Posts in Events

Hot and Dry Sessions: My Kind of Karma “Ho Hey”

As part of our own Throwback Thursday and keeping the #aokendlesssummer going strong, today and every Thursday for the next 10 weeks we’ll be releasing a live video by bands who performed at our Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-Off at Habitat on July 4-6, 2013.

We’re stoked to hear Kelowna band My Kind of Karma cover The Lumineers with “Ho Hey.”

Interview with By Divine Right

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Canadian alternative indie band By Divine Right played Fernando’s pub last night as part of their coast to coast tour promoting their ninth album, ‘Organized Accidents’.  Formed in 1989, the group’s only consistent member has been original founder Jose Contreras, well-known for leading the alternative rock revolution throughout the nineties, and for his collaborations with other big name Canadian artists. Past members of By Divine Right have included Brendan Canning and Feist. BDR now plays as a trio with Jose accompanied by drummer Geordie Dynes and his nanny Alysha Haugen on bass. After the show I got to catch up with Jose for a quick off-the-cuff interview.

When you started By Divine Right in 1989 where did you want it to go? What were your intentions?
I thought BDR would be a mostly improvisational Psychedelic band. When I was younger I was so influenced by the 80’s, I had a band that was synthesisers and drum machines, then at one point I saw Apocalypse Now and I heard the Doors again so I started listening to all of my 60’s albums and realized I loved the 60’s more, so my goal was to somehow steer it back to something real. I really just wanted to make a cool psychedelic record and listen to it, and I did.

What do you think about what BDR has become?
The weird thing is how time changes how you view things. In the States we were considered alongside with all of the other Canadian bands that were blowing up at the time so we were playing all of these really over the top shows and getting great reviews, whereas in Canada it was like people just wanted us to go away. Then just 5 years ago I began getting all of this credit for stuff because I was there and I didn’t stop. I think my last couple of records are really cool and fresh sounding. They’re honest and they’re creative and they’re not marketed. There are a lot of peers right now that are going a little too hard. They could be weirder and sound a lot less manufactured. There’s something to be said for the idea that obscure music is better. I believe in what I am doing, and when I pour it on it feels real.

You also produce? I heard you collaborated with Hannah Georgas?
Yeah, we wrote a song together, Bang Bang You’re Dead. It was like song 4 on CBC 3 which is cool. I have a lot of friends who are really good at marketing what they do. I’m not really like that. Out here I’ve worked with the likes of Hey Ocean, and in Toronto I’ve worked with my wife Lily Frost, the Meligrove Band, Bicycles, St. Sebastian etc.

Your ninth album just came out, are you already working on anything else?
Yeah, I’ve got three records that are almost done. One’s a new BDR record which is super off the cuff, but it’s really fun, and also I have an improvisational record in the works. The third project is a secret which nobody knows about. The new BDR record is tracked live. It’s really unexpected. Its super scrappy, super amazing and we’ll probably just release it digitally.

BDR has really paved the way for Alternative and Indie rock, and they will continue to do so with their experimental style and ambient sounds. The current line-up is a formidable trio of honest, outgoing and sincere musicians who have a great passion for their art. Even after two decades Jose is still animated and fun when he gets up on stage, and has a modest outlook on his life and achievements that make him very personable. I look forward to what he has in store for us.

Larry, His Flask, a Wild Son and a Canyon Rose Outfit

I caught the great Larry and His Flask last night along side them played Wild Son and another band originating from Edmonton, called The Canyon Rose Outfit.

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All three of these bands were great, it’s been awhile since I’ve seen Wild Son perform and remembering their talent was a perfect start to the evening. Being a Wednesday night, I was surprised at the turnout of excited fans that showed up.

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After a short tear down, The Canyon Rose Outfit came on stage and brought the energy on. This band consists of: Christan Maslyk (Guitar,Vocals), Justin Perkins (Guitar), Matt Harrison (Bass,Vocals), Jesse Gauthier (Drums) and Alex Pelletier (Trumpet). Their sound was different and I liked the trumpet solo’s that Alex pulled off towards the end of their set.

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This band was good, I liked their blues style and the energy was amazing for a mid-week show. Anyways check these guys out, they’re worth a listen.

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Next was Larry and His Flask and this was when the night got pretty rowdy. Dancers everywhere, spilled drinks, the venue was packed and the band was: loud, powerful and extremely talented. They had people buzzing, and grooving along to all their songs — it was awesome.

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If you haven’t heard of these bands before, get out from behind your rock and get involved. Click any of the band names above to be directed to their respective websites and do yourself a favour by listening to some great new music!

Until next time, support your local artists!

Hot and Dry Sessions: Van Damsel “The Sunshine, Girl”

As part of our own Throwback Thursday and keeping the #aokendlesssummer going strong, today and every Thursday for the next 10 weeks we’ll be releasing a live video by bands who performed at our Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-Off at Habitat on July 4-6, 2013.

First up is Kamloops band Van Damsel with their song “The Sunshine, Girl.”

Keloha Music and Arts Festival 2013

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Kealoha is a Hawaiian word which translates to “The Love”. The Keloha Music and Arts Festival is beautiful people coming together and creating magical moments under the hot Okanagan sun. This 3-day, all-ages festival is an all-weekend extravaganza of love, art, and good vibes. Over 30 talented musical acts share two stages in Waterfront Park, serenading and making dreams come true. The grassy knolls of the Island Stage provides a natural amphitheatre complete with shady trees to sit under when the heat starts to take its toll on you and The Sandbar Stage, located on the beach, is perfect for rolling out a towel and digging your feet in the hot sand. Or, you can cool off in the refreshing waters of the Okanagan Lake.

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Yukon Blonde

Between the stages there was plenty else for you to see and do. Lakeside Lounge and Paradise Beach provided a tropical get away for adults wanting to indulge themselves with an intoxicating tonic. VIP pass holders could skip the line-up and enter Paradise, an exclusive area complete with tables and private port-a-potties. Sponsors Big Surf and Palm Bay provided the perfect tropical summer brews for the sun drenched fiesta.

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The Trews

If you were a Hungry Patron you could make a trip to the Food Plaza where an assortment of vendors sold mini-donuts, hamburgers, tacos, pizza-by-the-slice, and more. Everyone’s favorite neighbourhood restaurant Kelly O’Bryan’s was even on hand to sell their famed Pachos. My favorite lunchtime item was the Bronco Burger from the Good Stuff Foods vendor with their reasonable prices.

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MUTEMATH

Those with a creative side could visit Art Avenue, a stretch of space between the Sandbar Stage and Food Plaza, which hosted drop-in yoga, paddle boarding, sandcastle building, gymnastic performances, and interactive art installations. The sidewalk was even transformed into a giant chalk canvas for the public to express themselves on. Installations included pyramids in the sand, and a volcano frothing bubbles.

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Dear Rouge

Sunset Way, the path between the Food Plaza and Island Stage, became home to a small village of vendor tents where small businesses sold clothing, accessories, and more. The tent I spent most of my time at was the Merchandise Tent where you could buy CD’s and T-Shirts from your favorite bands at the festival.

Continue Reading…

The Hot and Dry Canadian Summer: Night 3

Saturday night was the third and final night of the Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-off at Habitat featuring: Wild Son, The Fangles, and Shreddy Krueger. Everyone on behalf of Awesome Okanagan would like to thank you for coming out and supporting local music this weekend. We hope you had a great time and look forward to future events. Coming up next Friday, July 19th is our Summer Fashion Show and Fundraiser, “High Tide“.

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The line-up for the final night of our Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-Off was a heavier mix catering to the rowdier concert goers. Wild Son, who also opened for the Sandbar Stage at Keloha on Sunday morning, kicked off the night and got everybody dancing right away. Wild Son, for those who don’t know, is a groovy folk rock band that has been getting a lot of attention lately.

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The Fangles played second, and were a nice transition between the other two acts. The Fangles are a whisky drinkin’, crowd surfin’ rock band with some punk flair. The capacity throughout the whole weekend seemed to peak during their performance, perhaps a testament to how accessible their music is to those on both sides of the hard rock spectrum.

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Last but not least was Shreddy Krueger, a heavy metal band with caterwauling vocals and a crashing drum kit featuring no less than seven or eight cymbals.  The pure volume of their set-up created a sound barrier between the crowd and the stage that repelled any attempt at getting close; walking within three feet was like running head-on into a brick wall that sent you staggering backwards. The face of the crowd gradually transformed as mosh pits formed, catering to the burlier tattooed types. If this sounds like your idea of a good time you should definitely check out their next show.

Have a great summer everyone, and stay tuned! My coverage from the Keloha Music and Arts Festival this weekend will be coming to you shortly!

“High Tide” Promo Video

Holy Ship! Awesome Okanagan and CREAM Salons are eager to board the high seas* (otherwise known as Habitat – 248 Leon Ave) together with some of the freshest talent the A-OK has to offer. So don your nautical clothes, it’s all hands on deck for “High Tide,” the 2013 Summer Fashion Show & Fundraiser. We had such a great time at Wild Heart with local clothing store Man + Woman we’ve decided to pair with them again. This nautical themed, sun-bleached party will be right in the heat of the summer and evoke the nostalgia of ’50s/’80s yacht culture. Don’t forget to dress up! Navy, tan and white are easy colours, red and gold are great accents, pastels are in season.

Anchoring the evening will be the one (sea)man looping act Windmills. As usual there will be a photobooth with photographers (pics or it didn’t happen!) to make sure all your friends know what they missed out on. Bring your dancing boat shoes.

Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door. Proceeds from the event will go to the Elizabeth Fry society.

Tickets include one door-prize ticket (more will be available for purchase at the event) and are available at CREAM Kelowna (#2-1771 Cooper Road), CREAM Madison (1389 Ellis Street), CREAM West Kelowna (#313-3021 Louie Drive), Man + Woman (#1365-2271 Harvey Avenue in Orchard Park Shopping Centre), Mosaic Books (411 Bernard Avenue) and Leo’s Video (2680 Pandosy Street).

Prizes include:

  • Two (2) $20 gift cards to DunnEnzies Pizza
  • Two (2) tickets to any upcoming Habitat Event (value depends on event selected)
  • Haircuts from CREAM Salons (valued at $55)
  • An ORIBE shampoo/conditioner from CREAM Salons (valued at $70)
  • $25 gift card and book from Mosaic Books
  • Two (2) tickets for Dinner and any Show from the Actor’s Studio (valued at $150)

*Nautical themed, not actually on a boat

Hot and Dry Canadian Summer: Night 2

The Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-Off continues at the Habitat! Last night featured four more great bands that you may or may not be familiar with.

Opening was a solitary member of Manual Scavengers playing electric guitar and singing. You wouldn’t expect the voice that came out of this man. He was a blazing fast talker and story spinner with an outlandish sense of humor and tremendous boldness. He was joined half-way through by their drummer and the show was transformed into an entirely new experience, taking on a pulse that got people dancing.

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After Manual Scavengers one of my favorite new local bands took the stage. Tiger Moon, founded earlier this year by Dan Tait and Kasey Graff, appeared as a complete band with two new members. We shot a live video of them performing their song “North Highway” earlier this summer for one of our Rooftop Sessions. You can check it out here.

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Third on the bill was Windmills. Cory is no stranger to A-OK. Living in Vernon, he makes occasional trips to Kelowna and Vancouver to perform. Windmills brought a mellower mood to the venue that got everyone swaying and hip holding. His interpretation of R. Kelly’s ‘Ignition’at the end of the night got everyone ramped up to party again for the final act, Van Damsel

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Van Damsel is a modern indie rock band from Kamloops. They don’t play Kelowna too often but when they do they’re always a treat to behold. High energy, groovy danceable sounds flowed forth from these four guys as they performed tunes off their EP ‘Say Hello to Your Mother’ and their two newest songs, “The Sunshine, Girl”, and “August”.

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Tonight is the final night of the Hot and Dry Canadian Summer Kick-Off at the Habitat. Wild Son, The Fangles, and Shreddy Krueger will all be playing for your enjoyment. Get there by 9pm to find a table and enjoy some Cariboo beer!