I suspect that not many southern Manitobans know of Ed Bickert, who passed away this week. But they should! Ed Bickert is a legend in Canadian jazz circles, one of the greatest guitarists this country has ever produced. He played or recorded with Oscar Peterson, Milt Jackson, Paul Desmond and Rosemary Clooney, to name just a few. Famous for playing a Fender Telecaster guitar, he released fifteen jazz albums as a band leader, won a Juno Award, and was even given the Order of Canada!
Unfortunately, I don’t think he’s all that well-known in his birthplace of southern Manitoba. Ed Bickert (spelled Bueckert on the Grandma Online genealogy site) was born in 1932 in Hochfeld, Manitoba, a Mennonite village about twelve kilometres south of Winkler. He is the son of Heinrich Bueckert, born in Alexanderthal, South Russia and Helena Dyck of Plum Coulee, Manitoba. He grew up in Vernon, British Columbia and became a jazz legend in Toronto.
Thank you for the music, Ed. You will be remembered!