Live from Garden Bay: Pender Blues Fest
PENDER HARBOUR – I’m not one who regularly goes out for live music, not liking too-loud anything, crowds, bars… but my friend Mark Vance of the Pender Harbour Blues Festival Society gave me such an energy boost just talking about this year’s festival that I threw inhibition to the wind and the winding S-curves of Garden Bay and now I’m enjoying full-body shivers and the kind of transcendentalsim that only comes from music performed live.
The setting is unbelievable – the gorgeousness of some of coastal BC’s most beautiful scenery, often referred to as the Venice of British Columbia – the nooks and crannies of little coves and wharfs, summer and permanent homes sprinkled on the rocks and hillsides surrounding the bay, eagles overhead… and the drummer, late to start the show because he was out sailing the Strait in 30-knot winds (‘dipping the windows in’). Only in Pender!
Joani Bye joined Russell and the band for some fabulous funky blues, bawling it out in incandescent perfection, just the way blues ought to be. Russell’s guitar solos put me (and by the looks of it, most of the crowd) in an altered state. It’s tres casual here, people lined up around the wall, dancing impromptu in the tightly packed pub, and me sitting in the middle of it all, filming, shooting and writing my blog. A perfect Sunday on the Sunshine Coast!