It’s Wednesday night and I’m listening to Dr. Feelgood’s Blues Emporium, a radio show on CKLN with David Barnard, whom I met at the “Blues With A Feeling” event, and he’s interviewing Mark “Bird” Stafford. Bird is a real friendly fellow, and he booked Blue Willow into Chicago’s – the first blues bar I ever played at in Toronto. That was when I came through town five or six years ago. At that time I was hired by a guy called Robin Harp, who is considered a bit of a flake around town these days, but I went in on a Monday Night in the middle of a beer strike and played to an almost empty house. That was the first and only time I played in Toronto with my “one-man-blues-band” set-up and it came off OK even though I realized then that I was still not ready for prime time. That was the background for a truly “mystical” experience.
It seems that in the few days that transpired from the time I got the gig to the day I appeared, Robin had asked a girl that worked behind the bar to make a poster. I hadn’t left a picture and I don’t imagine he had given her a description of me because when I arrived for the gig there was a hand-drawn poster of a “Colorblind” that looked nothing like me, but looked exactly like my recently deceased father. The same chin, moustache wearing a cap just like he always wore. I was floored. I could only assume it was my father sending me a message from the grave that it was OK for my to play music (he never approved while he was living).