Upstream Music Fest + Summit 2017, Day 2: Karl Blau

all photos by Bebe Labree Besch (view set)

Our second live performance of the day came from Mr. Karl Blau, long a fixture of the local music scene in Anacortes, WA, who has released upwards of 30 records since the early-90s. Playing tracks from a forthcoming record, as well as his interpretations of songs from the 60s and 70s presented on 2016’s Introducing Karl Blau, Karl Blau played to a packed Little London Plane as part of our Upstream Music Fest + Summit coverage.

Accompanying himself with just acoustic guitar, Blau’s performance started with the great Tommy Cash tune “Six White Horses,” Blau’s rich voice emphasizing the elegiac quality of the track’s imagery (Cash’s version peaked at No. 4 on the US Country Charts). Four out of Blau’s five performed songs came from this golden era of music, including “To Love Somebody,” (recorded by Bee Gees and Nina Simone), and a gorgeous rendition of Link Wray’s “Fallin’ Rain.” Wray would have celebrated a birthday earlier this month, explained Blau, before launching into an extended version of the cut.

Karl Blau will be performing at J&M Cafe tomorrow at 10:45, headlining a showcase curated by Fisherman’s Village Music Festival. Blau is also selling many of his recorded albums on Bandcamp, which is well worth the investment.

Karl Blau live on KEXP @ Upstream Music Fest


Karl Blau live on KEXP @ Upstream Music Fest

Karl Blau live on KEXP @ Upstream Music Fest

Karl Blau live on KEXP @ Upstream Music Fest

Karl Blau live on KEXP @ Upstream Music Fest

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