Steve's Blog
Wednesday January 16, 2013

Keep in Touch

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Hi everyone

Margaret & I are back from Middle Earth! After 5 glorious weeks travelling around New Zealand (Auckland - Akaroa - Kaikoura - Abel Tasman Park - Blenheim - Omaka - Marlborough Sounds - Wellington - Palmerston North for Xmas - Napier - Coromandel - Hobbiton) we set off for Rarotonga in the Cook Islands, a veritable tropical paradise. Sadly, on the second day there I received the dreadful news that my Mum had passed away - suddenly and unexpectedly - in England. We decided to stay in Raro for the week, as planned, and returned on Sunday evening. We leave for England this coming Sunday for the funeral and to sort out Mum's affairs. Back in early February. (Big thanks to everyone who sent their best wishes on Facebook. It was a big help to me, and certainly kept my spirits up.)

We have a couple of exceptional concerts in the next week or two, and it would be great to see you there. You can buy tickets online, or at Highlife Records on Commercial Drive or Rufus' Guitar Shop at 10th and Alma. Tickets will also be available at the door.

1. Jocelyn Pettit Band and Thereafter, Friday January 18th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Jocelyn Pettit is a brilliant young BC fiddler who starred in The Chieftains' recent concert in town. (*I thought she stole the show, in fact!) She also composes, step dances and sings and is an engaging and charming performer. This British Columbian Celtic fiddler is an artist that deserves to be heard. Her debut CD of Irish, Scottish and Cape Breton tunes impresses both for the lovely tone she induces from her instrument, and its unhurried pacing. Pettit has an intuitive command and understanding of the material that would honour a musician of any age; for one who is just 15, it's astonishing. - Sing Out! Magazine (Summer 2010)

Thereafter are Neil Hammond - Guitar, Vocals, Harmonica; Keona Hammond - Flute, Vocals; Shanto Bhattacharya- Cello; Annie Brown - Fiddle; and Ben Brown - Percussion. When asked, they describe their music as "prog-trad." This is part self-deprecation, part guilty pleasure. They are open to exploring anything with their roots instrument base, anything, that is, except for a concept album, what with punk having happened. With flute, fiddle, cello, cajon and guitar and members from the celtic, jazz and classical traditions, Thereafter are able to range far and wide in their exploration of world music and the vivid arrangements of their original songs and instrumentals. Don't leave early - there will be a rollicking Celtic jam session with both bands at the end of the night!

2. Annie Lou, Friday January 25th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Fresh on the heels of two Canadian Folk Music nominations and chart-topping radio play with their new album "Grandma's Rules for Drinking", Annie Lou will bring their original stringband music to stages all over BC this month, from Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast to the Okanagan and the Rogue! Annie Lou is built around the original songwriting of Anne Louise Genest, who spent twenty years living in the Yukon woods. Now relocated to the balmier shores of Vancouver Island, Genest carries the spirit of an old storyteller inside her, and this voice, mixed with the stringband sounds of fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin and upright bass, traces a journey through days gone by to the here and now. Touring with Annie Lou are some of Canada's finest acoustic musicians, including Genest (guitar, banjo, vocals), with Kim Barlow (banjo, guitar, vocals), Andrew Collins on mandolin, fiddle, and vocals, and Max Heineman on double bass and vocals. Collins, a multiple Juno-nominee and founding member of some of Canada's most celebrated stringbands (including The Creaking Tree String Quartet) is an accomplished composer and multi-instrumentalist. Heineman is best known for his work with The Foggy Hogtown Boys, and Barlow is a well-known Juno-nominated singer-songwriter. With such a powerhouse of a lineup, Annie Lou's CD release tour promises to deliver great songwriting, great playing, and a really good old time!

3. The Edge On Folk, Saturday January 19th, 8am to noon, CiTR fm 101.9 and

Heather McCain did a sterling job filling in for me on CiTR for 6 weeks, and she'll be back for another two shows while I'm away again. I will squeeze in one edition of The Edge On Folk myself this coming Saturday. CiTR has had some challenges with its internet service and podcasting lately, but everything is up and running again now. I can't wait to have a go at radio again!! You can tune in live on 101.9 fm, or Telus TV channel 3717, or - hooray!! - live streaming on (podcasts of this show will be available on later this weekend as well.)

4. Help Wanted

While I'm away we will need extra help at the concerts and with Publicity for our upcoming concerts. Please visit our Concert Calendar for a look ahead to our future shows, and contact if you'd like to volunteer for a concert or if you'd like to help with Publicity.

Have a great weekend! See you at The Rogue!!