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Booker T
Booker T

Your Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival Monday - What to look for

Who to see, who to discover, your Sunday guide.

Day four of five! The 30th annual Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival kicks off at noon. Stop by and see us in our booth in the Louisiana Pavilion near the Front Porch Stage!

Who's new? What about your favorites? That's the essence of the festival. You saw our roundup earlier this week. Now let's tackle today. And who better to tell us about who's playing than the guy who booked the bands, Festival Artistic Director Peter Damman.

Joss Stone (Brewery State 9-10:15) I've been trying to get to Waterfront since the first record of hers. That retro soul record that she put out that Betty Wright was involved in. But she doesn't really tour. She’s done like one tour that's come through the NW in the last 6 or 7 years that I know of. So she happened to becoming to the states this year so I thought that would work. Her career began with this retro-soul thing and then she turned for a little while into sort of a pop diva. The last few years she's been doing much more straight ahead soul r&b. I'm really looking forward to that set.

Booker T (Brewery Stage 7-8pm) is coming with his sax hits review so Booker T with a horn section and a couple of background vocalists.

Also one of the bands that i'm most looking forward to seeing is this  Bokante (First Tech Credit Stage 8-9pm). Bokante is started by 2 or 3 of the guys from Snarky Puppy and they brought in Roosevelt Lee from The Lee Boys who’s a pedal steel gospel/guitar player like Robert Randolph, from that genre. And they got this great vocalist who's creole. She sings in french, she's a black woman. So it's this really interesting fusion of Caribbean funk and Delta Blues. The couple of clips I've seen in there are just spectacular. And of course Snarky Puppy is by no means a blues bands but it's maybe the best hardcoare instrumental group out there right now. They're just spectacular, they've won Grammies and all kinds of stuff. So that’s something I’m really looking forward to.

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Mary Yoko Brannen

Big Disappointment. My husband and I were really looking forward to seeing her and she came with such a big build-up and occupied an enviable spot at the end of the 4th day. BUT, her song mix didn't grab the crowd and many people left before the end of her set. She underestimated Portland's taste in music and didn't fit her song choice to a Blues event. She sang too many "personal" songs and didn't communicate anything meaningful to the audience. Rather, she came across as little bit of a spoiled adolescent dancing around barefoot on expensive Persian carpets in a posh nightclub type gown--for an event that has a history of preventing hunger!

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