Focus Friday: Creek Fog

mission-creek-fog

This week’s fog made for some magical light and dreamy autumn scenes, like this one in Mission Creek Park. The Greenway is spectacular right now — definitely worth a walk or bike ride this weekend. Earlier in the week, it seemed like the morning fog was burning off by lunchtime. The last few days have stayed socked in, giving us a preview of winter cloud.

Foggy Morning by Melanie Friesen


Daniel Romano – Streaming Cafe

IMG_6449
Another amazing concert happened last night at Streaming Cafe. . . Daniel Romano with Grey Kingdom performed and you should’ve been there. Spencer Burton (Grey Kingdom), not only has a great stage presence of humour and sarcasm, but his vocals and folk melodies will move you. . . check him out and buy his album here.
IMG_6432
IMG_6442
The Streaming Cafe has great sound and the small venue makes for the perfect audience experience. You become fully absorbed while in an intimate live setting. Daniel Romano and band played amazingly well and I was surprised to see such well crafted country/western songs. Romano played all of the set electric as well which is something I’ve never seen before, so that was a nice touch. Romano’s vocals pierce the soul with a deep range that drawls on with highs that can leave you heartbroken. His songs tell stories of relationships and heartbreak that make you yearn and reflect. If you haven’t heard of Daniel Romano before, please do yourself a favour and check him out.
IMG_6482
IMG_6468

After the evening of music was over, I stuck around and got to talk to Daniel for a few minutes outside and conversation ensued.

What are your opinions on alternative country, indie, folk and pop country music?

I think that those probably exist, genres like “alt country” or “americana” because there’s such a disconnect with the origin of country music and what is now considered country music. I don’t know if it helps any, but if it helps people decipher one thing from another I guess that’s a good thing.

Do you think it’s getting better or worse for country/western music?

It’s hard to tell right now, I know that the “americana” scene is flowering and that’s good I think. That’s pretty broad that category though, there’s a lot of styles of “americana” and that can be confusing.

What’s your favourite venue so far in Canada?

Oh you know what, there was this festival on Wolf Island in Kingston, Ontario. We were supposed to play on the back of this dock looking back at this bar. Minutes before our set time we moved inside because there was torrential down-pour. So we crammed inside this little bar and moved some chairs aside and did a show, it was so much fun. We had weird adrenaline from being confused and having no P.A system, that was a memorable show.

What’s your favourite show in the USA?

Actually, we just played a chili cook off in Portland that was awesome.

What’s your opinion of downloading and social media?

Uhm, whatever. It’s inevitable, it’s going to keep happening.

How has it affected your career?

There’s just no money to be made. It sucks because you can’t sell records and that’s what you want to do, but right now bands basically make their money off of merchandise.

How has it felt to transition to playing country music and changing your image?

I mean my image hasn’t really changed so much, but I would say that it’s a lot more comfortable for me.

Follow Daniel Romano on Facebook and check his website to learn about tour dates. His next show is coming up on the 13th of October, where he’s playing at Mercer Tavern in Edmonton.


Daniel Romano

I was lucky enough to briefly chat with former indie vocalist now turned country/western singer Daniel Romano, while he was gearing up for his Canadian tour in Portland, Oregon.

DR

Hey Daniel, how are you?
Not too bad.

Where are you right now?

We’re in Portland, we have today and tomorrow off then we play Seattle.

So that’ll be the starting of your tour then?
Yeah exactly.

And you’re playing with Spencer from “Grey Kingdom”, how’d you two meet?
We used to be in a band together called “Attack in Black”. We met in high school, he actually grew up in Kelowna and later moved to Welland, Ontario where I’m from.

So this tour is for your new album Come Cry With Me, how’s the reception so far?
It’s been great.

Where was that album recorded?
Oh, at my house.

Who else played and recorded with you on this album?
It’s pretty much just me, Erin plays lap steel and a friend of mine named Natalie sings on it as well.

So transitioning from Attack in Black and the more indie side of Dallas Green’s work, how has it been putting out your own country albums?
It’s been great, makes more sense for me.

How was playing with Dallas Green?
It was fine, was a good job.

Any plans once this tour is over?
I’m actually currently making a new record so I’m probably going to work on that a bit.

What does the songwriting process look like for you?
Um, it varies. Usually it’s find a good line and work around it kind of thing. I haven’t found anything that works better than anything else.

I’m excited that you’re playing at St. James Hall in Vancouver before the show in Kelowna, I went there to interview Gavin from The Wooden Sky and the venue is beautiful!
Oh yeah our friend raves about that place, I’m glad to hear it’s a good venue.

I’ve read you listen to punk rock so I’d like to ask you what some of your favourite records are?
Hmm ok, let me think about that for a second here. I’m going to go with this band called The Regulations, then there’s a band from my hometown called Keep it up they were great and The Ramones “It’s alive” was the best punk record ever.

What about some of your favourite singles from some country and western singers?
Roy Acuff’s “Crash on the highway”, George Jones’s “I can still see him in your eyes” and any side that Hank Senior ever cut.

Romano’s new album titled “Come Cry With Me” was released on January 22nd and should be played on the nearest porch with a glass of your favourite alcoholic beverage. He’s playing this Friday the 11th at Streaming Cafe so get ready for beautifully crafted folk/country and stay tuned for the show review this Friday!


Focus Friday: Aurora

Aurora Over the South OkanaganIt’s tempting to hunker down as the days get shorter, but some Okanaganites wisely embrace the night. Caillum has been finding some beautiful skies lately. We’re glad he’s got the gumption to sit outside late at night, capturing excellent scenes like this.

Aurora Over the South Okanagan by Caillum Smith


Focus Friday: Sunflowers

sunflowers

Autumn feels like a mellow post-workout cool-down after the heat and intensity of an Okanagan summer. It’s worth checking out the beauty and bounty in the fields, orchards and vineyards these days — so much to enjoy and be thankful for. I thought that Melanie’s exuberant sunflowers conveyed that feeling of gratitude.

Teachers Sunflowers by Melanie Wolczuk


Double Opening Reception: Dylan McHugh w/ Jeff Ellom & Lucas Glenn Co.

Dylan McHugh Press Image_edit small

Please join us for the double opening reception of both Dylan McHugh’s (Vancouver) Swal-low, and Thank You for Sharing, a collaboration between Kelowna’s Jeff Ellom and Lucas Glenn Co. The event will take place at the Alternator at 7 pm on September 28.

McHugh’s Swal-low is a light and ceramic based installation exploring an intersection of myth and symbol. Consisting of a sea of delicately crafted, translucent, backlit ceramic tiles, the work intends to captivate the viewer with its dream-like qualities.

Thank You for Sharing is a collection of paper-collage collaborations between Jeff Ellom and Lucas Glenn Co. The collages, mimicking the layouts of popular websites, are made up of found images and text.

Swal-low and Thank You for Sharing form part of the Alternator’s participation in Culture Days 2013.


The Bros. Landreth – Sept. 21 at The Streaming Cafe

The Bros. Landreth

Brothers Joey and David Landreth have spent the last decade supporting some of Canada’s most talented artists, developing a reputation for their exceptional musicianship. They’ve played with everyone from Doc Walker to Imaginary Cities and now they are finally taking the plunge into a project that is uniquely their own, The Bros. Landreth. The band will be releasing their debut album ‘Let it Lie’ on September 3rd and will be kicking off their Western Canadian Tour on September 5th with an Album Release Show at the West End Cultural Centre (WECC) in Winnipeg.

‘Let it Lie’ was recorded through the dead of winter in Southern Manitoba with the guidance of friend and producer Murray Pulver (Doc Walker, Tara Oram, Crash Test Dummies). Their studio time happened to land them directly in the middle of the coldest week in January with the temperature hovering below -30C. The heat in the loaned van died on the trip out to the country and they had to borrow a heat gun to defrost a pie shaped circle in the windshield. Despite all of this, The Bros. Landreth are still fiercely proud to call Winnipeg their home.

“We’re at the epicenter of this great artistic hub, smack dab in the middle of the coldest place in the known universe,” David playfully exaggerates. “We have to write and play just to stay warm half the year. It becomes a creative incubator – a survival technique.”

With their debut album ‘Let It Lie’ The Bros. Landreth leave the esoteric behind in favor of delivering stories simply, never letting their road-proven musicality stand in the way of the songs speaking for themselves. It begins with the upbeat “Our Love”, which tells the story of a relationship at the end of it’s rope. “Runaway Train” features their musician father, Wally Landreth, sharing vocal duties and the guitar driven “Goin’ To the Country” is an opportunity to hear the band dig in. French horn sneaks in beautifully unexpected on the heartbreaking “Greenhouse” – a song tackling the fallout of a tragic suicide. “Nothing” is the truest love song of the bunch and features a lonesome cowboy harmonica solo that will raise the hackles on the back of your neck and make you check your boots for snakes.

Catch The Bros. Landreth at Streaming Cafe on September 21st!


Floridas – Another Place

Local film collective ROOM paired with local musician Floridas to complete a music video for Floridas track “Another Place” off of their recent EP, Cadboro, which was released about a month ago. It was shot in Penticton with actors from Vernon, Kelowna, Summerland, and Penticton.