Stuart Laughton is at home on many stages, whether playing guitar, mandolin and harmonica at the Edmonton Folk, Ottawa Blues and Mariposa festivals with the Porkbelly Futures band he founded, at New York’s Lincoln Centre or Vienna’s Konzerthaus with Canadian Brass, at Milan’s legendary La Scala Opera (where he was principal trumpet at age 23), or most recently at his “home stage” in the Dora Keogh Irish Pub on Toronto’s Danforth Avenue, where RADIO DIAL was born.
Why RADIO DIAL? Because on long car trips, Stuart scours the radio waves for interesting music, and wanted to bring a similarly eclectic presentation to the stage (think Stuart McLean’s Vinyl Café, with the speaking and musical proportions reversed). It helps that he sings and plays a dozen instruments, and that he injects his contagious enthusiasm into a kaleidoscopic amalgam of 1920’s Broadway, country blues and 60’s pop instrumental hits, B.B. King guitar, Boogie Woogie piano and Chet Baker’s jazz trumpet, country, Celtic, rockabilly and his own songs about Canada. (Stuart’s enthusiasms have also made him Founder and Artistic Director of The Forest Festival in Haliburton, Ontario.)
RADIO DIAL Features some or all of the following:
- Burke Carroll (Murray McLaughlan/Justin Rutledge) – pedal steel guitar and Dobro
- Rebecca Campbell (Porkbelly Futures, Jane Siberry, Fat Man Waving) – vocals and percussion.
- Steve Lucas (Bruce Cockburn/guest with Levon Helm Band in Woodstock) – Bass
- Martin Worthy (Porkbelly Futures/Joe Hall) – Drums
- Jim Clayton (Clayton – Scott Group/Second City) – Piano