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The Watertower Grill welcomes Jolene Draper and the Inquisitive Few

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Friday, Jan. 11 was my first opportunity to check out the new Watertower Grill, located, as expected in the Watertower on Mayor McGrath.Jolene Draper and Steve Martin  at the Watertower Grill. Photo by Richard Amery
 The room was packed wall to wall for Jolene Draper and the Inquisitive Few and I had to squeeze my way through a lot of chairs and tables placed right next to each other to make it to the bar, located right next to the windows, so you can see Lethbridge from the west.

 It is always a pleasure to hear  Jolene Draper sing especially when backed by a crack band of bassist Steve Martin, lead guitarist Braeden Rouse and drummer Ryan Ebbinghoff.

I arrived during a sultry version of Peggy Lee’s “Fever.”
They covered a variety of musical styles including quirky , jazz tinged originals, a couple of capable covers of classics like me and Bobby mcGee, ’90s rock with Four Non Blondes’ “What’s Going On” and a spooky Portishead cover, which ended the set I saw.

 Martin alternated between  upright bass and electric bass. Rouse showed he was a phenomenal guitarist, playing ambient riffs and bluesy solos.
 They added a touch of psychedelic rock. And their drummer kept a strong, steady beat. Draper, as always, sang in her beautiful, unique warble.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:37 )

Keith Woodrow brings a bit of the blues to the Slice

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Keith “Catfish” Woodrow is starting to put on blues shows in Lethbridge. He played an excellent show at the Slice, Friday, Jan. 11.Keith Woodrow lays down some blues licks at the Slice. Photo by Richard Amery
 He had a decent, receptive and patient audience in attendance who didn’t mind as he took his time tuning his many guitars.

 He and his tight band played an array of blues music including relative newcomers like Keb Mo to more classic blues tracks like “Hoochie Coochie Man,” John LeeHooker’s “Boom, Boom, Boom” which had a couple of couples dancing and slower blues like “Stormy Monday,” which had them listening.

He switched to a national steel guitar to break out some slide powered blues including “Walking Blues.” He talked a little about the history of the music and some of the major players he was playing.

 He also welcomed Calgary bluesman Harley Packer on stage to add guitar solos to  a couple of songs as well as to sing lead vocals on another.

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:28 )

Mercedes Fawns fills the house for “I Grew Up here” CD release party

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It is always exciting to see rising talent perform, so I caught Mercedes Fawns’ Cd Release party at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Friday, Jan. 14 for her new CD “ I Grew Up Here.”Mercedes Fawns plays her CD release party at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Friday, Jan. 11. photo by Richard Amery
I missed opening sets from Bailey Kate and The New Weather Machine, but was glad to catch the main event— Mercedes Fawns and a tight band I didn’t recognize other than the Rainbow Patrol’s Richard Charlton, who also produced her album. They included Antonio bass,  Chris on drums and Cliff on keyboards/ guitar plus on Fawns guitar and vocals.

Mercedes Fawns doesn’t play live very often, at least, I haven’t seen her play for a few years, which made it a treat to see such a strong show.
 She started off with a piece of free form poetry before bringing in the band to  rock out.
 She had a powerful voice which brought to mind Avril Lavigne and a touch of Alanis Morissette. She put a captivating set, bouncing around the stage and knew how to control her voice and her microphone.
 Their set focused on original music, but they rocked a SIA cover.

She followed  that with a couple more songs from the album “ Backseat” and “Freezing in April.”
 They ended the show with the new single “Lighting Candles With Matches.”

— By Richard Amery, L.a. beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:19 )

Altameda begin exciting year with Trews tour

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 Edmonton based indie rock/ alt country band Altameda had a fun year last year. They played a lot of festivals, toured with the Sheepdogs and are embarking on a tour with the Trews in advance of their new second CD “Time Hasn’t Changed You,” which was due out in March, but has been moved up to Jan. 25 to coincide with the Trews’ “Civilianaires’ tour which stops by Average Joes, Feb. 5.

Altameda open  for the Trews, Feb. 5 at Average Joes. Photo by Richard Amery
“We’ve been sitting on it for about a year, so we’re pretty excited to get it out in the world. The label thought it would be better to release it before this tour,” said Altameda frontman Troy Snaterse. He is joined by bandmates Todd Andrews, Matt Kraus and Erik Grice.
 They were last in Lethbridge, May 2 with Arizona’s Jared and The Mill.

“I think that was the first time we were in Lethbridge, but we’re talking to our agent about coming back to Lethbridge after this tour and to some of the other smaller cities we’re going to with the Trews,” he enthused.

“We get 45 minutes, so we’ll start with a couple of the rockers, then pare it down for some more acoustic numbers, then end with a couple more rockers,” he said, adding they would be up for an encore jam with the Trews as the Trews have been wont to do with other opening acts like the Glorious Sons.

“I wasn’t aware they did that, but we‘d love to do that,” he said.
 Altameda has released two of the rockers on the new CD, “Rolling Back To Me” and “Losing Sleep,” both have which have been played on Edmonton Oilers broadcasts.
“They played ‘Losing Sleep’ during a montage of Oilers plays last week, which is pretty cool. Our agent has a pretty good relationship with SportsCentre,” he said.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 23 January 2019 10:11 ) Read more...

Lots of local talent performing this week

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Things are starting to pick up on the music scene this week, about the same time I’m going on vacation on the Outlaw Country Cruise from Tampa to the Bahamas and back.
There is a lot of fun to be had right here in Lethbridge. Start off the week on Wednesday, Jan. 23 with Calgary based alternative rock band Krowns featuring the music of Kyle McKearney, Shade McKearney and Adam Casey.

Makiisma is part of a local songwriter's showcase at the Slice, Jan. 26. Photo by Richard Amery
 Megan Brown has returned from her travels and has a busy week.  In addition to playing the songwriter’s showcase at the Slice, Jan. 26, she will also likely be celebrating Robbie Burns Day at the Owl Acoustic Lounge with the Junkman’s Quire, Jan.  24. That will be preceded by the Owl Acoustic Lounge’s poetry open mic which begins at 7:30 p.m.
I’ll miss a couple of awesome shows on Jan. 25.

 Up at the Watertower Grill, one of my favourite new classic rock bands, Blame Andi, including vocalist Andrea Roberts, bassist Shawn Worden, lead guitarist Sheldon Arvay and drummer Ryan Dyck,  will be holding court from 8-11 p.m., playing all of your favourite classic rock and pop hits on both Jan. 25 and 26.

 One show I am really sorry to miss will be at the Owl Acoustic Lounge. Regina based indie rock band Bears in Hazenmore will be playing with the queen of Vancouver Island, Carolyn Mark and as a bonus, Vancouver based surf/ rock/ folk duo Kitty and the Rooster. So bring your sense of humour, the filthier the better. Kitty and the Rooster aka Jodie Ponto behind the cat mask and the drum kit and Noah Walker, sporting a rooster mask and wielding the axe, are playing in support of their new CD “One Gig Hard Drive.”
Admission is by donation.
There are a lot of excellent shows on the weekend.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 22 January 2019 10:42 ) Read more...
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