By Will McGuirk
Now it could have just been the crowd I was hanging with but it did seem like The Doozies had the 59th edition of the Grand Old Dame of folk festivals lit as the kids say. My media access was restricted for some reason so I spent most of my time Saturday and Sunday with the three piece and I thank them for their generosity. They even provided me with a bed for the night. Great lads, The Doozies, Josh Kvasnak (singer/strummer), Jonathan Sloan (standup bass) and Sean Battams ( fiddle and trouble).
As I was with the crew quite a lot I was witness to the many, many folks who stopped them randomly to say how much they enjoyed their sets; They played the downtown Orillia stage on Friday; at the Pub Stage in a Saturday workshop with Danny Michel, Deeps and The LYNNes as well as in a workshop on Sunday with rising star and heir to Wilf Carter old timey country, Colter Wall, and the precious voice of Courtney Marie Andrews. No less than Fred Penner asked Battams to join him on the main stage. Unfortunately Penner’s set was shortened so the duet didn’t happen but sometimes its in the asking. And I would imagine those guys will be asked back.
Prior to the Doozies workshop, Ralph, Shakura S’Aida, The Sorority took part in the Voices For Good workshop. They were joined by the Snotty Nose Rez Kids and they funkified that tent. Powerful and entertaining.
I hung around to see Stars and Tom Cochrane & Red Rider on the main stage and both were enthusiastic about being at the festival. Cochrane said two places were inspirational to his development as an artist, Massy Hall and Mariposa. My fave track “Human Race” was just as enthusiastically performed by the Red.
Stars set was cut short to allow for a surprise appearance by Gordon Lightfoot; he sang '“If You Could Read My Mind.” And yes although frail he still has it.
Sunday I took time to see Jim Bryson. More talking than singing maybe but yes worth it. Hashtag no filter as the kids say. He was joined by Caroline Brooks of the Good Lovelies.
Thanks to the generosity of The Doozies, their manager and some mutual pals for stepping up, fab weekend. Much love.