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L.A. Beat

Del Barber brings new music and stories back to Geomatic Attic

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I always look forward to seeing rural Manitoba singer songwriter Del Barber, so was excited to catch his whole show at the Geomatic Attic, Sunday, Nov. 28.


I expected it to be completely sold out, but it was not. Del Barber and band mates lead guitarist Austin Parachoniak, drummer Ivan Burns and bassist/steel guitarist Ryan Funk played a laid back set for an appreciative audience in the  Geomatic Attic’s main venue.


Del Barber at the Geomatic Attic, Nov. 28. Photo by Richard Amery

As expected he focussed on songs from his most recent CD “Stray Dogs.”

But hedelved into his back catalogue, punctuating the music with stories about the songs and the people who inspired them as well as a few jokes.


 He had a real Hayes Carll mixed with Blues Rodeo , a touch of Todd Snider mixed with a little Tom Cochrane vibe throughout, but had the band come up to the mic at centre stage to sing a few stripped sown songs bluegrass style, which showed off his band mates’ vocal harmonies.


“ 62 Richmond” an older song about a tall tale teller, was an early highlight. Barber mused “I can’t believe I’m 38 years old, have two kids and  have songs that are 10 years old that I”m still playing,” as bassist Ryan Funk switched to steel guitar.


 he talked abut his dad who recently passed away and noted he wrote a lot of songs with him including a highlight about  a homeless couple in Winnipeg, dedicating “Ronnie and Rose” to them

“Big Smoke ” was another highlight.

The band ended his first set with an excellent cover of Ian Tyson’s  Someday Soon.”


Ryan Funk, Austin Parachoniak, Ivan Burns Del Barber at the Geomatic Attic, Nov. 28. Photo by Richard Amery

Their  second set was a little more upbeat and featured a lot more stories, including one about a ”tough  as a two dollar steak woman” who works at the gas stop in Virden, Manitoba.


“ I thought she deserved a song,” he quipped as he introduced “No Easy Way out.”


 he dedicated a pair of acoustic songs to his dad, including “ Just A Little Heat,” which was about his dad comparing himself to a car, not a failed romance as one writer described it.


Several  songs were inspired by hanging out in bars including “ Friends Like Us.” which was definitely a highlight of the show and one of the more Hayes Carll sounding songs.


 The line “Destined for Hell or a Wal mart parking lot” drew a few chuckles from the enraptured audience.


He ended with  with a slower song,  “Meantime” the single from the new CD.


But he was called back for an encore.

He noted  he doesn‘t usually get political in his songwriting, noting the next song was political, as he ended with “Dead Skunk In the middle of the highway.”

 the Geomatic Attic has several shows coming up in December. The next show is MonkeyJunk guitarist Tony D and Eric Braun and the new downtown location, Thursday, Dec. 2. 

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 01 December 2021 16:13 )  
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