A double bill comprised of Ladies of the Canyon and Old Man Luedecke — award-winning new roots and bluegrass — takes the stage at Joe’s Garage Thursday, May 12.
It will be a tale of joy, a tale of woe, of adventures far and wide, of new friendships and kinships discovered. One van, two bands, all killer, no filler … Ladies of the Canyon hit the road and cross the country with their new pal Old Man Luedecke, who not only is a consummate songwriter of inspirational proportions, but also a stunning banjo player and entertainer. And oh, is he funny.
They travel from Toronto to the ol’ Vancouver Island and back, hitting the likes of Thunder Bay, Jasper, Red Deer, Vancouver Island and more.
Old Man Luedecke won the 2011 Juno Award for Best Roots and Traditional Album Solo for his most recent recording, My Hands Are On Fire and Other Love Songs.
Old Man Luedecke is one of Canada’s best-loved and most intriguing roots singer-songwriters. “An original, he is a musical singularity to be savoured and shared,” says the Vancouver Folk Festival. His memorable melodies, poetic sense and easy charisma appeal to anyone searching for new growth from old roots.
Old Man Luedecke was born in Toronto but has made his home for years in the music-rich maritime province of Nova Scotia. There, his music has been wholeheartedly adopted and is becoming representative for its traditional storytelling folk elements. It speaks to a new generation of people craving such meaning in their music.
Luedecke is a young man with an old soul who doesn’t sugarcoat his fears, and this lets his songs breathe with a fresh breeze of bittersweet hopefulness. He channels a refreshing energy from folk giants like Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, with maybe a hint of Loudon Wainwright III.
But it’s Luedecke’s contemporary lyrics coupled with the irresistible rhythm of the old-time banjo that connect and make him so loved by his audiences. Anchored in his music’s melodic confidence is an ability to tap into a common muddled and dark search for meaning. This keeps people singing his songs and praises after he’s travelled on.
His performances are exciting and totally entertaining. His unclichéd banjo playing sparkles beautifully and dynamically. This, coupled with his thumping foot, creates a complete sound.
People are drawn into singing along. His singing is his own. Clear and unadorned, it is totally emotive and suits the sincerity of his tunes. In the breaks between songs come wild and charming stories of meeting heroes and easygoing but gripping musings on things ridiculous and sublime that may have a wink of contemporary vaudeville.
Ladies of the Canyon are four friends who got together in their living rooms to write and sing songs influenced by their favourite bands — the Eagles, the Band and Fleetwood Mac.
Musicians and songwriters Maia Davies (vocals, guitars, mandolin, keyboards), Senja Sargeant (vocals, guitars, mandolin), Jasmine Bleile (vocals, guitars), and Anna Ruddick (electric and upright bass, vocals) have their distinct tone and personality, but when they come together for harmonies, it’s a gorgeous, soaring blend.
Their debut full-length album, Haunted Woman (Kindling/Warner Music Canada) was produced by Colin Cripps. Already recognized as one of Canada’s premiere guitarists, Cripps previously produced critically acclaimed albums by Kathleen Edwards and Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy. Through his production work, Cripps has deftly showcased the wide range Ladies of the Canyon confidently explore, both as songwriters and vocalists.
Tickets at $15 are available at Bop City Records.
Dinner reservations start at 6 p.m., show at 8:30. Call 250-702-6456 to save your seats for dinner.
For more information, visit www.ladiesofthecanyon.com and www.oldmanluedecke.ca.