Remembering an icon. Pete Seeger passed away on January 27th at 94 years old. Pete was a folksinger who gave the world everything he had for a century. I'm a music fan of two worlds, Roots and traditional Music and Punk Rock. It's got to be music that moves you, it's got to have soul... it has to mean something. Pete sang songs to unite the labour movement, he sang songs to unite the country in WW2, he sang songs to unite people over environmental causes. He led marches, he taught. In the late 40's/ early 50's Pete was a part of the Weavers, a singing group that brought Traditional Folk music into contemporary concert halls. They sold a million records with Huddie Ledbetter's 'Goodnight Irene'. Pete got blacklisted for testifying at the HUAC and being branded a communist. He went into high schools and colleges for the next 10 years and taught work songs, play songs, gospel songs, history songs, protest songs, unity songs... music of the folk... he raised a generation of kids to sing out... and they became the conscience of the 1960's. Pete was an ethnomusicologist, an environmentalist and a damn fine banjo player. He wrote Turn, Turn, Turn out of the book of Ecclisiastes... that would later be a huge hit for The Byrds. He wrote Where Have All The Flowers Gone.. an anthem for the Vietnam generation. He assembled pieces like If I Had a Hammer, The Bells of Rhymney and Guantanamera from songbooks of the world. Pete was the archetype of the folksinger. He didn't give concerts, he invited thousands of people into his campfire for a sing song in a different union hall, concert hall, auditorium every night for decades. Watch the clips on youtube and get to know how important he was and still is to us all. The only way to fail his legacy would be to not sing songs of protest anymore. The only way to fail him is to not pick up a guitar and share a story that helps people understand the way that this world works, with power in the hands of the few. Pete was fond of singing spirituals like Eyes on the Prize and We Shall Overcome. Fill your life with a little soul this year and get some change happening. Whether your change comes from encouraging people to drive less, buy local foods, read more books or sing a song, any of those actions will change everything. If the oil companies don't have all your money, then they won't be able to lobby governments to go to war for them... If Monsanto farms don't have your money, they won't be able to make governments reduce food inspection services and push through the authority to bankrupt seed traders in favour of Genetically Modified Organisms. If you read more books and your kids read more books then they will have a more tactile in depth knowledge of the world and history than the fleeting instant google knowledge that scratches the surface of the mind but doesn't necessarily lead to understanding. If we learn how to build things, carve, knit, sew, cook and draw then the world won't fall apart if the lights go out on us. Pete was the leader that we needed at the time and now the torch is passed on to a new generation. Lucky for us he kept singing because he won't end up just passing on a torch... he used that torch to light a candle in everyone he met who then has the potential of turning that into their own torch to carry, teach and pass on.
Bluegrass and Gospel Brunch Returns!!We're back! After taking a couple seasons off, we're finally back to spend the winter Sundays with friends, family and everyone as we take the winter blues and kick them to the curb. This time, we'll congregate at The Townehouse, since we have the kitchen up and running full steam. We'll work on a special menu... as soon as we perfect the Omelettes... we'll have fresh coffee and tea on. We'll gather and celebrate the music of traditional gospel, old school bluegrass and outlaw country tunes. We'll play favourites. We'll open your head to music new and old. New songs and songs that are 100 years old. The Carter Family to Neil Young. Blind Boy Fuller and Reverend Gary Davis. It's a kid friendly shindig every Sunday afternoon until we beat the snow. Bring your guitars, ukeleles, harmonicas, jaw harps, singing saws, shakers, hands, banjos. We'll save some souls, have some laughs, talk about the weather… or how the weather used to be…
Saturday, February 1st – The Almighty Rhombus, Beams, Rival Boys, BBbrthr- $7.00 at the door
In the midst of a bunch of weekend tours, Rhombus takes time out for a home town show… last chance to see them before the Big basement Show.
Beams - Toronto... In the middle of the city there is a tree. Surrounded by glass, steel and concrete, the tree grows lush and strong despite its environs. A young woman is sitting under this tree, strumming on her banjo and humming the haunting melodies that will become the songs for her band. This is the world that Toronto’s Beams dwells in. It’s a place that’s familiar and comfortable while still being fresh and exciting. A place where old and new combine to create something unique.
Just Rivers, the long-awaited debut album from Beams is produced by Peter J. Moore (the creator of the Cowboy Junkies‘ infamous “Trinity Sessions” recording). Just Rivers overflows with the youthful abandon of its principal songwriter and lead singer, Anna Mernieks. The band’s lush vocal harmonies and layers of melody often belie the disquieting and sinister aspects of Anna’s lyrics. Born of her personal life experiences, Anna uses her words to explore concepts of community and familial relationships–taking the listener’s hand and leading them down a rabbit hole that continues to prove that you don’t need to scream to yell and the amps don’t need to be turned up to eleven to rattle your core. Mike Duffield on drums; long-time friends Heather Mazhar on vocals, Keith Hamilton on musical saw, Dave Hamilton on mandolin, Craig Moffatt on bass, and Martin Crawford on lap steel, some of whom have done time in popular local acts like the Hamilton Trading Co. and the Diableros.
The unconventional instrumentation lends itself to the subject matter well, which means that Just Rivers is unlike anything you’ve ever heard, both old and new; comfortable and unspoiled. In the middle of the city there is a tree. And now this tree has born fruit.??
rival boys sophomore album, animal instincts, is set for release in early 2014 via tinyrecordscanada/Maple Music Recordings. Produced by the band and renowned engineer Joe Dunphy at Revolution Recording Studios in Toronto, animal Instincts features sister and brother pair Lee (vocals/bass/violin) and Graeme (vocals/guitars) Rose. It's stripped-down, exciting rock music with interlocking guitar, bass and violin melodies, propulsive drums by Sam Sholdice, and aggressive two-part sibling harmonies.?
Thursday, February 6th, 2014 – JP Cormier - $20.00 tickets. 7pm doors.
This will be an early show! 7pm doors. We’ve asked Hugh Jazz’s Jamie Dupuis to warm up the evening. He’ll be on just before 8pm, JP Cormier will hit the stage around 8:30pm and dazzle for 2 sets. This internationally renowned fiddle player and finger-style guitarist will thrill the crowd for the night. Born in London, Ontario, schooled in Tennessee, settled in Cape Breton, he is unequalled in many styles. Whether he is demonstrating his mastery of Chet Atkins style guitar, Scruggs three finger roll Banjo, Appalachan frailing, fiddle, mandolin or delivering a powerful vocal song… JP Cormier is a unique concert experience. He also plays tenor banjo, piano, drums, upright bass, cello, 12 string guitar… and well… probably just about anything else you can imagine. I’d like to have a strange instruments vs prodigy musicians night sometime… Here JP… here’s a Kalimba (the African thumb piano)… you have 15 minutes to figure out a song. Hey JP! Here’s a Tenor Steel Pan from Trinidad, let’s see what you’ve got! Oh, JP? Can you give us a few licks on this Hammered Dulcimer? That would be a fun night. What will most likely happen is JP will dazzle us on guitar, fiddle, banjo and mandolin. He’ll sing a bunch of great songs and demonstrate a few different styles, tell some stories that make you laugh… possibly some slightly risqué jokes and you will walk away wishing he could come back every Saturday. We will have tickets on sale by December 1st.
Friday, February 7th - Paul DiSalle and The Terminators - $7.00 at the door
Larry the Cable Guy performs at the Arena tonight... this should be interesting. Paul DiSalle plays another night of party rock and roll. He is one of the great guitar players around, adept at any scene of music. The terminators set out a course to make people dance and have a good time. This can land them anywhere from Stevie Wonder and Grand Funk to Led Zeppelin to Blue Rodeo and the occasional Hip song. They know a ton, so you can just guide the band aalong if you know what you need for your dancing pleasure.
Saturday, February 8th - Satan's Sugar Band, Zamboni Slim Band, The Suicide Drifters - $7.00 at the door
Satan's Sugar Band is a great local group that draws the logical straight line between Frank Zappa, a hard rock mining town and Captain Beefheart. It's a fun night with this darkpsyche hard rock band. Sharing the bill tonight is the long running Zamboni Slim Band. Slim plays Chess style blues with a penchant for Chuck Berry energy Rolling Stones and a little splash of Stevie Ray Vaughn.
Thursday, February 13th - Silvertongue's Hip Hop Night - $7.00 at the door
We've brought back regular nights of beats & rhymes at The Townehouse Tavern! This is the second installment of T-Ho hip-hop nights (we were on hiatus for awhile). For this installment we're bringing in the crew Full Circle from the GTA, along with some local favourites!
Fresh hip-hop from the GTA
Weirdo rhyme poet and beatmaker from the forest. Member of Silvertongue. & The Pyramid Scene.
Nickel City's premiere MC. Raw, lyrical delivery and rugged beats.
UZ will be on the decks for the night, layin' down the beats and spinnin' his favourites before, in between and after sets.
Friday, February 14th - Ben Sures, Angie Nussey - $7.00 at the door
A great double bill tonight. Ben will have a full band with him this evening. Ben Sures is a Roots music singer songwriter and guitar player. In 2011 his album ‘Gone to Bolivia’ was the most played recording by an Albertan on CKUA radio, receiving more airplay that year than Corb Lund and Steve Earle. His live show is captivating, he is a great entertainer, funny, smart, musical and a gifted guitar player. He has won and been a finalist in all the International Songwriting contests, John Lennon, International and The USA songwriting competition. Raised in Canada’s ‘Austin of the north’ Winnipeg, Manitoba. Ben began playing guitar and writing songs at age 15. He performs with a seldom duplicated sense of intimacy that draws the listener inextricably into the folds of his melodic story telling.
Ben has released seven albums, all critically acclaimed, the most recent ‘Son of Trouble’ is a new adventure making forays into African Blues and singing in French and Spanish in addition to English with a focus on his very old fashioned approach to the electric guitar. A well respected guitarist within the industry, he has played with The Good Lovelies, Paul Reddick, Rita Chiarelli, Corin Raymond and many others in the Canadian music industry.
It's been awhile since Angie has come back to the Townehouse. We'll spy her at a private concert, a festival or a small joint, but Angie started playing the Townehouse opening for The Smokers in the late 90's. It's great to have her back on our stage. Angie Nussey will argue that she is a storyteller first and a musician second, but her most recent release “Still Hope,” suggests otherwise. With its sweeping string arrangements and melodic lines, you might believe that Nussey is planning to move into a more orchestral style. But her lyrics always bring you back, pull you in, make you think, and inspire you to shine as she does.
Nussey grew up in the small town of Lively, Ontario where both parents dabbled in music and creativity. She learned to play piano at the age of 6 and she soon began writing and recording her own songs.
In 1999, She released an 11 song demo CD which was soon noticed by Movie Producer, Albert Botha, who helped launch her first studio album, “Circumstantial Overload.”
Five albums, 12 years of touring, and over 15 awards for Best Song, Best Vocal performance, and Female Performer of the year, you’d think Nussey might be interested in slowing down. “I’m actually a very slow songwriter,” Nussey says with a laugh, “after every album, I think this will probably be the last one. But then, a year or two later, I have another 12 songs, so I just keep going….like a happy snail.”
Angie Nussey is the kind of artist who leaves thank you notes. Her attitude towards life and other people has the appealing charm of a long lost friend. Her stage presence is disarming and although she maintains a wonderful degree of humility, she never fails to perform a world-class show. It has been said that “she wears her heart in her voice” and her voice rings with the ease of a warm shower.
Nussey released her last album “Still Hope,” in 2011 and is currently working on her next album.
Saturday, February 15th - Superstack - $7.00 at the door
The day after Valentines we can shake off the fake holiday blues with Superstack. This band originated in Sudbury but has been living in Southern Ontario for a few years now. Scott shepherds the band through the groove of rock and roll. Superstack predates The Sheepdogs. The band wraps 70’s thunder groove rock and soul into a neat fuzz that inspires feet on the floor and hips shaking.
Tuesday, February 18th - Tommy Fyfe and the Traveling Medicine Show - no cover
Tommy and Paul hit the stage for a night of Blues, R&B, old Ragtime songs, a touch of Country, Bluegrass and Gospel… Basically any thing that pops into Tom’s head as the night rolls on is what we will play. It’s a fun night that is a little bit Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhie, a little bit Chess Records, a little bit cabaret. Two musicians crazy about almost every type of music there is. How could it be bad? Well, I guess if you only like Justin Beiber, you might not be thrilled, then again, what are you doing at the Townehouse?
Thursday, February 20th - Open Stage - $7.00 at the door
The return of the powerball! As the open stage goes along, we discover more talent in the city, get to know the artists and thanks to Clayton Drake, we have the seeds of what will be our Townehouse podcast. Part talk show, part artist development… come out for a night of laughs, get to meet some new artists… and if you are interested in playing, you had better send Clayton a message on Facebook and get your spot set up.
Friday, February 21st - Don Kunto's Birthday Spectacular - $7.00 at the door
It’s Don’s … um, I dunno, 29th birthday? Maybe 31? Whatever. Not important. What is important is that we come out to celebrate with Don and have some fun. He’ll put together a band that will be somewhere between the ‘Topes and Snotown Revival (The Motown band). We’ll dance and have a good time. Don will get another year older, all the while looking younger all the time. So that’s what organic food and exercise will do for you! Damn, there oughta be a law.
Saturday, February 22nd - Tympanic, KTA, Johnny B - $7.00 at the door
Music can soothe even the Savage Beast. Yet, once in a blue moon, the very same Savage Beast can be found gyrating in a funk induced frenzy, rarely seen in today’s modern hipster living. Enter Ottawa’s Tympanic, a Disco-Rock hybrid of Boombastic proportions, who are, at your service, handing out the tickets to a Turbo-Groove filled Paradise.
Drawing from diverse influences that range from Jamiroquai, the Dave Matthews Band, Earth Wind & Fire and the Roots, Tympanic’s music has grown into the soundtrack for today’s Saturday Night Fever.
So go on, crack a beer, touch the people around you. Laugh. Mingle. Connect. Now throw some Tympanic on. The heads bop. The hips shimmy. The smiles swell. Viva La Revolucion.
Joining Tympanic for this funky bill will be a set each from two popular local MC’s… Johnny B and Kill the Autocrat. Preaching peace and community organizing, both of these MC’s carry a heavy punch to their shows. This will be an awesome night.
Thursday, February 27th - The Big Basement Show Pre Game - Swan X Song, Bad Policy, Left Hand Path- $7.00 at the door
Why not make it a 4-day weekend? Come by the night before THE BIG BASEMENT SHOW @ Grace Hall and The Townehouse Tavern to see some of the best local bands in Sudbury. You'll be able to pick up your ticket for BBS and get a head start on rocking out for the weekend.
So what is The Big Basement Show? It is 3 days of bands taking place at The Grace Hall on Antwerp Street (Formerly Sampo Hall) and here at The Townehouse. The weekend is presented and organized by Clayton Drake and The Almighty Rhombus. If you remember, Clayton organized the end of summer indie picnic for 3 summers at the Myths and Mirrors space on Frood Road… now he’s taking things indoors. The weekend is supported by Northern Lights Festival Boreal, River and Sky Music and Camping Festival, The Townehouse, Rogers Q-92, CKLU 96.7FM and La Slague. Basically, there is a TON of indie rock bands coming through for the weekend and you can spend the late afternoon/ early evening at the Hall and then head down to the Townehouse for more great bands… the line-up is stellar, so you really don’t want to miss any part of it.
Friday, February 28th - The Big Basement Show - BA Johnston, Geyser, Coast Redwood - $7.00 at the door
When Clayton Drake needed a host for The Big Basement Show weekend, he immediately turned to BA Johnston. BA and a lot of other people tried to talk him out of it… They said that this was a total classy event. Clayton insisted that what we need in our lives is balance. Every now and then, when you are doing well in life, working hard and getting good grades, along comes a CHUD to remind us not to take life so seriously. Sometimes you need to eat poutine and play video games. BA is that emotional stoplight… when life gets too serious he reminds us that it could get worse.
This has been another tough year for BA Johnston, but luckily he has managed to turn lemons into the no name brand lemonade. It seems that BA’s Mother, inspired by all the austerity she has been hearing about in the paper, has decided to raise the rent and chore list around the house. Faced with the options of going to work as a bag boy at Foodland or releasing a new album, BA plugged his nose and recorded up another “winner” for his ever shrinking “fanbase.”
Titled Mission Accomplished and released on Mammoth Cave Recording Co., BA’s ninth full length album finds him regurgitating the same crud that has made his a household name (in one house in Peterborough, Ont). Songs about waffles, chugging cold certified Coors Light, and spending a GST cheque at a Giant Tiger abound. However its not all cheap laughs, there are also some heart warming songs about aliens, monsters and refusing to cat sit for your Mother.
Saturday, March 1st - The Big Basement Show - Eye Was An Ion, Ketamines, Echoes the Lion - $7.00 at the door
Formed in 2007, Eye Was An Ion quickly became a favourite band in Sudbury. Adored by music fans and musicians alike, the band played steady for a while, releasing their debut record and then the band fell quiet for a spell. They never broke up, they just didn’t perform out in public for a time. We’re ecstatic that the band is getting out of the basement again and can’t wait to see what they have in store for us. Ryan, Mac, Patrick & Martin play and write all of the music. They have many influences ranging from Sonic Youth to the Beatles and because of that they have a relatively eclectic mix of music to offer
Saturday, March 8th - Lanorme, Left Hand Path, Swan Song - $7.00 at the door
Saturday, March 15th - Sulfur City, Horned Ace - $7.00 at the door
Friday, March 21st – La Slague presents MC Et les Hula Hoops, Dylan Perron et Elixir de Gumbo, +TBA - $7.00 at the door
With the La Nuit weekend comes along La Nuit Emergent and a ton of great bands in town from Quebec and the Franco-Ontarian scene. We’re pleased to present 3 tonight with hosts La Slague.
Dylan Perron et Élixir de Gumbo, c’est une recette secrète du cercle des fermières de LaMotte. Une tasse de bluegrass, une chopine de blues, une cuillère à table de folk ainsi qu’une pincé de celtic. le tout arrosé d’un généreux quatuor à cordes. À TABLE... et offrez-vous ce que le Québec vous propose de mieux… se servir soi-même.
Dylan Perron et Élixir de Gumbo, a secret recipe from the LaMotte family farm… a cup of Bluegrass, a pint of the Blues, a tablespoon of Folk and a pinch of Celtic. Mix it with a generous amount of String Quartet and wash it down. Help yourself to a big portion of what Quebec does best!
MC et les Hula Hoops is exactly what the world needs right now. When the music world got to serious, indie rock becomes a parody of itself, pop falls apart… we need the purity of yé-yé. Like France Gall and Francoise Hardy in the 1960’s MC et les Hula Hoops make pure psyche pop with sugar and a few sharp edges. Marie-Claire has enlisted exatly the right musicians in The Houle Brothers and Eric Hoop (between them have been a key part of many of the city’s greatest bands… Statues, Varge, Strange Attractor, Quasi Mepris, UV Ray). Certainly among the brightest new groups to emerge in Sudbury in the past few years and securing our legacy as the cultural center of Franco-Ontarian music.
Saturday, March 22nd - Nature Boys - $7.00 at the door
The Nature Boys from Toronto are the newest high energy RocknRoll combo on Boppa do Down Records. Many Parts Power Pop, Punk and Twang, The Nature Boys have been described as a cross between "Exploding Hearts and mid-period Social Distortion" (Dave Brown - Career Suicide). The Nature Boys include members of T.O. bands Pow Wows and By Divine Right plus Ryan Rothwell who started out in Sudbury and has been working in the Toronto scene for many years. He was last seen here with The Crooked Beat, doing a bunch of Clash covers and rockabilly type rock and roll.
Saturday, March 29th - Abandon All Ships, Skynet, Oh Victory - Tickets available FOLLOW THIS LINK
SULFUR.CC, FRANK CHARTRAND, NICK TAILLEFER AND THE TOWNEHOUSE TAVERN PRESENT:
Abandon All Ships
Universal Records/Underground Operations
Underground Operations, ex Straight Reads the Line
March 29, 2014 @ The Townehouse Tavern
tickets $12 advance, $15 at the door
Online tickets: http://www.ticketscene.ca/ events/9890
Wednesday, April 2nd - The Wooden Sky, Dusted - Tickets $15.00
The Wooden Sky are a Canadian indie rock band based in Toronto, Ontario. They formed in 2003 as Friday Morning's Regret, but changed their name in 2007. They are currently signed to Black Box Recordings who has released their last two records.
The band recorded their second album with producer Howard Bilerman (Arcade Fire, Thee Silver Mt. Zion, Basia Bulat). This record, released on August 25, 2009, saw them push the limits of the folk and country genres that was heard on When Lost At Sea with a more sonic and multi-instrumentally layered aesthetic.
They toured extensively since 2009 in Canada, Europe and the United States in support of their subsequent albums, playing several sold out shows here at the Townehouse and a legendary set at the 2nd River and Sky Festival.
After six years of constant Holy Fuck touring, Brian Borcherdt emerged from the tangled cables and broken drum machines with a slew of new songs. Looking to explore a different sound, Borcherdt teamed with drummer Leon Taheny and recorded in a converted garage under the name Dusted.
The resulting album, Total Dust, resides in an atmosphere that is sometimes melodic, sometimes haunting, and always clouded by a fuzzy glow. With string arrangements and half-hidden guitar feedback held together by the occasional tambourine and minimal drum machine, the stripped down mood perfectly complements a collection of songs that are more than capable of standing on their own merits.
Live, Dusted challenges the sonic limitations of a two-piece. Vocals and guitar are expelled through small overblown amplifiers and bolstered by a raucous backbone of live drums, 808 samples, and bass synth. Since their stage debut this spring, the band has performed with A Place to Bury Strangers, Smith Westerns, and US labelmates Deerhoof and of Montreal. Back home in Canada the duo has been playing parties with fellow friends and label mates Bruce Peninsula, Little Girls, Odonis Odonis, and Chad VanGaalen.
Saturday, April 5th - River & Sky Fundraiser
Saturday, April 12th - the 24th Street Wailers - Record Release party with guests - $8.00 at the door