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L.A. Beat


The L.A. Beat

Gord Bamford excited to raise money for local mental health organizations with drive in concert

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Australian born, Lacombe based country star Gord Bamford had to change a few plans due to Covid 19 including cancelling the Rednek tour in support of his most recent CD.

Gord Bamford and Lisa Dodd. Photo by Richard Amery
 Instead, he is playing a limited number of drive in shows to raise money for mental health organizations in all of his tour stops. The Lethbridge show will go to Woods Homes and the Lethbridge and District Family Services, July 11 at Exhibition Park. He sold out the first  one — a Canada Day show in Red Deer, and is excited about shows in Lethbridge on July 11, Calgary on July 18, Grande Prairie, July 24, and Medicine Hat on a date to be announced.

“ It’s $65 per car and you can fit as many people in the car as you have seats. You put the windows down and open the sun roof. There will be surround sound and giant video screens. It will be like a Pink Floyd tribute show,” he said, noting they had to shelve a lot of projects  including the #Rednek tour in support of his most recent album.

“We were hoping to reschedule that tour, but weren’t able to. So we just decided to shelve the album and move on to the next project,” said Bamford, who has a number of hit singles, including  “Red Dress,” Dive Bar,” “ Country Junkie,“ Neon Smoke” “Day Job” and “Is it Friday Yet” which his shows will focus on, though he has released five new singles off of the shelved eight track album #Rednek.

“I’m not much for playing new music at the shows. Fortunately I have a lot of songs on the radio that I can play that people like,” he said.
“It’s a tough time for the music industry, so we’re all having to do things differently,” he said. Even videos.

 He released a video for “Just Let Go” in late June, featuring the band members dressed up in their favourite heavy metal costumes and recording their parts from their homes.

“That was a concept we had before. And it turned out great. It was a lot of fun,” he said, adding he is excited to play shows, albeit in a different and unique way.

“I’m just excited to tour. Because we don’t know when we’ll be able to tour again,” he said, adding he was disappointed to let the last album go.
“We released five singles. All of our marketing for the album has gone away. I took last year off. I wrote 40 new songs. I hadn’t expected to take this year off too,” he continued, adding he is considering a drive in tour across Canada when things clear up.

“ That would be fun because people could tailgate and barbecue smokies and hamburgers,” he said, adding that won’t be happening for these shows with all the new rules fans must follow.
“It’s a different experience especially playing to a row of cars,” he continued, adding the sound is also different as he isn’t used to Surroundsound bouncing back at him.
“ We worked a lot with Alberta Health to make this happen as safely as possibly, ” he said, noting there are a lot of rules that must be followed.


Covid inspires the Summer Salon at Casa

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Covid 19 got the creative juices flowing during quarantine. In addition to about a dozen local musicians releasing CDs in the past few months, local visual artists have been hard at work.

Darcy Logan examines one of the paintings in Casa's new Summer Salon exhibit. Photo by Richard Amery
 The 68 artists’ recent works culminates in The Summer Salon, the new exhibit at Casa, which officially opened on Monday, July 6.

“We have everyone from emerging and self taught artists all the way up to academic and professional artists,” said Casa curator Darcy Logan.
 The Exhibit, on all floors of Casa, runs until Aug. 21.

 “So it runs all summer,” Logan continued, adding he was impressed with the quality of the art submitted.

“We weren’t even sure if we  were going to be able to open casa,” he continued, adding organizing the exhibit came together quickly.


Skinny Dyck records “Get To Know Lonesome” at home on tape

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Ryan “Skinny” Dyck, went old school to record his new record with Evan Uschenko.Get to Know Lonesome
 Dyck, who plays steel guitar with several local bands as well as Winnipeg musician Sean Burns, recorded his new record “ Get to Know Lonesome” in his living room at the end of March, just as Covid panic was taking off.
“ I sang and played guitar and steel guitar. Evan did everything else and did all  the rhythm,” he said.
 Dyck has always embraced a raw classic country ”60s sound, and feels he captured that feel by recording the record on cassette tape with an old Tascam eight track recorder.
“I like what my steel guitar sounds like with the tape compression,” he continued.
“ It feels more real. I always liked vintage ’60s and’70s country. You don’t have the digital crassness,” he said, adding every thing was done in one or two takes.
“It’s more onerous to go back and do overdubs, but it can be done. So we tried to get everything in the first couple of takes,” he said.
The 10 tracks resulted from his work with a local songwriting group, who challenged themselves to write a song a month.

Fundraisers and comedy this week

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It is a surprisingly busy week this week.

Beaches has restarted their Wednesday night open mic .

 Red Deer country band the Red Hot Hayseeds return to the Slice, Friday, July 10. The show begins at 9 p.m. There is a $10 cover.

And Theoretically Brewing has started their patio sessions season with live music on their patio. Blue and Lemba will be performing on Friday, July 10 beginning at 7 p.m. Admission is pay what you can.

There are two big fundraising concerts.
The Slice features a variety of local bands, Saturday, July 11. Folk metal band The Minstrels of Crevas begin the show at 8 p.m., followed by classic rock band the Andi Roberts Band, pop rock band the Waterfront at 9  p.m., punk band the Scallywags at 9:30 p.m, Hard rock bands SI at 10 p.m and QuickDraw at 10:30 p.m and alternative/classic rock band Fractures of Etalon at 11 p.m.. An open jam begins at  11:30-. Everybody will be playing 20 minute sets.

They will be playing to support local music venue Keenan Pezderic and Tyson Maiko play the Owl Acoustic Lounge this weekend. Photo by Richard Amerythe Slice. There is no cover, so patrons are encouraged to hoist a pint and have some of their delicious pizza.

The music begins at 8 p.m. sharp.  There will be a special jam session after beginning at 11 p.m. Singers are required to bring their own microphones. There will be a backline available. So all you have to do is bring your axe, mic and muse. Amps will be disinfected in between sets.

And Albertan raised, Australian born country star Gord Bamford is performing a special live drive in concert at  Exhibition Park, July 11 as well. Tickets are $65 or $110 for  VIP parking up front. It is a fundraiser for mental health organization s in Alberta.
 Bamford, who has numerous radio hits including “Heard it In a Song,” “Stayed ’til Two” and “Red Dress,” already sold out a Canada Day performance.
 There are numerous rules that must be followed.
Each vehicle may include a maximum of four people though exceptions will be made for large families. People sharing a vehicle should be from the same household or cohort. Windows can be rolled down and convertibles can have rooftops open. No crowd participation permitted. People are asked to remain in their vehicles for the entire concert. People hanging outside of their windows or sunroofs will be instructed to stay inside their vehicles by security and MC’s or they will be instructed to leave.
No food and beverage sales will be available onsite. No giveaways or handouts onsite. Guests will be instructed to bring their own food and beverage to consume within their vehicle. Guests will be asked to take all their garbage with them when they leave the event.


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L.A. Beat is Lethbridge, Alberta's only online arts and entertainment magazine.

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