the road with Doc

Well now, I caught that train out of Halifax on Monday and chugged my way through the Merry-Times, awoke to a Quebec sunrise early next morning, then through Montreal and to Toronto to get aboard the "Canadian" - VIA's Transcontinental, 1955 built, stainless steel train to the west. To hell with those nasty jets I gotta take so often....the train is the way to travel.....
 Arrived in Winnipeg early Thursday morning and checked into my luxurious digs at the Carlton Hotel and awaited the arrival of Doc Maclean to begin our tour to the west coast and back to Winnipeg. Next day, sure enough, Doc and the big Lincoln were outside.  I loaded up and we were off to Brandon, after quick stops to rent gear and coffee up.
   Doc and I have known each other for 40 years, having been introducted by our mutual friend, Colin Linden. In fact, Colin produced my first record, and has either recorded/mixed or played on just about every record I have made over the last 30 years and he recorded Doc's most recent disc as well. Doc and Colin go back a long ways, to when they were teenagers, and Doc has been entertaining me with stories of their trips down south to meet their bluesical heroes. Although Doc and I have  been on the blues highway for all those years, we had never before played together, let alone toured together, so when Doc proposed this tour a couple years ago over breakfast in Fredericton, I was eager to go.
 Although we both saw snow in northern Ontario, the prairies are sunny and warm this second week of October. I am writing from the Capone's Hideaway Motel in Moosejaw, and it is 16 degrees and mild. Doc is out for a jog and I am in for a blog - HA!
  We have two gigs behind us, already finding a few nice grooves. Doc and I are essentially solo performers, have been for many long years....I find myself often just listening and watching Doc play, on account of there is nothing more really needed musically, but when I hear a part, I will slide it on in and see how it feels. Doc, being a multi-instrumentalist (lotta folks don't know he served 3 years for multi-instumentalism down in Angola) can always find a part on harmonica or washboard when I play a tune.

   Last night in Moosejaw we had a full house that was diggin' the music, and a happy restaurant owner. We have a night off this evening, and will prob'ly head down to their open mike night to check it out.

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