Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne (pictured) and Russell Jackson are headlining a Vernon event celebrating Blues legends like Fats Domino and Ray Charles on Nov. 16. (Submitted photo)

Former B.B. King bassist and ‘Blues Boss’ pianist headline Vernon blues show

Kenny 'Blues Boss' Wayne and Russell Jackson will perform at the Performing Arts Centre Nov. 16

Fats Domino, Ray Charles, B.B. King, Dr. John – these blues legends and more will be celebrated at a Vernon performance headlined by two of the best in the business.

Juno award winner Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne joins forces with Blues Hall of Fame inductee Russell Jackson (both now living in the Okanagan) for an evening of classic blues tunes and favourite hits, performed with soul and energy by an accomplished quintet.

Hailed as a child prodigy when he was eight years old, Wayne is not only the Boss of Blues; he’s the ‘Boogie Woogie Piano Man.’ Born in Spokane, Wash. he’s been a jazz and boogie woogie pianist since the 1970s and he’ll be putting the Performing Arts Centre’s Steinway grand piano to good use.

Jackson is a former bassist with the B.B. King orchestra and an acclaimed singer-songwriter. He was born in Memphis and earned his blues stripes playing with R&B singer Otis Clay while living in Chicago. He recorded five live albums while touring with B.B. King from 1979-1986. Like Wayne, Jackson now resides in the Okanagan Valley.

Also on stage will be Lindsay Mitchell, founder and guitar player for Prism, who will be bringing his soulful and bluesy guitar licks to the table.

The ensemble also features Craig Thompson, who was named the 2013 Okanagan Musician of the Year in part for his rich-sounding saxophone and energetic blues riffs, which will be on full display.

Rounding out the quintet is Ed Hilliard, drummer for Kamloops’ Swing Cat Bounce, who will be keeping the blues groove going.

The show takes place at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre on Saturday, Nov. 16 from 7:30 to 10 p.m.

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Brendan Shykora

Reporter, Vernon Morning Star

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