Bozzini’s is pulling out all the stops to mark their 200th show on July 30, with three diverse, world-class blues acts performing two shows.
This will mark only the second time these three artists have performed together on the intimate ‘stage’ of the Bozzini’s upstairs lounge.
For Darren Johnson, who’s performed at Bozzini’s four times in the past, participating in the 200th show was a natural choice. Hailing from Okotoks, Alberta, Johnson performs roots and blues that have been described as “somewhere in between Tom Waits and Leon Redbone, Howlin’ Wolf and Willie Nelson.”
His songwriting is simple, stemming from the everyday situations of everyday people. His sound is a throwback to yesteryear. One may find themselves deceived by the contrast between what they’re hearing versus what they’re seeing.
“Not only is Darren a great performer, he’s also a really great guy and one of many friends I’ve made through presenting music,” says Emmanuel Asprakis, owner and music booker at Bozzini’s.
The second act to join the bill was blues veteran Nigel Mack, who’s making his third appearance in Chilliwack. A blues ‘triple threat’ (slide guitar, harmonica and vocals), Mack delivers a high-energy show that fuses blues classics with an original contemporary punch.
Seamlessly switching between instruments, Mack is equally skilled at them all. These are talents honed by years of relentless touring in support of his critically acclaimed albums: Devil’s Secrets, Road Rage and High Price to Play.
Originally from Saskatoon, Mack has been living and performing in Chicago, the home of the blues, since 2003. He’s appeared at the world famous Chicago Blues Festival several times and his compositions have been featured on television soundtracks like Dawson’s Creek, The Street and Time of Your Life.
Rounding out the triple bill is Texassippi soul man Danny Brooks, performing as a dynamic duo with his wife Lil Miss Debi Brooks. She sings and plays Cajon/percussion while Brooks plays assorted guitars, slide, stomp-board and harp-rack.
After years of honing his writing and performance skills across North America, picking up nominations and awards along the way, Brooks is now known as “the real deal.”
Mixing Southern soul, Americana, blues and gospel, he’s recognized as a prolific writer and dynamic live performer. Danny Brooks and Lil’ Miss Debi are touring in support of their second Texas studio recording This World Is Not Your Friend. While this is Brooks’ debut at Bozinni’s, he is no stranger to Chilliwack having headlined the Back to the Blues event at the Threshermen’s Village three times from 2008 to 2011.
“We were very fortunate to add Danny as he had free day between shows in the Valley and the Okanagan,” Asprakis said. “It’s almost an embarrassment of riches, really. Having three acts in such in such an intimate space is pretty special,” he added.
Bozzini’s Upstairs 200th Concert with Nigel Mack, Darren Johnson, Danny Brooks and Lil Miss Debi is Saturday, July 30. Doors open at 4 p.m. for the 5 p.m. early show, or at at 8 p.m. for the 9 p.m. late show. Tickets are $24 to $27 at Bozinni’s (45739 Hocking Ave.) or call 604-792-0744 to reserve by phone.