Mar. 05, 2008 - Issue #646: Steve Earle
Paul Reddick & The Sidemen
Harp player has got the grade 7 blues
When Paul Reddick picks up the phone to do this interview, he’s at his Toronto home helping his 12-year-old son Sam with his math homework.
“This stuff isn’t really that clear to me,” he chuckles
quietly. “But I kind of like getting a grade 7 education
The blues musician is halfway done recording his new album, which may or
may not be titled Blue Wings. The record, set for an August release, is
being recorded in Nashville, Toronto, New Orleans and Woodstock—where
the Band’s Garth Hudson is adding his keyboards to a few
The soft-spoken Reddick is not nervous about performing new songs, and
he’s looking forward to bringing some of them to Edmonton for his
upcoming performance here.
“When you first get to meet them, it’s exciting,” he
says. “It’s like the first week with your new
Reddick is hoping to build a tight rapport with the Edmonton
“I hope they get to know me a little bit,” he says genuinely.
“I hope it’s to the point that they want me over to their
Reddick and his band the Sidemen have played Edmonton over 10 times since 1991 and one of his best memories of the city is, well, a little hazy.
“On one of our tours, we left Vancouver in the evening and got into
Edmonton in the afternoon,” he recalls. “We hadn’t slept
in 48 hours and, man, I can’t really remember.
“My greatest memory of Edmonton is not having any memory,” he laughs.
Hopefully Reddick’s next Edmonton show will be a little more
memorable with the Downchild Blues Band joining him on the tour. The
harmonica player warmly remembers seeing the classic Canadian blues group
when he was a teenager.
“I went to a show when I was about 16 and they were opening up for
Muddy Waters,” he says, starting to laugh. “I remember I went
up to the lead singer and said, ‘Do you have any advice for a kid who
plays harmonica?’ and he said, ‘Stay in school, kid.’ And
I said, ‘Fuck!’ That’s not what I wanted to
Despite the disappointing advice, though, Reddick has done well with his
career. Four of his albums have been Juno-nominated, including his last
record, a compilation called Revue, which was nominated this year for best
CD artwork design.
Even if Reddick occasionally doesn’t quite remember what goes down when he’s on the road, he admits that he does love the intensity of travelling to different places and playing live, although the father of two is quick to note that touring definitely has its drawbacks, too.
“I don’t like being away from this boy and his brother that
much,” he says while Sam tries to convince his father that he’s
finished his math homework. “But it’s a blast playing
Sat, Mar 8 (8:00 pm)
Paul Reddick & The Sidemen
With the Downchild Blues Band
Polish Hall, $40
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