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Leeroy Stagger returning to Lethbridge for Wide Skies Reimagined

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Leeroy Stagger is excited to return to Lethbridge to play a special roof top show for the Geomatic Attic’s Wide Skies Reimagined Festival, Wednesday, July 28.

 Stagger, who moved back to his home of Victoria during the pandemic is happy to be playing his music in front of people again. 

 It has been an adjustment being back on the road and has taken a toll on his voice so he answered some questions by e-mail.


Leeroy Stagger returns to Lethbridge, July 21. Photo by Piper Ferguson

“Hi Richard, nice to hear from you! Just adjusting to be back on tour and performing again, it’s such a trip. Love the performing but not so much the travelling. We are loving being back on the coast, all of my family are here, the best part of moving back has been being able to spend so much time with them. We miss

Lethbridge and I’m certainly excited to be back for a little visit,” he wrote, adding he is having to get his voice back in shape.


“The best part is playing and the camaraderie between me and my band, that’s a real thing that years on the road together cannot break. I’m really having to take care of myself on this run as my voice warms back up, lots of vocal exercises and I talk very quietly before shows, it’s comical really,” he noted, adding he will be touring with long time bandmates, bassist Tyson Maiko and multi-instrumentalist Ryland Moranz. He will be joined by drummer Kyler Harmon for the Alberta dates and Nick Stecz was on the BC shows.


“It’s been great to play with Nick again, he’s played with us on and off for well over 10 years, same with Kyle,” he noted.


 It has been challenging as a touring musician during the pandemic, but he has been able to spend more time with his family.


“The biggest challenge has been having my income cut down to a third but how honestly it’s been a real blessing to have so much time to spend with my family and to have time to go inwards and decide what I really want in life. Family is more important than ever to me these days. I’ve dedicated far too much time to touring and that life over the last two decades and now it’s time to reverse that,” he noted.

Last Updated ( Monday, 26 July 2021 22:08 ) Read more...

MonkeyJunk returning to play Wide Skies Reimagined

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Multi-instrumentalist Steve Marriner is excited to bring his blues rock trio MonkyJunk back to Lethbridge, July 28 for a special roof top show for the Geomatic Attic.

“I just found out it was a roof top show a  few days ago. It’s a weird venue. It’s unusual but we’ll play anywhere,” said Marriner, noting the strangest venues MonkeyJunk was played was a bank in France.


Steve Marriner playing with MonkeyJunk. Photo by Richard Amery

“It was back in 2009 when MonkeyJunk was jus starting. It was a strange festival without a centralized stage in a field. They had everyone playing in non-traditional spaces. On that festival, we played community centres and the bank,” he said, adding he is excited to return to Lethbridge. They are already playing the Calgary blues Festival and were happy to travel on down the road to play for the Geomatic Attic.


“We were supposed to play Wide Skies Music Festival for the Geomatic Attic before the pandemic, so when we got the Calgary Blues Festival gig, we checked in with Mike Spencer and he asked us to play this show with Leeroy Stagger. Of course we said yes because Leeroy is a dear, dear friend of mine,” Marriner said.


“We’ve always had a close relationship with Lethbridge,” he continued, adding MonkeyJunk will play their favourite songs.


“This will be the first show we’ve played in front of actual people in a long time, so hopefully we won’t make too many mistakes,” he laughed.


“So we’ll be playing our favourite songs and hopefully the crowd’s favourites,” he continued, taking a break from recording.


Marriner spent the pandemic learning how to produce and engineer music in the studio.

In addition to releasing his second solo CD “ Hope Dies Last,” in addition to Ontario artists like Miss Emily (Emily Fennell) as well as David Gogo‘s new album, “Silver Cup” which is to be released in October or November.


“I went out to B.C to record it in his house. He plays guitar and sings and I play pretty much everything else. I play drums on most of it and bass on most of it and some piano,” he said.

“ I’m really excited about it.”


He is also really excited about the solo album.

“With MonkeyJunk, the three of us create all the sounds. We’ll bring in backup singers sometimes, but me, Tony Diteodoro and Matt Sobb make all the sounds,” he said, adding in between Covid peaks and shutdowns, they went into the studio to write new material.

Last Updated ( Friday, 23 July 2021 16:04 ) Read more...

Shawna Lorraine plays original music at Coco Vanilla Galactic Cantina

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It was a slow night at the Coco Vanilla Galactic Vanilla, Saturday, July 17.

Shawna Lorraine at the Coco Vanilla, July 17. Photo by Richard Amery


Whiskey Gap Country was playing, but I arrived in time, near the end of the night for a solo set by Whiskey Gap Country lead singer Shawna Lorraine.


 She was playing a solo set of mostly original country music accompanying herself on ukulele for a couple of songs before switching to acoustic guitar.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 July 2021 11:13 )

Berserker and the Youngbloods rock the Slice for CD release party

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 It was another night of punk at the Slice, Saturday, Sept. 17 for Berserker’s  CD release party.


Berserker playing their CD release Party, July 17 at the Slice. Photo by Richard Amery

 I missed Revanchist, but was in time for another incendiary set from the Youngbloods, who I haven’t seen for several years.


 They played a tight, energetic set of pop punk and screamo music.


 Frontman Kyle Hogan wound up in the middle of the good sized crowd to stand up on a table or two and scream into his mic.


 The channelled a bit of Rage Against the Machine with some grinding riffs, but there were also a lot of catchy gang vocals and whoa whoah whoah  choruses.


 Berserker is Jon Vornbrock backed by most of local punk band Sessions including Brian Kostersky on vocals and guitar, bassist/vocalist James Myer and drummer Beau Sommerfeldt.


 They had a strong emo/ ’90s 2000s alternative rock with a touch of the Foo Fighters and a little Rage against the Machine.


The Youngbloods returned to the Slice, July 17. Photo by Richard Amery

 But, because it was Vornbrock on vocals and guitar, they also had a similar ’90s sound to one of his other alternative rock bands the Supervoid.


 They played an intense, tight and loud set of original music from their CD“Welcome To Hollywoodland,” though I thought I recognized a Supervoid song  in the set..

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 July 2021 11:25 )

Beautiful day for Latino culture at Latin Fest

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The weather was just about perfect for a celebration of Latin culture.

It was already hot,  so it already put people in a tropical state of mind, Saturday, July 17 for Latin Fest.


Mexicanos sin Fronterosas dancers at Latinfest 2021,July 17. Photo by Richard Amery

The Southern Alberta Multicultural Centre downtown was packed with hungry patrons enjoying Latin food outside. The ice cream booth was particularly busy.


Most of the people packed inside to enjoy Latin music and dance in an air conditioned atmosphere.


Rigoberto Alvaredo singing at Latinfest 2021,July 17. Photo by Richard Amery

 I was only able to stay for a couple acts. Most of them performed several times.


Around 3 p.m. Rigoberto Alvaredo sang a variety of Latino pop and jazz songs ba

cked by a taped accompaniment.


 He enjoyed himself, wandering all over the dance floor crooning into his microphone.

He was pretty popular and was called back for an encore of “La Bamba” which several of the performers covered.

Traditional dancing is always a highlight of Latin Fest.


There were several dance troupes on the bill but I only caught Mexicanos Sin Fronterosas Dancers.


They began with a beautiful graceful dance dressed in blue and white then another group in yellow, red and white danced a different dance.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 July 2021 10:04 )
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