MEET THE MAPLE BLUES AWARD-WINNING HARPDOG BROWN
Harpdog Brown is a gifted singer and an imaginative harmonica player that has been a strong force in Canada’s Blues scene since 1982.
He’s been called a blues evangelist and that is a very fitting moniker. "I speak the blues like it's the truth, and it is" he was recently quoted. "I do feel like I'm a servant of the people. And I do heal people if they pay attention to the good messages in the songs I choose." He delivers those messages in the traditional sound of early electric blues. Think of the old Chess Records and Sun Records of the late 40's and early 50's. Harpdog says "Blues has a healing power. It's a beautiful celebration of our perfectly flawed lives. We help people forget about their issues of the moment and then they realize that we all have our issues, and that's ok.”
Born in Edmonton, Alberta and based in Vancouver, British Columbia, he’s crossed tens of thousands of miles playing club dates and festivals in Canada, North Western United States and Germany.
Over the years Harpdog, yes that is his real name as his passport will attest, has issued 5 CD’s to critical acclaim. Back in 1995 his Home is Where The Harp Is won the coveted Muddy Award for the Best North West Blues Release, from the Cascade Blues Association in Portland. He is still the only Canadian to do so. A Juno Nomination for the best Blues Release in Canada followed that same year. Teamed up with Graham Guest on piano, his CD Naturally was voted #1 Canadian Blues Album of 2011 by The Blind Lemon Survey. Most recently Harpdog was honoured with his second consecutive Maple Blues Award for Harmonica Player of the Year by the Toronto Blues Society. Add to that a second consecutive nomination for Blues Artist of the Year by the Western Canadian Music Awards and the Fraser Valley Music Award for Blues Artist of the year. These are outstanding accomplishments that clearly solidify his rise in popularity and a new beginning in his career.
The album that delivered his first Maple Blues Award, titled What It Is, maintained status in the blues and roots charts throughout the year and in fact was ranked #20 worldwide Roots Music Report: Top 100 Blues Albums of 2014. Two songs on that album, Whiskey Bottle and In My Younger Days remained in the TOP 100 Songs for that same year. It is a great collection of live, off the floor originals and a few well placed covers that resonate well with blues fans of every vintage. Harpdog's original How Come is a fan favourite and earned regular rotation on BB King's Bluesville on SiriusXM.
In September 2016 Harpdog Brown & The Travelin' Blues Show launched their latest album Travelin’ with the Blues and are currently Travelin' in support of it. The album was conceived after a cross-Canada tour with none other than Little Victor Mac, the Beale Street Blues Bopper. In fact Victor not only produced the album he was one of the featured guests that included Big Jon Atkinson, Charlie Musselwhite, Kid Andersen and other blues greats.
The album has garnered rave reviews in the blues world and plenty of airplay too. In fact Harpdog has been nominated in three categories in this year’s Maple Blues Awards. (Male Vocalist, Album and Harmonica Player of the Year). He’s also won the right to compete in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis in February 2017 and his album is up for Best Self-Produced CD there as well.
As Harpdog recently put it, "After more than 30 years of blood, sweat and tears, it feels like I'm just getting started. I'm only 54 - that's young in the blues world!"