The Huron Carole, a cross Canadian tour of big name musicians to raise money for community food banks, doesn’t come to Lethbridge very often, so when it come to the Southminster United Church, Dec. 6 , it will be like — well — Christmas for Lethbridge’s food banks.
“It brings a lot of awareness to our cause, because of the big names involved,” said Interfaith Food Bank executive director Danielle McIntyre.
“The message goes further when there is a celebrity attached,” she continued.
Tom Jackson has a 40-year career in music, television and films, but he wants his legacy to be feeding the hungry.
He brings the annual Huron Carole celebration to the Southminster Church with George Canyon, Beverly Mahood, One More Girl and Shannon Gaye to raise money for Lethbridge food banks including the Interfaith Food Bank, Lethbridge Food Bank and the Kainai Food Bank in Stand Off.
He has been spreading good will and good cheer for this good cause since 1987, but has only been to Lethbridge with the Carole three times.
“I was fortunate to meet a member of the elders and one memorable thing he said to me was ‘I’m afraid I’m going to lose my shadow,’” said Jackson before one of the first shows on this year’s tour in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
“What that means is you want to have to opportunity to create a legacy for your children to remember. I want my legacy to be feeding as many children as I can for a long as I can. And I want to tell your readers that it is is a team effort and I love you,” he said.
“It is a lot of work. Mostly for my wife Alison. But it doesn’t feel like it. It is a labour of love.”
Jackson has lead Huron Carole all over the country raising money for the food banks in each community since 1987. The line up changes slightly every year.
He said the performers will sing solo sets as well as together.
“It’s all of that,” he said.
He said the show will put people into a Christmasy mood.
“I used to do an event called ‘Stories, Song and Tomfoolery.’ So there will be a lot of that,” he said.
“So there will be lots of Christmas stories and lots of laughter. I can sense people’s spirits being lifted when they are leaving,” he said.
He praised his fellow performers.
“ I‘ve known Carly and Britt McKillop who are One More Girl since they were little. I used to sit in their living room and listen to them sing like siblings only do and knew I was seeing the future of country music. I’ve known Shannon Gaye for 16 years. Beverly Mahood is one of those people I can ask to do a favour and she’ll do it. She won’t even ask what it is. I just met George Canyon at the floods in Alberta. He’s a guy who walks the walk and talks the talk. He’ll bend his back when he could be be doing other things,” he enthused.
The lineup is stellar. Juno Award winner George Canyon is one of Canada’s top country stars. He has sold over 300,000 albums and has charted countless hits including his latest ‘Slow Dance,’ ‘All or Nothing’ and ‘Seven Spanish Angels,’ to name just a few.