Ivan Zar

Born in Alexandria, Egypt and migrated to Perth in 1963, Ivan Zar was drawn to the Blues at an early age and taught himself the harmonica and Delta Blues style Guitar. In 1968, he formed his first band "King Biscuit Co", as well as writing his own songs. After playing in several bands, Ivan formed a band called The Elks in 1975, which was to introduce the Chicago style of Blues to the mainstream. The band toured the South West and across to major cities in the Eastern States. They had the opportunity to support B.B King, Rory Gallagher, Joe Cocker and Ike and Tina Turner, and recorded an album Refer to Drawer, which is now a sought after Australian Blues album by blues affeciandos. In 1981, Ivan recorded some of the material that he had written and worked in a duo with Brian Fitzgerald called The Deltatones. They worked in cafe's, folk festivals, small bars and supported John Mayall, Mick Jagger, John Hammond and Leo Kottke. In 1983, they recorded Me and the Devil as well as a cassette Harp of the West, which featured some of WA's most prominent harmonica players. Both of these recordings are also sought after blues fans alike. Going solo again, Ivan had the opportunity to play with such acts as The Black Sorrows, Paul Kelly, Bondi Cigars and Cold Chisel. From 1992-95, he opened The Bindoon Rock Festival and has been a part of Blues at Bridgetown since it's inception in 1993. During this period Ivan was busking in the streets of Northbridge every friday and saturday night - occasionally with other players. He also got the chance to start touring throughout outback WA, playing in pubs, Aboriginal communities, schools and many royal shows. 1995 saw the release of Ivan's first CD Track me Down, for which he received the 'Outstanding Recording Award' at that year's Blues at Bridgetown. In 1996, with John Wilson, he toured Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania. 1998 saw the release of Ivan's second CD Afrika Tide and he again toured the eastern states. While there he had the opportunity to record with some friends from Perth and came up with the next CD Ivan Zar's Deltatones. Back in Perth, a chance meeting in May 2003 with 13-yr-old Ben Witt saw the two working in local pubs and a live recording at the Perth Blues Club in June. They also performed at Bridgetown Blues in 2004 and 2006. Both Ben and Ivan were invited to be part of the West Australian showcase at Goulburn Blues Festival in NSW in 2007.

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