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Michael Bernard Fizgerald and band impress sold out crowd

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Calgary based musician Michael Bernard Fitzgerald played a sold out show at the Slice, Wednesday, Dec. 6.

Michael Bernard Fitzgerald playing for a sold out crowd. photo by Richard Amery
 I missed the opening set from the Middle Coast, but arrived in time to hear the hit heavy second half of Michael Bernard Fitzgerald’s set.

 He was backed by a crack band, who sang spine tingling vocal harmonies as well as adding lead guitar, bass, drums and keyboards.
I arrived just in time to hear “Make it With You.”

Michael Bernard Fitzgerald brought a full band to the Slice for a sold out show. Photo by Richard Amery
 The enthusiastic audience sang along with most of the  set. Fitzgerald was an affable host , advising the audience he’d get to their requests, but mostly  it was about the music, so there wasn’t a lot of patter other than thanking everybody for coming out.

He sang in his usual appealing John Mayerish sensitive singer/songwriter tenor voice and his band had the crowd bouncing up and down in front of the stage.

 That shone during a quick solo acoustic set during which he introduced a brand new song, which drew enthusiastic applause.

After  “Brand New Spaces,”  the audience called him back for an encore with chants of “MBF” so he returned with “What Do You Need.”

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 December 2017 14:37 )

Suzie Vinnick and Tony D blow away the Monday night blues

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Monday is a good night for the blues, so the Geomatic Attic was happy to wind  up 2017 with  a couple of Canada’s best— Suzie Vinnick and MonkeyJunk’s Tony D, Monday, Dec. 4.

Suzie Vinnick and Tony D playing the Geomatic Attic. photo by Richard Amery
 I missed the first set, but caught an exceptional second set, which focused on Vinnick’s “Me N’ Mabel” Cd and some new material. Vinnick and Tony Diteodoro took turns singing leads and adding special sauce to each other’s songs.
 They started off hot with a gorgeous cover of Bob Dylan’s  “Quit Your Lowdown Ways.” They continued with an equally hot cover of John Fogerty’s “One Hundred and Ten in the Shade“ and stayed in the traditional blues mode with blues classic “Spoonful.”

Tony D showed his guitar prowess and his love for Jimi Hendrix with a stunningly beautiful  version of Hendrix’s “Little Wing,” which drew rousing cheers from the quiescent, transfixed crowd.
 Vinnick broke a few hearts with her sultry, sexy voice reminiscent of Sue Foley and Bonnie Raitt as she sang a pair of  sexy songs from “Me N’ Mabel”— “You’ll be Mine” and the highlight “Save Me For Later.” Apparently I missed her great cover of “Oreo Cookie Blues,” which she played in the first set, but  stayed with the food theme for “Save Me For Later.”

 She played a couple of Roy Forbes songs including “ Crazy ’Bout Loving Me,” from “Me n’ Mabel.”
 In addition to  her great voice, she showed she was no slouch on acoustic guitar, playing some impressive solos.” Suzie Vinnick playing the Geomatic Attic. Photo by Richard Amery

She showed her country side after telling  a story about playing for her dad’s favourite song “ I Need A Cowboy” while he was in hospice care and got the audience to sing along with the chorus.
They were called back for an encore of Roy Forbes’ “ Let Me Make it Up To You” as she promised she would be back.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 December 2017 14:24 )

Highway 3 Roots revue previews new music

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 The Geomatic Attic has had a great run of sold out shows, though it was no surprise that this year’s edition of the Highway 3 Roots Revue was a sold out show, Dec. 1 as it  features three of the best singer songwriters, Lethbridge has to offer in Dave McCann, John Wort Hannam and Leeroy Stagger.

Leeroy Stagger, Dave McCann and John Wort Hannam playing this year’s Highway 3 Roots Revue show at the Geomatic Attic. Photo by Richard Amery
All three have kind of grown up together on Lethbridge]s scene and have since matured into laid back, hardworking family men.

They used the first set to introduce new music to the enraptured audience. Dave McCann opened the show by saying the trio used to tour for two weeks together before realizing “ touring in December is a bad idea.”
 Most of the new songs were about the joys of family and enjoying  being at home counterbalanced by songs about being on the road.

John Wort Hannam played “ Acres of Elbow Room,” his contribution to the new Skinny Dyck and Friends Twenty-One Night Stands” compilation.

Leeroy Stagger added “Dirty Windshields,” the namesake of his CKUA radio show, while McCann added “Headlights and Halos,” the title track from his last CD. And Hannam added “Chasing the Song” while displayed fleet fingered guitar picking.

Dave McCann followed that up by chatting about his inspiration Pete Seeger and playing a new song about that called “ When The Crows Come to Carry Me Home.”
 Hannam  returned to familiar territory  with crowd favourite “Church of the Long Grass.”

 Stagger played his powerful new song “Broken Generation,” which he premiered at the opening Lethbridge  date with Barney Bentall’s Cariboo Express tour in Lethbridge, after talking about the importance of love and chatting with Bruce Cockburn and asking him “if love was enough.”
 McCann followed that up with a new song  called “Bridges.” and had Stagger and Hannam and the audience singing along “Rolling, rolling, rolling.”
 Hannam wound up the first set with a heartfelt new song he wrote at his residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts about all the things he misses when he’s on the road like family and his son Charlie called “Missing it All.”

— By Richard Amery, L.a. beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 December 2017 14:09 )

Norwegian Blue bands pay tribute to their favourite ”90s bands

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Local record company Norwegian Blue Records kicked off December on a rocking note as some of their bands revisited their favourite ’90s moments at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Dec. 1 for a full house.

Sparkle Blood and Silvana Campus play the White Stripe’s Seven Nation Army. Photo by Richard Amery
 I arrived in time to catch local duo Sparkle Blood playing the hits of the White Stripes to an enthusiastic crowd.

 They plowed through a gritty set of blues rock including obscurities and hits like “Seven Nation Army,” for which he and drummer Bre Stewart welcomed Silvana Campus from MTBC (who were up next , playing the  Pixies) to play bass.

MTBC play the Pixies. photo by Richard Amery
 She played bass on that and on“My Doorbell”, which also featured Jane Edmundson on keyboards.

MTBC, including Sil Campus, drummer Garwin Poff, guitarist Quint Viskup and frontman Rob Cooper played a tight set of ’90s alternative rock from the Pixies and ended with  a rocked up version of ’60s classic “ Here Comes Your Man.”

 I wasn’t able to stay for Cope and Ryland Moranz‘s  Blink-182 tribute.

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 December 2017 13:59 )

Leisure Club play laid back ’80s tinged pop

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It was time to relive the spirit of the laid back ’80s at the Slice with Vancouver indie rock band Leisure Club, Friday, Dec. 1.

They had that Vancouver indie rock sound down with plenty of chiming, ambient guitars, but also added  a lot of groove plus a touch of soul and ’80s pop/yacht The Leisure Club playing the Slice, Dec. 1. Photo by Richard Ameryrock along the lines of Duran Duran and Hall and Oates.

I wasn’t able to stay for the return of Calgary indie rock band the Ashely Hundred.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 December 2017 13:45 )
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