Just got this note from Steve Edge:
The Malian group Tinariwen has been denied entry to Canada. This draconian measure has prevented audiences at the Winnipeg Folk Festival last weekend and the Vancouver Folk Music Festival, which opens today, the rare opportunity to see this fine band.
I am amazed and extremely disappointed. The band has been here before, with no problems. They are currently on tour in the USA, which has a much more stringent process for screening "exceptional aliens".
The Canadian Consulate in L.A. has failed to reply to any of the letters of support from local MPs and the Minister for Culture.
It is all very sad.
I had not realised that Canada was such a small (and small-minded) country.
Rogue Folk Club, Vancouver