Harry Manx returns to Ashland

Harry Manx will return to the Rogue Valley to perform his blend of blues and Indian music. St. Clair Productions will present the guitarist in concert at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29, at the Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 87 Fourth St., Ashland.

Manx performs a fusion of Mississippi delta Blues and traditional Indian ragas on slide guitar, six-string banjo, blues harp and the Mohan Veena, a guitar/sitar hybrid which looks like a guitar and includes the 20 sympathetic strings of the sitar.

Ariella St. Clair said that of the almost 300 concerts she has produced in Ashland over the last 12 years, Manx's performance for St. Clair Productions last September was one of the top five. "Manx's musicianship, songwriting, his patter between songs and his ability to mesmerize the audience (as well as this producer) convinced me that I must have him back," St. Clair said.

Manx's music has garnered many awards including the 2007 CBC Radios Great Canadian Blues Award; 2005, 2003 and 2002 Maple Blues Award for Acoustic Act of the Year; 2005 Canadian Folk Music Award for Best Solo Artist; and 2001 Independent Music Awards Best Blues Album. In addition, Manx's CDs have won several Juno award nominations (Canada's equivalent of the Grammys).

East Bay Express said of Manx: "At this point it's practically impossible to add anything new to the blues. But you can still wring a new tear out of the good ol' twelve-bar onion by adding something even older than the blues &

Indian classical music. That's just what Harry Manx has done, creating a style he calls 'Mysticssippi.' Sporting an appropriately weathered, gospel-influenced vocal tone, Manx's mix of folksy Americana and trance-inducing ragas truly pushes the boundaries of a genre long thought past innovation."

Born on the Isle of Man, Manx spent his childhood in Canada and left in his teens to live in Europe, Japan, India and Brazil. He honed his live show on street corners, in cafes, bars and at festivals. But it was Indian music that captured Manx and in the mid 80s he began his five-year tutelage with Rajasthani Indian musician Vishwa Mohan Bhatt He lived a total of 12 years in India before returning to Canada to begin recording and touring.

Manx and guitarist Kevin Breit opened for the Greg Allman Band at the Britt Festival in Jacksonville this past June.

Tickets are $20 in advance, $22 at the door, $10 for youth 12-17. Children under 12 admitted free with a paying adult. Tickets are available at the Music Coop, Ashland; on-line at ; or by calling 535-3562.

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