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Barney Bentall and the Cariboo Express having fun helping YouthOne

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Life could be worse for Barney Bentall , who not only has his first new album out in four years, but whose Cariboo Express charity concert series leaves the station at the Southminster United Church, Nov. 1 for  a quick Western Canadian tour  to raise money for various western Canadian charities. The proceeds from the Lethbridge show will be donated to Youth One.

Barney bentall and the Cariboo Express return to Lethbridge, Nov, 1. Photo by Richard Amery
“ It’s pretty much the same cast  as last year,” said Bentall, from the airport in Cranbrook, where he is about to catch a plane to Ottawa for a pair of weekend Ottawa area shows.

“So we have Lethbridge’s Leeroy Stagger, my son Dustin,  Ridley Bent, my co-host Matt Masters from Calgary and a couple of wonderful female  vocalists Kendel Carson and Wendy Barber and a crack band,” continued Bentall, who scored several early ’90s hits including “ Something to Live For” and “Life Could Be Worse.”

“Over the past 10 years, we’ve raised over a million dollars for Western Canadian charities. So we‘re excited to start the tour in Lethbridge,” Bentall said.
“That’s a beautiful room, that church, to play in, so we can get in the day before to rehearse for the tour,” he continued.

 Part of the fun of the tour, which is designed like an old time variety show, is song sponsorships.

“We weren’t able to do it last year, but usually we’ll  get a business to sponsor each song and we’ll make a up a special, humourous  introduction  to each one for the law office or construction company, whatever the company is, which is exactly what they used to so on the Grand Ole Opry,” he said, observing Youth One has been successful in selling the spots.
 He  always looks forward to the tour.

“One of my daughters in Cranbrook has a band called Wild Honey who will be playing with us as well. So this year, I have two of my kids with me,” he said.
This tour serves a double purpose as it is also serving as an album release tour for his brand new CD “The Drifter and  the Preacher.”
“That’s the beautiful thing about it is it’s also my album release tour,” he continued, adding the Cariboo Express performed some of the songs from the new CD  during last year’s tour.

“ So we’ll be playing several songs from the album,” he said, noting he wrote the song “The Miner” with his son Dustin.
“That was actually my agent’s  idea for us to write together. It was a really great experience and a lot of fun, so I’m surprised it never occurred to me before,“ he said, noting it will likely be one of the songs played on the tour.


“I remember the first song I taught Dustin was Tom Petty’s ‘Mary Jane’s Last Dance,’ when he was 13, so we’ll probably play that too,” he continued.

“We’ll also probably play ‘Something To Live For. That song has allowed me to keep on making music. And I never get tired of performing it,” he said.
He is pleased with the new CD.

“I’ve always really admired people like Corb Lund and Ridley Bent who can really tell stories with their songs, which are incredible,” he said, adding he focused on telling stories in the songs on his new CD.
“One of my favourites is ‘Don’t Wait For Me Marie,’ which is an epic that spans 150 years of history of Klondike gold rush, so that was a challenge. It’s actually a song we played on the last tour,” he said, noting he finished a music video for it.

“Dustin acts in it and so does Kendel Carson, my fiddle player. It’s basically an eight minute western,” he observed, noting some of his other favourites on the CD are the titles tracks, “ The Drifter,” and “ the Preacher.”

“ And I love“ Say Goodbye to Albert Comfort.”

He is excited to return to the Southminster United Church.
“Mike from the Geomatic Attic is a great promoter. And we really appreciate being able to begin the tour there. We hope to always be able to start the tour in Lethbridge,” he said.

Barney Bentall and the Cariboo Express perform for the Geomatic Attic  at the Southminster United Church, Wednesday, Nov. 1 at 8 p.m. Wild Honey open the show. Tickets are $42.50.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Sunday, 29 October 2017 12:17 )  
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