Doug Cox, artistic director of Vancouver Island Music Fest, and Sam Hurrie bring a mix of original and classic blues on acoustic and slide guitar, dobro and mandolin to Oak Bay Friday night.
Toronto-born Hurrie was initially obsessed with the pre-Second World War blues of Robert Johnson and Son House, and already had his own R&B band in the mid-1960s. On forays to New York to play and record, Hurrie, regularly jammed with Jimi Hendrix and did a few dates at the Electric Circus where he opened for Muddy Waters and Blood Sweat and Tears.
Cox was also initially drawn to the blues, particularly bottleneck slide guitar. He soon discovered the dobro, and before long earned a national and international reputation as he skillfully fused a wide range of acoustic roots and Americana musical styles. Cox has played and recorded with such diverse superstars as Indian slide guitarist Salil Bhatt, Hawaii’s Anela Kahiamoe, Long John Baldry, Austin’s BettySoo and expat Rwandan The Mighty Popo.
The two musicians first met at a gig in the West Coast’s Powell River in the 1990s.
“The music we instinctively wanted to play was blues oriented, but came from the perspective of guys who grew up in the world of rock ‘n’ roll,” Cox said. For many years they toured in Canada and Europe and recorded CDs, leaving behind a rich musical legacy and many memories for those who have seen them light up Island pubs, clubs and coffee houses.
The pair recently released a CD compilation, Revisited, as they once more hit the touring circuit with renewed energy and an ever-deeper feeling for the music.
The duo performs Nov. 6 at 7:30 p.m. in Oak Bay Recreation’s Upstairs Lounge, 1975 Bee St. Tickets are $12 in advance at Ivy’s Bookshop and Oak Bay Recreation or at beaconridgeproductions.com online and $15 at the door. Visit coxandhurrie.com for a taste of the music.