Monthly Archives: November 2012

Focus Friday: Wild Horses

It’s so cool to encounter wild horses while hiking or biking — amazing that they seem to be thriving year-round in the Okanagan. Lori got a great shot of this pair near Penticton, with a beautiful forested backdrop. You have a good chance of seeing a few if you pedal the old KVR railbed between Summerland and Penticton.

Between the Woods and Frozen Lake by Lori-B

Fashionate: A-OK Wild Heart

Last week my team and I at Loyal Hair Therapy partnered with Awesome Okanagan to throw you A-OK Wild Heart- a fall fashion show. We wanted to show off all the local talent we have to offer when it comes to fashion. Man + Woman was our feature store, showing you what’s hot for your staple winter wear. We topped off the night with a little sass from Frakas and featured 3 very different looks you could wear during the holiday season!

Man+Woman featured fidelety demin, bb dakota tops and an assortment of beautiful real leather bags, just to name a few. They showed off you can dress warm, comfortable and casual while still setting the tone of what’s hot in fashion.  Changing your regular jeans into a pair of high waisted skinny’s with chelsea boots, a black tank and a biker jacket can turn an everyday outfit into a fashion forward look.







Man+Woman also features men’s clothing that will modernize any man in your life!







Frakas featured three different options for the holiday season; showing off you can wear pants and still be dressed up to the nines. Paring leather with silk, or lace with satin, combining different fabrics within your holiday outfit will set you apart from your co-workers.

A-OK also featured the seasons hottest hair trends. Braids were very dominant on the Runway during the evening and these  can be easily transformed looks into your holiday party looks! Rockabilly is back stronger than ever with a twist, a smooth roll with a textured braid or curls will modernize your look instantly.

Our goal for the evening was to Raise some money for H.O.P.E, bring the amazing community together and show off our local talent! We hope it inspired you to shop local and support the Awesome Okanagan that we live in!

Visit Man + Woman in the mall or Frakas (Located next to Urban Fair) for all of your holiday shopping needs!

Photography by Chris from Clear Images Photography. To check out the rest of the photo gallery visit us on Facebook!

Gavin Gardiner Interview

Gavin Gardiner

Many of you might not have heard of him, but on a cold afternoon in Vancouver just outside of St.James Hall, I got to sit down with Gavin from The Wooden Sky and chat about music, touring and home life. He is a very humble person and I found he preferred just chatting away and wasn’t too worried about the time, the interview or anything else besides having good conversation and meeting someone new. That’s something you don’t see much from any musician, especially one that’s been on tour for weeks on end. So I just wanted to say how much I respected that.

Anyways, without further ramblings, here is the interview between him and I. For more information on this amazing band, visit their Facebook pages as well as their website, found here.

What’s your favorite place to eat while on the road? Give me the top 5 best restaurants you’ve eaten at over the course of your tour.

The best place we stopped at was this highway stop between Portland and San Francisco. We stopped and thought we’d go to Subway, but around back there was this family run Mexican place and it was amazing. We try to avoid the fast food chains, but it’s not easy to do, it just makes you feel like shit. I’ve been pretty good about avoiding it the past couple of weeks. There’s a place in Vancouver I like to go to called “Foundation”, it’s a vegetarian place. I like that. 

Name some things you disagree about with your band

Everything, I mean it depends on how much sleep we got the night before. But it’s not like a disagreement that ends in an argument, it’s more of a discussion and a conversation. That’s what makes it a band, instead of a solo project or something like that. 

Do you think the weather affects how much you write or what type of songs you write?

I think it just affects everything, it affects your mood. So yeah, I mean I get winter depression like a lot of people, it’s so cold and hard to leave. But being in San Francisco and even here in Vancouver, on days where it’s nice out. It’s like, oh I get it, I wanna live on the West Coast. 

What’s your favourite holiday and why?

Christmas, it’s a nice way to get together with family. 

Name your top 2 biggest influences in music

Pizza and Harry Chapin.

Where did you grow up?

In a place called Morden Manitoba, it’s about 5000 people. 

Where would you send people visiting Toronto?

If you were looking for a nice cozy drink at a bar, I’d go to “Communist’s Daughter”. I’d go to “Salad King” for Thai food and plus, you’d have to walk through the main downtown area and you’d get a little taste of that — which I’d steer you away from probably. If you wanted to go record shopping I’d send you either to “Sonic Boom” or “Soundscapes” depending on if you want new or used.

What kind of music did you grow up listening to?

Classic rock probably and pop and country. A lot of “Boney M”, *laughs*.

Where you raised in a religious family?

Yeah sort of, it was definitely a part of my life. I mean it was a very religious community, I wasn’t so much a part of that, I went to church that was about it.  

What’s your favourite guitar that you play on set?

Oh I don’t know, I got a lot of guitars. Either my 1967 Guild Starfire, or this 1940’s Epiphone Century, which is sort of my go to guitar live.

Do you use any drop tunings in your songs?

Drop D, the Kurt Cobain one *laughs*. 

Where did you learn to sing?

The radio, I just wanted to sing. I used to play the drums in bands and always wanted to sing. So in this one band I switched places with the singer/guitarist. It worked better that way. 

Do you listen to or read certain things when thinking of or writing new music?

No, I try to avoid it. I mean, you can listen to things for ideas and inspirations but I like to go for a walk, it seems like a better way to work on stuff. I feel less inhibited that way, I feel like I write more freely when I play things I don’t know how to play too, like ukelele or piano. 

How often do you think you’ll write a new song? Or get a new idea for one?

I’m writing a lot right now, I’m trying to write all the time, which is good. When you’re touring for this long, you’re starting to lose connection to the world and it’s just not normal. Writing helps to ground me a little bit.  

Can you tell me a little more about your new album and what you want it to be like (you mentioned a rock album — more of a live show)

Yeah I don’t know, it’s still such a baby at this point. We were talking about making a rock album, that would be fun to do. I’ve got a lot of songs right now, so we might make a couple records. I don’t know at this point yet, with the plans for going forward, we’ll see. 

When are you guys going back on tour? Are you releasing the new album in March then touring afterwards?

We’re talking about going back to Europe in March, our record just came out there in October. So now that it’s been out there, we’ll probably go back for just a couple weeks nothing crazy, and then be back home. 

What do you love to do besides playing guitar? 

I’m building a studio right now, I have a dog I like to walk. I like to hangout with friends at home. I’m also reading a book called “Angle of Repose”, it’s good. I like to ride my bike, do some gardening and housework. I’ve got a lot of stuff I wanna fix around my house so I’ll get into that. 

Click here, for The Wooden Sky’s bandcamp page and listen to their music if you haven’t yet! I recommend starting with their first E.P “When Lost at Sea”, it’s amazing.

The Wooden Sky at St.James Hall, Vancouver

You’d never guess where I was this week. I got the chance of a lifetime, thanks to Brandon Fletcher and Kat Stewart. I visited Vancouver with a friend and saw The Wooden Sky at St. James Hall this past Tuesday.

The venue was definitely unexpected, but as soon as we pulled up their choice became apparent. I’m not sure if any of you readers out there have been to St.James Hall, but it’s a really small venue. Basically, it’s a church with a community hall attached. But the entire place is set up like a church, all made out of wood. It even has a curved archway and a beautiful stage.

The sound quality was amazing and the intimate seating, around 50-80 made the concert just perfect for the music emanating from the vintage instruments.

The set opened up with Northcotea band which consists of Matthew Goud along with other “invited guests”. Their set was short but sweet, and Goud’s vocals are really unique and powerful for such subtle indie/folk music. After their set finished up, Wildlife came on stage.

This band holds five members and they are: Dean Povinsky, Dwayne Christie, Graham Plant, Derek Bosomworth and Tim Daugulis. Their genre was different from the regular indie rock bands around, as they focus more on power-pop/soul music. But their set got better each song and I was thinking if they did anything acoustic, it would be beautiful.

But, as I impatiently waited in the pews, the band of the evening came on stage. The Wooden Sky played an amazing set, ranging from a few songs off their newest release as well as some classic old tunes from their first E.P. One thing I noticed was the energy of the lead singer/guitarist Gavin on stage. He controls the bands flow and movement, and really pushes his vocals at the appropriate moments as their songs ebbed and flowed throughout the set. I can also imagine the vibrations from the surrounding wood of the church adding a magical quality you miss out on in larger venues.

That being said, this band is not something to pass up, so next time they come on tour across Canada, go check them out! Bring all your friends and family too, because it’s one of those bands that you never walk away from disappointed.

For more information visit their bandcamp here, and get listening. As well, stay tuned for the interview I got with Gavin, which I’ll post tomorrow.

Firehall Brewery Increases Capacity & Develops New Label

Article Submitted by Sid Ruhland / Submit Your Own Article

The Firehall Brewery on Main Street in Oliver, British Columbia has doubled its cold storage capacity this November to keep up with demand. Aging tanks were ordered & picked-up from Interior Stainless, a tank manufacturer in Summerland, BC. Firehall Brewery’s “Stoked Ember Ale” continually sold out during the summer of 2012, triggering the investment into more storage tanks. A new beer label is being developed, utilizing the increased capacity and adding more variety to the microbrewery’s product offerings. The new beer will be a blonde ale called “Backdraft”.

The addition of new tanks is very exciting for the town of Oliver because it exemplifies the growth of the community’s first and only brewery. Not only does the brewery compliment the current agritourism in the region (wineries, fruit stands, tomato festival, grape festival, et cetera), but has begun to attract additional visitors seeking craft beer. The beer products have been promoted in town with the Back Alley Concert Series at the brewery’s beverage garden, tying music and community involvement into the core of the Firehall Brewery brand. The Firehall Brewery has attended beer festivals as far as Victoria, BC, and has gained televised exposure for itself and the Town of Oliver across the province. The craft beer industry has begun to boom in British Columbia during the last few years, coming a long way since the market was created only a few decades ago. The “Craft Beer Revolution” is not just growing in BC, but has been sweeping the globe, as beer drinkers are becoming educated about the brewing process and the beverage’s long history.

After 15 months of planning and construction, the Firehall Brewery released its first batch of beer, the “Stoked Ember Ale”, in late March of this year, shortly followed by the release of the “Holy Smoke Stout”. The third beer to be released, the “Backdraft” blonde ale, is scheduled to finish recipe development and cellaring just before the end of 2012. It will be a light session beer with a golden colour and a crisp finish.

The Firehall Brewery is a small family-owned operation, managed by a father-son team, Jim & Sid Ruhland. Sid Ruhland is an Okanagan School of Business alumnus, now applying business theory to his home-brewing skills learned in the college dorms. The brewery is “draught-only”, meaning the beer is packaged solely into kegs for local distribution to restaurants, bars and pubs. There are no current plans to invest into canning or bottling equipment. 1.89L (1/2 US Gallon) refillable jugs called “growlers” can be brought to or bought from the Firehall Brewery tasting room to be filled with draught beer to-go. Tours are available by appointment.

My Kind of Karma Interview

Isaac Balson

My Kind of Karma

Multi-instrumentalist, inspired reggae and folk musician

On Friday the 16th, I was at The Well at UBCO and was able to meet up with my friend Isaac Balson from the band My Kind of Karma. These guys always play a great live show and after their set, Isaac and I had a smoke and talked music.

When did “My Kind of Karma” Start?

Well it started through an amalgamation of people, who came to Kelowna. We’re all from Southern Ontario and moved out here. What he have now, which is a four piece, started in June of this year.

What kind of music, would you say your band plays?

We play a lot of reggae, folk, rock style music. So there is a lot of reggae peppered throughout our music because that’s where a lot of our influences come from.

Is there a specific sound you’re going for?

Yeah, the sound that we play. I mean, you have to be there to hear it.

Does your band have any albums released, other than your E.P?

We have an E.P on Facebook, it’s just me and our guitar player Garrett. It’s not really telling about how we sound, because it’s just acoustic. We are in the process of going to Music City Studios this winter for a full album, ready for April 1st.

Are there any plans for touring?

Yes! Good friends of ours from our hometown are starting a tour in Toronto, so we’re going to catch on in Kelowna come spring time. Then tour with them all across the west coast.

What’s your favorite bar/venue in Canada?

Well, we have a certain affinity for our neighborhood bar in our hometown called, “The Village Inn”. But in Kelowna, there are several bars for amazing live music, “Fernando’s” and “The Grateful Fed” they always have a serious amount of energy, it’s beautiful.

Give me the names of some of your biggest influences?

As a group I would say a lot of “The Wailers” and “Sublime”, lately we’ve been into a lot of “Patrick Watson & The Wooden Arms”, “Mumford and Sons” and the “Stone Sparrows”. 

What’s the music writing process look like for you?

What we end up doing is each song is written by one person in our band, lyrically and the main melody line. Slowly we layer that idea more and more, until we get something we like.

Have you played in other bands?

Yeah, I’ve played in several bands all the way up through high school, this band is the main one that’s started where we’ve played shows. Essentially all our members have played in other bands too. Our drummer used to play for a Toronto band called “Earthtone”, which was a reggae band. We’ve been working together on and off for years and years.

Why did you choose the name “My Kind of Karma”?

The name came from an article that our bass player and I read about. This elderly Australian woman had a granddaughter and she was attacked, the guy who attacked her got off. He got shot later on and we thought that’s my kind of karma, the ideals of buddhism, reaction and reaction and creating your own sense of karma in the world, et cetera. So that’s where our band name formed. 

What instruments do you play?

Personally I play many different instruments, just because my father owned the only music store in our hometown. In the band I play the banjo and ukelele. 

Who has your band collaborated with?

We have worked a lot with “Crowd The Joanna” and “The Dirty Earth”. Basically any other singer/songwriters around town, we’ve jammed with most of them.

What inspires you most, to write new music?

Really just the feeling you get when you have a really intense emotion and you’d really like to find a way of writing it down. We use music as our only outlet to express ourselves and it’s what we know best.

Home or studio?

I would have to say neither, the studio is more professional but the comfort at home is definitely worth noting. 

Where are you playing next?

Next we are working on another show at “The Grateful Fed” for December 8th, which we hope works out. Other than that we’re going back home to Toronto to play some shows. 

For more information on this band click here.

The Big Mother Folking Schistshow

Last night shortly after 7PM The Well, the pub at UBCO held an awesome concert consisting of: Great White North, My Kind of Karma, Crowd The Joanna and a solo by Jack Rabbit. These bands played great sets and brought some great vibes to a place not many would consider. Their concert was hosted by The Geography Course Union and was not something to be missed.

I did arrive a bit late so I only caught the last bit of “My Kind of Karma” and “Crowd The Joanna”. Both of these bands hold members of whom I’m friends with and they never disappoint. If you enjoy listening to reggae/bluegrass/folk/rock type music, these bands are for you and the members are all great to meet. I highly recommend both as they consist of extremely talented musicians who love what they do.

“My Kind of Karma” consists of: Garrett Scatterty, Isaac Balson, James Hockin, Sam Wilson and Taylor Gross. They hold members from Bowmanville, Ontario as well as here in Kelowna and are super friendly guys. I can’t say much more about them, besides the fact that they know how to write good music and they aren’t a band you forget about seeing live.

“Crowd The Joanna” consists of a bunch of members, some of which change on occasion. Last night there was: Max, Sky, Ross, Ty and Shawn. I’ve been seeing them for a few months now and their energy is really what you remember. Their songs are tunes you dance and shake down with. Again, know if you go see them play live you’ll never forget it and you’ll have a great experience.

For more information please check out these bands websites and Facebook’s listed below! As well, stay tuned for my interview with Isaac Balson from “My Kind of Karma”, which I will post soon.


Wild Heart Features Live Auction

Tonight at Habitat (248 Leon Avenue) we’re throwing our second official party called Wild Heart. We’ve been talking about it on Facebook and Twitter a lot and we’re very excited about the whole prospect. We’ll be raising money for a charity called H.O.P.E. Outreach and their goal is to help out homeless or sexually exploited women in Kelowna’s downtown core.

To that end we’re very lucky to have some local businesses and artists donate items for a live auction that you can bid on right after the fashion show so that we can raise a bit of extra dough over the ticket price and featured drinks (maybe even some Champagne!!) that night and try to help out a great charity doing a great thing. Some of the items that have been donated include:

  • Two Fashion Books and GC from Mosaic Books
  • A makeover package from Loyal Hair Therapy
  • Tickets to Ballet Kelowna’s first 2013 Spring Show
  • A GC to Bai Tong
  • Artwork by Matt Klasen
  • A makeup pack by a surprise donor (come to find out!)

We’re always excited to see the wonderful and supportive attitude our community and neighbors have even in tough times. We’re thrilled to be able to do something to give back to a community we care about. We’re stoked to have a great time. So grab your dancing shoes, dress up (think Mad Men! Or get edgy! Looking for inspiration tonight? Check out, bring a bit of a wallet and a great attitude and get ready to embrace your Wild Heart!