Hot eats and cool jazz were served up in Saskatoon these past ten days. For the 25th year running the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival turned the city of bridges into a hub of live music. Jazz wasn’t the only thing on the menu – blues, folk, rock and hip-hop were all featured.

I made the trip up HWY 11 a couple times to catch a handful of shows – starting off with Timber Timbre. They played at Amigos on Sunday, June 24th. The low lit venue brought a mixed group of rowdy party goers and long time fans of the band. Timber Timbre brought their airy, spooky sound to the stage and were unfazed by loud voices in the back.

This past Saturday Kacy and Clayton, a pair of Saskatchewan cousins, opened for Elliott Brood at the Broadway Theatre. Clayton’s flat picking blues and Kacy’s beautiful voice had the crowd hanging on their every note.

Once Elliott Brood hit the stage the crowd wasn’t in their seats for long. They played two slow songs to start off the set, then brought out their stomping rhythms for the rest of the night.

A cool part about the Jazz Fest is the surprise shows that you just stumble upon. This was the case for Wild T & The Spirit. After leaving the Broadway Theatre, where Elliott Brood was playing, I stopped into Vangelis Tavern and got to see Wild T play his dirty blues. The expression on his face alone was worth the price of admission.

The Roots closed off the festival at the TD Main Stage in the Bessbourgh Gardens on Sunday. A fitting choice as both the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival and The Roots got started back in 1987.  It was an excellent way to cap off the festival.

// Photos by Kim Jay