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Renowned Minnesota folk bluesman Charlie Parr begins Turf Club residency

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

Charlie Parr is a Minnesota treasure.

He has evolved from a more straightforward folk/blues guitar player into a singular songwriter that contains multitudes.

Parr began his January residency at the Turf Club – he’s playing there every Sunday this month – with a unique show.

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

 

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

He began solo, playing songs on both his electric and classically-blues resonator guitar. As the show went on, more people joined him on stage, until finally there was a five-piece band of his friends and collaborators behind him. The loose collective had never played together live before, but you’d never know it by how tight they were.

The band featured fiddle, banjo, percussion, a second guitar, and that old-time string band contraption that is like a stand-up bass but it only has one string.

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

 

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

Parr’s energy was especially high on his classic “Cheap Wine.” The full sound of the band added a new dimension to folk standards “I Wish I Was a Mole in the Ground” and “Casey Jones Blues.”

The band really got cooking towards the end. Gospel stomper “God Moves on the Water” and “Duncan and Brady” (which lovingly nodded to legendary folk musician Dave van Ronk) were also highlights.

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

 

Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)
Charlie Parr (photo by Chris Schorn, Christine Photography)

Each night of Parr’s Turf Club residency promises to be a completely different adventure. If you missed him on Sunday, do your best to catch him the rest of the month. There are no tickets available for the remaining shows, however, so good luck. 

Erik Ritland
Author: Erik Ritland

Music in Minnesota editor Erik Ritland is a journalist and musician from the east side of St. Paul. He has released 7 albums and 8 EPs featuring his unique blend of rock n' roll, modern rock, and Americana since 2001. Rambling On, his personal blog and podcast covering music and sports, was launched in 2012. Erik was also Head Staff Writer for Minnesota culture blogs Hometown Hustle and Curious North.

Written by Erik Ritland

Music in Minnesota editor Erik Ritland is a journalist and musician from the east side of St. Paul. He has released 7 albums and 8 EPs featuring his unique blend of rock n' roll, modern rock, and Americana since 2001. Rambling On, his personal blog and podcast covering music and sports, was launched in 2012. Erik was also Head Staff Writer for Minnesota culture blogs Hometown Hustle and Curious North.

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