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Fundraisers help fill local music scene schedule

Posted on October 3, 2017 by Richard Amery

This is a good week for fundraisers.
Honker’s Pub is putting on a benefit concert for the wildfires in Waterton Lake Park, Sept. 30 from 3-11 p.m.
“We did a benefit for the Fort MacMurray fires and it was successful,” said Honker’s Pub entertainment director Samantha Wright. “We donated all the money to the Red Cross because the government was matching it. We don’t know where the money from this event will be donated to. We’ll decide where it can best be used.”
“We have a lot of talented musicians here because of our open mics on Friday and Saturday. So we’ll have different sets every half hour,” she continued, adding money will be donated through the proceeds from a 50-50 draw, a silent auction and a beef-on-a-bun dinner. There is no cover to attend the event.
“We’ll be accepting donations for the silent auction right up to the day of the event,” she said, adding there has been a lot of support for the event on the Facebook event.
“The numbers continued to grow every day,” she said.
The wildfire fundraiser is part of Honker’s usual monthly “Close to Home” fundraisers, which take place every month at the open mics.
“We choose a local charity every month to support. So we already had this in place. October will be Bikers Against Child abuse. Wildfires are happening right now, so it seemed appropriate,” she continued.
Average Joe’s is holding a fundraiser Sept. 29 to support the Lethbridge Girls Rock Camp, who recently had numerous musical instruments stolen from their storage locker. So the Chevelles are lending a hand and their talent to help replace the gear.
Admission is $10. The show begins at 9 p.m.
That is only part of the fun happening to wind up September.
Oktoberfest returns to Galt Gardens, Sept. 29 and 30. So get your fill of German beer and German music courtesy of Alpen Schatz, the Note-Ables and the Polkaholics performing throughout the weekend. There will also be a family area this year. There is no charge to attend all of the fun and excitement.
As usual the Owl Acoustic Lounge winds up the month with a comedy open mic on Wednesday, Sept. 27. You can also laugh at Club Didi with “Drunk Improv,” Sept. 30 featuring Impromptu. The laughs begin at 9 p.m. There a $10 cover charge
Saskatchewan alternative rock/progressive rock band the Faps return to the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Sept. 29 with local bands Mombod and Cope.
Medicine Hat singer-songwriter Jay Bowcott returns to the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Sept. 30.
Get a little funky and sweaty at the Slice, Sept. 30, with Klusterfunk, an Edmonton-based 11 piece energetic party band influenced by bands as diverse as Five Alarm Funk, Rage Against the Machine and the Sweatshop Union.
They will be joined by local band Shagadelic. A new club, Club Lime (1216 1 Ave. South), located next to Boss Hoggs, features a big rap show on Oct. 2 with Tech9ne plus Krizz Kaliko, Steve Stone, Doug Crawford. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $49.95.
Next week, Edmonton-based indie rock band Scenic Route to Alaska return to the Slice, Oct. 4. They are touring in support of their new single “Slow Down.” Tickets are $12 in advance, $15 at the door.
Edmonton indie rock band Scenic Route to Alaska haven’t had a chance to “Slow Down,” since their last Lethbridge show in May.
They return to the Slice, Sept. 4.
Since then they toured Canada, Europe and took three weeks in August to record a new album with Howard Redekopp in Vancouver over three weeks and just released a new single “Slow Down.”
“We really haven’t stopped playing since we were there in May,” observed drummer Shea Connor.
“We finished up that Canadian tour and flew to Europe,” he said, adding they went to Luxembourg and returned to Germany.
“We have a nice base in Germany, so we love going there,” Connor continued, adding as soon as they returned they took advantage of some “slow” time to record a new CD in three weeks.
“We recorded the bed tracks in Bryan Adams’ studio, the Warehouse,” Connor continued, adding they plan to release the new CD in March 2018.
“We’ll probably release a couple other singles before the album because that’s the way the business seems to be going,” he said.
“We feel it’s our most mature work so far, but then I feel like every work is our most mature work.”
“But it is another step in our continued growth,” Connor continued, adding there has been good response to the new single.
“The response to the single has been so far so good. We’re excited to get it out there,” he said.
They are planning on playing the new single and some other new songs in Lethbridge.
“We like playing the new songs. A lot of bands wait until their CD is released, we like to play them before,” he said.


B.A. Johnston at the Owl
It is always a good time when Hamilton funnyman B.A. Johnston visits the Owl Acoustic Lounge.
And while he could use a few new jokes, he promised he would have them “in six to eight months, when I come back here.”
His performances are always a celebration of the strange as it was, Sept. 19 at the Owl.
As usual, he entered by wandering through the audience grinning like a mischievous leprechaun and waving a sparkler in each hand, wearing several layers of identical “what are you looking at, dickhead?” sweatshirts, which he removed one at a time.
He cracked a bunch of jokes about Medicine Hat and chicken fingers, rolled around the floor, fed people their own beers, grinned as he rubbed a pregnant fan’s stomach, wandered behind the bar and fed bartender Braeden a bottle of something and basically had a good-sized Tuesday night audience howling for a solid 45-minute set with his jokes and quirky original music which included crowd favourites like “Deep Fryer in my Bedroom,” “Jesus Lives in Hamilton,” “GST Cheques,” “McDonald’s Coupon Day,” and newer songs from his new CD “Gremlins 3” including “A Day Off is a Day Off,” “Drive Through Beef” plus others about Tim Hortons, No Frills and annoying roommates.
Local band J Blissette opened up the show with a solid set highlighting Jackson Tiefenbach’s 12-string guitar, an addictive groove with elements of indie rock and a touch of punk to end their set.
Local musician Steve Martin opened the show with a new group called Saylor, featuring Martin, Junkman Quire’s George Fowler and several other friends singing a cappella versions of an assortment of sea shanties, Celtic music and a couple of excellent Stan Rogers songs including “Barrett’s Privateers” and “Northwest Passage.“

Sadies at the Geomatic Attic
The Geomatic attic opened up their new season with fantastic, sold-out show by Ontario psychedelic rock/country band The Sadies, Monday, Sept. 18. I arrived in the middle of the show in time to hear a couple familiar songs from a few years back and a variety of new music from their new CD “Northern Passages.”
They played a strong, loud set of sad songs, featuring a range of styles embracing country music, psychedelic rock, lightning-quick Chet Atkins-style instrumentals.
Guitarist/vocalists Dallas and Travis Good sang haunting harmonies, which made the band sound like they were haunted by the ghost of Gram Parsons throughout most of the set, and tapped into the essence of the Everly Brothers and the Byrds in others.
They played a variety of ’50s and ’60s-style rock and roll and country music including pop, rock and roll and even a Reverend Horton Heat-style rockabilly number.
Travis Good set down one of several battered, well-worn Gretschs to play some finger-shredding fiddle on a track which showed the brothers’ roots growing up with bluegrass and roots music in the household of the renown Good Brothers.
They played an enrapturing set of trippy music showing impressive musicianship. At the end, Travis and Dallas got close and dialled in on a riff together, and played each others’ guitars, which drew a standing ovation from the sold-out crowd. After a quick break, they returned for three more songs and received another standing ovation.
Garnet Rogers at Lethbridge Folk Club
The Lethbridge Folk Club opened their new season with a sold-out show with Garnet Rogers at the Lethbridge College Cave, Sept. 17.
I arrived at the end of his first set, which he was winding up by reading a passage from his new memoir “Night Drive: Travels With My Brother,” about touring in the ’70s and ’80s with his brother Stan Rogers.
He talked about his beautiful old acoustic guitars and made them sound like multiple guitars as he tenderly plucked their strings with a hand full of finger picks.
Rogers told stories, cracked jokes and played plenty of staggering acoustic guitar, but not many of his own songs, preferring to play obscure covers from folks like Mary Chapin Carpenter and an old Motown song which he turned on its head into an impressive fingerpicked folk song. He also played a few requests audience members had made during the intermission.
He switched guitars almost every song which gave each one its own unique sound.
He also read a few more passages from his book to wind down his show, promising not to do one of those fake show endings before returning for an encore.
After reading a passage from his book about an encounter with bikes when he and Stan were teenagers, he lead the crowd through a singalong of “Michael Row the Boat Ashore” and “Night Drive.”

Love and Records
CKXU’s Love and Records was a hoot, Sept. Sept. 16.
While I was listening to most of the music from behind the CKXU volunteer tent, I caught a few acts.
Local alternative rock band Fox Eyes opened up the festivities with their usual strong set of up-tempo ’90s-style alternative rock powered by lead singer Mandy Fox’s piercing screams.
The band I was really looking forward to see was Calgary rockabilly band Peter and the Wolves. They are always a blast to watch.
They had a new upright bassist, Pedro Lowe, plucking at a big, blue upright bass.
Frontman Peter Cormier grinned and leaped around the big stage between keyboard and guitar, playing high-energy rockabilly and ’50s and ’60s rock and roll. They played a lot of classic rockabilly and original music from their two albums. Cormier finished the band’s set by leaping high into the air.
A lot of people were excited to hear Toronto indie rock band Weaves. The guitarist started their set by doing his best Jimi Hendrix impression by playing his guitar with his teeth and spent the rest of the set squeezing all manner of noise and dissonant riffs out of his guitar, adding a touch of blues in places and a lot of punk for the last few songs of the set.
Their lead singer squealed in her high-pitched, soul-tinged voice, giving Weaves a sound similar to British punks X Ray Spex singing ’90s alternative rock.
Cold Specks a.k.a. Ladan Hussein, also from Toronto, finished Love and Records with a mellow, hypnotic set of soulful pop music which was heavily influenced by R and B music.
She and her band set down a mesmerizing groove which had an enraptured audience swaying in front of the stage watching intently.

Tom Savage and Roberts Hall
It is always good to see Kingston singer-songwriter Tom Savage in Lethbridge.
It has been a few years since he stopped by the Slice, but finally returned for a decent sized crowd, Sept. 15. He played two sets as Nanaimo duo Roberts Hall, who were sharing the night, had a table full of enthusiastic friends and family in the audience.
Savage opened the evening playing on his own with a variety of effects and speakers playing several blues tinged Bruce Springsteenish songs from his new CD “Everything Intertwined.”
He played the title track as well as a couple of highlights “Kid,” “Burnet By the Sun” and my favourite, “17 Years.”
Roberts Hall a.k.a. Étienne McGuigan (guitar, lead vocals) and Brendan Holm (drums, synthesizer, guitar, vocals) played a really laidback set of multi-layered, personal folk involving plenty of switching instruments.
They ended their first set with a gospel blues-tinged number “Don’t Go Down to The River.”
Sept. 27
Slice — Owl Acoustic Lounge – standup comedy open mic
Sept 28
Slice — open mic
Sept. 29
Mocha Cabana — Herb Hicks Jazz Quartet
Club Didi — Naked Monologues
Owl Acoustic Lounge — The Faps with Cope and MomBod
Smokehouse — Stevie heavy Hip hop
Honker’s Pub — open mic with Kelly Klimchuk
Casino Lethbridge — Breanne Urban and Southern Flyer
Average Joe’s — Lethbridge Girls Rock Camp Fundraiser with the Chevelles. $20
Sept 30
Club Didi — Drunk improv
Slice — Klusterfunk and Shagadelic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Jay Bowcott
Honker’s Pub — Southern Alberta Wildfires Fundraiser
Casino Lethbridge — Breanne Urban and Southern Flyer
Smokehouse — Megiddo 7 p.m.
Oct. 2
Club Lime (1216 1 Ave South) — Tech 9ne, Krizz Kaliko, Steve Stone, Doug Crawford $40 advance , $45 8 p.m.
Onion — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — open mic
Oct. 3
Smokehouse — Open mic with Daylan Delaney
Oct. 4
Slice — Scenic Route to Alaska
Oct. 5
Slice — open mic
Oct. 6
Mocha Cabana — Ray Sauer
Slice — Supervoid and the uptakes
Honker’s Pub — open mic
Oct. 7
Enmax Centre — Nitty Gritty Dirt band $65 $75 7:30 p.m.
Slice — Ivory Hours with Windigo and Fox Who Slept the Day Away
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Vissia
Honker’s Pub — open mic
Oct. 8
Average Joe’s — Matt Minglewood with Guests $25 advance, $30 day of show
Oct. 9
Onion — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — open mic

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