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With Red Devil Rockin’ Blues band, the Cellar, YK, NT

15 Oct Posted by in Shows | Comments

Way back in the late 1980’s and early 90’s, I met a musician who had just move into the ‘knife from Inuvik by the name of Jim Lawrance.  Older cat, about 15 years my senior, cool, respectful, hit it off good in sidewalk conversation so I called him up for a gig with a singer I was working with at the time.  He had no guitar, neither did I so I borrowed my brother’s Gibson Gospel for him.  We nailed the sound check, he wanted to hang around and play some more and as I was walking out of the hall, he cuts into a Willie Nelson tune that stopped me in my tracks.  Not only nailing Willie’s voice but the guitar parts as well.

Fast forward a few months, I got a call to bring something to the cultural showcase at that year’s Arctic Winter Games, 1988 I believe.  Gave Jim a call as I knew that he lead a band up in Inuvik and called Norman Glowach to play drums as well.  We hit the NACC stage with little or no rehearsal and had such a blast, we formed the Red Devil Rockin’ Blues Band (RDRBB).  RDRBB went on to play the taverns and saloons in town for the next decade or so with our irreverent punk blues sound, dipping into the Bo Diddley, Frank Zappa, Wilson Pickett and Otis Redding song books giving patrons permission to revel in an evening of drunken, hedonistic merriment strategically corresponding to the GNWT bi-monthly paydays.

Through those years, I was migrating back and forth between BC and NT and in my stead, the inimitable Ted Mildenberger filled in the bottom end to keep the RDRBB machine moving.

RDRBB, Ted, Norman and Jim

RDRBB, Ted, Norman and Jim (Bill Braden photo)

Jim was a teacher at the local high school through those years and retired around 2000 or so and moved to NB.  In the years since, he returns to YK to visit family and when he is in town, we wrangle a gig or two to get the band back together for one more kick at the can.  This past October, we had another such opportunity so booked ourselves into the Cellar for a Friday night.

RDRBB Cellar poster

RDRBB Cellar poster

With one rehearsal, if one could call it that, most of the time taken by the local reporter interviewing us for the newspaper.  It was an interesting experience as said reporter was younger than the years we had been playing, younger than most of the gear we were playing through so most if not all of our musical references were lost to one so young in the ears. The resulting newspaper article was superb and just what we needed to fill the house that night.

The trio launched into “Spoonful” for the first tune of the night and there was no doubt we were all bringing our “A” game and in the pocket from the first downbeat.  The rest of the night was pure musical bliss and joy, speaking for myownself.  It is a rare opportunity when I am let off my leash so to speak, as a Bassist, to play and interpret as I wish in an ensemble and I indeed relish each moment.

Here’s some shots from that evening and the shot of RDRBB with Ted, courtesy of my Bro, Bill Braden.

RDRBB (Bill Braden Photo)


RDRBB (Bill Braden photo)dscf2014


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