Ultimate Storyteller, Showman and Bluesman
Born & raised in
, Charlie Robertson spent the War years (WW II) with his father’s relatives in Montreal . It was there, at an early age that Charlie was absorbed by the Blues, a lifelong affair. Subsequent visits to his cousin John Peden’s famous club, “The Sidetrack” over the years saw Charlie playing with legendary players such as Doc & Merle Watson, Son House, Bobby Blue Bland and Otis Redding. As a schoolboy in Montreal during the 50’s, Charlie spent many hours at the Esquire Show Bar, Rockhead’s & the Harlem Paradise where he was welcomed by acoustic and electric jazz & bluesmen, Howlin’ Wolf, Frank Motley & his Motley Crew, Dizzy Gillespie & Bo Diddley. North Carolina
During the 60’s & 70’s Charlie performed the blues and ran coffeehouses in BC and Ontario where he worked with Richie Havens, Joni Mitchell, Elvin Bishop, Big Joe Williams, Bukka White, Paul Butterfield, Mississippi Fred McDowell and Tom Rush. He hosted university concerts with Buddy Guy, Little Walter, James Cotton and their bands.
His academic career saw him teaching classes in Popular Culture and Creative Writing. He developed the first post-secondary Canadian Literature Class. He also worked in the communications field and helped develop the
at the College of Integrated Studies . University of Waterloo
For 40 years, Charlie has been an itinerant bluesman, traveling the globe playing the blues, hosting concerts and conducting workshops. In recent years, Charlie has performed frequently at such festivals as the Harbourfront Jazz & Blues Festival, the Mariposa Folk Festival, our own Mill Race Festival of Traditional Music and festivals in the eastern US. He has also performed at City of
music festivals, the Waterloo and University of Waterloo Blues Fest ’s Blues, Booze & Barbecues. He has played the blues with the Gypsy Kings in Kitchener , tango bands in France , reggae players in Argentina , and flamenco dancers in Jamaica , where his passion for the blues has always erased national and political borders and brought strange bedfellows together to share the music. He may still be seen at universities and his favourite cafes when time permits. Charlie performed at the 10th Anniversary celebration for Voodoo Healin’ Blues Radio and at the Grand River Blues Society tribute concerts at the Cambridge Arts Centre. Poor Charlie is currently based in Muskoka where he can be found playing the blues wherever music lovers meet for cool drinks and hot licks. Spain