Mixing equal parts musical scholar and tattooed rock n’ roll rebel, Toronto-based guitarist Dan McKinnon is not your average blues rocker. While the foundation of his music is rooted in the sounds of Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Guy, and the three Kings, McKinnon also incorporates jazz, hip-hop, and fuzzed-out rock to create a sound that’s uniquely his own.
After his first release, the 2013 full-length album As Sharp As Possible, which received extensive critical acclaim and airplay across North America, Europe, and Australia, he’s back with Jook Joint, a live video series that showcases his modern interpretations of well-known, traditional blues standards. From its modern grooves and searing solos, it’s a collection of music that’s tailor-made for non-blues listeners, but accessible to traditional fans of the genre as well.
Recorded live at Poetry Jazz Café, the Toronto venue where McKinnon has maintained an ongoing residency for the last two years, Jook Joint also features bassist Mick Marratta and drummer Michael Carbone performing inspired takes of tunes such as the hip-hop tinged “Spoonful”, the garage-rock influenced “She Moves Me” and “Messin’ with the Kid”, which fuses breakneck funk and modern jazz with the genre that both music were born from: the blues.
The future ahead is only looking brighter, which includes a follow-up album planned for an early-2018 release. Blues Rock Review once wrote “With one great lick, a genre can don a new face, a new energy and excitement. Enter Toronto native Dan McKinnon”. After hearing his music or seeing him live, you will see why this is the case.