Amos Garrett and Julian Kerr at Studio 64 March 24
Keith Nicholas, chair of the Live at Studio 64 committee, has booked many excellent and several great musicians to appear at Studio 64 over the past six years but none, perhaps with a more impressive pedigree than guitarist and vocalist Amos Garrett, who will appear with Julian Kerr in the opening concert of the 2018 series Live at Studio 64 on March 24.
Amos Garrett is a blues, jazz, R & B, blues rock and country rock musician, as comfortable playing piano or trombone as on guitar. Born in Detroit in 1941, Garrett moved as a child to Toronto where he studied piano and trombone at the Royal Conservatory. Aged 12, he moved to Montreal where he started playing guitar, learning to play the blues by observing such greats as BB King, Fats Domino, and T-bone Walker at The Esquire Club.
He got his first professional gig as an accompanist at Carnegie Hall and by the 1960s was playing with the Dirty Shames jug/string band. He later toured with Ian & Sylvia and was a founding member of The Great Speckled Bird. Moving to Woodstock in the early 1970s, Garrett played with Maria Muldaur’s R & B band for several years, eventually becoming the bandleader. During this period he performed with many of the popular artists of that era.
Relocating to Edmonton in 1978, Garrett formed the Eh Team band with whom he recorded for Stony Plain Records. In 1989 the band won the Juno for best roots & traditional album with the recording, ‘Return of the Formerly Brothers.’ In 2004 he released the ‘Amos Garrett Acoustic Album,’ which featured tracks written by Lead Belly and Hoagy Carmichael. Later Juno nominations came in 2005 and 2008.
Garrett has recorded with over 150 artists, including Bonny Raitt, Jesse Winchester, and Emmylou Harris and has been described as “one of the most distinctive guitar players since the Telecaster was invented.”
His unique style has been praised by Chet Atkins and Mark Knopfler among others. These days Garrett lives in High River and performs with his Amos Garrett Jazz Trio and as a duo with Julien Kerr.
Calgary professional musician Julian Kerr has been playing piano, bass, and guitar for over 30 years, appearing on such gold record hits as One Tin Soldier and Mr. Monday with the Original Cast. He has performed with Gaye Delorme and Bo Diddley and many Calgary bands. He currently teaches piano and keyboards in Calgary.
The Amos Garrett and Julian Kerr Duet blues concert at Studio 64 starts at 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 24. Tickets in advance are $22 for members of Kimberley Arts Council – Centre 64, $24 for non-members, or $26 at the door, though I expect this concert will be sold out before the doors open. You can get your advance tickets at Centre 64 or online at eastkootenay.snapd.com.
Season passes are available for the three-concert series which includes the blue grass/folk band, Slocan Ramblers, from Toronto on May 9 and The Gin Joints, an old style R & B, shuffle swing and blues band out of Seattle on May 19. A great line-up, interrupted April 28 by a one-off concert at Studio 64 by Sean McCann, formerly of Great Big Sea, playing East Coast Celtic.