Full House For Climax

Full House For Climax
The Leaside Pub, 190 Laird Drive

Opposite The Aerodrome Since 1918

Opposite The Aerodrome Since 1918
Fine Photos Thanks To Bill Symmons

Canada's First Airmail Delivery, Leaside June 1918

Canada's First Airmail Delivery, Leaside June 1918
Photo Coutesy Toronto Archives

Dating Back To 1918

Dating Back To 1918
A Lot Of History At The Leaside Pub

Saturday, June 2, 2018


Saturday 30                      100th Anniversary of Airmail Delivery
                                          The Leaside Pub 4-7pm
Sunday 22                        Port Union Library 7-9pm
Tuesday 14                       Wasaga Beach, Jazz In The Park 7-9pm
Fri-Sun 7-9                      1st Annual Wawasee Jazz Party, 
                                          Chatauqua-Wawasee Resort, Syracuse, Indiana
Saturday 29                      The Leaside Pub 4-pm
Saturday 27                      The  Leaside Pub 4-7pm
Saturday 30                      The Leaside Pub 4-7pm
Saturday 29                      The Leaside Pub 4-7pm
Thu-Sun 7-10                  Fresno Dixieland Mardi Gras CA

Friday, June 1, 2018

Wings Over Leaside: June 30, 2018
100th Anniversary of Canada's First Airmail Delivery 
Yet again a full house at The Leaside Pub Saturday May 26. Best to phone Param well in advance to for reservations (416) 467-8682, especially for our very special occasion Saturday June 30. We'll be celebrating the hundredth anniversary of Canada's first airmail delivery at the RAF's Leaside Aerodrome, right opposite The Leaside Pub, on June 24, 1918. 
We'll have representatives of governments, Canada Post, The Canadian Aeronautical Society, The Canadian Aerophilatelic Society (with gifts of commemorative postcards), the Royal Air Force and the Royal Canadian Air Force.       Jeremy Hopkin will display photos of the historic event and other memorable happenings at the airport all those years ago, while the Great War Flying Museum, from Cheltenhamn will show what a wonderful job they're doing preserving, rebuilding and flying vintage planes.
Model Planes
We also invite airplane modellers to bring along any vintage or other interesting models for display. We already have a 1/24 scale model of the original Curtis JN4 Canuck (nicknamed Jenny) which delivered the mail -- built in Canada and used to train allied pilots in WW1.
Old Mull Scotch
There's quite a story behind the flight from Montréal to Toronto. Not only was there mail on board, but some illicit cargo, crates of Old Mull Scotch for a wedding -- Montreal was wet but toronto was dry...
Reception for Special Guests
We'll have a reception invited guests at 2pm.
Wings Over Leaside
At 3.30pm we have a special surprise for the people in the neighbourhood -- a tribute to all the pilots who trained at the aerodrome -- many of them killed in training and in the war. We have managed to arrange to have a fly-by of a Sopwith 1 1/2 Strutter from the Great War Flying Museum. Pilot Kees Van Berkel will show off this wonderful old plane -- a stalwart in the First World War -- 6,000 of them were built.  
Old Fashioned Variety Show
4pm-7pm Climax Jazz Band and Canadian Forces' Sweetheart (95-years young) Dorothy Rose will perform songs from the twenties with her usual pizzazz.
Leaside Proud
A pleasure to be part of the joyful celebration of a historic moment in Leaside's and Canada's colourful history.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Toronto Bands Take New Orleans By Storm
City's Council's Investment Pays off
Forty-Six years ago, April 1972 Climax, were in New Orleans for the Jazz and Heritage Fair, with Downchild Blues Band, Jim Galloway's Metro Stompers and Cliff Bastien's Camelia Jazz Band. Sponsored by the City of Toronto ($5,000) and with money raised at a concert at St. Lawrence Centre for The Performing Arts and a 12-hour marathon at Ye Olde Brunswick House. 
Though not officially invited to play at the festival, we took New Orleans by storm, with a packed Friday session in Economy Hall at the Royal Sonesta Hotel when the official opening at the Fairgrounds was cancelled, and cocktail hour sessions at the hotel's pool. Each of the bands found a pub to play at on Bourbon Street to greatly appreciative audiences. The Climax  line-up was Juergen Hesse, Bob Erwig, Bruce Bakewell, Craig Barrett, Geoff Holmes and Chris Daniels.
This led to Climax DC9 charters to the festival many years afterwards, with official appearances at the festival and continuing gigs on Bourbon Street, and to invitations to other festivals in the U.S. and Europe. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Mt. Pleasant Rose To Open Soon
Former Chick'N'Deli, 744, Revived At last the mystery is solved.. The old SEVEN44 will reopen as the Mt. Pleasant Rose sometime in May/June.
Owner Bernie Duff, whose daughter Lisa and husband Johnny own the still flourishing Rose and Crown on Yonge street, told Ursula there will be a piano and entertainment. Good news for the neighbourhood.
On behalf of all the patrons of the old Chick'N'Deli we'd like to welcome Mt. Pleasant Rose and wish Bernie and the staff every success in this long-standing venue.
We'll let you know when the grand opening is happening. Maybe we should all bring a rose to mark this auspicious occasion.

Historical footnote: Climax Jazz Band helped reopen the old Chick'N'Deli after a fire in February 1983 -- Paul Rimstead, columnist for the Toronto Sun, recommended co-owner Louis Nemes hire us 'eight days a week'. We played some full weeks, breaking the alcohol sales record several times, and continued performing Saturday matinées until 2015. Jack and Kathleen Brewer became full owners in 1984 and after Jack died Kathleen continued managing the business until 2013. Chef Steve took over and after renovations, including ripping out the Tiffany style ceiling, it reopened as People's Chicken and then as SEVEN44. Climax left at the end of 2014, eventually relocating to The Leaside Pub in 2016.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018


Climax's British style traditional jazz, rooted in new Orleans,nurtured in pubs and clubs, gets the audience involved. Outstanding musicianship, great humour, a wondrous variety of tunes for listening and dancing. Knocks your socks off!

Climax is a six-piece: clarinet, cornet/vocals, trombone/vocals, banjo, drums, double bass/vocals.
British style traditional jazz: marches, blues, spirituals, rags, latin, popular songs.
Founded: Toronto February 1971
Steady engagements: 1971-1974: Albert's Hall, Ye Olde Brunswick House
1974-1975: The Chimney, The Forge
1975-1982: DJ's Tavern
matinées: 1973-1983: Malloney's Studio
1983-2014: Chick'N'Deli (SEVEN44)
2014-2015: alleycatz
2015 -present    The Leaside Pub

Helped pioneer Toronto's Saturday matinée scene
Organized Charter  flights to New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival: 1973-82
Organized Trillium Moonlight Jazz Cruises on Lake Ontario: 70s-80s
Organized New Orleans Dance Nights for TD-Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival: 2001-2007

Toronto, New Orleans, Medford, Camden, Montreal, Sacramento, Fresno, Elkhart IN, Indianapolis, Olympia, Ottawa, San Diego, Washington,
San Francisco, Edmonton, Boston, Three Rivers CA, Chattanooga, Saskatoon, Los Angeles, St. Louis, Edinburgh, Vancouver, San Francisco, Chicago,
Kirkcudbright, Victoria, Pismo Beach CA, Denver, The Netherlands. Brantford, Eureka, Port Angeles, Kyoto (twice), Oakville, Seaside, Seattle, U.K., Penticton, Syracuse, Flint , Germany, Belleville, Madison, Breckenbridge, Kingston, Charleston S.C., Central City  CA, Thunder Bay, Indian Wells, Palm Springs, Hamilton, Friday Harbor WA, Holland MI

Caribbean (many), The Amazon (2) Mexico (many) Bermuda, Alaska (2), Antilles (many), Hawaii, Panama Canal (3)

Climax has performed with many outstanding guest musicians including: Oscar Peterson, Turk Murphy, Herb Hall, Wingy Manone, Kenny Davern, Mr. Acker Bilk, Humphrey Lyttelton, Bob Wilbur, Monty Sunshine, Graeme Bell, Phil Harris, George Segal, George Melly and Carol Leigh and shared gigs with The Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey Bands, The Dutch Swing College, The World's Greatest Jazz Band and Bob Barnard's Australian Jazz Band. 

Climax has made over 30 recordings with more than 250 different tunes including:
The Entertainers (for the Canadian Talent Library), Direct To Disk (15,000 sold worldwide),
Konnichiwa! Japan and Konnichiwa ll (live in Japan) and Toronto To New Orleans
and all the girls go crazy (Canadian Collectors' Congress Award Winners).

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

The Leaside Pub
A Lot Of History
The building dates back to the early1900s at the edge of the Leaside Aerodrome, where First World War RAF pilots were trained on the Canadian-built version of the Curtis Jenny (JEN4). After the war many of these two-seater planes became barn-burners providing joy rides at shows and fairs across North America.
Canada's first air mail was flown from Montreal to Leaside Aerodrome by an RAF Jenny on June 24, 2018. The flight took six hours because of two refuelling stops and a heavy load -- not just of the mail, but cases of Old Mull Scotch concealed in the hold (a well-kept secret for many years). The pilots had promised to bring back something for a wedding -- Toronto was dry but Montreal was wet.
The Leaside pub was a Canadian Bank of Commerce branch in the 1920s -- the Vault is still there, with its gold doors, installed in 1922 at the west end, behind the band.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

California Here We Come Feb. 2019
Bons Temps At Fresno's Mardi Gras
Come and join us at the glorious Sounds of Mardi Gras, February 9-12, 2019. The Fresno Dixieland Society certainly knows how to throw a wild party. Climax have performed at the festival since it began in 1984 and it's our favorite for good times and good music.
The luxurious DoubleTree By Hilton is right downtown, with all five venues in the hotel and adjacent Conference Center. The Doubletree is sold out but the La Quinta nearby has rooms with breakfast for reasonable prices.
  It's an unabashed traditional jazz festival, with fine bands including Climax, High Sierra, Grand Dominion, Blue Street, Bob Schulz's Frisco Jazz Band, Devil Mountain, Cell Block Seven and Tom Rigney's Flambeau Cajun Band, as well as other local bands and youth bands.
   They celebrate the Mardi Gras with Parasol and Masquerade/Costume Parades, a Swing Dance, Crowning of the Mardi Gras King and Queen, a Gospel Set and Wind Down Dinner And Dance. 
   We do hope you can join in the happy times in Fresno, the country of Redwoods, raisins and almonds and great music. For more information: www.fresnodixie.com