Posts in People

A-OK/CREAM Salons present “High Tide”

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*Nautical themed, not actually on a boat

Windmills – Her’s Place

Windmills releases a live recording of his previously unreleased song “Her’s Place.” From the man himself:

“Her’s Place” is a nostalgic reflection on the summers of my youth spent in Northern Ontario surrounded by family on a small lake north of Timmins. It is far and away the most personal song I’ve ever written.

Lee Watkins and I talked about creating a video and I wanted to challenge us both to do something we hadn’t done before. So Lee set up his cameras, I recruited Cameron Lutz on percussion and Rob Raybould on bass (who also recorded the live audio) and we set out one hot evening in Lee’s studio with a 15 pack of Pabst to record a song with instrumentation we’d practiced the day before. This is the result.

Catch Windmills at some upcoming tour dates:

  • June 20th, Vernon BC, Talkin’ Donkey with Ghost Lights – 7pm
  • June 21st, Kelowna BC, Good Earth Coffee House – 7pm
  • June 24th, Vancouver BC, Guilt & Co. – 9pm
  • June 28th, Kelowna BC, Milkcrate Records – 7pm
  • July 4th, Kelowna BC, Diner en Blan (invite-only) – 8pm
  • July 5th, Kelowna BC, Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-off – 10pm
  • July 13th, Vernon BC, TBA
  • July 19th, Kelowna BC, High Tide – 9pm
  • July 25th, Edmonton AB, Taste of Edmonton
  • July 26th, Edmonton AB, Private-House Show
  • July 27th, Calgary AB, TBA
  • August 2nd, Kelowna Bc, The Orchard 7pm
  • August 24th, Vernon BC, Riot on the Roof

On the Road to Shambhala! 2013

Destination: dancefloor. You’re are on the road to Shambhala!

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Announcing their lineup (which is actually too big to even post here, download this PDF) via newsletters today, Shambhala is only two months away! Air, bus, car, bike and thumb. Come August, 10,000+ people will be on the road to Shambhala Music Festival and experience Kootenay legend. Massive PK Sound, lasers, lights, dance. Under the starriest sky, among giant trees, beside the Salmo River, six stages deliver an experience of movement unlike any other.

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To get this party started, Shambhala invites you to attend an official on the road celebration, July 25th 2013. Sixteen locations celebrate each of their Sweet 16 years. Stay tuned on Facebook and on their website for on the road pre-party locations.

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Have your wheels already hit the road? Car packed? Truly on your way? Stop at Shambhala friendly locations along the roads leading to the Salmo River Ranch. Find them on their website or simply look for Shambhala stickers and banners enroute. If you own or know a business that would like to participate, simply email info@shambhalamusicfestival.com with the subject “ON THE ROAD”. Shambhala will mail a kit and post the business and location on their website!

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The Wild Oak: Nourish, Connect, Inspire

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A Mother, a Wife, a Creative Entrepreneur, a witch in the kitchen: Heidi Jordan is a woman stepping into her power, and the results are visible magic.

A simple memory fueled Jordan’s confidence. As an adult woman she felt disconnected from her passion, highly capable and full of enthusiasm, but her intuition continued to nudge her forwards. A flash to a memory long since stashed away reminded Jordan that she has always known what to do, and that she is now a grown-up, fueled to execute what her subconscious has been preparing her for. Let me introduce to you to Heidi Jordan, a Modern Career Woman & the brain behind your new favourite place to nourish, connect & inspire: The Wild Oak Café & Community Market in Armstrong.

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Design has played a large role in how you’ve approached your business, from your branding on your handmade business cards to the logo in the window, your eclectic furniture has been curated with a deliberate hand—what was your design process in this space?
When we started the space had low ceilings, florescent lighting, dark walls—it was a hairdresser’s shop. I kind of came into it with ideas of what to create, and a feeling to create, but didn’t know how to go about doing that. I am blessed to have a dad, a brother and a husband who are all carpenters. I was like okay, this is what I need to do, and they came in and did it. I would come along and embellish. I like to have the last word on design, but the collaborative nature of this project meant that the final outcome was something that I would have never come up with on my own, the Wild Oak is a true community effort!

Environment seems to be very important to you. What are some aspects which you keep in mind while creating a space?
I design a space based on the five senses. I recently worked at a Pilates studio, and noticed how atmosphere creates environment. This always rings true, and visually I need to be able to breath. White walls, high ceilings, keeping the space uncluttered—relaxed. Music is key for me, it’s always on, and if there’s silence in the air my staff is on it. They change the music, turn up the volume, a good vibe comes from good music. Gaz, my husband, is a musician. The soundtrack of our lives is very important.

How does it feel to own your own business?
I don’t even know yet. It feels (grabs face) sometimes unbelievable. Almost as if I’m playing house. I say to myself, “So how are you enjoying playing café?” (laughs). I Have to remind myself on a daily basis that I’m doing this. We dreamt of this for years. Often tried to do it, but it wasn’t the right time or the right place. This space came up for lease and they were on it. It’s a production. Start from square one, make your way through, finish one part of it, realize that you have jump into another. The business is ever growing, always expanding.

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Have you always seen yourself as a businesswoman?
Certainly wouldn’t say that I’ve always seen myself as a professional. Inside I feel like a little girl. When I’m walking around in my womanly body I feel like a little girl with loads of hopes and loads of dreams. I love to give myself a challenge and see it through to the end the best I possibly can. I see myself as a businesswoman for sure.

Continue Reading…

Okanagan Summer Festival Report

Here in the A-OK we love summer festival season and it’s just getting started! Line ups are being announced, tickets are on sale, and with all that commotion it felt like a great time to let you know about some of our highlight festivals and events that happen in the Okanagan. This list isn’t comprehensive but if your looking for an event worth going to here’s a starter list for you.

Not only that, but there’s a bit of a Giveaway at the end of this article for some lucky winner!

Parks Alive, Music in the Park, Lake Country Open Air Performances, etc:

July and August, Parks throughout the Okanagan! For any of those new to our region you really need to know about our free live music concerts in our various communities. Almost every community in the Okanagan hosts free community concerts in one of our parks.

Every evening throughout the summer there is a free concert somewhere. So get out there and discover some great live local entertainment. Call your local Parks and Recreation office for more information on free concerts in your community.

Funtastic: June 28th-30th, Vernon

Billed as “Canada’s Greatest Slo-Pitch Tournament & Music Festival” this is Vernon’s signature Festival. Headliners this year include: Honeymoon Suite, Sweet, and Aaron Pritchett.

More information after the jump.

Celebrate Canada Day Kelowna 2013: July 1st, Waterfront Park/Jim Stuart Park/Kerry Park, Kelowna

Join over 50,000 attendees celebrating Canada’s Birthday. Over 50+ activities and performances that are multi-generational and family- friendly.

The Hot and Dry Canadian Summer: July 4-6th, Kelowna

We’d be remiss not to post one of our own festivals on here. We’re working with BC brewery Cariboo Brewing the first weekend of July to celebrate our love of local music, too-hot days and festival-ready style. Featuring 10 local, up-and-coming musicians over 3 days we are chomping at the bite to get this party started!

Tickets available with bands or you can get a $30 weekend pass online.
More information here.

Keloha: July 5-7th: Waterfront Park, Kelowna

I recently interviewed the producer of this event. The full story can be read here.

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Picture The Ocean Back In Peach City

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Matt Blackie (Drums, Vocals), Jacquie B (Keyboard, Accordian, Vocals) Jess Dee (Guitar, Vocals)

A musical trio called Picture The Ocean, who happen to be three of my favourite musicians will be arriving in Penticton on Thursday (May 23rd) for another intimate performance at The Elite. Special guests this go-around will be local favourites Jack Rabbit & The Beetles.

What makes this visit by PTO extra-special is their return from international touring visiting the UK, Europe and India for the first time together. Before embarking on such a stretch of travel they did a tour across Western Canada and even up to Anchorage, Alaska… Then across the northern US with some stops in Ontario before catching their flights to the UK. I need a nap just thinking about the miles they’ve put in!

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Taking time off since setting foot on home soil has afforded some much needed R&R and family time, as well as a whole flood of new material which I can’t bloody well wait to experience! PTO can’t be put into a shoe box, categorized or labelled. They are their own unique creation of substantial musicians and performers. They are singers, songwriters, players, and storytellers. They’re the drivers and mechanics of a well oiled machine; evident in the nature of their songwriting with tales of insight and adventure on the exciting but often lonely open road. Most important to be on this road with those you love, and with that I offer another CONGRATULATIONS to Jesse & Jacquie on their engagement last summer!

I strongly urge everyone to check out PTO’s tunes on their site by clicking here… Perhaps purchase their debut album (or anything in the catalogue!) and show support for this insanely hardworking and talented band.  And then pop on down to The Elite at 340 Main Street in Penticton on Thursday, May 23rd to see your new favourite band perform LIVE!

Joey Ryan of The Milk Carton Kids Interview

After being caught in an awkward introduction I met Joey Ryan last Friday evening at The Media Club in Vancouver, which is on the corner of Cambie and Georgia. After coaxing the bartender to letting me stay before the doors opened, I was invited backstage to chat and drink a beer. Ryan is a really nice guy, who seems to know a lot about the music scene — or at least the scene of americana and folk. I wasn’t able to get a conversation with Kenneth, but I met him as well and briefly passed the other members of The Barefoot Movement, who were also playing that same evening. Ryan and I talked briefly about Kacy and Clayton a band he’s really been digging lately, we then got into a conversation on Orwell and Melville and of course his band The Milk Carton Kids.

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So, tell me about the tour so far
Ryan: It has exceeded all our expectations and it’s very encouraging. Musically it goes up and down still, we struggle some nights and some nights are incredibly inspiring and inspired. All we can ask for is a nice room full of quiet fans and the rest is on us.

What’s one place you’ve wanted to play that you haven’t yet?
To answer truthfully there’s two venues in the US that I’ve wanted to play at. The Ryman in Nashville and the Greek Theatre in Berkeley California.

Tell me how you started playing guitar?
My dad taught me how to play The House of the Rising Sun, and after that I kind of picked up guitar when I was around fifteen. Not taking it too seriously as I still do.

What’s next for you guys as a band?
Well, I’d like to release another album and see where it goes from there. I mean, I want to stay with what we’ve done so far and keep things as simple as possible.

Favourite authors?
Right now I’m doing all the Melville short stories. Over the years I’ve had infatuations with Vonnegut and Huxley, José Saramago’s “Blindness” was great too.

Have either of you had vocal training or music lessons?
Neither of us has had vocal training, but musically Kenneth is trained as a cello player, and I’m not trained in either respect. But that really shapes the way Kenneth plays and hears music which brings a good quality to our process.

What is it about music that you find appealing?
In the very beginning, when I was deciding to play music right after college, which was a really conscious decision. I thought to myself, if I could create for somebody else just one time, the transcendent revelatory experience that I’ve had with music, then it would be worth while. Realizing that one truth or something about yourself, some emotion that’s felt, is what draws me to music.

Most beautiful city you’ve played in?
I love Amsterdam. We just went to Europe for the first time and that city feels like no place else. Cobblestone streets and canals, the downtown area is shaped like a semi-circle, it’s charming and enchanting.

One instrument you’ve always wanted to own or play or both?
Just yesterday, I got to pick up Noah Wall’s fiddle from The Barefoot Movement and got her to teach me a scale and a melody, it sounded terrible, but felt so good. I guess being able to play all the string instruments would be nice.

What’s the songwriting process look like for you?
Usually for me, if I’m by myself the lyrical idea inspires the creative outburst that becomes the song. I’m not somebody that wakes up hearing a melody or is struck by a progression that imposes itself. I’m usually struck by an idea that I need to express or a problem that I need to solve, it always comes out in words. For Kenneth it’s the complete opposite, sometimes he listens to a song thirty times before he hears the lyrics. That’s just one of the many ways we fill each others negative space.

Studio or home recordings and why?
We’ve never done home recording, neither of us is a professional recording engineer ha ha. We’ve had the good fortune to work with some great people.

The Milk Carton Kids & The Barefoot Movement

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I was introduced to The Milk Carton Kids only a few months ago and it all happened so fast after that. I was home from work and checked their tour dates, found out they were playing in Vancouver and was lucky enough to do a phone interview with Joey (on the left in the photo above). I then got a chance to see them perform live at The Media Clubon Friday night. Currently touring with The Barefoot Movement, which are an outrageously talented group of bluegrass, americana inspired folks.

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The venue was small, simple and really dark — which created a warm atmosphere for the music to take hold. I really appreciated the dialogue in between songs that was shared between both Joey Kenneth and this laughing lady. Their solemn take on music which combines simplicity with gracious undertones of careful execution, creates something really special. Something that you all should go check out if you get the chance — their music is bringing something back to the olden ways of performance and there’s something about that raw quality, that pureness which pushes their music into a new reality.

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Before I leave you to ponder, listen to both of these bands. I’d also like to let you all know that I was a bit courageous after I arrived at this venue. It was about an hour before the doors were to open and I snuck in and caught up with Joey Ryan, got a free PBR and went backstage for an off the cuff interview — so stay tuned for that, it’ll be in the next post.

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For more information on these two acts, click their names above — and discover some new talent. Both bands are making one last stop in New York on May 19th at The Bowery Ballroomand the Milk Carton Kids join up with Melody Pool for a spring tour of Australia which starts on June 4th.