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Harper Brings ‘World Blues’ To Town Friday


He’s been called one of the best entertainers on the Blues circuit today, mixing world music, blues, soul, funk, and of course, a taste of his homeland of Australia, Harper will bring his didgeridoo and his band Midwest Kind to Old Skoolz in Sioux Falls this Friday night.

Harper is a phenomenal harmonica player with a deep, soulful voice who tells his own stories in a J.J. Cale type manner and is hailed by fans and critics alike.

Born in the United Kingdom, Harper’s musical journey began early, performing in brass bands playing the trumpet and euphonium.  At the age of ten, his family moved half way around the world to Perth, Australia, and his father introduced Harper to the harp. In Perth, one of the most isolated cities in the world, there was a thriving blues and folk scene. The blues had a rawness, an honesty and a passion of the soul which spoke to Harper deeply.  Then, like every blues lover, Harper began his journey backwards to discover the deeper roots of the music, inspired by a pretty wide range of players and styles, from Muddy Waters, Sonny Boy Williamson II and Little Walter to Sugar Blue and Stevie Wonder.

By combining traditional and modern influences, borrowing from western and Aboriginal music, Harper has created a highly original take on the roots genre, which some have dubbed “World Blues.”  His innovative use of electronic enhancement and feedback breaks the traditional boundaries of the harp, giving his music its distinctive harmonics and effects.  The distorted guitars and the unique drone of the didgeridoo create raw yet eerie sonic textures, somehow sounding primal and contemporary at the same time.

And don’t be surprised to hear one of his favorite words: wanker! Just typing it makes me laugh! Harper is scheduled to be my in studio guest Friday afternoon.

Tickets are $10 in advance at Old Skoolz or $13 at the door. Old Skoolz is located at 921 E. 8th Street in Sioux Falls. Call 338-9491.

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