Nova Scotia Music Week
I spent 4 nights in Yarmouth last week for Nova Scotia music week and saw a lot of interesting things. But I can’t tell about any of them. Just kidding.
Well actually to some degree, what happens in Yarmouth, stays in Yarmouth…but I will tell you about the music.
As usual there was more music then I could ever hope to take in so I just tried to check out some bands I hadn’t seen before.
Largely I was there to get out of town, unwind, network, see old friends, and attend some of the conference workshops. This year’s conference was all about digital downloads and social networking/marketing. Since that is what I do for a living, I took some time off to hang with a good friend of mine from Tusket who plays in a band called the Rough Edges.
I did pick up a few new tricks at the workshop because you can always learn something new. Plus it inspired lots of great discussion and I got to chat with some of the panelists who are giants in the industry. Can’t complain about that…
Unbelievably it was the first time I’d seen John Campbelljohn and he was absolutely kickass of course. The neatest thing was seeing the next generation of blues and rock artists having a blast at the show…very cool.
Ryan MacGrath has a simply delicious voice. I’m so glad I finally got to enjoy an entire set of his. I never get tired of Gillian Boucher’s violin playing, and it’s even better when she’s backed by Andrew White and his amazing guitar picking. Acres and Acres and Caledonia share members, and are similar but different. I haven’t been able to classify their music in my mind. They are definitely different; definitely crowd pleasers. All my friends love them.
Made it a fairly early night knowing there was lots more to come the next day. Saturday night the first place I went was the Songwriter’s Circle. It was a two set circle with 6 guests, Matt Minglewood hosting, and CBC radio taping. I’ve been to a lot of circles so always looking for that magic that only happens during circles. This time it was between Erin Costelo and Jenn Grant doing backing vocals for one another. Very sweet…loved it…and of course the whole thing was great. Oh and Ryan Cook’s new song was stupid funny. Ryan is such a clever lyricist…never ceases to amaze me.
From there I checked Andrew Hunter, Ruth Minnikin, and the Hupman Brothers. The Hupmans had Ian Sherwood and Coco Love Alcorn on stage with them and it was the kind of jam that makes you feel like you’re in the Last Waltz. Smokin hot…unbelievable.
Finally got to see Garrett Mason, and the Whiskey Kisses for my first time as well and then after hours party where many, many people took the stage, everything was fun and fantastic and I drank way, way, way too many beers and had too much fun.
As I way overdid it on Saturday night, I opted out for the gala awards show and stayed in and watched back to back Criminal Minds and ordered tropical chicken pizza. Party huh? I was a little sad about missing my friends win awards and not be there to share their happy moments, but honestly pretty happy to just have a night off from everything for a rare change.
But next year, I will pack some Pepto Bismol just in case.
We have a lot to be proud of musically in Nova Scotia. And we’re super lucky to have Music Nova Scotia nurturing the family type feel we have in our local music industry. Bravo and great event!