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Owl Acoustic Lounge to soar into new nest with community Kickstarter support

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A phoenix isn’t the only bird that can rise from the ashes. After a tough 2020, In 2021 The Owl Acoustic Lounge plans to fly higher and faster into a new location out of the ashes of the Covid pandemic, which has devastated the arts and entertainment industry and everybody who depends on it and enjoys being part of it.Steve Foord in his element — on stage. Photo by Richard Amery

 Owl Acoustic Lounge co-owner Steve Foord is overwhelmed by the community response to a super successful  Kickstarter campaign launched Dec. 16 which, in less than 24 hours, doubled the $7,500 goal they set to build a beautiful new stage in the Owl Acoustic Lounge’s new nest at 606 3rd Ave South, the former home of the More For Less Thrift Store.
“It’s a great location with the SAAG right across the street. Then we looked inside it and fell in love with it. We decided to invest in ourselves,” said Owl Acoustic Lounge co-owner Steve Foord said, adding they decided to launch the Kickstarter campaign to gauge public interest.

 As of this writing, 229 backers raised $15,113 on the Kickstarter campaign, effectively doubling the $7,500 they earmarked for the new stage, which will feature the names of everyone who contributed to the campaign which was one of the perks you can bid on. Foord noted there are over 450 names that have to be added to the stage, so he has to figure out the logistics of how to do that that. The rest will be put towards a new bar and other features of the venue.

“It’s been crazy. We really didn’t expect this. It really caught us off guard,” he said, adding they will leave the Kickstarter campaign going for the remaining 28 days. He said moving will be a challenge, but it is important to maintain the Owl’s “Keep it Weird” character.

“It’s wonderful to have some good news and it has been exciting to see the community get behind  this,” Foord said.
 “This pandemic is not going to last for ever and when it ends, live music will be back and we intend to be there,” he said.
“We’re in favour of the 3rd Ave revitalization and we’re excited to be part of it,” Foord enthused, adding they were already considering a move, as working on a diminished capacity to meet new social distancing regulations  was challenging. So they started considering a move.

“ We took some time to plan and we decided to bet on ourselves. We’ve been here for little over 10 years, so we looked at some new locations and said “Let’s go for it,” Foord said.

Last Updated ( Friday, 18 December 2020 15:45 ) Read more...

More shows cancelled due to Covid restrictions

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We are living in challenging and confusing times. Covid is taking its toll physically  and mentally on a lot of people. For a lot of people, like me, live music is therapeutic. But for the next few weeks people will have to find their musical thThe Chevelles’ weekend shows at Sound Garden are among those canceled due to new AHS COVID  restrictions. Photo by Richard Amery erapy elsewhere.

 As Covid cases continue to climb and with new restrictions in place, Lethbridge’s music  and entertainment  venues are trying to adapt. The Owl Acoustic Lounge announced on Facebook there will be no live music until further notice.

 Soundgarden has decided to shut down for three weeks including cancelling the Chevelles this weekend who o were going to help Sound Garden celebrate their twentieth anniversary on the weekend.

Good Times also announced in Facebook also cancelled all of their comedy shows, emphasizing no Covid cases have come through their venue.
The Nikka Yuko  Japanese Gardens are still planning on holding their annual winter lights festival, but have cancelled  all horse and wagon rides  for Dec. 4 and 5 as well as Shakespeare Meets Dickens’ Dec. 8 show.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 26 November 2020 16:41 ) Read more...

12 Days of Christmas at Casa begins this week online

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It seems too early to be thinking about Christmas, but with snow on the ground and election craziness and Covid all around, anything positive deserves to be highlighted.Karen Romanchuk playing Christmas at Casa last year. She is one of the artists involved in this year's online event. Photo by Richard Amery
 Christmas at Casa is a great way for local artisans to get their work out in the community and for people to get Christmas shopping out of the way.

 Unfortunately with Covid, the popular annual event is forced to go online. This year Christmas at Casa will begin at noon Nov. 21 and run until Dec. 1 at midnight  at
 “With over 3,000 people visiting Casa in two days in 2019, there was just not a safe way to proceed,” explains Tara Gillanders, Allied Arts Council Projects Manager in a press release.

 “By going on-line, we keep artists and customers safe in our community. While we will miss gathering in person there are some definite benefits to being virtual.”

The online market and extended run will allow vendors to restock products online and add new products over the next couple weeks.

“Covid has been hard on artists, really hard, so the Allied Arts Council has worked hard to give artists options, safe options,” said Kelaine Devine, Allied Arts Council Communications Co-ordinator, noting Christmas at Casa has been a Christmas mainstay over the past  eight years.

“But having between 3-5,000 people going through Casa  over a day and a half was never going to be an option,” she said.

“It‘s not like having an event at Exhibition Park where everybody is spread out. Casa is several tiny rooms,” she said, adding there are  more options for patrons as well as artisans.
“Check back often because artists will be adding more stuff. It will be 24-7 for 12 days. I, for one, love pyjama shopping. So if you feel the need for a ceramic cup at three in the morning, you can get one,” she chuckled.
“This has never been about making a buck for the Allied Arts Council, it is about supporting  artists in a safe and secure way,” she said.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 19 November 2020 18:10 ) Read more...

A whole lot of rock and laughter planned for this week

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With new AHS restrictions in place for the next two week, the local music scene is being forced to adapt to bars closing early.Damage Inc. Plays  Club Lime with Snake Bite, Nov. 20 . Photo by Richard Amery
 It is a great week for rock and roll. But with Covid  raging, use your common sense if you go out and stay home if you’re not feeling well as I did this past weekend, wearing a mask, sanitizing your hands and properly social distancing.

Former Chevelle and Def Leppard Tribute  Stage Fright lead singer Dave Chomiak breaks in his new Whitesnake Tribute “Snake Bite” at Club Lime, Friday, Nov. 20. They are on stage at 8:15 sharp. They will be  followed by Metallica Tribute Damage Incorporated  at 9:15. Like all other bars, Club lime is following Covid restrictions, so last call is at 10 and closing time is 11.  Face masks are required and  there is a maximum of six people per table. The $30 tickets are going fast.

 The Slice welcomes back Citizen Rage return to the stage with fellow Calgarians Black Pestilence and local band Green Mind.Doors open at 6 p.m. with  Bob Scallywag kicking things off at 6:30 p.m. followed by Green Mind at 7:15, Black Pestilence at  8:15 and Citizen Rage rocking the night to a close at 9:15Tickets are $15 in advance and $10 at the door..

 The next night, Nov. 21, the Slice welcomes back local progressive rock band Waterfront and local Volbeat tribute Rebel Angels.
 Doors open at 7 p.m. The bands begin at 8 p.m.. Tickets are going fast at $10.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 18 November 2020 09:52 ) Read more...

Slice celebrates 15 years with big jam session

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The Slice began fifteenth anniversary celebrations with a celebratory Thursday night  jam session, Thursday, Nov. 5. Aaron Trozzo playing the Slices fifteenth anniversary jam, Nov. 5. photo by Rchard Amery

A jam was the ideal way to kick off the Slice’s  celebration of 15 years of  being a cornerstone of the Lethbridge music scene.  A lot of local bands  got their start on the Slice stage. Numberous bands have formed through jam sessions like those at the Slice, so they had a decent crowd eager to celebrate and catch up with each other.

Hosts Aaron Trozzo, Paul Holden and Brad Brouwer welcomed a familiar cast of faces onto the stage to play some of their favourite songs.

 A masked Trozzo sang a quick set of obscure ’70s style heavy rock, from behind the usual plexiglass panes.He belted out impassioned lead vocals and supplied plenty of big, loud riffs before opening up the stage to a variety of other performers..

 They welcomed  T J Waltho to the stage to add keyboards for a couple of songs.

Devin Gergel playing the Slice]s 15th anniversary jam. Photo by Richard Amery
 Devin Gergel, a familiar fave at local open mics, was up next  to add more of an ambient, more country vibe.

 He backed Waltho on a song before taking over on lead vocals for a couple of songs before ending his part of the show with a Dave Matthews cover.

— by Richard Amery, L.A, Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Thursday, 12 November 2020 14:47 )
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