Presented by the South Peace Community Arts Council
About Home Routes: is a non-profit arts organization in Winnipeg, who coordinate a series of “house”concert circuits throughout Canada. These concerts provide an intimate up close concert experience for the audience. The Dawson Creek Art Gallery has been hosting these concerts since 2010.
All shows take place at the Dawson Creek Art Gallery.
Showtime is 7:30 pm. Tickets are $22.50 each through Tickets in the Peace.
Visit our Home Routes Concert Series on Facebook for video clips and more!
2018/19 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES SCHEDULE:
Saturday, Oct 20, 2018 – Ken Tizzard (ON)
Bio: Very few Canadian musicians have had as fascinatingly diverse a career as Ken Tizzard. In over two decades as a professional musician, he has gone from plying his trade as the charismatic bassist in top Canadian rock bands The Watchmen and Thornley (he is featured on six gold and platinum records received numerous Juno nominations and MuchMusic Awards, and licensed songs to such TV shows as CSI and Fashion Television) to then emerging as an eloquent roots-based singer/songwriter and guitarist with a prolific solo career.
Wearing his rock ‘n roll hat, Ken has toured internationally, appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and played such major venues as The Air Canada Centre. When he puts on his cowboy hat, Tizzard can be spotted performing his original material, solo or with a band, for a loyal and growing audience in pubs, clubs and concert halls across Canada.
There is a soul-baring lyrical honesty to the material on No Dark No Light. The majority of the songs are focused upon his own emotions and experiences or those of close friends, but, in true folk music tradition, he also creates characters and stories. He takes those songs just as seriously, striving to imbue them with real authenticity. “I see those songs as research pieces,” says Ken. “Rather like a method actor working on a role, I really immerse myself in those themes, searching to find the real story.”
“Tizzard is a born storyteller… a little Townes Van Zandt can be heard as he performs a descriptive and hugely impressive folk blues number that speaks of how the devil lives in St Johns Newfoundland… his vocal style has more to do with John Hartford than anyone other than himself for presentation, warmed with a hint or two of James McMurtry.” – Maurice Hope – Americana UK
Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018 – Woody Holler (MB)
Genre: country: western/swing
Bio: Woody Holler grew up on the Canadian prairie hearing the songs of the cowboy. Although he was later trained in opera, a sense of nostalgia held him close to those western roots. In 2009, Woody teamed up with some of Winnipeg’s finest jazz musicians and began purveying his own brand of Western Swing that Woody defines as “jazz from the saddle”. The show is reminiscent of a 1940s radio show with a sound that is nostalgic yet thrilling. The music involves clever arrangements rich with virtuosity and style. The repertoire is eclectic, fun and fascinating, featuring finger-snapping swing beats, honey-slowed love croons, a dash of opera, and show stopping “extreme” yodeling.
Since 2010 the band has showcased very successfully across Western Canada, which has led to several tours from across the prairies to the Atlantic and many tours of the Pacific. They have enjoyed a tour of the Northwest Territories and past the arctic circle. In 2016, the band spent three weeks touring England on behalf of the Northern England arts network.
Their first album, “Western Skies” was nominated for a Canadian Folk Music Award in 2010. Woody and the boys have just completed their second album, “Jazz from The Saddle”. It’s filled with all the things that make Woody Holler and his Orchestra so entertaining.
Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2019 – Pierre Schryer & Adam Dobres (BC)
Genre: Celtic, Acoustic, Folk, French-Canadian, Irish, Traditional, Fiddle, Guitar
Pierre Schryer is one of Canada’s leading traditional fiddlers. A recipient of numerous titles and awards including Canadian Open Fiddle Champion Grand Masters Champion Violoneux Championnat and North American Irish Fiddle Champion Pierre truly captivates an audience with his energy and genuine warmth. His ability knows no bounds covering styles from Irish Scottish Québecois and Cape Breton to Canadian Old Time American Swing and more. As leader of his self-titled group Pierre Schryer Band built an international reputation as one of Canada’s most well-respected traditional music ensembles by touring throughout Canada the USA Ireland Europe and the UK since the mid-90’s. Pierre has shared the stage with dozens of internationally renowned colleagues in the traditional music scene and has performed with numerous orchestras across Canada with his acclaimed Symphony Pops show. Of his six recordings released on his own label New Canadian Records “Blue Drag” was nominated at the 2004 JUNO Awards for best Roots and Traditional (Group) Album of the Year “Mélange” at the 2008 Canadian Folk Music Awards for Instrumental Solo Album of the Year and “2 Worlds United” a brilliant duo album with top Irish button accordionist Dermot Byrne was distributed by Claddagh Records. Pierre’s talents extend beyond his musical abilities. An accomplished luthier and artist he currently performs on one of his own violins and creates the cover art and design for his recordings. Pierre is the creator and artistic director of “Canadian Celtic Celebration” a three-day June festival presented in Thunder Bay Ontario for 16 years.
Adam Dobres is a highly accomplished guitarist with a natural ability to embody any style of music. He is equally at home with Bluegrass Celtic Jazz Gypsy Country Folk Old Time Rock Blues and more. His love of the electric and acoustic guitar has taken him around the globe performing throughout North America Europe Australia and New Zealand. With a taste for experimenting with personal style and a love of touring Adam has embarked on living his dream. From playing Celtic music with some of Canada’s finest fiddle players including Daniel Lapp and Pierre Schryer Adam has branched out to Pop Rock with Grammy Nominee Toni Childs (including an Australian tour where they opened for the legendary Jackson Brown) performed with renowned musicians playing exotic instruments such as the Sitar Turkish Lira and African Kora and toured North America with Old Time string band Outlaw Social. Adam was part of The Dustin Bentall outfit when they performed at the Opening Ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics and supported Blue Rodeo on their 2010 Canadian tour. In 2011 Adam joined the Ruth Moody Band and along with this dynamic folk vocalist and her all-star band has toured Europe Canada and the US and has released several albums. Adam recently released his self-titled first solo album – an eclectic mix of his own compositions revealing his many influences and his absolute grace and superb versatility on the guitar.
Wednesday, March 6, 2019 – Little Miss Higgins (MB)
Genre: blues country musician
Bio: From the Great Northern Plains of Western Canada, Little Miss Higgins struts and serenades her way, guitar in hand, lips blazoned red, onto any stage. As if she just drove in off the back-road of another time with gravel dust and a sunset trailing behind her, this pocket-sized powerhouse plays music brewed up in old-time country blues sprinkled with a little jazz and maybe a hint of folk. Whetherit’s songs about passion or songs about panties, she writes about real things in a rooted and poetic way. This is all too true on her most recent award-winning album, Across the Plains (2010).
Little Miss Higgins (aka Jolene Higgins) was born in Brooks, Alberta, and raised in Independence, Kansas. Music entered her life early.
“When I was about four my dad bought this old piano at a local bar,” she recalls. “It was a mini grand piano. He brought it home and told me it was mine. I carved my name in the side and started taking piano lessons.”
Growing up playing piano, Higgins now uses guitar and voice as her main instruments as well as her theatre background to bring a “refreshing sound and story to the stage.” She spent a number of years after studying theatre at a college in Alberta, roaming Western Canada, acting in plays, frequenting blues clubs and playing her guitar. Higgins finally settled down in Saskatchewan and that’s when music took the driver’s seat.
Her stage name, Little Miss Higgins suits the undeniably inflammatory mix of her blues and country music repertoire but the moniker was largely accidental. “When I moved to Saskatchewan in 2002 I started hanging out with this Greek guy,” she recalls “He started calling me Little Miss Higgins so I used it on poster for a gig I was doing and it just stuck.”
Thursday, April 4, 2019 – Ryan McNally (YT)
Genre: Jazz, Old Time
Bio: Whether he’s playing solo or with his band, you’re likely to find Ryan McNally performing on a Canadian stage near you in 2018!
While he’s known best for his interpretative playing of traditional acoustic blues, jazz and old time music, audiences can’t help but notice the influence that Northern living has had on his music. For the past 10 years McNally as called Whitehorse, YK his home.
His first album Down Home (2012), was recorded live by CBC North and received a feature on the popular radio show Saturday Night Blues, hosted by Holgar Peterson.
Originally from rural Quebec, Ryan first discovered jazz and blues by uncovering a huge collection of ‘78 records that belonged to his grandfather. Then, as a teen, his curiosity for the sound and history anchored his love for the genres and it’s only grown stronger since.
So much so, that Ryan headed south for a winter in 2015 to New Orleans, LA to write his second album Steppin’ Down South. The album captures the sound of hillbilly blues and jug band jazz. This album is saturated with the sounds and rhythm of New Orleans streets. Bob Hamilton at Old Crow Studios in Whitehorse, Yukon, recorded it live off the floor in 2016.
In 2017 Steppin’ Down South was nominated for Blues Artist of The Year at the Western Canadian Music Awards (WCMA). That year Ryan also had the privilege and opportunity to perform for Prince William and Princess Kate during their visit to the Yukon.
McNally has become known for his diversity as a multi-instrumentalist. He plays guitar, harmonica, mandolin, violin and banjo. Whether solo or with his band, he performs on all these instruments effortlessly and in his own signature style.
Ryan is currently in the studio writing and recording his third full-length album, due out in late Summer 2018.
When he’s not touring or recording McNally is experimenting with scoring music to film as well as musical direction for theater.
2017/18 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES:
Monday, Sept. 25, 2017 – L’il Andy, QC (duo)
Over the past eight years, Li’l Andy has earned a reputation as Canada’s foremost practitioner of country music for the thinking man. His album, All Who Thirst Come to the Waters, was nominated for Best Roots/Folk album at both the Montreal Independent Music Initiatives and the Quebec Independent Music Awards.
Li’l Andy’s new full-length album, While the Engines Burn, pulls off a rare feat by fusing 1930s Ole Opry country with traditional folk and by giving it a contemporary sound and feel in the process. This time around, the Montreal-based singer (yes, you read that right) may well have revived and reinvented quintessential Canadiana.–Exclaim!
Watch his video from his new album The Canadian Pacific.
Wednesday, Oct. 25, 2017 – – Manitoba Hal, NS (solo)
Manitoba Hal is a guitarist, songwriter and ukulele player. Using a combination of looping technology and effects he creates a performance that is one-of-a-kind. His combination of finger picking and strumming creates an instantly accessible sound that compliments his fresh and inventive originals and arrangements of traditional blues.
Watch his video Way Down the Hole – a Tom Waits cover
Thursday, November 23, 2017 – Spruce & The Meadowlark, MB (duo)
Spruce and the Meadowlark deliver a fresh take on contemporary bluegrass. The combination of complex driving instrumentals and haunting melodic lyrics help to create a new perspective on the marriage of folk and bluegrass.
Spruce and the Meadowlark deliver original modern bluegrass written by long time musicians, and soulmates, Aisha Belle (violin, vocals) and Donovan Locken (mandolin). Aisha’s haunting voice has been compared to Joy Williams of the Civil Wars, the combination of complex driving instrumentals and evocative melodic lyrics create a new perspective on the marriage of folk and bluegrass. They are on tour to promote their much anticipated debut self-titled album.
Friday, Feb. 9, 2018 – Dirty Dishes, ON (trio)
Imagine the Andrew Sisters
and the Stanley Brothers
having triplets…the result would be none other than these sharp-witted ladies with a 1950’s Nashville sound and killer charm. Bringing a shine to every space they fill with their beautiful blend of country-bluegrass-gospel sounds and extraordinary energy, the Dishes have spent the last five years (often backed by their rhythm section “The Plate Rails”) breaking hearts and soothing souls at clubs, fairs, festivals and events throughout Canada.
Audiences love their down-home music, tight harmonies and sassy style.
Saturday, March 10, 2018 – CASATI – MB (Trio)
Like three hearts beating in perfect time, the music of Casati is a living thing, constantly changing, evolving and reinventing itself. Grace Hrabi, Jesse Popeski & Quintin Bart search for stories waiting to be told and collaborate in bringing them to life. Songs about love found or lost, cautionary tales of time slipping away or even a whimsical tune about bicycle rides.
Sunday, April 15, 2018 – The Young Novelists – ON (Duo)
Through their rich but rustic sound, Toronto roots husband and wife duo, Graydon James and Laura Spink, deliver a dose of honesty in audible form.
On tour to promote their debut album Made us strangers, ripe with raw but elegant instrumentation and stacked multi-layered harmonies, their pure take on folk-tinged rock translates equally well from the stereo or stage. Featuring cuts like “brothers in the garage” showcase the fruit of that union – rooted in folk with the band’s captivating and catchy vocal phrasing but boosted by slightly overdriven guitar and a triumphantly authentic chorus. Similarly, “come back to me” is an upbeat earworm that showcases their breadth of influence. Conversely, more sombre offerings like “always make the mistake” – this one anchored by Spink’s vocals – are delicate but alluring.
2016/17 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES:
Tuesday, September 20, 2016 – Jay Aymar – Toronto
Jay Aymar has been described as a Canadian every man, because he gets his songs from the people he meets, and they are as complicated — and simple — as the drifter in the tap room, the traveler in the bus station, and the school teacher at Starbucks. He gets ideas from movies, great books and trash novels, and tunes he hears on the radio as the station fades between Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The winners and losers and lovers and fighters all contribute their voices, adding the details as well as the big ideas.
Opening Act: The Mechanical Botanicals (Lydia Hibbing & James Mannion from Tumbler Ridge)
Wednesday, October 19, 2016 – Washboard Hank &
Sweet Muriel – Ontario
Washboard Hank has successfully made a living as a musician/cultural treasure for over 40 years. He started as a street musician playing all over North America where he learned how to present a truly entertaining show. Late at night he would have total strangers laughing and dancing in the grimmest of urban settings. This ability to spread joy has been Hank’s constant goal.
The Stradovarious Washboard, from which he gets his name, is a musical phenomenon of the first order that he plays with breathtaking virtuosity. With wild flailing motions he carves out melodies in the most unlikely yet spectacular fashion. Hank also plays guitar, 4 & 5 string banjos and the kitchen sink tuba.
Opening Act: Iyan Bruvold of Folky Strum Strum (Rolla)
Thursday, November 17, 2016 – Victor Anthony – BC
Victor Anthony was born in 1952 and he’s made his living around the edges of the art world for the past thirty years. Old friends joke that he came into the world with a guitar in one hand and a camera in the other. He’s worked as a musician, an actor and a photographer, occasionally all in the same week. A native of Nashville, he and his wife Joëlle immigrated to Canada in 2007, settling on an island in British Columbia’s Salish Sea. To date, he has released four CDs of original material with his latest, Mystery Loves Company, available now. His musical style is firmly based in the roots tradition of the American South but the lyrics are up-to-date vignettes of life and love, full of rich visual imagery and simple truth.
Opening Act: Oline Marie (Bridges) – Dawson Creek
Tuesday, February 7, 2017 – SUSSEX (QC)
SUSSEX was founded by longtime friends Rob Lutes and Michael Emenau who after a 25 year pursuing their own careers, once again find themselves making music together. Their diverse musical backgrounds ranging from Blues, Roots, Jazz, and Electronic music have given them a unique palette for storytelling and dream-making. For the debut album they have enlisted the services of several of Canada’s finest players in an ensemble that features acoustic and electric guitar, vibraphone, violin, trumpet and upright bass.
Opening Act: The McCarlie Trio (violin/guitar)
Saturday, March 4, 2017 – All Day Breakfast Stringband (QC)
The Montreal-based All Day Breakfast Stringband plays old time music from the southern and midwestern USA. Fiddle, guitar, double bass, banjo, and voices join forces to confirm that the old music is still exhilarating. The band formed gradually through bourbon fuelled jam sessions in Montreal’s many public nature reserves, and solidified with recording sessions, as well as actual concerts for people who don’t spend all of their free time in parks. This semi-serious monkeying around has done the group quite well by taking them to beautiful spots around Quebec and Ontario as well as becoming an award winning band two years running at the Appalachian Stringband Festival in Clifftop West Virginia. The fiddle has always been at the heart of old time music, and Max Evans makes his sound like the best bacon in the world popping and spattering in a burning hot cast iron skillet; Matt James’ banjo playing is as crude yet necessary as bacon’s timeless counterpart, the buttery fried egg while Andrew Kobus on the mandolin and Dara Weiss on the guitar chug like you did that pot of coffee after a night at the bottom of a whiskey bottle.
Opening Act: The Sweetwater Ramblers
Sunday, April 2, 2017 – T. Nile – (BC)
Quite a ways from her early days in a Galiano Island cabin on the wild coast of British Columbia, Canada, T. Nile has blurred musical boundaries, fusing the traditionally conflicting styles of Electro-pop and folk-roots. “Working with both acoustic and electronic instruments gives me a sense of unlimited musical possibility” she says, comparing the capabilities to a field of wildflowers versus a vase of flowers. On her new release Tingle & Spark, it’s a sentiment you’ll hear come alive in vibrant, twirling chords throughout the album.
T. Nile has toured North America and Europe, won awards, including “Best New/Emerging Artist” at the Canadian Folk Music Awards, played major festivals, released two albums, two EPs and in 2016 she will spend a good part of the year on the road in Europe, the USA and Canada.
Opening Act: Threza (Grande Prairie)
2015/16 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES:
Tuesday September 22, 2015 – Braden Gates – Edmonton
Venue: Faking Sanity Cafe/Bookstore
Braden Gates a sing-songwriter from Edmonton, on tour to promote his second album Ferris Wheel – a combination of intricate guitar work, driving fiddle playing and honest story telling.
A born raconteur in both his songwriting and song introductions, he is often compared to a young Loudon Wainwright: for his similar grimacing as he hits the notes and the sharpness of his observation and sly humor. Drawn to those with a story to tell, Gates aims to communicate these stories in a way that brings people together – which is often the case in one of his intimate live shows.
Opening Act: Paul Dobrowolski
Wednesday October 21, 2015 – Russ Kelly – Ontario
Venue: Faking Sanity Cafe/Bookstore
Russ Kelley gave up a promising singing career after damaging his vocal cords, it was then his life took another road, by accepting a position as Program Officer with the Canada Council for the Arts, and later appointed to Head of Music.
In 2012, Russ regained his voice and returned to the stage – fast forward to today he is on tour to promote his 2nd album “In Plain Sight” , an eclectic mixture of folk, blues and rock.
Opening Act: Barb Munro
Tuesday November 17, 2015 – Kevin Roy – Manitoba
Venue: Faking Sanity Cafe/Bookstore
Everyone loves a good story. Winnipeg alt-country troubadour, Kevin Roy, shares his songs as if telling a story for the first time over morning coffee.
He sings earnest tales and comedic balladry with heartfelt melodies and hook-driven choruses. His tall-grass poetry paints images of Canadiana and experiences of the roads he has travelled.
With one album under his belt, his Home Routes tour will showcase some of his new songs from his soon to be released 2nd album.
Opening Act: Ryan McGuire accompanied by Cory Lizotte
Friday February 5, 2015 – Suzie Vinnick – Ontario
Venue: Dawson Creek Art Gallery (816 Alaska Ave)
Suzie Vinnick is a Canadian roots and blues singer-songwriter. She performs as a solo artist and contributes to variety of band projects, including The Marigolds, Vinnick Sheppard Harte, Betty and the Bobs and as a duo with Rick Fines. Suzie has been featured on Stuarts McLean’s Vinyl Cafe on CBC Radio, and has performed across Canada, the US, and for the Peacekeepers in Bosnia and the Persian Golf.
Accomplishments: Suzie is a ten time Maple Blues Award winner, three time Juno Nominee and was a Finalist in the 2013 International Blues Challenge Solo/Duo Category. In 2012 she won both the CBC Saturday Night Blues Great Canadian Blues Award and the SIRIUS/XM Blues Artist of the Year for her newly released album entitled Live At Bluesville, a collection of roots, blues and gospel tunes featuring Mabel, her parlour guitar.
Opening Act: Josh LaCroix
Saturday March 5, 2016 – The Crooked Brothers – Manitoba
Venue: Dawson Creek Art Gallery (816 Alaska Ave)
A good dance, a good cry, it’s all here. Music full of hips and heart. Slinky throbbing bass lines and growling melodies, or a heartache stripped and unadorned. The diversity in instrumentation and vocal arrangements are the vanguard of The Crooked Brothers’ art. Touched first by a three-part harmony, the driving insistence of a strutting funky beat, or maybe the lonesome caterwaul of a lap steel – the listener is drawn in and invited into the true heart of these songs. The poetry. Every word deliberate. Their timbre and lyric summon imagery of resilient souls, of long tough winters, of sadness, sorrow and longing, of sex and mortality. They get lonely and low as low can be, but they are also quick to celebrate. The Crooked Brothers’ songs move from sorrow to joy and back with an ageless grace and it is clear they harbor a love and honour for the lows in life just as much as the highs.
Opening Act: Aaron Marchuk
Sunday April 10th – 100 Mile House – Edmonton
Venue: Dawson Creek Art Gallery (816 Alaska Ave)
Folk/Roots husband and wife duo Peter Stone and Denise MacKay have shared their unique brand of original transatlantic folk at shows and festivals near and far. Their beautiful harmonies, rich arrangements and captivating lyrics make their sound truly distinctive.
Their new release ‘Wait With Me’ is their third full-length album, packed with the lyrically driven roots tunes that gained this band a devoted following in the Canadian music scene and beyond. Debuting at No.1 on CKUA across Alberta, the album is nominated for four Edmonton Music Awards, a WCMA for ‘Roots Duo/Group Recording of the Year’, shortlisted for the Edmonton Music Prize and the song ‘London’ won the coveted Calgary Folk Festival Songwriting Contest, the second time the band has walked away with the prize. This haunting and highly personal song collection is the follow-up to hollow ponds, their award-winning 2011 release.
‘hollow ponds’ won the Edmonton Music Award for Folk/Roots Album of the Year in 2012 and was nominated for a 2012 WCMA for Roots Duo/Group Recording of the Year. It was featured in CBC’s Key of A – Best of 2011 and the track “Better, Still” won the Calgary Folk Festival songwriting contest Grand Prize in 2011.
Review: “…extremely well produced and performed…This band is poised to move the folk rock needle outside of Canada.” The Alternate Root
Opening Act: Shawna Lisa (Fort St. John)
We hope to see you at the shows!! With your support you will help make their stop in Dawson Creek a memorable one.
Proudly sponsored by the Dawson Creek Art Gallery, Safeway, the British Columbia Arts Council and the Province of BC.
2014/15 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES:
Friday September 19th – Ben Sures – Edmonton
Truly one of Canada’s best-loved singer/songwriters, Ben is the 2005 winner of the John Lennon songwriting contest in the folk category (out of 15,000 entrants). He has performed at many of Canada’s folk festivals and has been featured on CBC Radio his most recent album was #30 in the Top 100 for Alberta wide broadcaster CKUA.
Raised on a diet of The Winnipeg Folk Festival and his mother’s record collection of Neil Young, Muddy Waters, Thelonius Monk, Tom Waits and Lyle Lovett. Ben learned how to entertain an audience from the likes of James Keelaghan and Taj Mahal . He has toured from the East Coast to the West regularly for ten years. Ben is best-known for his quirky, upbeat folk songs that offer unique takes on complex issues – and sometimes loving takes on simple pleasures like high school rock n’ roll idols.
Opening Act: Rachael McPhail accompanied by Andrew Ho on piano (Rachael played the role of teenage Fiona in the DCSS 2014 production of Shrek the Musical, she also performs regularly with the Dawson Creek Community Jazz Band).
Saturday October 18th – Two Piano Tornado, YT
Sit back and enjoy jazz pianists Grant Simpson & Annie Avery sing and perform to timeless swing tunes. The two Whitehorse-beloved musicians, grooving in New Orleans jazz style or igniting a ragtime tune by Jelly Roll Morton, will spark a dance in any pair of feet.
Avery and Simpson are both accomplished musicians in their mid-fifties with multiple recording projects. Two Piano Tornado, their first recorded collaboration, is a lively ride through 10 jazz standards and one original song. Tucked in after a spirited rendition of “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore,” Simpson’s “I’m Gonna Name My Gypsy Wagon After You” is a lilting tune that dissolves slowly and sweetly like taffy. Over the years, they began to know each other’s work, but it took time. Simpson works as a full-time musician and directs the Frantic Follies vaudeville shows each summer, a role he’s thrived in since 1980. Avery runs a full music-teaching schedule, records with multiple Yukon artists and plays live shows practically every week of the year. Avery has also played with the Frantic Follies part-time for the past two seasons.
“When we do a gig, it’s, ‘What do you want to focus on?’” Simpson says. “We both know a lot of piano stuff between the two of us and we each have our area of expertise, so there are tons of crossovers. Like Annie’s really good at New Orleans stuff, she’s got all the little rolls, all the little nuances. So it’s really fun.”
“And he’s got the fastest left hand in Canada!” Avery interjects, adding that Simpson is an expert in stride and in songs from the 1920s.
Watch their Youtube video of Honeysuckle Rose
Opening Act: Singer/songwriter Ian Smith from Chetwynd
Sunday November 16th – Devon Sproule, ON
Opening Act: Parker Dean (Parker played the role of Shrek in the DCSS production of Shrek the Musical and he has performed at local Coffee Houses)
Tuesday February 3rd – Dan Frechette & Laurel Thomsen, MB/CA
Meeting via a chance YouTube sighting and fueled by a rare musical chemistry, Dan Frechette, guitar/vocals, and Laurel Thomsen, violin/vocals, both powerful and magnetic talents in their own rights, prove that musical magic is not only possible, but alive and well. In a relatively short time frame, the Alt-folk duo has overcome adversity to circumnavigate North America, logging over 25,000 miles, 130 concerts, and releasing their debut CD.
With influences ranging from Folk, Classical, Old Time, and Celtic, to Gospel, Jazz, Vintage Country, Rock N’ Roll, Blues, and Bluegrass, Dan and Laurel flow seamlessly through genres, tempos, stories, and moods, embodying each style with virtuosic command. With exuberance, heartwarming harmonies, soundtrack ready violin and guitar lines, and stories of irony and triumph, wit and humor, delighted audience members speak of “falling in love” with music all over again.
Watch their Youtube video of Horse & Buggy Rag
Opening Act: singer/songwriter Matt Patershuk from LaGlace, Alberta
Wednesday March 4th – Karen Savoca & Pete Heintzman, NY, USA
Grit and sensitivity. Percussion and groove. Karen Savoca and Pete Heitzman are sinuous as two skaters gliding on ice as they play across soul, r&b, roots and world rhythms, conjuring a communion between audience and stage.
Karen pours her heart into a song the way a great actor throws herself into a role. Her songs draw you into a world of humor and compassion, shared with grace and ease, as though you’ve been invited to her table for supper. Born in northern NJ, the daughter of a big band singer, Karen’s baby diary reads “20 months, knows 6 songs.” At the age of eight she asked for piano lessons, and at thirteen began composing on a guitar she bought with saved birthday money. She attended Syracuse University, where she studied music and elementary education.
Pete, a Syracuse native, was playing in clubs at the age of fifteen. He carved out a reputation as an ace guitarist capable of playing many styles, touring across the country with a variety of bands. He met Karen during a return trip to his home town, invited out by friends to hear a new singer. They jammed the night away, and he joined her group the next day.
“A true virtuoso of groove, with a sly touch that, combined with Savoca’s in-the-pocket drumming and spectacularly soulful vocals, gives the duo the impact of a four-piece band.” – Acoustic Guitar magazine
“Embracingly beautiful songs that have a beguiling way of changing and reconfiguring themselves like an aural kaleidoscope.” – Duluth News Tribune
Winners of seven SAMMY Awards. Notable appearances include The Today Show, A Prairie Home Companion, Mountain Stage, Big Top Chautauqua, The Vancouver, Edmonton, Ottawa, Falcon Ridge, Kate Wolf, Stan Rogers & Winnipeg Folk Festivals, and many more.They are also independent record producers who have scored several feature films and documentaries. They are currently working on their ninth recording, due out in 2014.
Watch the two perform live on Mad Toast Live
Opening Act: Northern Lights Drummers
Thursday April 9th – James Leva & Jen Maurer, VA
James Leva is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, and songwriter whose music is deeply rooted in Appalachian tradition. He learned much of his fiddle, banjo and vocal repertoire from great traditional masters such as Tommy Jarrell and Doug Wallin. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s he performed with seminal traditionally focused groups that were exploring the boundaries of Appalachian music. Bands such as Plank Road, Ace Weems and the Fat Meat Boys, and the Hellbenders, performing throughout the US and Europe and their recordings were widely influential. In the 90’s he formed the Free Will Savages and recorded two albums with the Renegades. He composed and performed music for a variety of plays and theatrical productions in Europe and was part of Stephen Wade’s performance piece, “In Sacred Trust”, a tribute to the music and life of Hobart Smith. More recently, James has been performing with Purgatory Mountain.
Watch James perform fiddle and banjo on Vimeo
Jen Maurer has been playing music all her life. While she started on piano, she likes to pick up every instrument she can and somehow make it part of her. That list includes guitar (acoustic & electric), bass (acoustic and electric), diatonic single and triple row button boxes, 5-string banjo, fiddle, mandolin, flute, and sax. Coming from parents that appreciated the blues and many American styles of music such as old-time, bluegrass, ragtime, country, and jug band. Jen is a simple girl steeped in tradition with a love for singing, playing, stomping, tune writing, and overall jamming until the sun comes up. A natural talent with 20+ years of professional playing, she is a must hear force. Currently Jen is a member of Mo’ Mojo
Opening Act: singer/songwriter Dori Braun accompanied by Savannah Bridgeman
2013-14 HOME ROUTES CONCERT SERIES:
Saturday, September 21st – Ariana Gillis (ON)
Young Performer of the Year at the 2009 Canadian Folk Music Awards
“I’m staggered by how good she is. There is not much that impresses me these days but after hearing her tracks I can honestly say she’s the single most exciting thing I’ve heard in a very long time.” – Bernie Taupin (Elton John’s lyricist and songwriting partner)
“A blast of energy and fearless confidence, Ariana Gillis sings and strums and stomps and leaves ripples behind her wherever she goes. With an impressive vocal range and a firm grasp on the craft of songwriting, Ariana is unstoppable There is an intense, driving force behind her folk/pop sound, and a deeper story behind every song.”– Andy Frank, Roots Music Canada
Local musician Brianna Abbott will open the show.
Sunday, October 20th – Dave Lang & the Twin Otters (BC)
This energetic trio have performed their mix of ‘30s jazz and western swing music in small pubs, large festivals, theatres or busking in outdoor venues putting “time on the instrument” ahead of incessant social media networking might seem old-fashioned, but it’s panned out for them; last year the trio logged nearly 200 paid performances, and they’re on track to play more in 2013.
Lang is a witty and subversive performer who has a sly sense of humour which you can hear in his songs, such as the hilariously deadpan “Pretty Girls (Can Write Boring Songs)”. His songs have been covered by the likes of Corb Lund, Neko Case, Carolyn Mark, and Geoff Berner.
Local musician Danica Baldry will open the show.
Tuesday, November 19th – Chris Carmichael (MN)
One of the most in-demand guitarists and drummers in Winnipeg’s remarkable roots and blues music community, Chris has provided a wealth of talent and experience to countless recording sessions and live performances. His lively stage show meshes rock, alt/country, blues and surf.
Chris has played with acts like The Perpetrators, Big Dave McLean, Righteous Ike, Romi Mayes & the Scott Nolan Band.
On tour to promote his debut self titled album.
Local musician Peter Cooper will open the show.
Wednesday, February 5th – Veda Hille (BC)
Veda started playing piano at the age of five. Her childhood interests included plants, books, microscopes, science fiction, and psychiatry. She started writing music when she attended art college. Since then she makes records, writes musical theatre, scores films, teaches songwriting, tours, and generally keeps busy.
Opening act: classically trained soprano artist Caitlyn Triebel accompanied by Randi Jo Torgrimson on piano.
Thursday, March 6th – Jon Brooks (ON)
Whether about the times we live in, its past or its future promise, Brooks’ songs are underscored throughout by his gently weather-beaten voice, the singular beautiful sound of hand on guitar, and his uncanny ability to press his ear against the heartbeat and the soul of the times we live in – transforming, inspiring and uplifting us as we bear witness.Though Jon’s music is filled with grey and morally ambiguous characters living on the outskirts of approval, his mandate is unequivocal: “I’m not interested in ‘happy songs’ – I’ve chosen to write healing songs and, for that reason, I’m obliged to reveal a wound or two now and then. I’m even less interested in writing unhappy songs: I want to write hopeful songs, inspiring songs and I expect I owe today’s listener some hopeful argument – some legitimate reason – as to why we should believe our present world could be improved, or healed. The highest aim of song is to invoke empathy – to offer that rare sight of ourselves in others. His latest CD “Moth Nor Rust” looks inward to all that neither moth nor rust can touch: love, hope, trust, memory, inspiration, justice, and faith. The album has earned Jon his second Canadian Folk Music Award nomination for Songwriter of the Year and its lyrics were published by Canada’s esteemed literary quarterly, Exile Editions. “He reminds me of Steve Earle, Bruce Cockburn and Ray Bonneville in his honest, gritty vocal delivery and his straight-shooting political songwriting which honours the tradition of folk music without the contrived earnest format of many folk songs.” – Harry Manx Local musician Bill Studley will open the show.