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May 23, 2019 May 23, 2019

Plenty of variety coming to city stages

Posted on March 6, 2019 by Richard Amery

There is a lot of comedy, roots music and even punk music coming up in the next couple of weeks. This week has several roots shows. Southern Manitoba-born, Alberta-based country/roots musician Idaho Joe and the Mountain Men play the Slice on March 6.
And Winnipeg-area roots musician Richard Inman returns to the Owl Acoustic Lounge March 8 with George Arsene.
For more mainstream country, Ryan Lindsay returns to Casino Lethbridge March 8 and 9. There is no cover charge for the shows, which begins at 8 p.m. each night.
Also on March 8, Los Angeles-based, Australian-born blues and soul singer the Kara Grainger band will be at the Slice March 8. Admission is $10 for the show, which also features local blues/rock band Rockuronium. The show begins at 9 p.m.
If you enjoy modern dance, the Lethbridge Society of Independent Dance Artists presents Dance as Art — Common Thread at the Sterndale Bennett Theatre March 8 and 9 beginning at 8 p.m.
They have brought this show to the stage for the past three years for three sold-out performances. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for members, $20 for non-members and memberships are $10.
There will be lots of laughs at the Yates Theatre March 9 as the Snowed In Comedy Tour returns with Dan Quinn, Paul Myrehaug, Pete Zedlacher and Domonde Tschritter performing beginning at 8 p.m. Tickets are $45 for adults, $35 for seniors and $25 for students.
Also for comedy, Ben Proulx performs two shows at Good Times March 9 at 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.
If you are in a punk kind of mood, Calgary’s the Galacticas return to the Slice March 9 with local bands Sessions and the Youngbloods also on the bill. The show starts at 9 p.m. There is a $10 cover.
There is even some local jazz music happening at the College Drive Community Church. The Lethbridge Community Band present “Music From the Silver Screen” with conductor Josh Davies. You will hear songs from “King Kong,” “Braveheart,” “Apollo 13” and more. Tickets are $15, children 12 and under get in for free.
And, the Stoketown Cafe are beginning a new brunch music series monthly on Saturdays. This week, Papa King and Doug Freeman will be performing.
Kavanagh and Hepher perform on April 13 at the High Level Blues Duo are performing May 18. Brunch music runs from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Also coming up, Keith Catfish Woodrow is starting a blues jam at the Slice. The first one is Tuesday, March 12 at 9 p.m.
Victoria punk legends the Dayglo Abortions return to Lethbridge March 15 to play the old firehall at 9 p.m. with Chief Mountain and The Hockey Moms. Admission is $15.

Reviews
Harpdog Brown at the Slice
It is great to see good blues music getting a great turnout in Lethbridge.
Edmonton-based harp god Harpdog Brown returned to the Slice Tuesday, Feb. 26 with hot pianist David Webb and clarinetist/saxophonist Billy Bobby Joe Abbott. Harpdog was in the mood to laugh and share a lot of music from his brand new CD coming out in April called “For Love And Money.”
So he played a lot of that as well as a lot from his most recent, “Travellin With The Blues.”
He sat back and listened to Webb wail on the piano and for Abbott to play beautiful solos on clarinet and saxophone, sometimes changing instruments mid song. Then he spoke to the 30-some people at the early-starting show through his harp. It was a thing of beauty watching the trio interacting with each other.
He played blues classics from the likes of Sonny Boy Williamson, several drinking songs written by Amos Milburn and a lot of his own songs from his past couple of CDs, but focused on the new songs in between telling stories and expressing how happy he was to be in Lethbridge.
With the piano and, clarinet and saxophone, he had a strong jazz feel to his set.
Webb was impressive playing rock and roll and boogie woogie on pianos. And Abbott was really focused on embracing the music.

Pokey Lafarge at the Geomatic Attic
I missed The Geomatic Attic’s presentation of Dan Mangan at the Yates Theatre last week, so made a point of making it to Los Angeles-based, Chicago-reared, St. Louis-born musician Pokey Lafarge, who was at the Geomatic Attic Sunday, Feb. 24, hot off a successful weekend playing the Block Heater Festival in Calgary.
Lafarge didn’t play a lot from his latest, horn-heavy CD “Manic Revelations,” except for a stripped-down version of “Better man Than me,” but showed an impressive range of influences including folk, blues, string band, gospel and a lot of jazz, which he plucked on a battered old 1930s-style acoustic guitar.
He noted the best question he has ever been asked was what his influences are and took pride in his answer of “I don’t know.”
It was one of several off-the-cuff remarks he made while tuning a stubborn acoustic guitar no doubt affected by winter. He laughed about how he looked like E.T. with long arms and then joked more about Alberta winter.
He noted he has a new CD coming out next year, which he recorded in Chicago and added how excited he was about the band he put together for it and touring with them.
He channelled the spirit of old blues shouters like Leadbelly and touches of Robert Johnson, and had similar voice and mannerisms similar to Canadian talent like Petunia and Blue Moon Marquee. He also brayed out an impressive falsetto, which he tried to get the audience ti sing along with.
Because he has a a new CD coming out he was excited to play a lot of the new songs as well as several from his “Something in The Water” CD including the title track, which came right out of the gate.
He talked about recording in the middle of a fierce “polar vortex” Chicago winter, so perhaps not coincidentally, a lot of his songs seemed to be about storms, snow and plenty about heartbreak and loneliness.
An early highlight was “End Of my Rope.” I also enjoyed a newer song “Even Bums Get Lucky.”
A couple of earlier songs were highlights near the end of the set including pumped-up gospel blues of “The Devil Ain’t Lazy” and “Central Time,” with which he ended his set before being called back for an encore.
The encore consisted of a trio of slower, more jazzy numbers, ending with an optimistic “I’m So Happy.”
Ryland Moranz, who just returned from touring the United Kingdom with Leeroy Stagger, rushed to Lethbridge from a gig in Edson to open the show with a quick set of impassioned folk and roots music.
Moranz played a couple of up-tempo originals on guitar and banjo, getting the crowd to clap along ever faster as he set his fingers afire on the banjo with some quick picked licks.
Erin Ross and George Arsene at the Slice
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Calgary musician and radio personality Erin Ross never gets the crowd she deserves when she plays the Slice, as she did, Saturday, Feb. 22.
I missed Chris Drew’s set, but was in time to catch George Arsene previewing a few songs from his upcoming album with Pete Loughlin adding lead guitar. Arsene played a quick set of “Back Against the Wall” and his tribute to Tom Dooley.
Ross can play a variety of music, but was in more of roots/country mood, playing beautifully fingerpicked licks on guitar and then on banjo.
Loughlin stayed on stage to play some sweet leads on some completely new songs which he listened intently to, before adding tasteful leads.
Papa King always competes with other good blues shows, in this case Erin Ross.
But I caught the end of Kings’s set with bassist Doug Freeman and keyboardist TJ Waltho.

Bands as bands is always a good tie, even more so when people dress the part. That wasn’t the case at the Owl Acoustic Lounge, Feb. 22. I was in time to see Chief Mountain tackle a few Ramones classics including Blitzkreig Bop, “I Wanna Live,” “Pet Cemetary” and the “KK Took My Baby Away.”They even took on my favourite Ramones song “Beat on the Brat.”
Mombod took a stab at a few Runaways songs, and after a few false starts, made it through. The highlight was Rainbow Patrol doing “Hobo Kiss.”
They had put ion basic KISS makeup, though no white base.
And they sounded great as they played decent version of older KISS classics like “Deuce,” “Strutter,” and “Call me Dr. Love,” as well as few obscurities like “Hotter Than Hell.

March 6
Beaches — open mic
Slice — Idaho Joe and the mountain men
March 7
Slice — open Mic
Good Times — Comedy Open mic
Zoo — Thursday Thursdays open mic
March 8
Sterndale Bennett Theatre — Dance as Art Common Thread 7:30 p.m. $20
Honker’s Pub — open mic
Slice — Kara Grainger Blues Band and guests
Owl Acoustic Lounge — Richard Inman with George Arsene
Casino Lethbridge — Ryan Lindsay
Good Times — Ben Price Magic
March 9
Yates Theatre — Snowed in Comedy Tour $45 adults, $35 seniors $25 students With Dan Quinn Paul Myrehaug, Pete Zedlacher, Domonde Tschritter
Sterndale Bennett Theatre — Dance as Art Common Thread 7:30 p.m. $20
Slice — The Galacticas with Sessions and Youngbloods $10 9 p.m.
College Drive Church — Lethbridge Community band
Honker’s Pub — afternoon open mic
Casino Lethbridge — Ryan Lindsay
Good Times — Ben Proulx 6:30, 9:30 p/.m. $10
Stoketown — brunch Concert Series with Papa King and the Freeman 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m.
March 11
Owl Acoustic Lounge — open mic
March 12
Slice — Slice of Blues jam with Keith CatfishWoodrow
March 13
Beaches — open mic
March 14
Good Times — Comedy open mic
Slice — open mic
Mocha Cabana — Medium Jennie Ogilvie 7-9 p.m.
Firestone — James Oldenburg 6-8 p.m.
March 15
Casino Lethbridge — Breanne Urban and Southern Flyer
Yates Theatre — Platinum Blonde
Slice — Suit Jacket Society with Decadent Phase
Firehall — 9 p.m. Dayglo Abortions with Hockey moms and Chief mountain $15
Owl Acoustic Lounge — CKXU Terrific Tavern Taster with Carbolizer, Corinthian, Strip mall, object_option
Honker’s Pub — open mic
March 16
Owl Acoustic Lounge — 1-4 p.m. Lethbridge Girls Rick Camp Family jam
Casino Lethbridge — Breanne Urban and Southern Flyer
The Slice — Underlier, Bastian, Eons of Earth
Honker’s Pub— afternoon open mic
Library — Love N’ Cupcakes
Pixie Pub — CKXU Melodic melee battle of the bands with Youngbloods, Fawns, 21st Avenue, Tyrants of Chaos
March 17
Club Lime — St. Patrick’s Day Smash Up with A. Skillz with Rabbyt, DJ PEz, Phunky Le Freq $17, $20
March 19
Southminster United Church — Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra Cruisin with Mozart with Magdalena Van Escher piano, Ecole Agnes Davidson Children’s Choir
The Zoo CKXU Fundrive karaoke Knights
March 20
Geomatic Attic — Sean burns
Beaches — open mic
March 21
Good Times — Comedy open mic
Slice — open mic

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