Blen­ders Mu­sic an­nounces lineup for 2018-19 con­cert se­ries

Prairie Post (East Edition) - - Swift Current - BY MATTHEW LIEBEN­BERG — mlieben­berg@prairiepost.com

The 2018-19 Blen­ders Mu­sic con­cert se­ries will bring a wide range of live mu­sic to the Lyric Theatre stage in Swift Cur­rent.

The lineup for the new sea­son, which was an­nounced on Aug. 9, in­cludes es­tab­lished and ris­ing stars from across the Cana­dian mu­sic scene.

“We're re­ally ex­cited about the lineup this sea­son,” Cul­tural Fes­ti­vals Direc­tor Sheri Flori­zone said. “It's been an in­ter­est­ing process, be­ing in­volved from the very be­gin­ning, be­cause when I came on last year the line-up has al­ready been set and I was just run­ning the show af­ter that. I had a chance to con­trib­ute to the se­lec­tion of the line-up and that's been re­ally fun.”

There will be 13 concerts dur­ing the sea­son and the lineup cov­ers a wide va­ri­ety of mu­sic gen­res.

“There's a lit­tle bit of some­thing for ev­ery taste,” she said. “We've got folk, we've got blues, we've got pop, rock, reg­gae, soul. You name it, we've got a lit­tle bit of it.”

Ac­cord­ing to Flori­zone the sched­ul­ing of artists to per­form at the Blen­ders Mu­sic con­cert se­ries will largely be determined by two fac­tors.

“It's rout­ing and rep­u­ta­tion,” she said. “The rout­ing has to work to come through. Some­times they're trav­el­ling from Regina to Cal­gary or what have you, but also Swift Cur­rent has a rep­u­ta­tion for be­ing a fan­tas­tic, re­spect­ful crowd. The Blen­ders Mu­sic se­ries has been go­ing for a num­ber of years now and they've re­ally built that rep­u­ta­tion of hav­ing a won­der­ful au­di­ence, a fan­tas­tic venue with the Lyric Theatre, and just an all around great ex­pe­ri­ence for the artists and of course the au­di­ence as well.”

The 2018-19 Blen­ders Mu­sic se­ries kicks off on Sept. 29 with a per­for­mance by the six-piece Cal­gary band The North­ern Beau­ties. The group won the 2016 Western Cana­dian Mu­sic Award for best roots group/duo of the year as well as the 2016 YYC Mu­sic Cal­gary Award for folk record­ing of the year. Band mem­ber Todd Ste­wart has also built a solo ca­reer and he will per­form a sep­a­rate set dur­ing the evening.

Roots mu­si­cian and gui­tarist Colin Lin­den will be at the Lyric Theatre on Oct. 9. He has pre­vi­ously played on this stage in his other role as a mem­ber of the very suc­cess­ful trio Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, and is re­turn­ing for a solo per­for­mance.

The Juno award win­ning folk rock band White­horse will be play­ing on Oct. 19. The duo brings to­gether the mu­si­cal tal­ents of hus­band and wife Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland to cre­ate a mu­si­cal iden­tity of dizzy­ing gui­tar play­ing and vo­cal chem­istry.

Cal­gary singer-song­writer J.J. Shiplett will re­turn to the Blen­ders stage on Nov. 3. His dis­tinc­tive grav­elly voice com­bines with lyrics to cre­ate a con­nec­tion with au­di­ences.

The Nov. 30 con­cert will fea­ture the al­trock sound of the six-piece Win­nipeg band, The Tre­ble. Their mu­sic is char­ac­ter­ized by strong melodies and an­themic har­monies.

The Saskatchewan trio Éti­enne Fletcher, named af­ter the group's lead vo­cal­ist, will play at the Lyric Theatre on Dec. 8. Two mem­bers of the group are for­mer mem­bers of the band Indigo Joseph. Fletcher com­bines his French and English roots in his mu­sic, which ranges from rock and blues to folk and pop. He has re­ceived the peo­ple's choice award and song­writer's award at Nou­velle Scene and Chant'quest in 2015.

The first show in 2019 will fea­ture The Royal Foundry on Jan. 12. This award­win­ning elec­tro-alt-pop band from Ed­mon­ton will en­ter­tain with their up­beat sound that fea­tures dar­ing in­stru­ment pair­ing and catchy song mak­ing.

The Jan. 18 ap­pear­ance by The Jerry Cans prom­ises to be a mem­o­rable ex­pe­ri­ence. This five-piece band from Iqaluit, Nu­navut cat­e­go­rizes their mu­sic as Inuk­ti­tut rock and roll. Their mu­sic is in­spired by their home­town and by life in the high Arc­tic. They com­bine tra­di­tional Inuit throat sing­ing with in­die folk-rock and they want to help to pre­serve the Inuk­ti­tut lan­guage through their mu­sic.

Three-time Juno nom­i­nated singer­song­writer and pro­ducer Danny Michel will per­form on the Blen­ders stage on Feb. 9. He has a wide mu­si­cal vo­cab­u­lary that that com­bines folk, rock and world mu­sic. He has been re­leas­ing songs from his new al­bum since June.

Shred Kelly, a pre­vi­ous crowd favourite at Blen­ders, will be back in Swift Cur­rent on Feb. 23. The al­ter­na­tive folkrock band from Fernie, B.C., is known for their high-en­ergy live shows and their fourth al­bum Ar­chi­pel­ago, their most am­bi­tious project yet, is now avail­able.

Cal­gary singer-song­writer Mariel Buck­ley will per­form on March 9. She has opened for k.d. lang in 2017 and has been called the new Loretta Lynn. She brings a new in­ten­sity to the lyri­cal au­then­tic­ity of clas­sic coun­try mu­sic to cre­ate a new roots al­ter­na­tive.

Prince Ed­ward Is­land singer­song­writer Dy­lan Men­zie will play at the Lyric Theatre on April 5. He uses his sprawl­ing vo­cal range and strik­ing gui­tar-play­ing to share his mu­sic with au­di­ences. In 2016 his break­out sin­gle Kenya was the num­ber one song on the CBC Ra­dio 2 Top 20 for two weeks and he was a fi­nal­ist in CBC's an­nual Search­light com­pe­ti­tion.

The 2018-19 Blen­ders Mu­sic con­cert se­ries will con­clude on May 4 with a per­for­mance by Caleb Hart, who lives in Grande Prairie, Al­berta, but grew up in Trinidad and Tobago. His reg­gae beats have been in­fused with a va­ri­ety of mu­si­cal in­flu­ences, vary­ing from gospel and soul to pop and rock, and he cre­ates a pas­sion­ate live show.

In­di­vid­ual tick­ets and sea­son passes for the new Blen­ders Mu­sic sea­son are avail­able on Aug. 10 at Phar­masave in Swift Cur­rent.

In­di­vid­ual con­cert tick­ets range from $30 to $40, de­pend­ing on the show, and sea­son passes are $365.

“I re­ally want to en­cour­age peo­ple to take ad­van­tage of the sea­son pass,” Flori­zone said. “You're get­ting about two free concerts to the sea­son at that price and then you al­ways got your ticket and you're en­sured a seat at the Blen­ders Mu­sic concerts.”

For more in­for­ma­tion about the con­cert se­ries, go to the Blen­ders Mu­sic web­site at www.blender­smu­sic.ca

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