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Blues band bringing deep-down sound to Diamond Valley

BMW - Belzner, McLean, Williams playing Flare n' Derrick Jan. 28.
scene-beneath-the-arch-bmw
Reknowned blues trio BMW - Belzner, McLean, Williams will play Beneath the Arch at the Flare n' Derrick Jan. 28.

The upcoming Beneath the Arch concert is rolling out a BMW.

That’s trio Kevin Belzner, Big Dave McClean and Tim Williams.

Making a return to the Flare n’ Derrick in Diamond Valley on Saturday, Jan. 28 from 7-10 p.m., the roots and blues act is bringing its signature sound, including fresh tunes from its new album Catfish.

“It’s great, I love gigs like that with a listening audience,” said Williams, elaborating he enjoys dance venues and concert venues for their own reasons. “There’s nothing wrong with playing a little club, but the concert sets are a different beast. They’re a lot of fun and Dave and I get to rag a lot on each other.”

“It’s just a chance to dig a little deeper into the music and worry a little less about the danceability factor.”

To achieve its signature down-home sound, Williams added the trio takes an old-fashioned approach to its lower tones.

“You see a lot of groups, acoustic folk band and singer/songwriter acts going to a bassless format,” he said. “Two guitars or a drummer, that kind of thing, and that kind of lineup was common before the invention of the electric bass.

“A few of the early blues and electric acts like Elmore James actually just had a second guitar that was just tuned down.”

This now-unorthodox configuration sets the tone for the band’s classic sound.

“It’s a nice combo because there’s a lot of traditional stuff from hill country and delta blues,” Williams said. “I use a great big old jazz guitar from the ‘40s or ‘50s that has a huge bass response on it.

“In spots on the album it actually sounds like there’s an upright bass playing with us.”

The band has deep roots, with Williams making his first album in his 20s, during the 1960s.

“Dave and I met 40-some years ago at a conference, hit it off,” he said. “I sat in with him one night in a club and somebody saw us saying ‘Hey, if I loaned you the money, would you make enough money to pay me back?’

“So we did the album called Fellow Travellers.”

For tickets and information, visit beneaththearch.ca/concerts.


Brent Calver

About the Author: Brent Calver

Award-winning photojournalist for the Okotoks Western Wheel and OkotoksToday.ca
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