In the spirit of the Sixties the TD Toronto Jazz Festival kicked off in the new location of Yorkville last night with a performance by Randy Bachman of the Guess Who and B.T.O. fame.
A special mention to research group – Info-Tech, for revitalizing the infamous Concert Hall (Masonic Temple), formerly known as the Rock Pile in the late Sixties when it showcased early performances of Led Zeppelin, the Grateful Dead and Frank Zappa.
With a packed house, Bachman and his band, including his son Tal on guitar took to the stage opening with a instrumental number, then launching into the B.T.O. classic ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” and then the Guess Who’s well known “No Time”.
Singer/keyboardist Laila Biali sat in for a new blues tune by Bachman, followed by the SADE cover of “Smooth Operator. Then another classic Guess Who song “No Sugar Tonight” and the jazzy B.T.O.
A short intermission followed as the band set the stage for guest number two of the night, singer-guitarist and bluesman Walter Trout. A graduate of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers in the 80’s, Walter Trout is a force of nature.
The band opening the second set with the rock anthem “American Woman” with Whole Lotta Love teases followed by a cut of Trout’s recent album that Bachman guests on. The rest of the set featured classic rock covers from Bachman’s legacy as well as Del Shannon’s “Runaway” and a encore mash-up of covers and the classic ‘Taking care of Business”.
All in all a great night for Bachman and Co. and TD Toronto jazz festival reviving the spirit of the Sixties in the old Masonic Temple.