Picks of the Week – February 25, 2015

As we come to the end of February, we find some entertaining picks of the week to lead us into March;

portsidepubBeer: Hit up the Portside Pub tomorrow night for Meat, Beer and Cheese Night Vol 2, presented by Benton Brothers, Cheese Mongers, Parallel 49 & D Original Sausage Company, $20 gets a flight of 4 beer plus meat and cheese samples.

Sing: Irish singer-songwriter John Vincent Morrow plays the Vogue Theatre Thursday night.

Fest: The Talking Stick Festival continues at various location around the City until Sunday.

Dance: Now that Jane Smokr has been crowned Vancouver’s Next Drag Superstar, Liberace Thursdays at Celebrities returns to previously scheduled fun and entertainment.

Band: Join fan favourite, The Sam Roberts Band for two nights at the Commodore Ballroom on Friday and Saturday evening.

Retro: #HDFriday starts of with Gingerbear Todd playing the retro video you love on Flashback Fridays from 9-11pm

Tight: Head up to #HDFridays for BootyBox Tight & White Party with DJ Jay Douglas and host Alma Bitches Friday from 11pm

Stage: The Cultch historic theatre welcomes Cadre, a new work presented by the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and Richard Jordan Productions Ltd with the Market Theatre of Johannesburg

Gigs: Acclaimed Canadian bands Stars and Hey Rossetta! play a pair of shows at Vogue Theatre on Friday and Saturday night.

Arts: Chutzpah Festival brings dance, theatre, music and comedy to venues throughout Vancouver until March 15.

Upstairs: Monroe: Saturdays at Heaven’s Door has no cover all night for your evening’s fun.

Pucks: The Vancouver Canucks return from the road to host the St Louis Blues at Rogers Arena on Sunday night.


Current Swell fills the Commodore

Current Swell – Commodore Ballroom – December 28, 2014

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Jon & Roy

It was Victoria night at the Commodore Ballroom on the weekend when indie rockers Current Swell brought a full house to Vancouver.

Kicking off the night was fellow Victoria band Jon & Roy, the night was a welcome post-Christmas night out for most of the crowd judging by the energy in the room.  The always entertaining Jon & Roy brought the crowd out early to heat up the room on a chilly night. By the time they finished their short opening set, the audience was well lubricated for the main event.

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Current Swell

Once Current Swell took the stage the swell of excitement rushed the floor as the fans welcomed the (nearly) local boys.  As singing and smoke filled the air the vibe in the room had a festive feeling of good cheer.   The broadly diverse audience were all feeling the cheer as young and old dances, sang and cheered throughout the night.

Current Swell is next onstage January 16 in Kelowna follow them on Facebook and Twitter.  Jon & Roy rang in the New Year on Saltspring Island watch for their next gig on Facebook and Twitter too

Phillips Backyard Weekender 2014

Philips WeekenderAtomique Productions and Phillips Brewery have once again teamed up for the Phillips Backyard Weekender, three great days of music. While the loading dock and parking lot of a brewery doesn’t seem like the first place one would think of for a concert venue but the Phillips Brewery backlot in Victoria it is a great location.

The Phillips Backyard Weekender, expanded to 3 days this year, packs each evening with entertaining music and food. Friday and Saturday the fun runs 5pm – 10pm then on Sunday, start your funday at 3pm until 8pm. Food Trucks; Tacofino Victoria, Pizzeria Prima Strada, L’Authentique Poutine and Burger and Smokey Joe’s will be on site to handle your sustenance while the Phillips Brewery Beer on Tap Truck will be serving up the fresh suds.

The Weekender line-up is

Friday, July 25th
The Original Wailers with special guests Marcia Griffiths & Judy Mowatt, Five Alarm Funk, Mindil Beach and Kim Churchill

Saturday, July 26th
HOLY F**K • The Funk Hunters, Delhi 2 Dublin and Pigeon Hole

Sunday, July 27th
Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires, Shad, The Budos Band and Jay Malinowski & the Deadcoast

To enjoy the great music, food and beer, grab a flight or ferry and head over to Victoria this weekend for the Phillips Backyard Weekend

Single Day Tickets for the Phillips Backyard Weekender are $34.75 & Three-Day passes are $89.50, available online at TicketWeb



A Pete Seeger Tribute Concert – March 15

PETESEEGERFLYERRecently the world lost a pioneer of folk music and activism, Pete Seeger, long an inspiration to generations’ worth of musicians and activists, including many BC musicians and songwriters. Seeger performed benefit concerts in Vancouver several times, including a well-remembered summer concert at Malkin Bowl, benefiting those evicted from the Downtown Eastside prior to EXPO ’86. The show had Pete performing with a number of Vancouver artists and activist of the day.

In memory of that performance and Seegars decades-long career, the Rickshaw Theatre will play host to a tribute to the artist on Saturday, March 15. Eight popular Vancouver acts will take the stage and sing the songs of Pete Seeger, as well as their own songs influenced by the troubadour. The amazing vocal harmonies of The Sojourners and Company B, the haunting stories of Ben Rogers, the poignant politics of CR Avery, and the contributions of several other of the city’s own troubadours. The house band features Barry Mirochnick(Neko Case, Whitehorse), Paul Rigby (Neko Case, Kathryn Calder), and Rob Becker (Barney Bentall, The Sojourners).

For local presenters Khari McClelland and Anna Hilliar, it felt fitting to rally together this selection of Vancouver’s folk singers and activists, and in the spirit of Pete Seeger, use proceeds to contribute to ongoing music education programming through the Power of Hope and Metaphor facilitators, benefiting the Burnaby Youth Custody Services Centre.

Pete Seeger Tribute Concert takes place Saturday March 15th, 2014 at The Rickshaw Theatre, 254 E Hastings Street. Doors 8pm, Show 8:30pm
Tickets: $15 at the door / $10 advance – available at Highlife, RedCat Records, Zulu Records, Neptoon Records and online at NorthernTickets.com
Proceeds donated to Power of Hope and Metaphor

The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra hit the road

The Tequila Mockingbird OrchestraThe Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra is in for a busy month. In support of their recently released album, “Follow My Lead, Lead Me To Follow” the Victoria quintet has hit the road throughout Alberta and British Columbia.  Their stage-filling sound will echo across the provinces as towns are treated to the band’s acoustic blend of folk, ska, bluegrass, reggae with a hint of Eastern European, African and Latin rhythms. The band also like to make their mark on the towns they visit as they collaborate and incorporate local not-for-profit groups, youth organizations and work with small businesses and local food suppliers.

Catch TMO as they stop in your town if you can:

January 29th: Sleep is for Sissies, WINLAW, BC
January 30th: Bluebell Bistro, KASLO, BC
January 31st: The Royal, NELSON, BC
February 1st: The Grind, KAMLOOPS, BC
February 2nd: CHURCH (Oak & 49th), VANCOUVER, BC
February 4th: Duncan Garage Showroom, DUNCAN, BC
February 5th: Crace Mountain, NANAIMO, BC
February 7th: Club 9one9, VICTORIA, BC
February 8th: The Waverly, CUMBERLAND, BC
February 9th: The Legion, QUADRA ISLAND, BC
February 10th: Tiber Bay Room at Linnea Farm, CORTES ISLAND, BC
February 12th: House Concert, ASHCROFT, BC
February 15th: Hartwood Folk Club, ATHABASCA, AB
February 16th: Demitt Community Centre, HYTHE, AB
February 20th: The Log Cabin, EDMONTON, AB
February 22nd: The Legion, JASPER, AB
February 23rd: The Mayor’s Ball, HINTON, AB
February 25th: The Ironwood Stage & Grill, CALGARY, AB

Rifflandia Festival 2012

For three days each September Victoria comes alive with the sound of music…no Julie Andrews isn’t running down the hill but you may be running to hear great acts like Flaming Lips, Mother Mother, Cake or Everlast.  Rifflandia Festival Year 5 runs from this Thursday night, September 13th to Sunday September 16th, in venues across Victoria. With eight night stages over three nights and Royal Athletic Park featuring two day time stages on Friday, Saturday and Sunday there’s sure to be something to suit every musical whim you might feel.
Dance into the night with DJ Shadow or Morgan Page at Market Square, rock out to F*cked Up, The Antlers, or Humans at Sugar or Alix Gooden Hall. Then chill out on a sunny afternoon to Dan Mangan, Sloan or Hey Ocean! at Royal Athletic Park.
No matter what your budget, there’s a way to take in some of the great music Rifflandia 2012 has to offer. Wristbands start at just $20 for access to the acoustic War Child Lounge at The Atrium (space permitting, admission at the door will be based on a min suggested donation of $10), to $80 for single day passes and $295 for the VIP wristband. Wristband holders have access to Wristband Connect, discounts and special offers from the Rifflandia sponsors like American Apparel, Helijet, Silk Road Tea or Cook Street Liquor Store.
The forecast is for sun and fun this weekend in Victoria as Rifflandia takes over, don’t miss out. Plan your trip now!

Check out Rifflandia.com or Rifflandia TV for more information.

Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes


Stepping down into Bloomsbury Lanes, you can easily forget you’re leaving the streets of central London, but rather a classic North American bowling alley. Picture Donald Draper on a day off, turtleneck and slim trousers accompanied by a poodle skirted honey. Bloomsbury Lanes is a hive of activity, 8 classic (albeit slightly short appearing) bowling lanes, ping pong tables, foosball tables and classic diner tables and food replicate the ‘all-American’ entertainment suitable for the Happy Days set. However, adding in a long bar, built from bowling lane wood, a large dance floor with a small stage and a group of Karaoke rooms ensure that there is fun for everyone


The evening we visited was “Bands, Burlesque & Beats” night, we’d gone to see our friend’s band, The God Damn Disasters, who’s Rockabilly sounds fit right in with the retro feel of the room. Following the band, The Folly Mixtures, a great troupe of Burlesque performers took to the stage for a thoroughly entertaining set of shows. Our group booked a bowling lane and a karaoke room so we all had something to participate in…along with a few beverages. After hours of fun we we’d all had our fill and a great time at Bloomsbury Lanes
Bloomsbury Lanes is located in the Lower Level, Tavistock Hotel, Bedford Way, London near Russell Square Underground Station. Email info@bloomsburybowling.com for bookings.




The God Damn Disasters