A couple of excellent folk and roots shows open the week. And they both begin early.
You might remember the fleet-fingered fiddle and equally fast feet of Charlottetown’s Gordie MacKeeman from the South Country Fair a few years ago.
He brings his band the Rhythm Boys to the Geomatic Attic, Nov. 8 at 8 p.m. to melt your faces with fiddle, rockabilly ant lots more. Tickets are $37.50.
The Windy City Opry returns to the Slice, Nov. 8 as well.
This week Winnipeg-based, 10-piece brass heavy Dirty Catfish Brass Band will be performing with Eastern Canada-based old-time, bluegrass and roots duo Hornell and Sneddon. Matthew Hornell and Andrew Sneddon play timeless traditional ballads, old-time country, bluegrass, originals and instrumentals. That show also begins at 8 p.m. on the dot and ends early. There is a $10 cover.
The Geomatic Attic is a busy place this week as in addition to Gordie MacKeeman and his Rhythm Boys, Skinny Dyck and his Chicken Catchers will be performing, Nov. 10 at 8 p.m. in support of Danny Dyck’s excellent new compilation Skinny Dyck & Friends: 20 One Nighters. Tickets are $27.50.
It will be the official Lethbridge CD release party for the compilation.
Local indie rock/progressive rock band the New Weather Machine also have a CD release party at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Nov. 11. Shaela Miller will also be performing.
The Owl Acoustic Lounge also has a busy week as it brings back Red Deer singer-songwriter Tyler Allen on Nov 9. The venue features Edmonton-based musician Eric West and singer-songwriter Max Hopkins on Nov. 10.
Also this weekend, Cal Toth brings Duelling Pianos back to Average Joe’s Nov. 10.
Also on Nov. 10, the Lethbridge Folk Club hosts their monthly open mic at Casa at 7 p.m. Bring your guitar and $5 to cover the room rental.
If you need a dose of the blues this weekend, Calgary bluesman Eric Braun returns to Casino Lethbridge on Nov. 10 and 11.
Don’t forget about the monthly ukulele jam taking place at Casa, from 2-3 p.m., Nov., 12.
The Slice features Nanaimo-born alternative rock band Wise Youngblood Nov. 10.
The Slice honours Remembrance Day with a night of war movies and documentaries.
A little later in the month, Brodie Moniker of PandaCorn and Fancy Diamonds brings his solo project to the Slice Nov. 15 with local band the Mormon Girls and Makiisma.
If you are in the mood for fleet-fingered Maritime fiddle playing, and some fast-footed dancing, then you won’t want to miss Gordie MacKeeman and His Rhythm Boys at the Geomatic Attic Nov. 8.
The Charlottetown-based fiddle player and his band, guitarist Peter Cann, upright bassist/banjo player Thomas Webb and drummer/bassist Jason Burbine, have played everywhere but Lethbridge since making an impression at the South Country Fair several years ago.
“I think that was the last time we were there. We’ve released two CDs then and we’ve toured a lot. We’ve toured in India and the UK,” said MacKeeman, enjoying a couple days off in Fort MacMurray, where the band is set to play next.
They enjoy playing India and the United Kingdom.
“India was definitely interesting. We were playing the Nomatch festival. They liked us,” MacKeeman said.
“And we always enjoy playing the United Kingdom,” he said, adding they are planning to take some time off after this Western Canadian tour to write a new album.
Gordie MacKeeman and his Rhythm Boys are more than just about Celtic music; the show has expanded to include their diverse musical tastes.
“Originally it was an instrumental show based around my Maritime fiddle playing but we also love rockabilly and country music and folk music, so we expanded it to include those too.
“So everyone gets to show their individual interests. We play a high energy show including rockabilly, rock and roll, blues” he said.
They also enjoy putting their own spin on popular covers including Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ “King’s Highway.”
“We were already playing that before he passed because it is on our last album. We love his music. We think if you’re going to do a cover you should put your own twist on it so becomes not just a cover, but a tribute,” he said.
Gordie MacKeeman and his Rhythm Boys play the Geomatic Attic at 8 p.m Nov. 8. Tickets are $37.50.
You may remember Regina musician Brodie Moniker from such bands as PandaCorn and the Fancy Diamonds.
He is in the middle of a tour in support of his new solo CD “Nowhere Left to Ghost” which stops by the Slice Nov. 15 with local bands the Mormon Girls and Makiisma.
His new CD, which he released in March, allows him to explore a variety of different styles of music from riff-based stoner rock, more ambient space rock and introspective singer songwriter material.
“A lot of people are starting to connect with “Punching Bag,’ because they connect with aggression and the feeling of recovering. I basically put all of my feelings from past relationships into the one song,” said Brodie Mohninger, who changed his name to Brodie Moniker.
“People kept mispronouncing it and it is a nice little pun,” he said, from Chamberlain, Sask., a half hour out of Moose Jaw.
While he noted PandaCorn is no longer active, he said Fancy Diamonds is set to record a new CD in January.
In the meantime he can tour with his solo trio of bassist Steve Leidal, who just finished touring with country musician Blake Berglund, as well as Apollo Suns drummer Glenn Radley, who was just in Lethbridge with that band.
“I’m excited to play with them because I don’t often get to tour with my own music. We’ll be playing the music from the new album and a couple of cool covers,” he continued.
“We might also play a PandaCorn song that we never recorded,” he said.
He said the solo CD includes a variety of music.
“They’re all definitely different. I found it frustrating in other projects when I had to sit on songs because they didn’t have the right sound. But I think it’s cool for people to skip a song on a CD while always being drawn to others,” he said.
“Lyrically a lot of people are drawn to ‘Even Birds Return’ because it is about growing up in a small town that everyone says they want to leave, but they always return because there’s something about it that they missed,” he said.
Brodie Moniker, Mormon Girls and Makiisma play the Slice at 9 p.m., Nov. 15.
Barney Bentall at Southminster
Barney Bentall’s Cariboo Express tour always puts a smile on my face, even as the snow started to fall outside the Southminster United Church.
I only caught the last hour of the show, which was a fundraiser for Youth One.
Bentall mainly took a back seat during the portion of the show I caught, taking a seat in the audience while talented tour mates like Leeroy Stagger, Ridley Bent, Kendall Carson and Bentall’s son Dustin, took centre stage though Bentall would join them to help add harmonies.
I arrived as Leeroy Stagger was leading the crack band through his epic “Run Rabbit Run” from his new CD “Love Versus.”
The always entertaining Ridley Bent played “Bobby and Suzanne” from his album “Buckles and Boots.”
And, as always in a show with so many great musicians, there are always pleasant surprises. Kendel Carson’s hot fiddle playing was a highlight on everybody’s songs. Another highlight was the country stylings of Angela Harris who sang “Tears I’ve Cried.”
Everybody returned to stage including Bentall, co-host Matt Masters and to help Dustin Bentall sing his big song “Three Thousand Miles,” with Barney Bentall, Leeroy Stagger and Matt Masters each taking a verse and everybody singing beautiful harmonies.
Leeroy Stagger got to end the hometown show kicking off the tour by singing a brand new song “Broken Generation.”
One Bad Son, Whale and Wolf
One Bad Son are always a lot of fun, and now with their new hit album “Made in the Name of Rock and Roll” on the charts, it was no surprise Average Joes was packed even on a Sunday, for their superb Oct. 29 show.
Opening act Whale and the Wolf played a solid set of contemporary rock while Megan Rae Norris shoed some impressive lighted hula hooping moves in front of the stage.
One Bad Son played a solid set of familiar hits which showcased their new bassist Steve Adams and which had their many fans, now gathered in front of the stage, singing along.
Frontman Shane Volk showed an impressive set of pipes as usual, screaming and howling like “It Ain’t Right” and “Retribution Blues.”
Their huge cover of the Talking Heads’ “Psycho Killer,” is a steadfast highlight which came midway through the set
They added a great cover of Soundgarden’s “Spoonman,” as Volk hit those high-octave Chris Cornell notes pretty close.
They also played a lot of the new CD, showing their heavier side with Adam Hicks‘ huge, guitar riff driven rockers like the title tack and the new number one single “Raging Bull” which came midway through the set. Volk dedicated sexy rocker “Scream For Me,” to the new bassist.
As they did with “Raging Bull” during their last Lethbridge visit, they also tried out some new songs in this show including the mid tempo rocker “The Promise.”
Drummer Kurt Dahl grinned behind the drum kit hammering away and the skins and took a brief drum solo.
They wound things down with a tear jerking cover of the Tragically Hip’s “Bobacageon,” as Volk donned a bowler hat to sing his tribute.
Even on a Sunday night, they were called back for two encores including “Scarecrows.”
The Slice featured rock and roll for Oct 28 with Sparwood’s Due Clause who entertained 30 some people. They played an array of southern rock and classic rock music.
The trio played a tight set featuring an excellent version of “Simple Man.” and Neil Young’s “Ohio.”
Their guitarist had a whole Eddie Van Halen rig set up including a 5150 stack and Ernie Ball Music man guitar, so he had Van Halen’s brown sounds down, though I didn’t hear any Van Halen in the part of the show i heard. Though hearing surf classic Mirsirlou played through the rig was impressive.
J Blissette at the Owl
The Owl Acoustic Lounge’s pre-Halloween party featured several acts, Oct, 28, but I only caught local 12-string guitar-powered alternative rock band J Blissette.
They were in a more power pop mood, but had a Violent Femmes feel for a couple songs. They picked up the tempo for more alternative rock to wind down their set with “Stand In the Sun,” which was a highlight.
The Chevelletons or Chevelles dressed as a band of skeletons celebrated Halloween, Saturday, oct, 28. and helped out minor hockey with the Novice Tier 3 Hurricanes, who were selling 50 50 tickets and tickets for door prize.
The Chevelles always equal a good time and played their usual variety of classic rock.
The Halloween show included “Every Rose has A Thorn” and popular party starter “Brown Eyed Girl.”
Frontman Tim Carter shouted out a toast to country music and launched into “Take me Home Country Roads.”
They picked up the pace with “You Shook Me All Night Long,” and “Whiskey in The Jar.”
Geomatic Attic — Gordie MacKeeman and the Rhythm Boys $37.50 7-11 p.m.
Slice — Windy City Opry with Dirty Catfish Brass and Hornell and Sneddon
Slice — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Tyler Allen
Casino Lethbridge — Eric Baun
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Eric West/Max Hopkins
Geomatic Attic — Skinny Dyck and the Chicken Catchers 7 p.m. $25 advance, $27.50 online, $30 door
Average Joe’s — Dueling pianos with Cal Toth
Slice— Young Wisebloods
Honker’s Pub— open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — New Weather Machine album release party with Shaela Miller
Casino Lethbridge — Eric Braun
Honker’s Pub — afternoon open mic
Casa — ukulele jam 2-3 p.m.
Onion — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — open mic
Slice — Brodie Moniker
Owl Acoustic Lounge — R Ariel/ 30 Spice/ Simply Damon/ Birch barks/ ONTK!
Slice — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Soft Lions,Ground Sloth orchestra WITS
Slice — Flowshine with Birch barks
Geomatic Attic — Del barber
Mocha Cabana — Accordion melodies with Alice Tinordi
Honker’s Pub — open mic
Casino Lethbridge —Uncovered
The Gate — Gabriel Thaine and Friends $40 Lethbridge Food bank fundraiser 7 p.m.
Slice — Kane Incognito with The Rock River Rebels
Owl Acoustic Lounge — 1:30 p.m. Family Jam/ 9 p.m. In Cahoots
Average Joe’s — adequate for Atop Tier 1 $10
Casino Lethbridge — Uncovered
Southminster United Church — Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra Adventures on Film
Onion — open mic
Owl Acoustic Lounge — open mic