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Revitalized Streetheart Launches Eastern Invasion

Revitalized Streetheart Launches Eastern Invasion
By Keith Sharp Since Streetheart last played at Toronto’s legendary El Mocambo Tavern, much has happened. You need to go back in time by 43 years to 1979. The Winnipeg-based band had just released their second album, ‘Heaven Over Hell,’ John Hannah had just replaced Paul Dean on guitar (who moved on to help form Loverboy), and they were about... Read More

NEW FACES: Fracassi New Face Of Coalition Music

NEW FACES: Fracassi New Face Of Coalition Music
Sophia Fracassi releases her debut six-song EP ‘Marathon’ – Photo by Wendy Wei By Keith Sharp Think of Coalition Music, and you would think of the Toronto-based music incubator operation, which has successfully nurtured careers by the likes of Our Lady Peace, Simple Plan, The Tea Party and, more recently, Scott Helman. So, when Rob Lanni’s company starts to promote... Read More

Lee Aaron Revisits The El Mocambo And Her Metal Queen Roots

Lee Aaron Revisits The El Mocambo And Her Metal Queen Roots
By Keith Sharp Lee Aaron has vivid memories of her first and only concert appearance at Toronto’s legendary El Mocambo Tavern. March 31st, 1984, with a performance which debuted her Metal Queen album. On Friday, July 22nd, Aaron and her band, comprising of husband/drummer John Cody, guitarist Sean Kelly and bassist Dave Reimer will return to the newly revamped facility... Read More

Country Thunder Bounces Back From Pandemic Disruption

Country Thunder Bounces Back From Pandemic Disruption
By Keith Sharp Thursday, July 14, sees the return of Country Thunder – Craven, Saskatchewan, with the likes of Morgan Wallen, Lee Brice and the legendary Tanya Tucker joining forces with domestic talent Chad Brownlee, Washboard Union and Lindsay Ell for the first of three Canadian festivals that will also feature the official début of Big Valley Jamboree in Camrose... Read More

The Return Of Small Festivals Provide Economic Lifeline

The Return Of Small Festivals Provide Economic Lifeline
Lucknow’s Music In The Fields – Summer 22 By Keith Sharp As COVID restrictions are lowered sufficiently enough to allow for concert festivals to be re-introduced this year, many smaller communities can once again benefit from the influx of spectators to attend these events and, in doing so, provide a much-needed injection into local economies and the charity foundations which... Read More

The Sheepdogs Find Favourable European Response To New Release

The Sheepdogs Find Favourable European Response To New Release
By Keith Sharp When the pandemic ground the entire global music scene to a screeching halt, Saskatoon’s The Sheepdogs were in advance preparation for another major European tour. So, according to the band’s lead vocalist/guitarist Ewan Currie, the band did what comes naturally to them, record another album! Now amid a major makeup tour of Western Europe which is responding... Read More

High Valley – Way Back & Way Cool.

High Valley – Way Back & Way Cool.
Have a little faith. This may well be the signature catchphrase of High Valley, the country band which originated in a small Mennonite community in Alberta and is now based in Nashville. Family values have always been an integral part of the band’s music and this remains an important underlying theme on their latest album ‘Way Back’.  Lead singer Brad... Read More

Stampeders Continue To Roll

Stampeders Continue To Roll
By Keith Sharp One thing you cannot say is that The Stampeders take themselves seriously. On stage on April 8th at Oshawa’s Regent Theatre, guitarist, vocalist Rich Dodson, drummer, vocalist Kim Berly, and bassist/vocalist Ronnie King cheerily announced themselves as being “Seventy From The Seventies” about their ages. During their entire 90-minute set, the former Calgary trio poked fun at... Read More

It’s All About Persistence – An Interview With Strange Advance

It’s All About Persistence – An Interview With Strange Advance
Strange Advance Releases 4 2022 By Keith Sharp “Just like getting back on a bike, it was so great to play in front of a live audience again,” enthused Strange Advance keyboardist/vocalist Drew Arnott after finally getting to parade his reconstituted line up which now features six musicians; including vocalist/guitarist Sean Dillon, keyboardist Rob Bailey, guitarist Ian Cameron, drummer/vocalist Russ Friesen... Read More

A Call To Arms – Jesus Jones in Toronto, May 15th.

A Call To Arms – Jesus Jones in Toronto, May 15th.
By Keith Sharp Even those of you who are not familiar with the progressive British rock band, Jesus Jones, will identify with their mega 1990 hit “Right “Here, Right Now” which was written as an acknowledgement of the ending of the Cold War in Europe and the breaking up of the Berlin Wall. Some thirty-three years later and lyrical message... Read More

Rough Trade’s El Mo Performance A Practice Run For Future Stage Production

Rough Trade’s El Mo Performance A Practice Run For Future Stage Production
By Keith Sharp If Carole Pope & Rough Trade‘s sold-out performance at Toronto’s El Mocambo Tavern Friday, April 29th seems to take the form of a Broadway musical, that’s because the concert is being set up, partially as a dry run for the music that will eventually form the basis of a new musical which is being created by Pope and... Read More

Advice Chat Turns Into Envy OF None Album Debut.

Advice Chat Turns Into Envy OF None Album Debut.
The Envy of None features singer-songwriter Maiah Wynne, guitarist Alex Lifeson of Rush fame, bassist Andy Curran formerly of Coney Hatch, and multi-instrumetalist Alfio Annibalini. Photos by Jaden D, Richard Sibbald, and Troy William Dunn By Keith Sharp As an A&R rep for established Canadian Record Label Anthem Entertainment, Andy Curran was asked to be an online judge for an Alabama songwriting contest four years... Read More

Eighties’ Techno-Pop Renaissance Allows Men Without Hats To Flourish

Eighties’ Techno-Pop Renaissance Allows Men Without Hats To Flourish
By Keith Sharp It started out as a vocal/piano exercise with Men Without Hats’– Ivan Doruschuk utilizing time off during the COVID-19 pandemic, and deciding to re-record an EP of some of his favourite songs. “It was when I was recording a version of The Tragically Hip’s “Blow At High Dough” as a vocal/piano track that I thought, `what would... Read More

James Faces Liberating Challenge With Buddy Guy U.S. Tour

James Faces Liberating Challenge With Buddy Guy U.S. Tour
By Keith Sharp Think of Colin James and you focus on the Regina native being the consummate Canadian blues artist. Someone who has won a staggering 27 Maple Blues Awards and no less than seven Juno Awards while releasing a total of 20 studio albums during his 34-year career. So, it’s strange then that James finds himself in a position... Read More

Our Lady Peace Embraces Music and Tech Intersection with New Album Release

Our Lady Peace Embraces Music and Tech Intersection with New Album Release
“We just had 500 fans lean into the future of web 3.0 with us and be the first to purchase our forthcoming album, Spiritual Machines 2, as an NFT,” says Raine Maida, lead singer and co-founder of Our Lady Peace. “We have firmly embraced this critical intersection between music and tech and are leveraging the power of the blockchain to build better communities and... Read More

HARKNESS Stirs Up A Creative Concoction

HARKNESS Stirs Up A Creative Concoction
HARKNESS By Keith Sharp Take a scan at the bio shot of HARKNESS and what springs to mind is one of those costumed assassins from The Squid Game. Now maybe this Toronto musician does not kill people for playing a game of marbles but his ubiquitous 11-track debut album, `The Occasion’ is certainly designed to create a stir with anyone... Read More

Many A Mile Tour/Album Presses Blue Rodeo’s Reset Button

Many A Mile Tour/Album Presses Blue Rodeo’s Reset Button
Photo by Dustin Rabin Photography By Keith Sharp Recent announcements suggest that Blue Rodeo have put their pandemic break to good use by utilizing their downtime to produce a new album `Many A Mile’ (Warner Music) and are set to head back on the road for a leisurely 27-date national tour which launches December 10th and 11th at Kitchener’s Centre... Read More

Aussie Acceptance Has Created Tea Party Long-Distance Relationship

Aussie Acceptance Has Created Tea Party Long-Distance Relationship
The Tea Party – Photo by Francesca LudikarBy Keith Sharp Literally from day one, the country of Australia has embraced the music of Canada’s Tea Party. Their 1993 major label release, Splendor Solis was equally embraced by the Aussies and through numerous tours of the country (Wikipedia says 12 tours but lead vocalist Jeff Martin swears it has been many... Read More

EXTC Rekindles Classic Band’s Legacy

EXTC Rekindles Classic Band’s Legacy
By Keith Sharp The advent of social media allows music fans to rediscover bands and artists which may have been ignored during their prime yet have been totally revived as new audiences discover the depth of their musical catalogue. England’s XTC is one such band. North American audiences may be familiar with key singles like “Making Plans For Nigel and... Read More