Robert Reid, Record staff March 29, 2013
The Kitchener Blues Festival is kicking into gear for 2013 with two events.
The lineup for the 13th annual TD Kitchener Blues Festival will be announced at a launch party on Friday at the Walper Terrace Hotel.
The annual Youth Legacy Challenge takes place April 14 at Bobby O’Briens.
The launch party presents two blues bands playing simultaneously in two rooms at the downtown hotel.
This year’s featured acts are Irene Torres and The Sugar Devils, an award-winning blues outfit from Toronto, which debuts at the festival in August. Also appearing is Cambridge’s Conor Gains Band, 2013 Maple Blues Award finalists.
Festival artistic director Claude Cloutier describes Irene Torres and The Sugar Devils as “Amy Winehouse accompanied by a red-hot blues band.”
The launch party marks the start of the 13th annual blues bash, which unfolds across downtown Kitchener Aug. 8-11.
“It’s the start of our promotional and fundraising campaigns,” Cloutier confirms. “It’s a real joyous celebration of the blues.”
Cloutier says 80 per cent of this year’s lineup will be secured by the time of the announcement.
The launch party raises funds that helps keep one of the country’s largest blues festival free.
Door prizes include gold seat and general admission tickets to the festival’s kickoff benefit show at the Clock Tower Stage on Aug. 8, which is a paid event.
Doors to the launch party open at 7 p.m. Music starts at 9 p.m., with the lineup announcement commencing at 10:20 p.m.
Tickets ($50) are available at Orange Monkey in Waterloo, Encore Records in Kitchener and online at www.ticketscene.ca.
The Youth Legacy is designed to develop and promote youth blues talent across Waterloo Region.
The winner lands a noon-hour slot on the main stage at the blues festival and is provided with studio time to record a song.
Cash prizes go to second- and third-place acts.
Solo and group acts are encouraged to register by April 12. All participants must be under 21 years of age as of April 14.
Information is available online at firstname.lastname@example.org.