Blue Moon Marquee and A.J. Croce
PG Playhouse, 7:30 pm
Tickets $30 + GST & service fees
Available online or from Studio 2880 and Books & Company
Blue Moon Marquee
Blue Moon Marquee is a Gypsy Blues band born of the wild rose foothills of Alberta, but currently make their home in an island shack on the coast of the Salish Sea, British Columbia.
A.W. Cardinal (vocals/guitar) and Jasmine Colette a.k.a. Badlands Jass (vocals/bass/drums) write and perform original compositions influenced by anything that swings, jumps or grooves.
Artists such as Lonnie Johnson, Louis Armstrong, Blind Willie Jonson, Charley Patton, Howlin’ Wolf, Screaming Jay Hawkins, Tom Waits, Memphis Minnie, and Django Reinhardt are deeply infused in the soul of their music. Blue Moon Marquee is primarily a live duo with the energy and sound of a full band.
Colette, the rhythm section, not only commands the upright bass but also brings the swing with her feet on the kick drum, snare and high hat, all while singing harmonies.
Cardinal is of the screaming and hollering blues ilk with distinctive thick and smoky vocals that barrel out like a raging bull. His guitar crackles with the swinging energy of jazz tinged blues.
According to Willie Nelson, “A.J. Croce has wisdom beyond his years. With his music, he represents his generation with a profound sense of honesty in his lyrics and quality in his delivery. The future of entertainment is safe in his hands!”
A.J. Croce has been inextricably linked to a version of his own story by virtue of his name. He’s experienced a lifetime of comparisons to a father he lost at age two, whose music bears little resemblance to his own output yet still serves as a reference point despite the years that have passed and the many iconic mentors who have stepped in to offer their counsel, creativity, and endorsement throughout his long career.
It’s curious that it now feels necessary to include the reference, as enough time has passed that a new generation of tastemakers and journalists might not know who Jim Croce was — that he was a golden-voiced everyman, a singer-songwriter-guitarist who died too soon, leaving one of pop music’s most beautiful and memorable ballads (written about a young A.J.) in his wake.
Croce the younger, on the other hand, is a piano man, first and foremost, and a vocal stylist second. His muted growl pulls from a host of American traditions and anti-heroes — it’s part New Orleans, part juke joint, part soul, but somehow evokes New York, a continuum where John Lurie meets Lou Reed. He is further a songwriter, driven by a personal muse, informed by a life on a boomerang of tragedy.