Blues House Party 4

Thunder Bay Blues Society to Present Homegrown Talent

By Ken Wright



Superior Outdoors


Since its inception in the summer of 1998, the promotion of local blues musicians has been a cornerstone of the Thunder Bay Blues Society’s (TBBS) mission statement. A prime example of that commitment is the Blues House Party series, which features an entire evening dedicated to our homegrown blues talent. The fourth edition will be staged at the Port Arthur Polish Hall on Court Street on March 25. “We’ve got to support the local music scene,” says TBBS president Rob Croves. “If we don’t have a local scene, the interest will just totally go away.” For many years, through its Highway 61 to Memphis initiative, the TBBS has sponsored both bands and solo/duo acts to participate in the world’s largest gathering of blues musicians at the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge held annually in Memphis, Tennessee. “The local blues community is tightly knit,” says Croves. “The friendly competition always brings out the best in all the musicians. It encourages them to write and perform original songs as well as record their music.” With the Thunder Bay Blues Festival currently in abeyance and fewer venues offering live music, there aren’t many performance opportunities, especially for blues musicians. Blues House Party 4 promises to narrow that performance gap. “As long as people keep coming out, we’ll just keep putting it on,” says Croves. “That’s basically what it comes down to. If the interest is there, if there’s an audience for it, then we’ll do our best to fill the need.” In 2023 the society will celebrate its 25th anniversary. Blues House Party 4 will shine the spotlight on Voodoo Blues (a newly formed blues/rock quartet), The Blue Pretenders (the traditionalists in the lineup), James Boraski & Momentary Evolution (classic rhythm and blues that earned them two appearances at the Thunder Bay Blues Festival), and the B5 Blues Band (comprised of regulars of the long-running Sunday night blues jam at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 5). “It really says something about Thunder Bay when we can do this four times with very little repetition,” says Croves. “It’s always good to have variety for the audience. They’ll hear some different styles that will appeal to everyone.” Ultimately, Croves adds, with satisfaction evident in his voice, “I see a lot of people having a good time.” For more information, visit