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Plenty of open mics, art, comedy and country round out January

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The first month of 2023 has just flown by.

Dave McCann and the Firehearts return to Casino Lethbridge this weekend. Photo by Richard Amery

 The last week of January opens with a whole lot of open mic.

 

 The Owl Acoustic lounge’s open mic is tonight, Tuesday, Jan. 24.

As usual on the last Wednesday of the month, Teri Petz hosts a poetry open mic at the Owl Acoustic lounge.

n the west side, Petals, paws and Beans hosts another new  Wednesday night open mic.

 

Mandy Fox hosts what is sure to be a hard rocking open mic at the Slice Wednesday, Jan 25.

 

 If  you’re funny and you know it, show it at the pro amateur  night at Good Times, Thursday, Jan. 26.

 

 On the weekend FOE (Fractures of Etalon) host a rocking open mic at Honker’ Pub, Friday, Jan. 27. Frankie G will be hosting  Honkers open mic on Saturday, Jan, 28.

 Open mics return to Mojos Pub on the west side, Monday, Jan, 30 , where Luke James Bruce holds court on the last Monday of every month.

 

There are a lot of other events, non-open mic related.

Midnight Channel plays some jazz music in the Bunka  Centre at Nikka Yuko Japanese Gardens, Thursday, Jan 26.

They move to Sunday performances in February.

James Oldenburg and Ryan Heseltine return to the Watertower to play some jazz music from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday.

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Last Updated ( Monday, 30 January 2023 19:18 ) Read more...
 

John Hewitt plays a little bit of everything for Lethbridge Folk Club

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John Hewitt had a good crowd  listening intently at the Lethbridge College Cave for a Lethbridge Folk Club show, Sunday, Jan 15 for  approximately 60 people.

I missed opening act Cathy Hawley.

 

Edmonton based musician John Hewitt transcended a variety of genres, but mostly focused on original folk flavoured singer/songwriter material.

 

John Hewitt playing for the Lethbridge Folk Club, Jan 15. Photo By Richard Amery

“ I arrived in the middle of “ River of Coal.”

 

 He accompanied himself on guitar, told stories and got the audience singing along on  a few songs  including “ Won’t Let You Down This Time” that CKUA plays, a more straight ahead country song reminiscent of country icon Don Williams.

 

“Smoky Mountain Rain,” inspired by Jack Kerouac’s tome “Tristessa,” but putting the twisted characters in the mountains instead on Mexico City,” was one of my favourites.

 I also enjoyed “Shot Him Down (She Was Only 17)” about living in Toronto.

 

 He credited his wife for  inspiring a few songs and played them including a Van Morrison inspired “ Chaos in Creation.”

 

He delved into a little Otis Redding inspired R and B  and soul for a couple songs including “ In My Loving Arms.”

 He expressed his love for major seventh chords  before playing “Brand New Stetson.”

 

 His second set included  several songs from his latest album “Life Blood and Tears,” as well a lot from his 2020 album “ American Hotel,” which has a picture of that Hotel in Fort Macleod on the cover. “ Tel Aviv Nine ” was one of those highlights. “ Too Many People” also about living in Toronto was definitely a highlight.

 

He took advantage of  the  enraptured crowd to play a few songs that he hasn't recorded, and ended with a. slew of popular covers reflecting his influences including Neil Young’s “Helpless,” and an old  Bob Dylan song “ She Belongs to me from his 1965 album “ Bringing it Back Home.”

 He wound up his set with “Shine On,” which had the audience singing along, before they called him back for one more — “ Thank You For the Rose.”

— by  Richard Amery, L.A. beat Editor

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Last Updated ( Friday, 20 January 2023 15:35 )
 

Ashley Hundred bring a variety of influences to Owl Acoustic lounge variety

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I always miss Calgary  ambient rock/psychedelic rock band the Ashley Hundred, so made a point to catch their Jan. 14 show at the Owl Acoustic Lounge. 

 

The Ashley Hundred at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Jan. 13. photo by Richard Amery

I missed Bailey Kate’s opening set.

 

The Ashley Hundred improved a lot since I last saw them.

 

 They  played an easygoing, hypnotic set combining elements of rock, progressive rock and a touch of jazz and an iota of hip hop and R and B , a smattering country and a little ’70s style soft rock which incorporated a variety of instruments.

 

Brett Cassidy alternated playing  banjo and steel guitar, but not like any country musician would, using them to create layers of ambiance  ad mellow sounds over plenty of groovy bas sand drums.

 

  They added guitar, keyboards and multi-part vocals  into the musical stew they were brewing.

 

 You couldn’t see much of it with smoke rising from the dimly lit stage, but you could hear their somewhat spooky sounds.

 

 The keyboards added a ’60s feel and a touch of more modern Jesse Northey sounds.

— By Richard Amery,L.A.Beat Editor

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Last Updated ( Friday, 20 January 2023 15:28 )
 

Bluesman Eric Braun brings some country to Casino Lethbridge

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Local bluesman Eric Braun and his band were in a country mood at Casino Lethbridge, Friday, Jan.13.

I caught the end of their last set of the night on Friday.

 

Eric Braun and his band returned to Casino Lethbridge, Jan. 13 and 14. photo by Richard Amery

 I arrived in the middle of  a cover of Brad Paisley’s “Alcohol” which featured one of many hot Eric Braun guitar solos.

 

 He added Chris Stapleton’s “ Tennessee Whiskey” and went classic  country for Waylon Jennings’“Working Man’s blues.”

 

 Just after midnight, they were called back for  an apt encore of “ After Midnight”  which let everybody show off their skills.

—by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

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Last Updated ( Friday, 20 January 2023 15:22 )
 

Ellen Froese and Richard Inman share their souls with packed Slice

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Saskatchewan singer/songwriter Ellen Froese returned to the Slice to enrapture a good sized crowd Friday, Jan. 13.

 

Ellen Froese returned to Lethbridge, Jan, 13. Photo by Richard Amery

She was at the Owl Acoustic Lounge during the summer, but I missed her. Before that she was last here in 2019 so it was great to hear her again.

 

Froese  played a laid back, enjoyable, enrapturing  set, which felt just like she was playing in your living room.  She told stream of consciousness stories and musings while strumming her guitar. She had a lot of new music to share, but wound down  her set by playing a request for an older song “Girl on the Cover of the Eaton’s Spring and Summer 1975 Catalogue.”

She wound  down her set with “ I’m So Happy Alone, featuring a harp solo.

 She has a beautiful smooth, smoky, folkie voice along the lines of Joni Mitchell and Joan Baez and as always  looked just delighted to be here.

 

She ended with “Ease My Mind” but  happily posed with photos and selfies on the stage with her fans after her set before making way for Richard Inman and his band.

 


 Richard Inman always plays engaging shows. he sings as if  every heartfelt word he utters is the most meaningful word ever uttered. The audience can tell he feels every single word of  his songs. 

 

 Inman told stories and sang original music  backed by  some of Lethbridge’s best musicians including Megan Brown on fiddle, drummer Brad Brouwer, bassist Paul Holden, led guitarist Kevin  Peters and Trevor Christensen adding country twang on steel guitar.

Richard Inman playing the Slice, Jan 13. Photo by Richard Amery

 

They started strong with “What Was I Thinking” (Not the Dierks Bentley hit) and  went even more country with “Love and Rose.”

One of many highlights of the first set was  a song about “losing all my money playing cards.”

 

 He played a song that reached number 6 on the Indigenous country charts.

 

 And played several songs from his  2020 “ Come Back Through” album including “ Waiting on the River” and “ Cut Fence and Let God Sort Em out about the wildfires in Waterton.

 

They wound down  the set with a request for  “Coming Back Home To You.”

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

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Last Updated ( Friday, 20 January 2023 15:16 )
 
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