Steve's Blog
Southlands Jam, Dick Gaughan, Legends Series, Radio Waves over the long weekend
Friday September 4, 2015

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New windows to be installed in our Coop; noisy construction of new stairs and flooring at the entrance to the office on Granville Island; the September Contra Dance moved to the last weekend in August; no concerts or festivals this week; what else should we do but head over to an island for a few days? We chose Saltspring. Good choice! Heading into Ganges for the Farmers Market we passed the Fulford Hall - home of the Saltspring Folk Club - and saw this sign:


Hmm. Valdy's birthday. Potluck. Music is bound to happen, we thought. It was quite the party.


Valdy turned 70 and lots of musicians came along to share music with him - including Bill Henderson, Marianne Grittani, Connie Lebeau, Dan Lapp, and many more. Kathleen - Valdy's wife - dressed him in her family's Fraser kilt - onstage; you had to be there - and she also did a wonderful parody of Marilyn Monroe singing "Happy Birthday, Mr. President". 

After that the weather turned nasty, of course, but at least we weren't camping! Ruckle Park is one of our favourite destinations, but it was cold and windswept when we stopped by. Amidst the thunder and rainstorms we managed a few little nature walks, and watched hummingbirds competing with wasps on the feeders in the garden of our Air BnB cottage retreat. We visited the excellent Saltspring Brewery, Saltspring Winery, Mistaken Identity Winery, and the new Saltspring Cidery (is that a word?) I'm writing this on our first sunny day - and we have to take the ferry back this afternoon! Ah well, it's been a very pleasant "retreat".

Southlands Farm - Musical Jam, Saturday September 5th, evening (I'm guessing around 7pm)
Feel like jamming? Bring your instruments and come along to the staff and volunteer party at Southlands Farm (6767 Balaclava St., south of SW Marine Drive) tomorrow night. It's very informal. Call 778 772 7328 for more details.

Dick Gaughan, Saturday September 12th, 8pm, St. James Hall (3214 West 10th Avenue)

Our Fall Concert Series kicks off next Saturday with renowned Scots singer and guitar maestro Dick Gaughan (pronounced gock-un) making his first Vancouver visit in 6 years. Dick's 1980 album, Handful Of Earth, was voted Album of the Millennium by the readers of British magazine fRoots - the definitive international folk and roots music magazine, and - along with Canada's Penguin Eggs magazine - an indispensable part of my research for the radio show and concert series. Since then he has released a string of albums comprising some of the very best in contemporary songwriting - many of them his own compositions. He recorded a powerful rendition of Waist Deep In The Big Muddy for a Pete Seeger tribute series, he's played concert halls, picket lines, and folk festivals around the world. He even married Ron and Miriam Kavana at Denmark's Tonder Festival a couple of decades ago (he'd trained for the priesthood before seeing the light!) He remains fiercely political: a troubadour of the hapless and downtrodden, full of hope, passion, and love as well as anger and scorn for the folly and cruelty of the capitalist system. He has one of the finest voices on the planet, capable of capturing the heart with the most tender of traditional ballads in one moment and stirring the fire of the spirit with his uncompromising commentary on social injustice in the next. This powerful performer conveys his message with humour and passion, and he is a stunning guitarist, delivering traditional Celtic tunes with such aplomb that he and Tony McManus have become "co-chairs" of an informal mutual admiration society! On top of that, Dick is one of the very best singers of traditional ballads anywhere. He is an unforgettable artist, able to change the way you think and feel through the power of music.

Legends Series

The Rogue's "Legends Series" continues apace with pioneering Canadian songwriter Connie Kaldor (September 25th), remarkable Canadian guitar poet Don Ross (September 27th - with special guest Jon Gomm from the UK), and Irish fiddler Kevin Burke (October 4th) followed by a founding member of John Lennon's Original Quarrymen - Rod Davis - presenting songs, stories and slides from the heyday of skiffle and early rock & roll on Merseyside in the late 1950s and early 60s. Rod performs on October 16th, and we will have a Beatles Tribute Folk Band to conclude the evening. Stay tuned for details! All this and a whole lot more are coming to The Rogue in the next few weeks! 


Radio Waves

I'll have some new music from Compass Records' Joy Of Living: A tribute to Ewan MacColl on tomorrow's Edge On Folk on CiTR fm 101.9 and from 8am to noon. Artists like Billy Bragg, Eliza Carthy, Seth Lakeman, Kathryn Williams, The Unthanks, Martin Carthy, Martin Simpson, and many more contributed to this 21-song compendium of new interpretations of the songs of the late, great English folk singer / songwriter (husband of Peggy Seeger, and writer of such classics as Dirty Old Town - covered on this album by Steve Earle, and The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face.) I'll also spin the Chilliwack version of Bill Henderson's inspirational new Canadian anthem, Take Back This Land, new music from Shemekia Copeland, a couple of classics from Dick Gaughan, new music from Vancouver Celtic quartet Blackthorn (photo below, who release their new CD, Open Skies, at the Rogue on September 19th), and a whole lot more. Hope you can join me!


Radio Rogue - featuring a shuffling playlist of well over 1,000 of my personal favourite songs - is on the air 24/7 and can be accessed here RADIO ROGUE

For Rogue Concert Information, Memberships, Tickets etc. visit Often!
Have a great long weekend!