Blues Berries and Hot Club of Mars grace FRHP

Two more high-energy concerts are coming to Fraser River Heritage Park

Hot Club of Mars will perform on Aug. 21 at Fraser River Heritage Park.

The Envision Twilight Concert Series continues Aug. 16 from 7 to 8 p.m., as the Blues Berries perform at this year’s Kids’ Concert in Fraser River Heritage Park.

In the past dozen year the Blues Berries have performed more than 1,000 school concerts in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. Their educational performances have introduced hundreds of thousands of students to established genres of popular music through programs such as The History of the Blues, Jazz in the Gym, and A History of Rock and Roll.

This four-piece ensemble comprises upright bass, guitar, drums, and sax. They created Jazz, Jive, and Wail to introduce elementary and secondary school audiences to up-tempo, danceable blues and jazz styles, as well as artists ranging from Louis Armstrong to Ray Charles to Stevie Ray Vaughn. Through their performances, young audiences learn how to recognize a call-and-response, listen to a solo, and even how to jive.

Deanna Knight and the Hot Club of Mars come to the park Aug. 21 from 7 to 8 p.m.

This Vancouver-based band has been swinging for years, though things really started heating up when performance songwriter Deanna “D” Knight arrived in 2002. A lovely and talented chanteuse, “D” adds a magic sparkle that really brings these wonderful old tunes to life with style, power and grace. She also writes her originals with as much depth and pizzazz as when she delivers them.

Between them the Hot Club of Mars encompasses over a century of performing experience. Acoustic bassist Charlie Knowles “kicks the cat” with finesse while guitarist Steve “Bugzy” Szabo keeps the rhythms chugging. Michael Dunn and new arrival Don Kellett spin their sweet Djangoesque lines on lead slide and guitars, and Mark Dowding keeps the winds blowing hot. Violinist Tom Neville rounds out the sound to a full acoustic orchestra of roots jazz.

This high-energy acoustic seven-piece inspires swing dancing in settings as varied as jazz and folk festivals, dance halls, and night clubs.

Twice weekly on Wednesdays and Fridays, bring a lawn chair or blanket and settle in for a range of live music at the park. The Blackberry Kitchen and The Log Cabin Café are open. Admission to the concerts is free, but donations are appreciated.

“This is our 13th year of partnership with the Mission Heritage Association,” says Susan Byrom, manager of community investment at Envision Financial. “We’re very excited to once again showcase some of the amazing talent Mission has to offer.”

For more information, including the full concert schedule, call 604-826-0277, email twilightconcerts.mission@gmail.com or visit heritagepark-mission.ca.

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