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April Wine and .38 Special play special night of Whoop Up Days rock

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 I only got to one of  an outstanding Whoop Up Days Line Up — Wednesday, Aug. 23 — the classic rock night featuring a  “Wonderful night” of ’70s and ’80s hits delivered in spades by Halifax born,  Montreal based rockers April Wine and Florida rockers .38 Special..38 Special's Danny Chauncey takes a guitar solo at Whoop Up Days. Photo by Richard Amery

April Wine “likes to rock” at Whoop Up Days. Photo By Richard Amery
 April Wine still Like to Rock,” and showed it by opening strong with  “Could Have been a Lady” and Fast Train and one of my absolute favourites “Enough is Enough,”
 they focussed on the rockers  from their late ’70s, early ’80s “Nature of the Beast ” era heyday.

 The semi-retired frontman Myles Goodwin still has an impressive set of pipes, nailing the high notes of most of the band’s hits, though drummer Roy “Nip” Nichol nailed the earth shaking , heart stopping shrieks of another favourite “Weeping Widow.” bassist Richard  Lanther added extra vocal harmonies to fill out the band’s  sound.
 Long time guitarist Brian Greenway also sang his share of the hits in his gravelly, AC DC styled voice while adding blazing solos, though he gave his axe a rest to play  a mournful harmonica solo on “Rock and Roll is a Vicious Game.”

 Greenway added a hot solo to “I Like to Rock,” while Goodwyn played the ‘I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” part of the song‘s bridge.
In addition to their many hits to which the crowd happily sang along to, they also brought out a few obscurities including a song which featured a lovely arpeggiated  lick, which I didn’t recognize. “I Wanna Rock,” was another pleasant album track.

The crowd sang along with “Tonight is a Wonderful Night to Fall in Love.”

April Wine’s Bryan Greenway gets the crowd to sing along with the hists, Aug. 23 at Whoop Up Days. Photo by Richard Amery
They saved a hot version of “Sign of the Gypsy Queen for near the end of their set\ and officially ended their show with “Roller,“ Of course, they were called back for an encore of “Crash and Burn” and  “Oowatanite,” which left eardrums ringing as much as the frenetic cowbell powered rhythm of the song.
I’ve never seen .38 Special before. And despite only having one original member , frontman/ guitarist Don Barnes , remaining, they still brought back the spirit of ’70s southern rock and’80s arena rock. They also had long time guitarist Danny Chauncey, who happily traded leads with barnes and leaped all over the stage and even played some sweet guitar harmonies.

Long time keyboardist Bobby Capp stood in the background adding subtle stings and drummer Gary Moffatt hammered away at the skins, getting his own time in the spotlight near the end of the show for a thunderous drum solo.

Don Barnes and Danny Chauncey of .38 Special play a harmonized guitar solo at Whoop Up Days, Aug. 23. Photo by Richard Amery
“Rocking into the Night,” was a good theme for the evening as the sun set over  the grandstand as they played hit after hit including one of my favourites “Back Where You Belong” as well as “Wild Eyed Southern Boys.”

 They played a mini set of  some of their best known movie hits including “Take Me Back To Paradise” and “Teacher Teacher,” and even played several upbeat rockers from Don Barnes‘ solo record “ Riding the Thunder.”
As expected they played some of their hit ballads like “ If I Could Be the One.”
 A highlight was the rocker “Trooper with an Attitude.”

 they saved “Caught Up in You” for near the end of the set and were called back for an encore of “Hold On Loosely” and a cover of Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet band’s “Travelin’ Band.”

— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 30 August 2017 10:42 )

ULSU Freshfest features fun and EDM for incoming students

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The University of Lethbridge is getting ready to get Fresh for their tenth annual  Freshfest outside the Student’s Union Building, Sept. 7-9.Ameet KUmar is excited about Freshfest 2017.  Photo by Richard Amery

“If you don’t have your tickets, I don’t know what you’re waiting for,” said organizer Ameet Kumar, who has been involved in the past three Freshfests, since he was in his second year and who steps up as coordinator for this year.
“We‘re moving away from rock like the last couple Freshfests. This year our two main acts for the jamboree, Sept. 9 are EDM,” Kumar said.

“We have Haywyre. He plays keyboard and does remixes of classic pop. He’s known for his remix of ‘Smooth Criminal,’ by Michael Jackson,” Kumar continued.

“Our headliner is Walshy Fire. He’s one third of Major Lazer. They’re a team who have worked with everyone from Nicki Minaj and Justin Bieber.” Up and coming Halifax EDM/pop  trio Neon Dreams are also on the bill. They have a couple of hit singles including “Find Away” and “Marching Bands.”

 On the rock side, Vancouver indie rock band Said the Whale return to Lethbridge for Freshfest. Juno nominee Scott Helman, known for his hit “Bungalow” is also on the bill.
 “We also have local support with TreyMark and Scotch Whiskey Limousine,” Kumar enthused.
“And for the first time, we’ve hired an MC— Dylan Playfair of Letterkenny. I’m super pumped about it,” he continued, adding there will also be food trucks at the jamboree including Two Guys and a Pizza Place.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 30 August 2017 08:59 ) Read more...

Shine On Music Festival helps U of L celebrate 50 years

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The University of Lethbridge will “Shine On” for their fiftieth anniversary, Sept. 2 in the University of Lethbridge stadium with artisans, food tucks and lots of excellent live music.Tanya Jacobson-Gundlock is excited for the Shine On music festival and homecoming weekend , Sept. 1-3. Photo by  Richard Amery
“Shine on is a music festival put on with the University of Lethbridge 50th anniversary homecoming weekend,” said Executive director of advancement, Tanya Jacobson-Gundlock, who had been busy helping co-ordinate this massive event.

“It’s a celebration. The university couldn’t exist without the community and vice versa,” she said.
While there are a plethora of activities happening on campus coinciding with homecoming celebrations, everything culminates on Saturday, Sept. 2 with the Shine On Music Festival from 12:30p.m.-11 p.m.
A variety of acts perform beginning at 12:30 including local alternative rock band Doublejack, Trevor Panczak, DJ Millz Skillz, Vancouver indie rock band Mother Mother, up and coming Vancouver based roots and country band Washboard Union, local country musician Corb Lund and Vancouver based superstar Dallas Smith, who finishes the festival.
“There is a no re-entry policy after  3 p.m., but between 12 and 3 p.m.they are welcome to come and go,” she said.
“We want people to come to stay for the day. And It is easier to manage the crowd that way,” she continued, noting there is limited parking available at the stadium, though the university parking lots will be available as the stadium is only a 10 minute walk away along a lit path.
“We’re encouraging people to take transit, bicycles or taxis,” she said.

The next the next day there will be a battle of the bands at the stadium featuring local bands competing for a $1,000 cash prize and a Cottonwood Records package beginning at 2 p.m. with awards being given at 4 p.m. Gates open at 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.Competitors include local pop punk band the Youngbloods, country band Alyssa McQuaid and Coyote Junction, hip hop group the AWD fellows with funk rock trio Adequate, Nevada Place, young rock band Diversified and local rock band Scotch Whiskey limousine.
Also on Sunday  there will be two rugby games, a craft market, food trucks, an inflatable obstacle course, round dance, cultural demonstration and  a beer gardens. It is free to attend on Sunday.
“It’s going to be a great party and something to celebrate,“ she said.

“Let‘s hope the weather co-operates,” she continued, crediting  generous partners including the City of Lethbridge and the Enmax Centre for their assistance.
Homecoming activities begin on Friday with a variety of events including the John Gill Memorial Golf Tournament at Paradise Canyon Golf course beginning at 1:30 p.m. The tournament is open to everyone, the format is a four-person, 18-hole open scramble with a shotgun start. The entry fee is $200 including golf, a cart and dinner. Players can enter as a single, as a team, or as a corporate sponsor. Entry forms are available here:
Washboard Union is excited to play Lethbridge for the Shine On Festival on Sept. 2.

“ We played a private event there , but we haven’t played an actual show there,” said Washboard Union multi-instrumentalist and vocalist David Roberts.“ Our new single is called ‘Shine,’ so when they booked is, we thought they named the festival after us,” chuckled Washboard Union multi-instrumentalist David Roberts, who plays the washboard in the band among several other instruments.
“But anything with shine in it is all right with us,” he continued, adding he is excited to share a stage with luminaries like Dallas Smith and Corb Lund.
“I think there’s also a  DJ too,” he said.

Things have moved quickly for the band, who have been nominated roots artist of the year  by the British Columbia country Music Association and signed with Warner Brothers record label and scored several rootsy, breezy, optimistic, harmony hits including “Shine,” “Head over Heels,” “Shot of Glory,“Can’t Complain” and “Maybe it’s the Moonshine” which reflects the sounds of the Emerson Drive and Blue Rodeo.

“I’ll take that compliment. Actually Warner Brothers is doing a 50 year celebration album with up and coming artists recording versions of their established artists’ songs, and we got asked to record Blue Rodeo’s “Hasn’t Hit Me yet,’ which is a really honour,but  also made me feel a little nervous,” Roberts said.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 30 August 2017 08:40 ) Read more...

Lots of live music for September

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School’s back and so is the live music, even on a long, Labour Day weekend.

The Groove Apostles are one of several local acts performing this week. Photo by Richard Amery
 But end August with a whole lot of laughs at the Owl Acoustic Lounge  stand up comedy open mic, Wednesday Aug. 30.

It begins at 9 p.m. There is no charge.

 There is a special event at the Owl Acoustic Lounge the next night, Aug. 31 as they host Busted Up: A special fundraiser for scenester Derek Hoyle who had a serious workplace accident. There will live music and a silent auction, with all proceeds going to help out Derek Hoyle while he is off work.
 Admission is $10.

The Slice opens September with Calgary based progressive metal band Anti-Pattern with a touch of jazz courtesy of local jazz rock band the Groove Apostles and a new Edmonton based “math-jazz” band called Red Litmus, who have two shows this week. Red Litmus are also playing the Owl Acoustic Lounge on Sept. 2 with Swift Current progressive rock band the Moon Runners.

The Slice finishes  August on a rock and roll note as they welcome back Regina based desert rock band Snake River along with local rockers Biloxi Parish and experimental ambient musician An Ant and an Atom. Admission is five dollars.
Club Didi opens their new season with a couple of events.  The first episode of improvised soap opera Starship Gammorah is September 1.

The monthly  improvised soap opera brings  the cast on an interstellar journey fraught with scandal and intrigue and most likely a lot of laughs. Admission is $10 for the show, which begins at 9 p.m.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 29 August 2017 11:59 ) Read more...

Aaron Pritchett returns to Lethbridge with hot hit single VW Bus

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B.C based country Star Aaron Pritchett is  on a roll with a score of hit singles from his latest  Juno nominated album “ The Score,“ including the latest single “VW Van.”

Aaron Pritchett returns to Average Joes, Sept. 5. Photo by Richard Amery
He is excited to return to Lethbridge to play Average Joes, Sept. 4 with Craig Moritz in support of the CD.

“It’s been a crazy year. It’s been really busy,” said Pritchett, preparing for a show at the CNE in Toronto.

“ But it was nice. I got to take three weeks off in July.”

 He is pleased  with the string of hits from the last album  including “VW Bus,” coming hot on the heels of the other hit singles “Out of the Blue,” “Dirt Road In Em,” “Out of the Blue” and “Mama’s Boy Meets a Daddy’s Girl”

“ I actually bought a 1973 VW bus, so as soon as the song was submitted with the name ‘VW Bus,’ I said ‘this is perfect. I hope it’s good,”he enthused.

“It‘s kind of describes my life now,” said Pritchett who lives an easygoing life spent half on the road and half at home on Gabriola Island, where he bought the Silva Bay Restaurant and Pub last year.
“ It’s a song that’s a very much slice of life story and I always like to choose the best songs I can whether I write them or not,” he observed.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 29 August 2017 11:48 ) Read more...
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