Fredericton — Police could be seen surrounding City Hall Saturday night after evacuating Queen Street between York and Carleton. While the officers remained tight-lipped on why they were evacuating the area, some witnesses claim that they saw a man in his late 20s being lowered into a police vehicle around 8:30 p.m.
The man has since been identified as mediocre blues musician Tom Howland, who had allegedly been bombing so hard that is was “a threat to municipal security.” Howland refutes these claims, contending that “the crowd was dead” even before he stepped onto the stage.
“It deeply saddens me to hear of this bombing,” said Mayor Brad Woodside in a statement this morning. “The festival has been a staple of our city for many years now, and I’d hate to think that a single bad performer can put an end to its great legacy.”
In fact, the festival itself has come under fire yesterday and today, as it has since come light that organizers were well aware of the possibility that Howland might bomb during his set. They had been informed by several sources that the band played at the Halifax Jazz Festival in 2014 with similarly poor results. But, despite these warnings, Harvest decided to go ahead with the act.
“I saw them in Nova Scotia last year, and they were pretty bad,” said local blues fan Tracy Albert. “Still, my girlfriend and I decided that we’d see them again this year, hoping they had gotten a little better.”
But they hadn’t. If the police had not stepped in and put an end to the show, Albert, as well as 38 other concert-goers would have been subjected almost 2 hours of self-indulgent, derivative blues music. Albert says that she is “extremely grateful” to the cops who had risked their own enjoyment by attending the concert so to bring the show to quick halt before any serious harm was done to the art form.
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