Crossroads Stage launches with first lady of blues
IT’S appropriate the first performer on Dubbo’s newest venue, The Crossroads Stage, will be Australia’s first lady of Blues, Melbournite Fiona Boyes.
She is renowned in Australia, the USA and Europe for her eclectic Blues styles which include Delta slide guitar, single chord Mississippi Hills grooves, intricate country blues finger picking, and the classic blues sounds of New Orleans, Chicago and Memphis.
Ms Boyes is being hosted in Dubbo by Old Bank Music Shop’s Michael and Gloria Picton who have convinced Ms Boyes to stay in town for an extra night to also host a two-hour workshop on song writing and possibly a guitar master class.
Previous workshops on finger picking, acoustic blues and cigar box guitars have included teaching at former “Jefferson Airplane” and “Hot Tuna” guitarist Jorma Kaukonen’s Fur Peace Ranch Guitar Camp in Ohio, USA.
“It’s not about me sitting down and telling people stuff. I’m interested in knowing what people want to get out of the workshop,” Ms Boyes told Dubbo Photo News.
“If anyone has songs that are half written, or songs they’ve written, we’ll actually have a chance for people to sit in a song circle and play songs and talk about what might be good to tweak, or if someone’s stuck with a song to workshop it, so people can get some input from myself and others, which might help finish a song. There’s lots of possibilities,” Ms Boyes said.
Unlike many of her counterparts in the blues industry, Ms Boyes started out as the only female blues guitarist she knew.
“I was a fan for many years before I became a player, so I was going to see a lot of bands and listening to a lot of music and soaking it all up. It was another good six or seven years before I decided to borrow a guitar and have a go myself,” she said.
“That was a challenge in many ways because by the time I did start playing guitar I was into my mid to late 20s. There was no real role models and no women playing. I was keenly aware my male peers had mostly been playing, if not since their teens, but younger. I never imagined I would be doing what I’m doing now.” z Fiona Boyes in concert at The Crossroads Stage, Old Bank Music Shop, 78 Macquarie Street, Dubbo, on Wednesday, October 30, 7pm to 9pm. Tickets $20, in store or online. Limited seating. z Song writing Workshop/ Masterclass, 7pm to 9pm on Thursday, October 31. Tickets $20, in store or online
Australia’s first lady of blues Fiona Boyes will be the first performer next week at Dubbo’s newest venue, the Crossroads Stage. PHOTO: SUPPLIED