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L.A. Beat

Geoff Berner records crowd favourites for new CD

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Due to audience demand, Vancouver musician Geoff Berner  is taking a slight departure from his usual accordion powered klezmer punk muse on his new album “Canadiana Grotesquica.”Geoff Berner Sings Phony Drawl last year. Photo by Richard Amery
Though there is still his usual blend of humour and serious issues, there is also plenty of accordion, except placed in a more country rock context.
 Berner plays a special ticketed event at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, March 29 with songwriter Richard Inman.

“These are songs people have asked if they are on a CD. And I felt just terrible that they weren’t so I put them on a CD,” Berner said.

As usual he combines razor sharp wit with serious issues and songs he has just always wanted to play like his ode to Vancouver Canucks enforcer, Gino Odjick.
“ The Algonquin Assassin’s job was to protect the Russian Rocket Pavel Bure. But off the ice he was a fan favourite and a real gentleman. He carried himself with a certain dignity. Even after a fight, he’d be a gentleman,” Berner said.

“Super Subtle Folk Song” is anything but. But it also draws attention to issues with Berner’s unique humour.

“It‘s a fun song,” he deadpanned.
 There is even Alberta content on “Never Play Cards for money With Corby Lund.”

“ I‘ve never played cards with Corb, but I’ve watched him enough to know that I don’t want to because he’s way too good,” Berner said.
“Rule of the Road” is inspired by Dick Montana of the Beat Farmers.

Berner takes a shot at modern country music on “Phony Drawl.”
“ It’s about country singers from Vancouver and Ontario who sing with a drawl and it sounds a lot different than how they talk.”
Other than recording the new CD, Berner has written another book and toured  Europe with Rae Spoon.

“ I’ve known Rae since 2003  when Rae was barely 18. We went to Scandinavia for the first time. I have a pretty good career there, but Rae had never been there,” he said.
 Berner fondly remembers playing Love and Records in 2016.
“That’s a great little festival,” he said.

 After this tour, he returns to Europe with Rae Spoon, with tour dates all over England, the Netherlands and Scandinavia
He is excited abut his new book “The Fiddler is a Good Woman.”


“It’s a character study — 12 different perspectives of one lady fiddle player,” he said, noting the fiddler was inspired by several different people.” he said.
“The last book, ‘Festival Man’ was directly inspired by real events. And it did pretty well, so the publisher asked me to write another book,” he said.

He is excited to play with Richard Inman.

“ He‘s  a great songwriter. And he’s from around there and he sings like he talks. I’m pretty excited to play with him in Lethbridge and Calgary,” he said.

He noted he doesn’t want people to be dissuaded from coming to the show because of the cover charge.

“I hope it doesn’t deter people. I have a policy. I’d rather have people in the audience who are really into the music. If you really can’t afford it, send me an e-mail and I’ll put you on the list. I don’t want people to not be able to come,” he said.
The March 29 show begins at 9 p.m. There is a $12 cover.

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 27 March 2018 09:00 )  
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