Acclaimed eight-time Juno Award-winning singer/guitarist Colin Linden joins 7 other Canadian acts at this year’s Edmonton Blues Festival.
Linden, a long-time Nashville resident, and the two members of his trio have been playing together for over 25 years, and it shows on their 2015 release, “Rich in Love”, which sparkles with their seamless musicianship and collective talents. The music takes influences from blues, country rock and roots. And then there is the playing, where every guitar pluck, bass note, subtle drum sweep or organ solo from this consummate musician and his band adds to the stories.
Born in Toronto, and raised in White Plains, New York, Colin Linden returned to Canada in 1970. He was already a guitar prodigy at 11 years old, and when most kids that age are playing sports, Colin was meeting and being mentored by one of his musical heroes, the great bluesman Howlin’ Wolf, which helped set the youngster on a course to pursue the sounds of his dreams. That encounter helped fuel a career that has featured his work on literally hundreds of albums. At last count, the total number of recordings on which he has played approaches 400, while over 100 albums bear the “Produced by Colin Linden” credit.
As a testament to his roots music acumen and early devotion to the idiom, Colin – at the tender age of 15 and accompanied by fellow Canadian musician Doc MacLean – embarked on a summer blues odyssey of the USA, working down from the border and hitting Detroit, Chicago, St. Louis, Atlanta, Memphis and other points south in the Mississippi Delta. Along the way, they met up with and performed on numerous occasions with a “who’s-who” of blues legends, including Sippie Wallace, Buddy Moss, Little Brother Montgomery, Sunnyland Slim, Tampa Red, Henry Townsend, Robert Wilkins, Sleepy John Estes, Son House and Sam Chatmon.
Colin Linden is a genuine renaissance man of roots music. He’s a singer and songwriter of great skill, an in-demand and prolific record producer (Bruce Cockburn, Tom Wilson, Colin James), a sideman to the stars as guitarist for the likes of Bruce Cockburn, Emmylou Harris, Robert Plant and Alison Krauss, and, for the past decade-plus, a member of the highly successful trio, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings.
Colin’s songs have been covered by The Band, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Keb’Mo’, and Colin James, and his well-stocked trophy case includes eight Juno Awards, multiple Maple Blues Awards, and a Toronto Arts Award. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for the star-studded “A Tribute to Howlin’ Wolf CD”.
Linden has a well-deserved reputation as a slide guitar virtuoso of true originality and his riveting slide work can be heard both on albums from numerous artists as well as on his own sizeable solo catalogue. Believe it or not, Colin has never performed at The Edmonton Blues Festival and we are thrilled to have him with us Sunday August 27!