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Highwater Jug Band plays one of their last shows in Lethbridge

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A close to sold out crowd enjoyed the Highwater Jug band’s show at  the Wolf’s Den for the Lethbridge Folk Club’s first show of the year. They are calling it quits to pursue other project as of February.John Rutherford of the Highwater Jug Band. By Richard Amery
Their first set included most of their self titled 2007 CD. Guitarist/mandolinist/ banjo and jug player/vocalist Tim Williams as well as guitarist/jug player and singer Mark Sadlier-Brown, Suitcase James on muckbucket and acoustic bass, clarinet Cedric Blary on an array of woodwinds and drummer/ banjo/ukulele, banjo-uke player John Rutherford pulled out all the stops, a lot of instruments, an assortment of bells whistles, kazoos, bike horns and  plenty of jokes to keep the receptive audience grinning and cheering pretty much every solo.
Williams, Sadlier-Brown and Rutherford traded lead vocals and instruments throughout the first set. Even Suitcase James took lead vocal on a song.
Rutherford  sang, one of the show’s highlights, ‘My Ukulele Helps Me Beat the Blues,’  which appeared in the Hank Williams First Nation movie.
Sadlier -Brown had the crowd laughing during ‘Laundromat Blues.’
The band is calling it quits as of February.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 12 January 2010 14:21 ) Read more...

The real flamenco experience

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For  the real flamenco experience, after Art Stage 2 , Jan. 16 Flamenco guitarist and event organizer Ali Golbabai is putting on a show at the Yoga Rituals studio upstairs from Catwalk.alt
The two dancers, two singers and flamenco guitarist playing during ArtStage 2 will put on the full experience beginning at 9:30 p.m. for the  Arte Performance and juerga or jam session.
“This will be the full spectrum, not a Gipsy Kings thing. You can experience the real thing,” Golbabai said adding while people like Jesse Cook are considered flamenco, there is a lot more to it.
“So we’re pretty excited about it,” he said the performers  were coming from B.C for ArtStage 2  so he decided to give them an additional show to test the  waters for a bigger show  a few months down the road.
“This is a smaller venue. It holds about 60 people, but if this works we might do a bigger show,” said Golbabai who moved to Alberta from Spain, three to  four years ago.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 12 January 2010 13:18 ) Read more...

John Wort Hannam ready for a busy year

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Fort Macleod singer songwriter John Wort Hannam is  finally ready to officially release his fourth full length CD , “Queen’s Hotel,” which was officially released on October, in his home province. He,  along with drummer Brad Brouwer, Tyler Bird on stand up bass and accordion and fiddler Scott Duncan will be playing the release party at the Slice, Jan. 14. He is just playing a handful of Alberta CD release gigs including the CDs namesake in Fort Macleod,  Jan. 15 at ‘Queens Hotel’, in Calgary Jan. 16 and Edmonton, Jan. 17.
“I’ve bJohn Wort Hannam playing with the Highway 3 Roots Review. Photo by Richard Ameryeen touring a lot,” Hannam said from Edmonton, adding  he  did a long tour with Dave McCann and Leeroy Stagger as part of the Highway 3 Roots Review and did a lot of solo gigs in California and the east coast of the United States at the tail end of last year.
“I’m always writing new material, but  I won’t record for at least a year. I really think that making a record is the easy part. It’s the touring, marketing and promotion that is the hard work,” Hannam continued.
“ I want to make sure  I’ve marketed and promoted this one right,” he continued, adding ‘With the Grain’ appears to be the crowd favourite off  this CD. The song won him the Calgary Folk Festival songwriting competition, which won him $3,000 and a tough travel case for his guitar.
“They’ve been holding the contest since 2004 and I’ve entered every year except for two. That song actually came out of a conversation I had with my dad when  I was thinking of quitting teaching  to become a songwriter. I was talking to some people  and people were like ‘are you serious?’ but dad was one of the few who said ‘that’s great,’” Hannam continued adding he taught for five years on the Blood reserve. While  the reserve itself  didn’t inspire songs, taking his degree in English gave him a sense of storytelling.
He is inspired by Southern Alberta landscape and people and decided to start writing  songs after hearing a Louden Wainwright III album, then listening to songwriters like Fred Eaglesmith and Billy Bragg.
“It’s that  genre of storytellers that’s inspirational. They sing about small towns, people and underdogs,” Hannam added, noting he is a songwriter first and decided to pick up a guitar to accompany himself, so he wouldn’t have to sing a cappella.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 12 January 2010 00:42 ) Read more...

Moka Only back at the Blarney

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With  over 40 albums to his credit including a  six  ‘Martian Christmas,’ CDs it is never a problem for Vancouver rapper Moka Only to choose a set list for a show, like his Jan. 15  show at the Blarney Stone with Sonreal.
“I change the set nightly. A lot of it is about sensing the mood of the audience,” Moka Only said from Vancouver.
Vancouver rapper Moka Only returns to the Blarney Stone, Jan. 15.“It is made when I walk into the room. Right when I walk into a room, I can  sense the mood of the audience,” he continued adding he doesn’t make a set according to whether the music will get them dancing.
“ There’s enough artists whose goal is to get people dancing. That’s not my thing. I’d rather they stand and listen to the beats,” continued Moka Only. He will be performing with the City Prophets, who he has worked with many times before.
“(Who he tours with) is always different. It’s whatever works and whoever is available,” he said adding other than a few gigs here and there, he is taking a break this year, sort of, by working on a new solo CD and a project with Booty Brown of the Pharcyde.
“ It’s  probably half done. It’s difficult when we live in two different cities. I’m in Vancouver and he’s in Los  Angeles,” he enthused.

Garage and punk is music to the ears of Mammoth Cave Records

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Garage/punk music is an acquired  taste. But it is  music to the ears of Lethbridge musician and owner of Mammoth Cave Records, Paul Lawton.  Mammoth Cave is a  new Lethbridge record label  focusing on garage and punk music which which issued the Alberta Boom cassette back in 2008.
alt“Mammoth Cave was actually inspired by Vancouver bands. They bring along a huge merch table full of bands from all over Vancouver, and  nobody was doing the same thing for the Alberta scene, so we wanted to fill that void,” Lawton said adding the first cassette compilation included bands from Edmonton, Calgary and Lethbridge.
“We look at bands who are less commercially viable but who are still really good,” he  said adding there are a lot of bands who are big in their own home towns but  don’t travel outside of them very often.
“There’s not a lot of overlap in the  three major markets. So we want to  get that music heard outside of Alberta,”  Lawton continued adding he has  signed distribution deals to get  Mammoth Cave recordings in record stores across  Canada and the United States.
Their first big release was  the recently released Moby Dicks and Sharp Ends 7 inch singles, which like all Mammoth Cave recordings is released on a vinyl record which comes with a digital download of the music.
He gets  the records pressed at United Records in Tennessee. Mammoth Cave Records work with other companies to expand their distribution.
So far, Calgary’s Sharp Ends and Lethbridge acts, The Myelin Sheaths and the Moby Dicks (which feature Lawton on drums and bass respectively) are on Mammoth Cave Records and  they are working with  Edmonton’s the Famines and  Krang. They are also working with Calgary’s Tension Slips and Hunter/Gatherer plus a new Lethbridge band called Fist City  consisting of former members of Endangered Ape and the New Danger Kids plus Amelia Earhart’s Ryan Grieve.
Last Updated ( Monday, 04 April 2011 23:25 ) Read more...
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