The League of Rock Montreal; And a One … And a Two …

They say, practice makes perfect.

If that is the case, then no-one is perfect because even guys like April Wine’s guitarist Brian Greenway keep practicing ….

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Greenway is the first ‘Rock Star’ coach to participate in The League of Rock Montreal’s first rehearsal which took place this past Wednesday at Studio Musico Practik in Verdun.

An initial meeting of the instruments ( and minds) …

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Under the watchful eyes of Montreal President Gary Johnston, the boys and woman – were locked away inside four beautiful studio rooms on de L’eglise Avenue for a night of hard work.

With Brian Greenway making the rounds and spending time with each group,’ lessons learned’ and ‘lessons earned’ became the catchphrase for the night.

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Local guys such as Ed Booth, a player who just past middle age, decided to live his dream and start playing music. Suddenly, he is knocking elbows with Greenway and loving  the learning  of it.

Josh Van Sprang, Martin Jaz, Murray Rappel, Gregory Gallagher and Jordan Gosselin – just a few of the musicians from various backgrounds, playing levels and ages, together at The League of Rock Montreal. All with one common goal. To become one with their band-mates whom they met for the first time last week.

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Greenway, upon completion of the last session, exited the studio room with a smile larger than Lasalle. The April Wine guitarist clearly energized by the vibes taking place among virtual strangers a week ago.

“The beauty of the League of Rock is not knowing what will arrive from the nine weeks of rehearsing and a couple of gigs leading to the final showcase. ” Says League President and CEO Gary Johnston. ” That’s why it is important to focus on a couple of songs right away. Too many choices will not allow for any song to be performed and developed properly.”

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Heavy Metal could be heard from one studio. A cover of a Rolling Stones’ tune from another. The only thing not heard in the first ten minutes may have been ‘Smoke on the Water’. Surprisingly ( or not)  – Deep Purple’s iconic song, too simple for the bands (?)

An indication this batch of musicians are advanced in their playing or not fans of Deep Purple. Either way, nothing caught fire.

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The second rehearsals are taking place this coming Wednesday. The guys and gal have no excuses left to not put their fingers to the chords and their feet to the bass pedals. All intros are over. All nerves should be settled and not ‘torn and frayed’.

It is time to get down to some serious business at …

The League of Rock Montreal !

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To buy pictures from The League of Rock Montreal’s first rehearsal –

Visit James St Laurent Here !

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Visit The League of Rock Here!

 Visit Evenko Here !  

 

 

Visit The Hi – Fins Here !

 

 

Mathew and Jill Barber Keep Family Values Alive With New Album

Mathew and Jill Barber are brother and sister. 

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Both – possessing very solid solo careers on their own but face it, family is family …

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All these years later, the pair of siblings have finally recorded an album together and it is a feel good story. ‘The Family Album’ combines folk music with sentimental values – the album is an open door to heartwarming lyrics and melodies.

Please listen below as Mathew explains the album and his relationship with his younger sister.

Thanks for listening ! Talk soon !

 

Please visit Mathew Here !

 

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Visit The League of Rock Here!

 Visit Evenko Here !  

 

Visit The Hi – Fins Here !

 

 

Justin Rutledge – Former Juno Award Winner is Heading ‘ East ‘.

Justin Rutledge – at one point, wanted to be a writer.

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A Juno Award down the road, things have not gone Justin’s way. Or – have they?

 Please listen below to hear some new tunes from Justin’s album East and hear his thoughts on bar-tending?

Justin? What’s up?

Visit Justin Here !

 

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Visit The League of Rock Here!

 Visit Evenko Here !  

 

Visit The Hi – Fins Here !

 

 

What’s The Talk on The Turnpike ? The Word on the Street ?

As usual – a lot happening in Montreal !

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The Quebec to Memphis Blues Challenge got underway last night and The League of Rock started  it’s first Chapter in Montreal !

There are a lot of shows coming – the Jazz All Year Round Series and Evenko are busy as usual and a bevy of local acts are playing everywhere !

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Please listen below to what is coming on Rick Keene Music Scene and hear some great tunes !

Talk Soon !

 

 

Visit The League of Rock Here!

 Visit Evenko Here !  

 

Visit The Hi – Fins Here !

 

 

Turn Those Smart TVs Off and Go See Some Shows!

What’s shakin’? What’s happening? What’s going on?

As usual – a lot of stuff is going on in and around Montreal.

May 6th ! Calistoga Pte Claire
May 6th ! Calistoga Pte Claire The Hi Fins !
Carlos Santana is bringing his guitars and Michael Kaeshammer is bringing his piano. Just two of the many things going on this week.

 

Please listen below for other events as well as some great tunes !

Thanks for listening ! Talk soon !

 

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One Road; A Little Bit Country – A Little Bit Rock n Roll

La la la la … life goes on …

Or so it goes for the band One Road.

Tracy and Mike’s lifelong dream of making a living as musicians – is far from over. Despite a learning curve larger than Justin Bieber’s list of arrest warrants, the duo are re-adjusting their game plan. Not changing – tweaking. A little change never hurt anyone after all …

Listen below as Tracy explains his next course and why he thinks something other than Marois must be changed in Quebec.

Tracy …?

 

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Please visit One Road here!

 

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David Usher – Moist for a Few …

David Usher performed at Club Soda on Thursday night. The former front man for Moist brought his solo act and a new album along for the ride.

‘Songs from the Last Day on Earth‘ is Usher’s eighth solo album since his former band left the scene in 1997. There is not a big difference between the sounds now and then except for Usher’s softness shining through a bit more.

Thursday night, he performed favorites such as “Silver” and “Push‘ from his Moist days yet it was the mostly female audience who may have gotten wet. Especially those in the first few rows as Usher launched some water their way during his two hour set. Usher is a talented singer who just happens ro be a very good looking guy. Something he appears to not take too seriously during shows.

‘And so we Run’ was the best tune of the night and his loyal followers seemed to agree as they sang in unison to one of his trademark songs. ‘ The Music‘ was right up there and it – along with ‘And so we Run’ ‘ played in the first half hour. These songs hooked people into Usher’s world and he had the females eating out of his hand.

The bantering in between was an indication of his charm. It is easy to have confidence when a singer is aware of his sex appeal, which David clearly has.

Love will save the day‘ and “Lonely People‘ were played out with great musicianship from a backing band who appeared on great terms with their meal ticket. It is obvious Usher and his mates are close as Usher’s experience of being in Moist has eased the process.

All in all a great show, Usher’s tunes have a hint of Coldplay in them – either that or it is the sound which is the flavor of the month right now.

David Usher is not ‘Alone in the Universe’.

The Hi – Fins; Everyone’s Cup of Tea

A record collection contains many gems.


The Dave Clarke Five, the Kinks, the Monkees, the Who, the Stones and the Beatles. Six groups which make up a good contigent of the British Invasion. Now – if it were possible to sit and listen to all these bands plus a few more in one night – LIVE, would a music fan sit at home? Of course not  …

Montreal group the Hi-Fins, provides exactly that. A taste of the British Invasion right in the neighborhood. An evening without the kids or the headaches of daily life. Paul McCrowe, the bass player, explains how the band achieved it’s name;

“Spy ( the guitarist ) and I have known each other since we were twelve. Spy was heavily into crosswords and we were trying to come up with a name. So there was a word that he came across “hyphen”. We both liked the word and came up with “Hi-Fins”, which – if you read between the lines, the symbol hyphen is there plus Hi-Fi.” He continues.” Hi -Fi is 60’s technology for  noise solution. All in all the name is a play on words. We thought we would be clever enough for someone to maybe figure it out when they see it! Some have …!” He laughs.

One thing which is simple to figure out is the band is blessed to have Mitchell Field on board as the drummer. Field grew up in England and was one of the fortunate few to have watched the Beatles play at the Marquee Club in London. Long before the band gained cult status.

“I was nine.” Says the fifty- seven year old Mitchell. ” I saw them all back then. The Kinks, the Who – it was a lesson which made me passionate about music and right then I decided to be a lifetime musician.” Mitchell left school and started to live his dream and played drums for Johnny Lee Hooker at one time. He then went on to play  with a band called Hellfield in the late seventies in Toronto. That band obtained moderate  success and opened up for bands such as Foreigner, the Cars and Kim Mitchell.

“Ya – we are very fortunate to have Mitchell in the band.” Says Paul. ” It is a funny story of how he joined.” He laughs. ” We put an ad on Craigslist and he answered it. When he came for the audition, he said ‘ Okay boys – show me what you got …!’ Spy and I looked at each other for a second and said ‘um…why don’t you show us what you got! We are auditioning you …!”

From the get -go, these three guys hit it off and following the second song in ‘the audition’ – a certain chemistry existed. They did not have to work too hard at achieving their very own ‘wall of sound’. ” People come up to us all the time and ask whether we have taped music playing in the background.” Says Spy. ” Or – they ask if we have a guitarist hidden somewhere. The sound is all in the way Paul plays bass. It becomes like a second guitar and the band’s sound is fuller.”

That must be the case. In a recent show at Le Pionnier, the room was packed with all ages. The kids in their early adulthood seemed to really dig the music that their parents grew up on. They were boppin’ and dancing all night long. Right along with their parents to ‘A Hard Day’s Night ,’ Satisfaction’, ‘You Really Got Me’ and ‘My Generation’.

A concert with the Hi – Fins contains many gems…

Listen to the Hi -Fins here

Please stay tuned for a more in-depth interview with Mitchell Field and the boys ….