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Blues ‘brothers’ bring tunes to Vernon

B.B. King bass player and Honeyboy Edwards accompanist perform
Les Copeland (left) and Russell Jackson bring an All Blues show to the Prestige Hotel Aug. 5. (Dean Gordon-Smith photo)

Dean Gordon-Smith

Special to The Morning Star

Like the characters played by Tom Cruise and Glenn Frey in the film Jerry McGuire, these guys have history.

The guys, Russell Jackson and Les Copeland, have deep threads in elemental blues that stretch back to some primal and pivotal figures.

Their personal connection goes back more than 25 years to shows they played at the Yale Hotel in Vancouver.

The combined history of the two musicians is “a full 90 years of blues,” as Jackson says.

Jackson and Copeland have what musos, especially blues musicians, crave. Mojo.

Theirs comes from dues playing tours and friendships with iconic figures like B.B. King and Honeyboy Edwards – you can’t get any closer to the source than that. That’s real cred, both street and professional. This reveals itself in the expression and vibe of their sound and performance, but more importantly gives them soul and stories to tell.

These anecdotes include Copeland relating Honeyboy Edwards candid views on Son House: “He had a big mouth,” and his own time in Chicago with the venerable blues man, gigging and hanging out.

Jackson’s memories of his years as B.B. King’s bassist are a font of inspired information, touring all over the world, being showcased by King in concert, and taking part of a jam arranged by King at the Berkeley School of Music. King’s appreciation of Jackson’s playing is testament to the man’s groove and swing.

Jackson and Copeland promise an evening steeped in blues in all its forms when they play the Prestige Hotel and Banquet Room Friday, Aug. 5.

Supporting them are the skilled Okanagan stalwarts Henry Piovesan on keys and Scott Grant on drums.

The show is called All Blues for a reason: they tell stories that are old and endless, and you’ll hear them in sound and song.

Doors open at 7 p.m. with appetizers and cash bar prior to 8 p.m. showtime. Tickets, $40, available at Bourbon Street Bar and Grill in the Prestige Hotel (4411 32nd St.) and Collectors Direct 303-2520-53rd Ave., 250-503-1971.

READ MORE: Getting to know: Les Copeland

READ MORE: Lights, camera, action: $1,000 bursaries for Vernon area arts students


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Les Copeland (left) and Russell Jackson bring an All Blues show to the Prestige Hotel Aug. 5. (Dean Gordon-Smith photo)

Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

20-year-Morning Star veteran
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