The number of tickets available only reflects our allocation and not the total tickets remaining for the event.
We do not post out tickets. See faqs for more info.
Harry forged this distinctive style by studying at the feet of the masters, first as a sound man in his formative years in the blues clubs of Toronto doing sound for the likes of Junior Wells, Buddy Guy and Willie Dixon, then under a rigorous five-year tutelage with Vishwa Mohan Bhatt in India. Bhatt, whose guru was the late, great Ravi Shankar, is the inventor of the 20-stringed mohan veena, which has become Harry's signature instrument. Bhatt is best known for his collaboration on the Grammy Award-winning album "A Meeting By The River" with Ry Cooder.
Manx's musical journey has seen him busking in the streets of Europe, playing in Japanese shopping malls, and even a time when he regularly bumped into none other than John Lennon for three months, on a daily basis as Manx took a job in a New York City studio where Lennon was recording his album "Mind Games".
As fate would have it, it was while Manx was busking in the aforementioned Japanese mall that he first heard the sound of a mohan veena being played on an instrumental Indian album in a small record store. The guy in the store told him it was Vishwa Mohan Bhatt playing, and there began Harry's journey to go to India find Bhatt.
Even though he had played slide guitar for many years before arriving in India, Manx started back at the beginning under Bhatt's tutelage, even re-learning how to hold the bar. From there, Manx learned Eastern scales and eventually ragas, deceptively complex and regimented musical patterns that form the basis of Indian composition.
He spent three to four hours each morning practicing in Bhatt's home before returning that evening for a jam session with the tutor, his sons and various other fellow musicians. "Sometimes I'd throw in some blues licks in the middle," he says, "and everyone would fall over laughing and enjoying themselves. And I thought if I can get Indian people to enjoy Western music like that, then maybe I could get Westerners to enjoy Indian music, too."
Harry decided to explore this thread of connection between the two musical traditions.
His signature style follows in the footsteps of such pioneering work as that of Joe Harriott and John Mayer and their Indo-jazz fusions in the '60s, John McLaughlin's work with Shakti in the 70s, and Ashwin Batish's innovative raga-rock hybrid Sitar Power in 1987. But Manx's own indo-blues fusion seems destined to be the most universally appealing yet.
Born on the Isle of Man, Manx immigrated to Ontario with his parents when he was six years old. He started doing sound at age 15 and gradually worked his way up to becoming a regular soundman at the well-known El Mocambo club in Toronto, where he worked with a slew of blues legends. While Manx doesn't consider himself to be a blues artist per se, he does admit that blues is at the heart of much of his work. "I've always had one foot in the blues from those days," he says. "What I got from those artists is a groove that's fairly similar to theirs. That's what I'm particularly interested in, the groove, and that's the way I play blues today.
"I went to Europe when I was 20 and started making money as a busker," recalls Manx. "I've worked only as a musician since then. Few people know that I was actually a one-man band with a drum-and-bass feel to my sound. I still have that one-man-band sound."
Much of Manx's time in India was spent meditating with different masters, which in turn has imbued his music with an intangible spiritual quality. "I always cloak my messages with inspirational ideas in a story," Harry explains. "I also try and reach the listeners' hearts rather than their minds. With the mind, there's always a filtering of 'I agree' or 'I don't agree.' I like to engage people's hearts. I've always had more interest in my own development as a person than I had in my music. I think my music has done well partly as a result of my years of meditation. I can't take complete responsibility. My songs are a synthesis of everything I've absorbed. We're the sum of all of our experiences."
Those years of busking on the street in various locations around the world taught him how to truly connect with and move an audience. His training in India allowed him to approach music from a different perspective, where the focus is on the song and on the transfer of energy between the performer and the listener. What makes Harry an exceptional performer is his ability to completely give himself over to the song in the moment, creating a deep well of emotion for the audience to draw from. It's in the live setting, Manx says, that a bridge between "heavenly" India and "earthy" American blues is most effectively built.
"Indian music moves inward," he explains. "It's traditionally used in religious ceremonies and meditation, because it puts you into this whole other place. But Western music has the ability to move out, into celebration and dance. There are ragas that sound bluesy, and there are ways to bend strings while playing blues that sound Indian. I may be forcing the relationship between the two musical cultures, but I keep thinking they were made for each other. That idea leads me to more and more experimentation, and the journey has been great so far."
While Manx was a late bloomer, not releasing his first album until he was in his mid-forties, he is nevertheless a prolific artist, now releasing his ninth solo album in a 12-year span (he's made three more in collaboration and co-released with Canadian guitarist Kevin Breit). He's received seven Maple Blues Awards, six Juno nominations, the Canadian Folk Music Award in 2005 for Best Solo Artist and won CBC Radio's "Great Canadian Blues Award" in 2007.
His 2009 album "Bread and Buddha" was another melange of blues, roots, world and folk sounds. Harry spent almost two years carefully preparing the songs and used full instrumentation including piano, organ, drums, base, and scored strings. The CD is a poignant exploration of the ephemeral nature of the human experience, and received a Juno nomination for "Blues Album of the Year". Since then Harry has released a compilation album called "Isle Of Manx", his bestselling album to date, as well as the "Strictly Whatever" collaboration with longtime friend Breit.
After playing the prestigious Montreal Jazz festivals numerous of times solo, the festival promoter asked Harry to put a band together for the 2012 show. That's how Harry's World Affairs band developed, a culturally diverse collective made up of Indian vocalist Kiran Ahlawalia, African musician Yeshe on various instruments and Hammond organ player Clayton Doley from Australia.
It was with his new band line-up that Harry recorded his new studio album "Om Suite Ohm", which features mostly original songs with the members of World Affairs. The album was produced by distinguished musician/ producer/ engineer Hans Christian (Daniel Lanois, Robbie Robertson) and recorded between Wisconsin and Australia.
Harry has already been nominated by the Canadian Music Awards as Songwriter Of The Year for his song "Carry My Tears", featured on "Om Suite Ohm". The album also contains an unusual cover of jazz giant John Coltrane's song " A Love Supreme". This album is a step away from past Manx albums, and contains a more electric Bollywood feel to it. If you blend Indian folk melodies with slide guitar, add a sprinkle of gospel and some compelling grooves , you get a sound that goes down easy and leaves you hungry for more. The sort of sound that only Harry Manx can make.