April 18, 2014

RECORD CROWD pigs out on the Blues with

A record sized crowd ate, drank and danced the night away with THE HOGTOWN ALLSTARS last Friday at BLUES ON THE RIDEAU at THE COVE INN Westport ON. This Toronto based supergroup is made up of 5 members of DOWNCHILD (this year's Juno Award winners for Best Blues Album Of The Year) - Chuck Jackson (vocals & harmonica), Michael Fonfara (keyboards), Pat Carey (sax), Gary Kendall (bass), Mike Fitzpatrick (drums) - plus the great Teddy Leonard on guitar (formerly with 2X Juno Award winners FATHEAD). Collectively they represent over 250 years of experience playin' the Blues - and it shows. They played tight, fast and smooth right from the opening song and had the crowd up and dancing all night long. This was the Allstars second appearance at BOTR @ The Cove and based on the crowd reaction you can definitely expect to see the "Hoggies" back soon.

Special Guests in attendance included Stevie & Anne Connor from Blues & Roots Radio in Port Credit, Ontario www.BluesAndRootsRadio.com with Show hosts Mark Stenzler of The Blues Zeppelin in Berne, Switzerland and Craig Mills of Eastern Passage along with Randy MacNeil & Francine Aubrey, authors of the great photo book "A Portrait Of Blues In Canada" http://www.randymacneil.com/e/bluesbook_e.shtml The Cove served up their usual delicious buffet - roast beef and fried cod in remoulade with mixed veggies, roast potatoes, two salads and home made buns - topped off with cheesecake covered in fresh local maple syrup for dessert. All this for only $60!

Comments from attendees:

"I fell in love with this place as soon as I drove down the big hill and saw the view. A romantic spot on a beautiful lake in a charming small town, excellent shopping, friendly people and a great atmosphere. And The Hogtown Allstars were FANTASTIC! 10 out of 10 for everything. Thank you so much" Pierre Copping, Ottawa (First timer)

"I don't always listen to the Blues but when I do, I choose Blues On The Rideau at The Cove! Stay thirsty my friends. The Hogtown Allstars rock" Larry & Gail Miles, Catawissee Pennsylvania (They've driven up from Pennsylvania 5 times for BOTR Shows and will be back in May for David Rotundo)

"Excellent entertainment, fabulous meal and a wonderful time was had by all. If you didn't enjoy this night you must be dead!" Margaret Bourk, Pakenham (2nd time)

"Never a disappointment. Fabulous. 10 out of 10 for everything
" Charlie Courneyea, Oshawa (4th time)
$816 was raised for Westport's Rideau Vista and St. Edward's elementary schools.

The smilin' Irishman, Mike Fitzpatrick, on the drums

The "Fonf" tickling the ivories

Happy attendee delivering a beer to Chuck on stage who was, as can often be the case, thirsty!

Chuck & Gary with Pat Carey blowin' hard on the sax

Like I said - PACKED dance floor all night long

Michael Fonfara on the keys with Teddy Leonard on guitar looking on - Mike Fitzpatrick (drums) and Gary Kendall (bass) in background

Francine Aubrey of Randy MacNeil Photography - co-author of the great "A Portrait Of Blues in Canada" photo book - visit their website- celebrating her 25th birthday

Happy attendees feasting at the famous Cove buffet

The Allstars enjoying dinner before the show - joined by Chuck's lovely lady Karen

BluesAndRootsRadio.com Board Meeting preceding the Show - Anne Connor (B&RR President), Mark Stenzler (Host of Blues Zeppelin - he came in from Berne, Switzerland for this night!), Craig Mills (Host of Eastern Passage), James Doran (Host of Inside The Blues), Stevie Connor (CEO of B&RR)

The Hogtown Allstars - Pat Carey, Gary Kendall, Chuck Jackson, Michael Fonfara, Mike Fitzpatrick, Teddy Leonard. All stars indeed

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