40 Years of Stony Plain

Like his last two-CD compilation 10 years ago, which celebrated his 30th year in business, Holger Petersen has again opened his Canadian label’s vaults, releasing this three-CD set commemorating this latest anniversary. What’s new here is the third CD, a selection of 12 rarities and previously unreleased material. Curiously, the story begins with the last track on disc three—Petersen’s very first recording, a pre-Stony Plain 1972 session that featured Chicago harmonica great Walter ‘Shakey” Horton on the moody instrumental “Shakey’s Edmonton Blues.” The label’s focus is on “roots and blues music” and Petersen records a lot of stateside musicians such as guitarist Duke Robillard, who has more than 20 albums out on the label. He gets his licks in here on “Ain’t Gonna Do It,” an outtake from a 2002 session. Other stateside musicians include Maria Muldaur, Eric Bibb, Jay McShann and Rory Block. There are a lot of Canadian musicians here, too; among them singer Ian Tyson, guitarist/vocalist Colin Linden and blues/rocker Jeff Healey.