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L.A. Beat

Ken Whiteley winds up Lethbridge Folk club season with excellent show and singalong

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 I haven’t seen Canadian folk icon Ken Whiteley since I lived in Kenora and he was touring with Mose Scarlett and Jackie Washington, so Whiteley’s long awaited return to the Lethbridge Folk Club, April 14 at the Lethbridge College Cave, was a fitting end to another successful Folk Club season which brought back a lot of good memories.

Ken Whiteley plays the last show of the Lethbridge Folk Club Season, April 14 at the Lethbridge College Cave. Photo by Richard Amery
Whiteley is still hippyish in demeanour  and is all about telling stories and showing of some impressive guitar picking. Which he did with the help of some beautiful old guitars including an old acoustic , a 12-String and a white national steel guitar on which he played some beautiful slide guitar.

But he also played some fleet fingered folk and even a little jazz on a song “ I Won’t Be Happy Until I Make You happy ” which  “Canadian treasure, Jackie Washington taught me,” which he prefaced with a sweet story about the life of his old friend.

 Whiteley maintained a strong, resonant, slightly reedy voice and sang simple melodies which had the audience instinctively singing along.

 True to  the folk tradition, he lead the audience through a couple sing alongs of some of his favourite songs  including “It’s Golden” and chatted about touring and recording with children’s entertainers Raffi and Fred Penner.

“It’s way past my bedtime. I’ve been doing this for 50 years,” he observed close to 11 p.m. as he wound up the show by switching to  the 12-String and playing a couple  more songs including a Mahalia Jackson song and a couple of his own including a gospel tune and a newer song “  Friends All Over,” which was a great way to finish things.

 But he was called back for an encore anyway.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 25 April 2018 10:15 )  
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