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February 2007 - Nr. 2


The Editor
In Canada, eh?
"A Matter of Trust"
KW & Beyond
More of KW & Beyond
The Threepenny Opera
Erhard Matthaes
Dick reports...
AutoShow 2007
Have a (Healty) Heart
Welcome Al Gore!
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Toronto Mendelssohn Choir
Ewa Podles at Roy Thompson
Nathaniel Dett Chorale
April Listings
Good Shepherd Wins
The Blind Boys of Alabama
Don't Let The Pigeon...
Planet in Focus Call
Aretha Franklin
Red Elvis
Organics Growing in Ontario
Canada's Food Aid
VW Seeks to Tempt US Buyers
Tempelhof to be Closed
Transatlantic Ties
Baby Boom
Germany's Dirk Nowitzki


with special guest
Bettye LaVette, soul singer

Saturday, April 14 at 8 pm
Massey Hall

Tickets: $69.50 - $49.50
416-872-4255 or visit the Roy Thomson Hall Box Office


Toronto - Formed some six and a half decades ago, The Blind Boys of Alabama are the Iron Men of the music industry. They predate Elvis, Little Richard, and Al Green. Yet, even in their 70s, they are still at the top of the gospel charts and have earned impressive honours by winning consecutive Grammy Awards in recent years. This April concert marks the Blind Boys’ third visit to Massey Hall.

Previously, The Blind Boys had spent more than 40 years working mostly in the traditional gospel circuit, since forming at The Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind in 1939. More recently, The Blind Boys have proven themselves masters of bringing out the most spiritual aspects of mainstream music, while at the same time bringing the music of the church straight to the roadhouse. They have recorded moving renditions of songs by everyone from Tom Waits to Prince, side by side with their traditional material, and appeared as guests on records and on stage with an equally diverse array of artists — from Peter Gabriel to Ben Harper. During this amazing run, the cover tunes and collaborations have been consistently tasty and organic, seasoned with a time-tested understanding of the sounds that move man’s soul. Interest in The Blind Boys of Alabama from other musicians has been at an all-time high, with the group augmenting its own award-winning albums with guest appearances from a distinguished and diverse group including Peter Gabriel, Lou Reed, Ibrahim Ferrer (Buena Vista Social Club), Solomon Burke, Asleep at the Wheel, and Jools Holland, formerly of Squeeze. They were also tapped by Walt Disney Productions to sing a Phil Collins-penned tune in the animated feature film Brother Bear. 2004 found The Blind Boys reprising their role in a new, 20th anniversary version of The Gospel at Colonus, which starred Charles S. Dutton and The Soul Stirrers during its late October/early November run at the famed Apollo Theater in Harlem.

As they have reached new levels of respect, acclaim, and commercial success, one thing has remained: the group’s mission to do God’s work in new and inspiring ways. In doing so, they are not only expanding the very definitions of gospel and soul, but also bolstering a legacy that is unmatched by any other traditional artist that has remained true to the gospel path.

There is a space in American music where country meets soul, where elements of blues, folk, pop, jazz, gospel and R&B meld in seamless alchemy. Bettye LaVette’s artistry reflects the wisdom and musical acumen acquired over a 43-year career. Bettye LaVette is an extraordinary American soul singer, possessed of an incredibly expressive voice that one moment will exude a formidable level of strength and intensity and the next will appear vulnerable, reflective, and full of heartbreak.


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