Jim Byrnes is a complex man.
Some folks know him as the bluesman who was born down in St. Louis, eventually making his way up to Vancouver in the 1970s.
Over the years Jim has played with a virtual who’s who of the blues: Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, Robert Cray.
Some folks know Jim as the actor who has appeared in many TV and movie roles, achieving fame on the Wiseguy, Highlander and Sanctuary TV series.
Well, there is another facet of Jim Byrnes for folks to explore — the man who has a passion for country music. In 2012, he released a CD of his favourite country tunes to prove it.
I Hear the Wind in the Wires is a collection of songs from the golden age of country music, many of which Jim has been listening to for all of his life. He has turned back the hands of time to take his listeners into the world of country music, but not the kind of country music heard on the radio anytime this century.
Modern country records often favour overplaying and glossy production more than talent and authentic emotion.
The tales of lawlessness and tender love, recklessness and yearning, and tough as nails characters with sentimental flaws are songs that Jim sounds as if he was born to sing. Not just any musician can feel music like this and bring it to life.
Steve Dawson is the producer and multi-instrumentalist for this celebration of the music of Buck Owens, Ray Price, Hank Williams, Marty Robbins and other country music legends. Listening to I Hear the Wind in the Wires is a rare and exhilarating experience.
This is the most natural and downright joyous album of Jim Byrnes’ career. There’s nothing more powerful than a good song and nobody knows that better than Jim.
If a song is good enough, it can lift us up, bring us to tears, and heal a broken heart. Folks will have two chances to hear Jim Byrnes and Steve Dawson perform songs from I Hear the Wind in the Wires at the Filberg Festival.
The Filberg Festival in Comox happens Aug. 2 to 5. Tickets are $15 daily or $40 for the weekend pass.
This family-friendly festival celebrates excellence in all forms of Canadian arts and crafts and music with over 100 juried crafts booths, plus music on two stages, a children’s area, and concession booths. The objective of the festival is to raise the money needed to restore, preserve and maintain the beautiful Filberg Heritage Lodge and Gardens.
The lodge is open for guided tours throughout the festival and the gardens are open to the public year round.
For more information, go to www.filbergfestival.com.
— Filberg Festival