17th Annual Winterfolk Blues and Roots Festival, took place in Toronto's east end from February 22 to 24, 2019. Featuring the best of urban, blues, rock, jazz, country, folk and roots music, it’s an annual all-ages, mid-winter, weatherproof event that emulates a multi-stage rural summer festival around the corners of Danforth Ave. and Broadview. More than 100 artists performed at three venues and five stages, all booked by Beverly Kreller at SPEAK Music..
Here are some high spots.
photos by Paul & Kim Corby
The Barrel Boys had just the right remedy for the Saturday- night swarm of musos ducking the weather, raising up a hearty hootenany at the Black Swan.
Jon Brooks dug deep, channelling the drum's intensity from his acoustic guitar to frame songs of passion and protest.
Howard Gladstone and Lynn Harrison kept close to Dora Keogh's kitchen vibe at The Bridge session, featuring life stories rendered in song.
HOTCHA's Howard Druckman, was booking it all weekend, hopping and hauling from showcases to workshops.
Maggie & Mr. Rogers offered pristine instrumentation and vintage songcraft at the Mambo Lounge.
The always congenial Noah Zacharin brought his warmth and an exquisite fingerstyle guitar repertoire to subdue a widespread winter ennui.
Captivating Australian folk fugitive STAV frolicked through a set of her uniquely melodic song constructions, despite being beset with Ontario-induced coughs and sneezes.
Ornate compositions and masterful performances by Borealis Records' duo of John Williams and Emilyn Stam held the upstairs crowd in a melodic musical hug.
Glen Hornblast & his Queen Street Cowboys rode into the Black Swan saloon on Friday night with guitars and fiddles a-blazin'.
Howard Gladstone and his wizardly sidekick, Tony Quarrington, took a few new tunes out for a spin at the Dora Keogh.
David Storey broke his new album, Made In Canada, wide open over the weekend.
Madagascarana (thanks Sue Peters) played textured waves of rhythm across the Black Swan fans with the complex emanations of the Donne Roberts Band.
Guelph's Doris Folkens struck an intimate note with her simple conjuring of historical and personal life lessons.
Cassie and Maggie livened up the fest with their galeforce fiddling and lustrous guitar work, and charmed the hearts of everyone with their Gaelic ballads.
Chloe Watkinson lit up the room she hit the stage with her powerfully penetrating songs and exquisite vocal artistry.