► May 10, 2007

When Cape Breton Rocks...The World Rocks!
by Mike Megaffin

The Seventh Annual Cape Breton International Drum Festival took stage at The Savoy Theatre in Glace Bay, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia on April 28th and 29th, 2007. Everyone had a blast, from the world-class international performers to the show patrons who ranged in age from eight to eighty. The festival is all about life, love, drums, percussion, rhythm, music and inspiration, but mostly it's about sharing and education. Each year the program is based around the festival's motto, "Education through Performance".

What makes the CBIDF one of the world's most unique drum festivals? I asked Bruce Aitken, who along with his lovely wife Gloria Jean, are the owners/operators of the show.

Bruce Aitken
This year was the best show we've ever held. A lot of collaborations took place that were totally unplanned. It was extraordinary because our guests performed music that they weren't expecting to play and took the audience on a journey of discovery. Cape Breton is the most unique drum festival in the world. It brings people together both spiritually and emotionally.

2007 Highlights
Pete Lockett brought people to their knees. That had a huge effect on the other performers because Pete ended up playing with Ed Mann and Michael Shrieve. Michael gave extraordinary insight about the music industry and his career, and people sat on the edge of their seats listening. You could hear a pin drop. The audience was riveted to Michael's heartfelt discussion. Phil Maturano's playing was great. The extreme/heavy metal drummers, Flo Mounier and Derek Roddy, showed a side of drumming we've never seen here before. Bill Bruford was on fire. John Favicchia, the a cappella trio Asani, Alan White, Dom Famularo, Curt Bisquera, and Richard Mangicaro were all super and entertaining. The festival makes every audience member feel like they're the only person in the room. The drummer up there is talking to them on a personal level.
It was an honor to give the Legends Award to Steve Gadd and Denny Seiwell. Steve made a personal video message sent to us via John DeChristopher at Zildjian. Denny Seiwell received the recognition that he richly deserves due to his outstanding input to the drumming community in this world. We received an email from Paul McCartney congratulating Denny on his award. Denny gave a master class that was packed and people told me that it was the greatest master class they had ever seen. Our Legends Award roster now includes Hal Blaine, Bernard Purdie, Bill Cobham, Denny Seiwell, and Steve Gadd!