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About "James Reaney"

James Reaney has covered everything from operas to Neil Young concerts to baseball's World Series in more than 30 years at The London Free Press. These days, he concentrates on London entertainment in his Saturday Today section column and Forest City lore in Monday's My London column. He is the host of two weekly lfpress.com videos, Reaney's Pick, most often a one-take platform for London performers, and It's On, a guide to the best of the local scene. He also keeps a blog http://blogs.canoe.ca/brandnewblog/ about the London arts scene & his place in it.

It’s official: Tommy Hunter & that stamp unveiling

- July 24th, 2014

Tommy Hunter stamp

Tommy Hunter stamp images courtesy of canadapost.ca . . . they do look terrific

JBNBlog is delighted to see confirmation from Canada Post that Tommy Hunter will be unveiling the stamp we see here in London on July 31 at 11 a.m. . . . details follow … but wow.

Here’s a quick quiz — who was his guitar teacher? For bonus points, who taught Tommy fiddle?

All of this makes me so happy, it’s possible to overlook this not-the-same Tommy Hunter news from last night’s Orioles’ loss to the Angels:

Hunter, T(BS, 5)(L, 2-2) 1.2 2 2 2 3 2 0 4.11

Back to London’s Tommy Hunter . . .

Here is the Canada Post media release:

OTTAWA – Canada’s Country Gentleman, Tommy Hunter, is one of five Canadian country music artists to be commemorated on a stamp series issued on July 31. The new stamp series recognizes Canada’s contribution to the evolution of country music and will feature Mr. Hunter along with kd lang, Renée Martel, Hank Snow and Shania Twain – 5 of the most unique voices in Canada’s country music history.

Mr. Hunter will be joined by Canada Post representatives in London to do the unveiling of his stamp in a special ceremony.


  • WHO: Tommy Hunter, Peter Scott (Director, Retail Sales, Canada Post)
  • WHEN: Thursday, July 31 at 11:00 AM
  • WHERE: Canada Post outlet at The London Business Centre (387 Wellington Rd., London)


Interviews will be conducted immediately following the unveiling.


Take five to hear After Four in Springbank Gardens series

- July 24th, 2014

After Four IMG_0687 (1)


Ace #ldnont vocal group After Four looking particularly kewl in an undated image . . . OK, who can ID these fab four?

JBNBlog luvs Free Jazz, free jazz . . . & jazz that’s free (with the musicians being paid). This weekend marks the start of an excellent series called the Springbank Gardens Summer Concert Series . . . thanks to A4′s Jenny Nauta for passing along the following details. Which appear here slightly edited. JBNBlog is pretty sure Jenny was an ace co-host for the 2009 JRMA because just about the last award that night went to After Four . . . & Jenny’s look of surprise & delight as she there for the announcement reminds all of us of how important & supportive a good recognition program is.

Over to Jenny . . .  & thanks again.

We are pleased to have been invited to perform the Opening Concert of the Springbank Gardens Summer Concert Series

Sunday July 27th 2:00-4:00 Guy Lombardo Pavillion at Springbank Gardens

285 Wonderland Rd. South

London, ON N6K 3T3

This is an initiative of the London Musician’s Association and is sponsored by the London Arts Council, LMA, Radio 98.1 FM, and Park’s and Recreation, City of London. Admission is FREE!

. . . .


The group AFTER FOUR features a quartet of fabulous singers with rich harmonies. Awarded the Jack Richardson Music Awards Best Jazz Group in 2005 and the London Music Awards in 2012, as well as, the prestigious Jack Richardson Music Awards Fan Favourite in 2009, they perform a varied repertoire of old and new standards, often singing their own ‘made-in-Canada’ arrangements supported by a quartet of accomplished instrumentalists. Appearing on the Takes Five CD from Jürgen Gothe’s CBC program Disc Drive, they have been heard on CBC radio programs from coast to coast, and continue to enjoy support from local and regional radio stations. AFTER FOUR has worked with Canadian legends Peter Appleyard, Phil Nimmons, and Juno award-winning producer Kevin Doyle, who produced the second of their three albums.

Vocalists – Jenny Nauta, Ron Nauta, Theresa Wallis, Dave Williams

Bryan Gloyd/keyboard, Larry Ernewein/bass, Rob Larose/drums & percussion, Ken Foster/sax

Visit www.afterfour.ca for more details.


Home County Music & Art fest photos & a few words

- July 23rd, 2014

Whitehorse CPaton

Whitehorse’s Luke Doucet & Melissa McClelland in a classic image from opening night (Friday, July 18) at Home County 2014. Photograph by Cameron Paton.

Elisapie CPaton

 Elisapie, also from opening night at Home County 2014. Another great shot by Cameron Paton

Jenn Grant CPaton

 Jenn Grant, rawkin with the Telecaster (is that right?), in another Cameron Paton photograph from Home County 2014′s opening night.

JBNBlog is grateful to good friend to London music Cameron Paton for sharing his images from Friday night as Home County opened its 41st edition at Victoria Park. Thanks for these. Wow.

The photographs from acts on the Kiwanis bandshell have the headliners Whitehorse at the mic . . . luved their cover of I’m On Fire and their own Devil’s Got A Gun, songs heard while bicycling home through the park. Deadlines meant only a couple of Jenn Grant songs were heard & Elisapie was missed entirely though a co-worker who ran to the park on evening shift dinner break for 15 minutes of bandshell glory before running back to work station reports she was great.

Here a few remembered comments:

Bry Webb apparently covered The Grateful Dead’s China Cat Sunflower at his solo spot on Sunday (July 20) … he’s loving the Aoxomoxoa  tune — but has to keep checking the lyrics because they’re “complete nonsense” …. jeez, Aoxomoxoa used to be somewhere in my collection. Never really registered with me but maybe China Cat Sunflower’s nonsense will emerge from the subconscious. Think it was bought at a long vanished record store on Talbot St.

Trevor Dubois had a 2014 lyric about watching Netflix from the couch at the Fanshawe MIA stage .. . wonder what the Home County I (1974?) equivalent sad romance reference was.

Lonnie In The  Garden were the loudest (in an excellent way) band on Sunday afternoon . . . yay for Lynne Craven & everybody … psychedelic folk & rock not long before Bry Webb’s Dead cover … could be a theme emerging.

As the fest was closing, Nathan Rogers asked aloud what makes a song traditional & answered himself saying something about that being the time for Corb Lund to appropriate it & then for people to say Nathan Rogers is an idiot, he laughed.

Congratulations to all involved with Home County XLI (hmm … the WrestleBowl touch doesn’t really work) … anyway, on rawk, on folk,

Ann Denny to rawk East Village Coffeehouse

- July 22nd, 2014

Ann Denny mic

 Ann Denny, in an undated photograph 


Ann Denny when she’s channelling Anna Danova

JBNBlog doesn’t know just what former Londoner & now ace Haligonian Ann Denny will be singing at the East Village Coffeehouse tonight (Tuesday) . . . based on a fine 2007 memory, here’s a request. Blue Moon.

If Ann & ally Jayne Hysen don’t find their way to the moon, that’s OK, too. Ann’s range is pretty much limitless & it’s going to be good whatever songs are chosen … just for the record, here’s how good Blue Moon sounded back in June of 2007.

Ace London chanteuse Ann Denny sang Blue Moon, one of my all-time favourites, at a going away party at her parents’ house on Hyman Street last night.

Ann is moving to Halifax – as if Hfax does not have enough fine musicians already and needs one of London’s best – next month.

So it was a treat to her sing Blue Moon, fast, swinging, lots of swoops & blurs & completely unlike my previous favourite versions (Elvis, Marcels, Dylan).

. . . (working with John Noubarian and Darryl Stacey, Ann sang) greats like Ain’t Misbehavin’ – talking about how she listened to Fats Waller as a toddler – and Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most  and I Can’t Get Started.

Ann’s approach to all these was her own – and she looked great with some kinda floral arrangement atop her hair. It was nicer than that but you get the idea.

Behind me, I could hear Ann’s dad, vibes player Peter Denny, talking about how Ann listened to Fats as a tiny person and loved jazz even then.

Back to Tuesday, July 22, 2014 & thanks to Ann’s mother, ace London writer Marion Johnson for the following details …

The all-new, beautifully refurbished East Village Coffeehouse (754 Dundas St) invites you to an evening of

hot jazz & other cool genres with soloist Ann Denny, from Halifax Nova Scotia (formerly London).

Program includes classical/opera — jazz standards — Icelandic folk — Canadian folk — original Anna Danova comedy — other songs by Ann — Joni Mitchell covers — and original compositions by Peter Denny — a cornucopia of good vibes and great music!

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you might sing along — and you can purchase delectable coffees and other drinks, as well as delicious treats

– a summer evening you won’t soon forget!

DATE: Tuesday July 22

LOCATION: East Village Coffeehouse at 754 Dundas St, at the corner of English

TIME: doors open 6:30 pm — coffee, cold drinks, yummy snacks and light meals will be available to buy

– music begins at 7 pm and continues through the evening — drop in any time

COVER CHARGE: just $10, children free



For the jazz & classical numbers, Ann will be accompanied by Jayne Hysen.

Tuba or not tuba @Indie Underground

- July 21st, 2014

Christian Hegele tuba

An undated image from The Free Press files . . .  Christian Hegele,17 ,left , holds his tuba  and Shaunvire Sidhu,16, holds his baritone after the two Central Secondary School students won a silver medal in the Brass Ensembles class at the Kiwanis Music Festival in London.

Thanks to our good friends at Indie Underground for the good words on Wednesday’s show at Call the Office . . . but before getting to them, JBNBlog wonders if Jetsex (Christian Hegele) is still rawkin the tuba. The tuba has a comeback & it would be kewl if it turned up Underground, doncha think?

Over to the good words:

Indie Underground Presents…

Timothy Glasgow, cosmosuave & Jetsex

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 at Call The Office


NEW-Tim-Glasgow—Brian-Featherstone-Cosmosuave—Jetsex-Christian-Hegele—Indie-Underground—Aaron-McMillanInterested in sharing good times with friends (new and old) are the three modest & musical magicians, Tim Glasgow (known for working with Metric, Sonic Youth, etc.), cosmosuave (Brian Featherstone, formaly of Scratching Post) and Jetsex (Christian Hegele, who has played with of Olenka and the Autumn Lovers, EXIT2012, etc.).


Each musician will perform one set of their own by twisting knobs and hitting all the right keys to provide you with three-of-a-kind unforgettable, seductive & synth-tastic experiences.


It all happens on Wednesday, July 23 at Call The Office and is followed by the Indie Underground Wednesday Dance Party with DJ Aaron.


Call The Office – 216 York St.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Facebook Event

Price: $5 or Pay What You Can

Doors: 9 pm

First Band: 10pm