Jeff Healey, Zappacosta lined up for ‘tour de fort’

“tour de Fort” organizers have lined up two talented and entertaining acts for its upcoming 2005-06 concert series, with four more to be confirmed later this summer.
Chairman Gary Rogozinski revealed Friday afternoon that the committee has confirmed bookings with Jeff Healey’s Jazz Wizards and Alfie Zappacosta.
He added while the remaining four acts won’t be announced for at least another month, news of these big names should boost passport sales for the concert series, which starts this fall.
“Jeff Healey. That’s a reason to buy my passport right there,” said Rogozinski.
“If people want passports, they’d better get them because they’re going to go,” he warned, noting while he can’t say anything about the other artists being negotiated for the upcoming season, “We always have good shows.”
Healey, blind from eye cancer since the age of one, picked up his first guitar at three and hasn’t stopped performing since—easily recognizable by his technique of playing with his guitar flat on his lap.
He and his band released their first album, “See The Light,” in 1988, garnering a top 10 single in “Confidence Man” and a Billboard Hot 100 Top 5 ranking for “Angel Eyes.”
That led to appearances on Late Night with David Letterman and The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.
Over the years, Healey went on to release several more albums, contribute songs to movie soundtracks, and win numerous awards (including Grammys).
He also toured with the likes of ZZ Top, Little Feat, Ringo Starr, Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, Bon Jovi, and even once opened for the Rolling Stones.
Just recently, Healey underwent successful surgery to remove a malignant tumour on his left thigh, but is expected to be back on tour later this month.
He has returned to his jazz roots with his most recent album, “Adventures in Jazzland,” and his concert here—with backup band Jeff Healey’s Jazz Wizards—will focus more on traditional jazz music of the 1920s and ’30s.
According to his website (iamzappacosta.com), Zappacosta is considered by some as one of the best vocal talents in Canada, with chart-topping singles like “Nothing Can Stand in Your Way,” “Passion,” “When I Fall in Love Again,” and “We Should Be Lovers.”
Zappacosta has won two Juno Awards, (for Most Promising Male Vocalist and Album of the Year) and an American Music Award (for Most Popular Album of the Year).
He has written for his own production company, gone solo on his own label, fronted the rock band, Surrender, performed lead roles in the musicals “Evita,” “Hair,” “Jesus Christ Superstar,” and “Frankenstein,” and collaborated on the “Dirty Dancing” soundtrack.
He’s also released eight original albums (including “Dark Sided Jewel,” “Innocence Ballet,” and, most recently, “Start Again”).
He is also an actor who has appeared in movies and television.
All shows will be at the Townshend Theatre and start at 7:30 p.m., unless otherwise noted.
As Rogozinski noted, passports for the 2005-06 season are still available. The cost is $95 for all six shows.
To get yours, talk to any “tour de Fort” board member, call Barb MacDonell at 274-2544, or fill out an on-line request form at www.tourdefort.com.

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