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Music is the language of friendship

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Floyd Sillito plays  the Friendship Festival 2009, Aug. 14. Photo By Richard Amery
“Music is a pretty universal language. If people just stop long enough to listen ,” said local musician Floyd Sillito, who is an integral part of a special event taking place in Galt Gardens, Aug. 14 designed to  bring the community together.
Numerous performers of all different genres will be playing Friendship Festival 2009 including organizer and old school country music aficionado Floyd Sillito.
“It’s a friendship festival. That’s the idea. The purpose of the concert is creating bonds of friendship between  First Nations and other communities in Lethbridge,” Sillito said. The Aboriginal Council of Lethbridge and Amnesty International are putting on the event, which includes performers  Trevor Kiitokii, Richard Doeksen, Lance Tailfeathers, Pow Navarro, Russell Red Crow, the Ammena  Dance Company and Planet Telex as well as Floyd Sillito and West Winds, Miss Blackfoot Canada Meghan Shouting and other special guests.

Local ladies to shine as Kitty Leroy’s Lady Gamblers and Gunfighters

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Karen Romolliwa, singing with the Creationists here, is looking forward to her first solo performance, Aug. 14. Photo By Richard Amery
“Music is love looking for words,” said Karen Romolliwa summarizing Kitty Leroy’s Lady Gamblers and Gunfighters, which showcases seven of Lethbridge’s most talented female musicians, Aug. 14 at Henotic.
The performers include Shaela Miller, Amy Bronson, Austria, Erica Van Drunen, Kelsey and Brenna, Jennifer Lee Bailey and Romolliwa, who is looking forward to her first solo gig.
“I’m always nervous until after I get through the first song,” said Romolliwa, who is usually seen singing with Hipppodrome.
“It’s different because the focus  isn’t all on me because there ’s 12 members of Hippodrome on stage. This is taking it to a whole different level,” Romolliwa continued adding she took up guitar  a year ago to help her cope with her dad’s death.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 11 August 2009 11:36 ) Read more...

Super Saturday

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Saturday Aug. 1 was all about the ladies. I caught most of Alyssa McQuaid’s last set at the Mocha Cabana. Her resonant and melodic pipes will take this local girl a long way in the business. She has a new CD coming out fairly soon, as soon as  the photography and cover art are completed.
The, myself and perhaps 20 others were charmed into falling in love with the sweet country harmonies of Victoria bluegrass/country trio the Gruff, playing the Slice.  Guitarist Jenny Ritter, drummer Phaedra Kemp and stand-up bassist Terri Upton played off each other well, exhibited a quirky sense of humour and some really outstanding music enhanced by Chris Herbst’s tasteful dobro playing.
Then it was time to get rocked by the Pack A.D. who tore the roof of Henotic for approximately 40 people digging the Vancouver duo’s blend of grunge, hard rock and blues.
Singer/guitarist Becky Black howled the blues like a tortured soul, her leather lunged pipes  sounding like a cross between the Headpins’ Darby Mills and Janis Joplin. Drummer Maya Miller pounded the skins like a woman possessed by the spirit of Keith Moon. I kept expecting her kit to either burst into flames of collapse into itself. Their hour some long set was thunderous. I hope they come back soon. I can see why the Pack A.D are one of  the darlings of the alternative music community.
I also caught the very last  gravel voiced song from Darryl Düus and the One Shoe Blues Band who wound up a two day stint at the Lethbridge Casino. They wound up the set with a scorching version of “Who Do You Love,” guitarist/singer Düus wandered into crowd and played for each of the half dozen in attendance.
— By Richard Amery L.A.Beat editor
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 04 August 2009 16:00 )

Wild show from Wild T and the Spirit

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Thanks a to a high flying spirit any Wild T and the Spirit show will uplift the lowest of spirits. His Aug. 2 show at the Slice was no exception as Wild T aka Tony Springer, wielding a brand new Gibson SG instead of his trademark Stratocaster, beamed as if he was having the time of his life.
He began with “My Next  Ex-Wife from his latest CD, “Fender Bender, then took off from there, into a meandering psychedelic jam on “All Along the Watchtower,” during which he displayed every guitar playing technique ever invented, playing behind his head, back, with his teeth, with his butt, tapping, playing harmonics — everything. It was a guitar player’s dream. And then he got a little funky on another jam which segued into Jimi Hendrix’s “Hey Joe,” then played an freaky older cut of his, “Telephone Freak.”
There were a few  Wild T originals in the set including “Life Goes On,” and “Love Crazy” but not some of his well known tracks like “Freedom Train” and “I’ve Got the Rhythm,” but that didn’t matter to the audience of about 20 who loved his  extended jams — especially his Bob Marley songs, “No Woman No Cry,”  and “Everything’s Going to Be All Right,” and even a reggae version of Neil Young’s ”Down By The River.”
Those who stuck around for his second set were treated  to more guitar tricks and Stevie Ray Vaughan’s “Cold Shot,”  plus guest singers Karen and Shawna Romolliwa, who helped out on “Mustang Sally.”
Then he proved he is more than just a flashy guitar player during a couple hard core, heartfelt old school blues numbers, which were absolutely phenomenal.
 And no matter where Springer  went in his jams, his band, bassist Guenther Kappelle and drummer Murad Gunduz kept the pace and showed they had a few tricks of their own up their sleeves. Gunduz played a drum solo in the second set which took him through the crowd drumming on tables, chairs, glasses and microphones. Fantastic.
 — By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat editor

Exotic week in Lethbridge

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While last week was a great week for the blues in Lethbridge, this week has a more exotic flavour.
The reggae stylings of  Bedouin Soundclash provide the biggest show of the week on Aug. 10 at the Blarney Stone (see the interview on L.A. Beat).
However, that’s not the only one. On Aug. 5,  the Chloe Hall Trio are coming to Slice all the way from Australia. Their pop harmonies will be enhanced by local openers Austria.
 A couple streets away, also on Aug 5 (Wednesday) Henotic is taking on a more  eastern flavour as they welcome back  Vancouver’s From Delhi 2 Dublin.
 And if you are feeling Irish, Average Joes  downtown is bringing back east coast Celtic quartet the Irish Descendants, Aug. 6.
Last Updated ( Tuesday, 04 August 2009 13:41 ) Read more...
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