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L.A. Beat

Kimberley MacGregor inspired by working with Harry Manx at Banff Arts Centre

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Musically the past year has been a “dream come true,” for Edmonton based singer/ songwriter Kimberley MacGregor, who returns to the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Jan. 21.

Kimberley MacGregor returns to Lethbridge this weekend. Photo by Richard Amery
 She played a wicked show at the Owl in September, but returns on her own for a more intimate, acoustic evening.

 Since September, she has been writing a lot. She completed a five week residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts where she was mentored by renown Canadian blues/folk/east Indian musician Harry Manx, which lead to an opportunity to perform on stage with him.

“I felt so stupidly lucky to play with him. I got to play ‘Sometimes’ from his In Good We trust Cd which he recorded with Kevin Breit,” MacGregor enthused.

 I got a great recording of us together, though  I don’t think I can release it because it’s his song,” she said, adding it was a highlight just to meet him.
“We had an hour long practice session together.  I had a whole list of things I wanted to do and at the top of the list was get a selfie with him,” she gushed.
“I learned a lot  from him about working with an audience and performing,” she said.
She had high praise for the Banff Centre artist residence program, where artists get their own personal cabin to focus on creating , free of distractions as well as  the added benefit of mentorship from well known artists.
“It was a huge, life changing experience,” she enthused.

“It is such an amazing opportunity for people to have,” she said.

“The biggest  benefit is they gave me the space to just create, which is pretty tough to do when I  have three jobs and almost feel like giving up,” she said.
 She wrote and recorded enough material for an entire new EP.
“I might release it as an EP called the Banff sessions, but listening to the songs, I think I’d prefer to  to play them with my band,” she said.
After completing her residency,  she decided to focus on booking a “North by South” tour of Alberta with Ryan Phillips frontman of Lethbridge indie-rock band the Silkstones before he leaves for overseas. She met him during her last Lethbridge show which included the Silkstones.

“He messaged me and said it would be fun to do a mini tour together,” she related.
“He’s an exceptionally nice person and he’s really talented. It just made so much sense,” she said.
She will be playing Lethbridge with Elliot Thomas, who she plays with a lot in Edmonton
 She has several key gigs coming up. She is going to Kansas City for the Folk Alliance in April and will be returning to Lethbridge to play with Matt Patershuk and Ryland Moranz, March 31.

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 17 January 2017 11:11 )  
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