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J Blissette begins tour in Lethbridge

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The Owl Acoustic Lounge had an excellent show, May 5, but I only caught the end of an energetic set from local alternative rock band J Blissette, who were kicking off their new tour. J Blissette's Jackson Tiefenbach at the Owl Acoustic Lounge. Photo buy Richard Amery

The band, featuring Jackson Tiefenbach on electric 12 string guitar,guitarist Cory Fisher, bassist Arnaud Sparks and Matthew Rederberg, playing his last local show with the band on drums .

 They played a solid set of  groovy psychedelic rock tinged with elements of punk.

They were called back for an encore of  some Pink Floyd.
 Unfortunately I missed the Shiverettes and Snake River’s opening sets.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 17 May 2017 10:43 )

Rodney DeCroo plays great set of gritty alt country for intimate audience

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 A great candidate for best show of the year that nobody saw was the long awaited return of Vancouver based songwriter/author Rodney DeCroo, who played the Slice, May 5.

Rodney DeCroo at the Slice. Photo by Richard Amery
I was one of a handful of people who caught an energetic, and tortured set of dirty country and alternative rock, which mostly focused on DeCroo’s great new CD “ Old Tenement Man.”

DeCroo and his hot band of lead guitar Bryce Jardine, drummer Ed Goodine, bassist Ken Nakamiki and drummer Sean McPherson were pretty much playing the album track by track.

DeCroo strummed a battered acoustic  guitar and sang his powerfully tortured and plaintive lyrics about the downtrodden and forgotten, making the audience feel every little bit of pain of his characters. The band sounded like the bastard child of the Drive By Truckers, Steve Earle and Neil Young, especially because of Jardine’s lead guitar sound.

One of my favourites, “ Lou Reed On the Radio” was a highlight, as I expected. Jardine broke a  guitar string , which gave  DeCroo the opportunity to play a quick solo acoustic set including “Radio” from the new Cd while Jardine left the building to change his string.

A highlight of the first set was an older song “You Ain’t No-One” which he played again as an encore for the second set which ended around 1 a.m. as the audience had doubled to about 12 people.

He ended the first set on a slower, haunting note with “Ariel.”
I arrived for the end of set two, which  was  louder and more boisterous. “ Stupid Boy in a Stupid Town” was a highlight, and has people finally showed up. he brought back “Lou Reed on the Radio” and “You Ain‘t No One.”

— by Richard Amery, L.A. beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 17 May 2017 10:35 )

Ease into May long weekend with rock and roll

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It has been one busy May  for the music scene in Lethbridge. So I’m able to take a bit of a breather, but there are a couple of key shows  coming up over the May long weekend week.The Mahones return to Lethbridge on Wednesday. Photo by Richard Amery

 Celtic punk mainstays the Mahones make a long awaited return to the Slice on Wednesday, May 17. They never get the turnout they deserve here, so  I’m glad they are returning. Expect a lot of whiskey drinking, Celtic powered punk music with lots of energy accordion, whistles and punk intensity. They are  celebrating 25 rocking the world with Celtic punk  for the second year in a row in support of their new CDs “The Hunger and the Fight Parts 1 and 2”
 Admission is $15.

 The other big show of the week is the return of Geoff Berner and Kris Demeanor who play a ticketed event at the Owl Acoustic lounge with Carolyn Mark on Saturday, May 20.

And pianist Jesse Plessis returns home from Montreal to play a  couple of shows this week. The most interesting one is at the University Theatre, May 18 where he will be joining forces with Bente Hansen to perform the Beatles’ classic “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely hearts club Band”  album in its entirety. The concert begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $30.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 16 May 2017 10:34 ) Read more...

Carolyn Mark ready to laugh on the road with Geoff Berner and Kris Demeanor

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Victoria based singer songwriter Carolyn Mark loves to be on the road. The quirky and perky  country/folk songstress just returned from a month long tour of Europe with Rusty Ford and is getting ready to join Geoff Berner and Calgary poet laureate Kris Demeanor on an Alberta/ B.C tour which comes to the Owl Acoustic Lounge for a special ticketed event, Saturday, May 20.Carolyn Mark returns to Lethbridge this week. Photo by Richard Amery

“I’ve been doing the Amsterdam- Fort St. John tour which is a pretty popular touring circuit,” Mark laughed from Vancouver.
“I was in Europe with Rusty Ford and I was touring northern B.C. with Twin Peaks,” Mark observed.

 It has been a while since she officially played Lethbridge.
“But the last time I was in Lethbridge was for Shaela Miller’s wedding last summer,” she said.

“I’m going to be spending a lot of time in Alberta this summer. I’ll be working on Lance Loree’s farm in between tours. I’ll be doing chores- weeding and things like that on Mondays and Tuesday because those days are hard to book,“ she said.
 She released  her latest CD “Come! Back! Special! in September.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 16 May 2017 10:09 ) Read more...

Kayla Howran excited to work with Colin Cripps on “Spare Parts”

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Peterborough born singer songwriter Kayla Howran moved three times and finally  overcame a serious case of writers block to record her sophomore CD “Spare Parts” with producer and songwriter Colin Cripps.
Howran and Dylan Ireland come to the Slice to play an early show beginning at 8 p.m., Wednesday, May 24 in support of the new CD.

Kayla Howran returns to Lethbridge, May 24. Photo by Jen Squires
“I was just there in October, but I only released it two weeks ago,” said Howran from a tour stop in Dauphin. Her last CD, “Pistol,” was released in 2013.
 Working with Cripps, a well respected producer, who is also part of Blue Rodeo, was along time coming.

“We’ve been friends for years and started talking about  doing a CD together four years, ago, but I wasn’t ready. I had horrible writer’s block and couldn’t come up with anything I wanted. When I was ready, i called him up and he was just as excited about it as he was back then,” she said.

“Saying it was very cool is an understatement,” she continued, adding Cripps plays all the lead guitar parts on the album.
“There was such a great vibe. He’s so professional. It was so neat to sit and watch him work. He’s so well put together. I’d play him a song and I’d watch him figuring out how it was going to work. He‘d explain it and I’d just get it, ” she enthused.
 She noted  the lyrics are mostly about heartbreak.


Last Updated ( Tuesday, 16 May 2017 09:55 ) Read more...
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