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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 )

LMT take Broadway open mic to Arts in the Park

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New West Theatre’s weekly outdoor concert series Arts in the Park was in the north at Legacy Park, July 17.


The Lethbridge Musical Theatre Broadway open mic was the main attraction on a sweltering, smoky afternoon.


They have been doing online Broadway open mics during Covid, but before that were a regular fixture at the Owl Acoustic Lounge.

Jillian Bracken and and Joel Gardner providing accompaniment for the LMT Broadway open mic, July 17. Photo by Richasrd Amery

A full slate of participants were just happy to be able to sing in public again.

 A variety of performers of all ages, sang their favourite show tunes from a variety of musicals from older like Fiddler on the Roof to the modern like Spamalot and Hamilton.


Host Jeff Carlson introduced all the   performers and lead the audience in giving them positive affirmation.


Joel Gardner added accompaniment on piano while Jillian Bracken turned pages when she wasn’t on stage. She sang a couple of times including “Once”

 Cole Fetting, who is a familiar face on Lethbridge stages sang “Wait For it” from Hamilton.


Jeff Godin was also  on the bill reading from  his autobiography “ Bears Falling From Trees with Erections: Diary of an Indigenous Dude:Book 1” as well as the Southern Accord Chorus.

 This weekend Arts in the park is on the west side at Nicholas  Sheran Park, July 24, where there will be several family friendly  events including   Nicola Elson’s new Hootenanny play,Carl Brave Rock’s napi stories and  the band formerly known as Karen, Lewis and Pam. The afternoon begins at 1 p.m.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Thursday, 22 July 2021 09:32 )
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