Tuesday November 3 saw the release of Bob Reid's 'Highway of Heroes'. The moving tribute to Canada's fallen soldiers and those who salute them as they make their final journey home was produced by Blair Packham and features a stunning guitar solo by Rik Emmett.
"Bob's song is beautiful," says Blair, "touchingly sung, confidently performed and well-written."
'Highway of Heroes' created quite a stir amongst Newstalk 1010 listeners who first heard it as a demo a year ago. Bob was convinced to go on the Bill Carroll Morning Show and talk about the song, and the listener reaction was overwhelming. The responses came not only via emotional phone calls, but also heartfelt e-mails and many requests for Bob to perform the song at schools and veterans' Remembrance Day gatherings. The unexpected interest led Bob to want to record a full-band version, and he called on Blair--they are co-hosts with Newstalk 1010's 'Rock Talk'--to book a studio and musicians and cut the track. Calling his new friends at Rouge Valley Studios and his old friends Paul DeLong (drums), Mike Pellarin (bass), and Michael Zweig (guitar), and with Bob playing piano, the group made the song the best it could be.
"I knew it had to be great--this song, unlike most other things I work on, had already been heard and loved by a radio audience, and I really didn't want to ruin their experience of it by dressing it up too much." Nonetheless, he wanted to make room for another old friend: legendary guitarist Rik Emmett, who had agreed to play a solo. "And what a solo!" exclaims Blair, going on to say "it makes the song absolutely soar!"
With the addition of Curtis Reid, Bob's brother, playing the military snare part that is such an integral part of 'Highway of Heroes', as well as some other rhythm guitars, lap steel and vocals by Blair, the song was complete.
The cover of the CD is a beautiful photograph (above) of fallen soldiers on their final ride down Ontario's Macdonald-Cartier Freeway ("the 401") and the citizens lined up on an overpass in salute. 'Highway of Heroes' is available at all HMV Canada stores, and online at CDBaby.com. A portion of all sales goes to support Wounded Warriors, an organization that helps Canadian Forces personnel hurt in the line of duty and their families. More information can be found at Bob Reid's site, highwayofheroessong.com
For a look at a preliminary music video, check YouTube
NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE: NEW VENUE / JANUARY 23
Returning for his sixth show in Niagara-On-The-Lake, January 23 will see Blair performing once again with the wonderful Niagara Rhythm Section, featuring Steve Goldberger, Herb Nelson, Dave Norris, Penner McKay and Steve Grisbrook. The band is the same, the venue has changed: after six years at The Anchorage, down by the water, the Niagara Rhythm Section has moved to Corks, 19 Queen Street (on the main drag). "Winging it" much of the time, playing originals of Blair's and some of Blair's old favourites, it's one of the rare times Blair gets to play with a full (and excellent) band. Good food, good beer, good times--and great music: this is what Saturday January 23rd in Niagara-On-The-Lake offers!
SONGSTUDIO '10 DATES ANNOUNCED
Blair, Bill McKetrick, Allister Bradley and Rik Emmett have decided upon dates for next summer's SongStudio workshop: July 17 - 23.
No word on other faculty or guests yet, but if the previous five years are any indication, the workshop should be fun and fulfilling for all. More details: www.songstudio.ca
NOT-SO-SECRET RETURN OF "THE JITTERS", THE RIVOLI, TORONTO, November 28, 2009
NOT-SO-SECRET JITTERS GIG, THE PILOT, TORONTO, December 3rd, 2009
BLUEBIRD NORTH TORONTO, Royal Conservatory, December 12, 2009
C'EST WHAT, TORONTO, 67 Front Street East, January 10, 2010
NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, Corks, January 23rd, 2010
* * *
What an amazing bunch of talented, kind, supportive (and good-looking!) people: the faculty and participants of SongStudio '09.
SONGSTUDIO '09 A SMASHING SUCCESS
July 18 - 24, 2009 saw the debut of SongStudio, a week-long workshop all about songwriting, headed by Rik Emmett and Blair Packham and ably assisted (and often led) by Bill McKetrick and Allister Bradley.
Joining Rik, Blair and Bill on the workshop faculty was Fergus Hambleton, veteran singer/songwriter and Juno Award-winning bandleader (Sattalites) as well as indie wunderkind Ember Swift. And bringing a decidedly contemporary approach was energetic, enthusiastic songwriter/producer/manager (Sum41) Greig Nori. A late addition to the faculty was the lovely, talented, charming and funny Sara Kamin, who rocked the students' world with her "Psychology of Performance" workshop.
SongStudio guests included Shirley Eikhard ("Something to Talk About" for Bonnie Raitt, multiple-Juno winner Ron Sexsmith, ex-Barenaked Lady Steven Page, and indie sensation Lindy.
Modelled on the popular Humber Summer Songwriting Workshop, SongStudio was held on the campus of Ryerson University, in downtown Toronto, and it appealed to songwriters of all levels.
Each day featured intimate mini-concerts with Q&A sessions as well as small-group workshops, with plenty of one-on-one time with faculty and guests. Evenings included open mike sessions at various venues around the downtown area, including legendary clubs C'est What, the Cadillac Lounge and the Rivoli. And the Thursday evening of that week featured a Student Showcase, with crack backup band, at Toronto's famed Hugh's Room.
'ROCK TALK' NOW HEARD ON CKTB IN ST. CATHARINES
Blair continues to co-host, with Bob Reid, the magazine-style chat-and-live-performance show called Rock Talk, heard Sunday nights from 6 -7 on Toronto's Newstalk 1010 . But the show was recently added to the lineup at St. Catharines' CKTB 610, and is heard Saturday nights from 9 - 10 PM.
2009 STARTS WITH A NEW SONG
'I am a very slow songwriter. I write fragments of ideas down in a notebook, I look at it a few weeks later, change a word, add a line, write a melody for the verse, then I forget about it for a while. Or rather, it percolates in my imagination. Then, maybe six months later, sometimes years later, I re-visit the thing, decide I don't like it and scrap it! I'd like to say that my standards are just so unattainably high that it's difficult to actually finish a song, but there's more to it than that: I am sometimes afraid of my own creative process. My goal for 2009 is to figure this mystery out, and by doing so, maybe finish more songs." So says Blair Packham, who started 2009 early, finishing a song called "Proof", which muses on the existence of God (note to Blair: maybe try writing about less ambitious subject matter? A little moon/June, boy/girl stuff, huh?) Blair is very proud of the song, which he performs in a YouTube video here:
R.E.M. RELEASE "LIVE AT LARRY'S HIDEAWAY" ENGINEERED BY BLAIR PACKHAM
In July 1983, Blair was a recording engineer, working for Comfort Sound, Toronto's hardest-working mobile studio. Regularly recording live concerts for radio stations Q107, CHUM-FM, and CFNY, the Comfort truck was booked to record the Toronto debut of Athens, GA's R.E.M. Sitting in the truck with Blair was the band's then-manager, Jefferson Holt. The resulting recording was broadcast only a couple of times, and then the master tape made its way to the band. In the meantime, the recording made the rounds as a very popular bootleg among fans. This year, the 25th anniversary of R.E.M.'s full-length breakthrough album, the band decided to officially release "Live At Larry's Hideaway" as a bonus disc along with a re-mastered and re-packaged Murmur, containing the beloved "Radio Free Europe" Though Blair --and the studio--remain uncredited, there is no doubt that it is his recording. "There was only one truck there at that show, I soundchecked the guys, and their manager sat with me for the whole 75-minute set. Plus, I recognize the sound of that reverb unit!" says Blair, delighted that the recording will reach a wider audience. Blair continued to work for Comfort Sound for another two-and-a-half years, during which time he also recorded Stevie Ray Vaughan, Bryan Adams, Psychedelic Furs, Payolas, Bo Diddley, Martin Short, Teenage Head, Burton Cummings and many, many others.
RADIOSTAR NEW SONGWRITERS WORKSHOPS
At seminars sponsored by Canadian Music Week, the Songwriters Association of Canada, and Astral Media, Blair visited seven Canadian cities in September and October 2008 to talk about "What Is In A Song?". To audiences across the country, Blair talked about writing strong lyrics, better melodies, and structuring your songs in a way that will hold the listener's attention longer. "It's all about keeping the listener engaged, so they 'get' your message. From the most commercial pop to the most personal and intimate, singing a song is an act of communication, meant to convey an emotion or a thought or both. And there are ways to help the listener receive that communication, ways that often--not always--'work'." The tour visited Regina, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Toronto, St. John's, Halifax and St. John with Blair along for the ride, as well as Vancouver, Victoria, Edmonton, Calgary, Ottawa and Montreal, with other writers as guests. Joining Blair on the trip were tour organizer and singer/songwriter Mary Simon, singer/songwriter Tomi Swick, music publisher and new media guru Tony Tobias, and EMI Music Publishing's Mike Fox. Audiences ranged in size from 35 to 150, and they seemed to get a lot out of the program. "Songs rely a lot on tension and release, the establishing of a pattern, then letting that pattern go, to hold a listener's attention...I talked about that and other aspects of songwriting that got a great response. And I had fun on the road!"
HUMBER SONGWRITING WORKSHOP ENJOYS VISIT FROM BRUCE COCKBURN
Veteran Songwriter is Awarded The 2008 Euterpe Award
Bruce Cockburn receives the 2008 Euterpe Award from Blair Packham (left), Rik Emmett (2nd from right) andJoe Kertes (right), Friday July 25, 2008
The fourth annual Humber Summer Songwriting Workshop (July 19 - 25) proved to be a full and resounding success, with its myriad guests and new faculty. A visit from legendary songwriter and performer Bruce Cockburn capped off what was an amazing week of writing, collaborating, performing and networking. (Indeed, "networking" doesn't really describe what went on: "making lifetime friendships" is more like it!)
This year's faculty consisted of Shari Ulrich, Emm Gryner, Terence Gowan, James Linderman, Fergus Hambleton, Ember Swift, and Christopher Ward, along with workshop co-ordinators and founders Rik Emmett and Blair Packham. Each afternoon, the faculty would listen to student songs, commenting where appropriate, offering constructive suggestions and support, all in the name of writing better songs. In the mornings, most faculty members offered classes on specific subjects near and dear to them. Also in the mornings were guest panelists. For example, SOCAN's Dan Kershaw, also a great writer and player, told us about copyright and performing rights and other industry-related stuff, while Eddie Schwartz ("Hit Me With Your Best Shot" by Pat Benatar) told us about the Songwriters Association of Canada's proposal to "monetize" peer-to-peer file sharing so that songwriters would be compensated for the use of their music. Paul Sanderson, entertainment lawyer, addressed our students' legal concerns, while Mike Northcott of Nelvana described how he goes about selecting and using music in Nelvana's animated television shows. DALA, Wendell Ferguson, Greg Wyard, and Arlene Bishop performed and told us about their songwriting process.
Thursday evening saw the annual student showcase at Toronto's famed Hugh's Room. Rik Emmett graced us with the Triumph barn-burner "Lay It On The Line", while Terence Gowan killed us with his over-the-top Christmas song
. Fergus Hambleton trotted out "Ice On The Road", a beautiful song he wrote many years ago with lots of life left in it. Then, it was the students' turn, and they were wonderful. Heartbreaking, funny, energetic, and (gasp!) professional, they each turned in great performances, many of songs they had written during the workshop week.
Finally, at the end -of-week gala luncheon, the workshop was visited by Bruce Cockburn, who had consented to an intimate interview and Q&A session for our students. We were thrilled to have Bruce join us, and were pleased to present him with the 2008 Euterpe Award for Excellence and Achievement in Songwriting (previous Euterpe winners included Barenaked Ladies' Ed Robertson, and Andy Kim, writer of "Rock Me Gently" and Sugar, Sugar").
NEW CO-HOST OF NEWSTALK 1010 CFRB'S
Attempting to fill the big pants, er, shoes of departing co-host Greg Godovitz, Blair Packham is joining Bob Reid as hosts of CFRB's "Rock Talk", heard Sunday nights at 6 PM. Featuring interviews with the famous and up-and-coming, "Rock Talk" is a magazine-style show with lots of information, live music and lots of laughs. Past guests have included everyone from Alice Cooper, Ray Davies, Craig Northey (The New Odds), Revival Dear, and Rik Emmett to Murray McLauchlan and Alan Frew. Listen 6 to 7 PM, Sunday nights, CFRB in Toronto, or listen on the Web at CFRB's RockTalk.
JITTERS VIDEOS ON 'YOUTUBE'
Added in April 2008: The Bridge Is Burning (1990), featuring Blair, Danny Levy, Matthew Greenberg and Peter Nunn. This song was co-written with and produced by Jules Shear. The video was directed by Curtis Wehrfritz, and was a MuchMusic staple in Canada back in the, er, day (Ed. note: "I hate that expression").
As of early January '08 Blair has posted many Jitters videos on YouTube, including the independent "Take Me As I Am" from 1984. Also posted: a rarely-seen in-house promotional film used to introduce The Jitters to Capitol Records Canada in 1987. Other clips include very lo-fi footage from the downstairs El Mocambo (lots of unreleased Jitters songs) and TV appearances in Canada and the UK.
SPECIAL GUEST OF "THE TWO BOBS"
Friday May 23, Blair appeared in a solo opening set at the Pilot Tavern's Stealth Lounge. Upstairs at the venerable drinking hole, Blair warmed up a crowd expecting to hear the music of Bob Marley and Bob Dylan, as performed by Jason Wilson and Fergus Hambleton. He did this by performing the songs of Blair Packham as interpreted by Blair Packham.
Blair was special guest of
ex-Northern Pike Jay Semko
On Saturday May 17 Blair opened the show for ex-Northern Pike Jay Semko at Toronto's Rivoli. It was great to see so many familiar faces in the audience, and to hear Jay's great new songs. Speaking of new songs, Blair debuted his newest, "Slippery Slope".
Blair went to Chicago
Blair went to Chicago in mid-April 2008, the great Midwestern city that is the birthplace of the skyscraper, the latter-day home of Muddy Waters, the home of John Prine, Saul Bellow, Studs Terkel, Emma Goldman, the Wobblies, and to much American history (both great and shameful). Blair played an impromptu set at the Bird's Nest in Lincoln Park on Friday April 18, including NV, the song he and Arlene Bishop wrote together in 1997. Saturday April 19
at The Spot, as part of International Pop Overthrow 2008, Blair played another acoustic set, dedicating his performance to the late Steve Goodman, an early hero and Chicagoan.
Vancouver: Three Shows in February '08
Blair went to British Columbia for three acoustic shows in February. The first was as part of Just Singin' Round, ther monthly singer/songwriter event held on behalf of a different charity every time. At the Vancouver Rowing Club in Stanley Park, the gig also featured the wonderful Coco Love Alcorn and her sultry voice, plus Christie Grace with Daryl Jahnke, Melanie Dekker, Mark James Fortin, and Yvonne McSkimming. The music was wonderful, and so was the food. And the audience was a DREAM--attentive, full of humour and warmth.
Two days later, Blair appeared at The Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre, playing another Bluebird North, along with the aforementioned Coco Love Alcorn, the-also-wonderful Craig Northey, Kelly Brock, Craig Zurba and Shari Ulrich. Again, a great audience, and some amazing music.
Tuesday January 15, 2008 saw the fourth installment of Blair's songwriter-series-with-a-twist, WISH I'D WRITTEN THAT! at Hugh's Room, in Toronto's west end.
Guests were Alan Frew (Glass Tiger), Fergus Hambleton (Sattalites), Lee Whalen, and the indescribable-but-amazing Bob Snider.
"Wish I'd Written That!" is all about covers. Great songwriters are asked to perform songs that rocked their world, made them laugh, made them cry, made them think, or maybe even made them say "I wish I'D written that!"
Past guests have included Greg Godovitz, Liam Titcomb, Gregg Lawless, Lynn Miles. Mia Sheard, Allister Bradley, Jim Creegan (Barenaked Ladies), Eric Schenkman (Spin Doctors), Wendell Ferguson, and Dean McTaggart ("Dark Horse", "Birmingham" for Amanda Marshall).
Blair enjoyed his short set at Graffiti's in Toronto's Kensington Market as part of Songwriters Unite! on Friday December 7, as well as the opening set he did for Greg Wyard at Toronto's venerable Cameron House, December 10.
* * *
At The Rivoli in Toronto on November 17, Blair appeared with a band to play his particular brand of "unpopular pop". As part of the International Pop Overthrow festival, and presented by Bullseye Records, it was the rocking-est late-afternoon show ever been gave, featuring former Dead Boy David Quinton on drums and Terence Gowan on bass.
"It was great to see so many familiar faces in the audience," said Blair, mopping his brow. "I should play in the late afternoon more often." The set featured songs from both Blair Packham discs, plus an old Jitters song that hadn't been performed since about 1985, "Stick It In (And Give It A Twist)". Loud, irreverent, and (hopeully) charming, Blair, Terence and David intend to do it again soon.
* * *
On October 24th, Blair hosted the Justice For Children and Youth benefit for Street Youth Legal Services at Hugh's Room. Along with musical friends Mia Sheard,Simon Law, Ryan Granville-Martin, John Teshima, and Jen Schaffer, Blair joined Lucian Thomas and the re-formed (not reformed, they're still bad boys) Lowest of the Low. Thanks to all the friends and fans who came out.
* * *
As of June 2007, Blair has joined The League of Rock, as a corporate songwriter coach. Along with Erica Ehm, and Michael Zweig, Blair coaches corporate participants in songwriting. The topics are decidedly NON-corporate, however, as the "students" tackle subjects like drinking and drunkenness, debauchery, transvestitism, drinking and more drinking. Hi-brow? No. Fun? Yes.
When he wasn't writing songs and playing gigs , Blair was busy with all manner of other musical projects. Scoring 26 episodes of Global Television's "The Jane Show" was perhaps chief among them. From December of 2005 until May of 2007, Blair worked hard helping to bring out even more humour from the wonderfully-conceived and -written shows. "What a great experience," says Blair. "I can't believe the fun we had putting the musical touches on that show. The producers and the show's creators (Teresa Pavlinek and Ralph Chapman) were truly wonderful to work with. They made me feel part of the creative team, not just a necessary evil or an after tthought like so many film and TV people treat the composer." Regrettably, Global decided to cancel production on "Jane" in June of 2007.
* * *
In addition to his TV and film work (at Christmas 2005, Blair also scored a feature documentary called "Move Your World" about youth AIDS in Africa) Blair continued his work as Program Coordinator of the Humber Songwriting Summer Workshop. Year Three under his belt, Blair was responsible for booking all of the workshop guests, who included Jules Shear, Murray McLauchlan, Tom Wilson, Lynn Miles, David Steinberg, Christopher Ward, Mia Sheard and Ember Swift.
* * *
The Bluebird North songwriter series that Blair produced in Toronto for the last ten years has finally come to an end. "When we started, songwriter circles were pretty rare in Toronto. There were a few, like Jason Collett's Radio Mondays, and a handful of others, but the Bluebird really led the way, eventually becoming a touring show that crossed the country six times. Over the years, guests included Ron Sexsmith, Jane Siberry, Joel Plaskett, Haydain Neale, Tom Wilson, Stephen Fearing, Choclair, Danny Michel, Sarah Slean, Damhnait Doyle, Kardinal Offishall, Dala, Peter Elkas, Charlie Major, Russell DeCarle, and many, many others. It is sad to see it go, but the decision was mutual between the Songwriters Association of Canada (the show's sponsor) and Blair, due mainly to heavy competition from other varied events. "There are now so many multi-act shows in Toronto and other centres, from Michael Wrycraft's "Girls Do Boys/Boys Do Girls" series, to my own "Wish I'd Written That!" show."
Blair still has copies of Could've Been King
(available here). for sale, and of course it's also available at iTunes and via CDBaby.com. Recorded in a whirlwind three days at the
end of November 2003, Blair joined Craig Northey, Pat Steward and Doug Elliott, all
late of Canada's gone-but-not-forgotten Odds ("Someone Who's
Cool"), and Simon Kendall (Doug & The Slugs) at Baker Street Studio in North Vancouver. Colin Nairne engineered the eleven songs with assistance by Mike
Rogerson. Other guests included Kevin
Fox (cello), Michael Zweig (harmony vocals), Perry White (baritone and tenor sax)
and Danny Michel (lead guitar and Hendrix-like mumblings). Never one to shy from a
bit of "fairy dust" production, Blair and Jeremy Darby even added a choir to the
title track, with the help of Tamara Williamson, Mia Sheard, Imali Perera, Monique
Barry, Lori Cullen and Arlene Bishop. For a look at some session photos, click here.
Could've Been King features songs about betrayal, failure, death and destruction,
going insane, and the general unfairness of life. And those are the happy songs.
January 31, 2004 saw Blair once again launching another national Bluebird North
tour. The Bluebird North is a regularly-held songwriters show that is well-established
in Toronto and Vancouver, but it has only visited other cities in Canada a few times.
Sitting in a row, each writer takes turns telling stories and singing songs, in an
evening that's spontaneous and inspiring. Taking place over three weeks, the 2004 tour
visited fourteen cities: Halifax, Montreal, Wakefield, Ottawa, Kingston, Guelph,
Toronto, Winnipeg, Regina, Saskatoon, Spruce Grove, Calgary, Banff and North Vancouver.
The artists on the road in 2004 included Stephen Fearing, Andy Stochansky, Haydain Neale
(jacksoul), Tom Wilson (Blackie & the Rodeo Kings), Lennie Gallant, Russell deCarle
(Prairie Oyster), Sue Foley, Lynn Miles, Alana Levandoski, Joel Kroeker, and Tal Bachman ("She's So High"), as well as hosts Blair Packham and Shari Ulrich. For a look at some
tour photos, click here. In the past, the tour has featured the likes of Sarah Slean,
Jian Ghomeshi, John Mann (Spirit of the West), Neil Osborne (54:40), Danny Michel,
Arlene Bishop, Roy Forbes, Snow, Damhnait Doyle and Choclair.
The spring and summer of 2003 were spent making music: Blair played in many places
in Canada, solo or with his trio.
Owen Sound, Ontario, a town that is always welcoming, saw two visits by Blair &
partner Arlene Bishop, one to the Summerfolk Festival in August, and the other to
the launch of Winterfolk '03.
Another music festival that hosted Blair and Arlene in the summer of 2003 was
Folk On the Rocks, in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. The trip up north was
long and arduous: flying first to Ottawa, the pair then transferred planes and
headed to Iqaluit on Baffin Island, near the Arctic Circle. After a stop at Rankin
Inlet, more than twelve hours later, Blair and Arlene landed in Yellowknife, where
the sun set just after midnight and rose again at about 3 in the morning. Talk about
disorienting! The other acts featured at Folk on the Rocks were the excellent
Hawksley Workman and band, bluesy Sue Foley and her band, and the Cajun spicyness
of Swamparella. Closing the festival was UK act Horace X; their Day-Glo costumes
and funky hyper-kinetic rhythms were anything but traditional folk music! The
audience, and Arlene in particular, loved it. There was much dancing in the midnight
sun, along with swatting of the bird-sized mosquitoes.
In addition to traveling, Blair appeared a few times at hometown pub fave C'est
What, usually with Terence Gowan and Sean Kilbride in tow. Drunkenness often
ensued, and a good time was had by whomever happened by.
Blair scored two feature films, with
Terence Gowan leading the way. The first, in 2002, is a funny crime caper called TRIGGERMEN which stars Neil Morrissey, Adrian Dunbar, Donnie Wahlberg and Michael
Rappaport. The co-written score features a slinky, funky guitar-and-Wurlitzer-piano
combo that perfectly suits the action onscreen. Morrissey and Dunbar are particularly
engaging in TRIGGERMEN, both with a sort of dowdy screen presence that adds to the
comedy. Morrissey's work is well-known without Neil actually becoming famous, by
the way: he's the voice of international kids show sensation "Bob the Builder."
(Speaking of international kids sensations, in 2002, Arlene and Blair co-wrote the
theme to BEYBLADE, a show about battling tops that is aired around the world)
The next film Blair scored with Terence was HOLLYWOOD NORTH--which was in limited
release in selected cinemas across Canada and featured at the Toronto International Film Festival. The film, a story of how a Canadian
tax-shelter movie was made and the disasters that ensue, stars Academy Award™winner Alan Bates, Matthew Modine, and Jennifer Tilly. It was directed by Peter
O'Brian, who is probably best known for his production work on such seminal
Canuck films as MY AMERICAN COUSIN and THE GREY FOX.
On September 15, 2001 Blair played an opening set for Martina Sorbara at Toronto's
Rivoli. Telling the audience that Arlene was at home in labour (which was sort of
true--by September 15, the contractions had begun!), Blair called her on his cell
phone from the stage. The audience of a hundred or so people said "Hi, Arlene!"
and "Congratulations!" (Baby Owen Jupiter was born September 25, 2001 at about 8:20 PM).
CONTACT BLAIR: email@example.com or mail to BLARE! MUSIC 260 Adelaide Street East, #131,Toronto ON M5A 1N1
click here to view blair's tour photos
take a look at the session photos
buy blair packham cd's
HOW TO CONTACT:
BLARE! MUSIC 260 Adelaide St E #131, Toronto ON M5A 1N1
Not so recent, perhaps: (L to R) Benmont Tench of Tom Petty the Heartbreakers, Colin Linden of Blackie & the Rodeo Kings, and Blair Packham and Glenn Martin of The Jitters (1991, Grossman's Tavern, Toronto)
Bob Reid and Blair Packham perform "Highway of Heroes" live on the final broadcast of CFRB's Toronto At Noon, at the Keg Mansion (legendarily known to oldtime Torontonians as Julie's Mansion), October 1st, 2009.
Okay, okay, maybe this isn't so recent...it's a picture of Jitters guitarist Danny Levy from 1983, recently exhumed from the basement.
This picture was sent to me recently by David Quinton-Steinberg..It's a photo of The Jitters circa 1984 as published in Toronto's NOW Magazine.
Charlie and Craig Reid of The Proclaimers visit Blair at Rock Talk on Newstalk 1010 CFRB
Blair appeared in June with the Bebop Cowboys (shown here with Drew Jareka and Steve Briggs--who was in the process of being beamed up to an alien spaceship) at Bebopalooza, an event to support Riverdale Share.
On April 20th, Blair celebrated his 50th birthday at Toronto's Hugh's Room with a reunion of The Jitters (BIG thanks to Bill Mcketrick for organizing everything!)
Blair and Matthew Greenberg
Danny Levy and David Steinberg
Special guest Ember Swift
Special guest Kurt Swinghammer
* * *
Meanwhile, over at Rock Talk...
Blair with Tryg and Brian from Fall From Grace
Blair, Emma-Lee and Bob Reid
Blair and Bob Reid give a shout-out to Satan at the CFRB 'Rock Talk' studios with Anvil's Lips and Robb Reiner
Legendary engineer/producer Ken Scott (The Beatles, Bowie, Supertramp...) chats with Blair in Toronto recently (Feb.'09)
Blair at Winterfolk '09, Toronto, February 14. (photo: Jeff Stewart)
Blair and co-host Bob Reid say hello to Rock Talk guest Serena Ryder, November '08.
(photo: Trevor Weeks)
Appearing at the annual benefit for Street Youth Legal Services at Hugh's Room (Toronto, October 30), Blair shows off the sweater his grandmother knitted for him. (Nana was a Goth).
(photo: Trevor Weeks)
Blair rocks out at the SYLS benefit (playing Jim Creegan's guitar, with Paul Linklater in the background)
Demonstrating the size of hooks he prefers, Blair discusses songwriting
with a CMW audience in Halifax in October.
Blair, shown here in obvious pain as a young man plays electric guitar right into his ear! (Actually, this was an appearance in Saint John, NB, on behalf of Canadian Music Week, as part of the traveling New Songwriters' Workshop)
CFRB Newstalk 1010 co-hosts Bob Reid and Blair Packham are draped with a healthy dose of Burton Cummings. The ex-Guess Who singer dropped in to sing a few songs and tell some stories on the weekly show (Sundays 6 - 7 pm , and on the web at www.cfrb.com/rocktalk)
photo: Ania Ziemirska
The sedative having kicked in, Blair is now ready to transport Bruce Cockburn back home from Humber College's super-secret location. (Note Blair's t-shirt, courtesy The New Odds)