True prairie girl returning to Valley

Born and raised on a farm near the village of Fosston, Sask., Belle Plaine is a true Prairie girl.

THE VENUE FORMERLY known as Joe's Garage will host the musical styling of Belle Plaine on March 20.

Belle Plaine’s voice silences noisy taverns.

Born and raised on a farm near the village of Fosston, Sask., Belle Plaine is a true Prairie girl. A performer by the age of five, she was the ringer for every local musical event.

Classical voice lessons began at age six and continued through high school. At 18, she knew what she wanted: to write songs, perform and have a home recording studio.

But when she moved to Edmonton to study jazz at Grant MacEwan College, her focus shifted toward a more technical aspect of music: sound recording.

After graduation, she worked at a recording studio in Calgary — close to the action, but not in the game. She occasionally sang jingles for commercial radio, but the work felt meaningless.

“I gave up on music in Calgary. I’d lost touch with my own voice. I had years of education, but artistically I felt drained,” Plaine recalls.

After two years at the studio Plaine realized she was better off waiting tables.

Eager for change, she enrolled at the University of Victoria as an environmental science major. Science was not the right choice, but she had found the right city. Having fallen in love with Victoria’s vibrant arts community she dropped out of school. She also began to sing again.

Two co-workers heard her voice at the Cook Street Village coffee shop where they all worked. Soon after they informed her that they were starting a band and she was in it.

A handful of performances at open mic nights followed. Plaine began to write. An itch to travel carried her to Sydney, Australia.

She waitressed at a dodgy restaurant, lived in a house with 10 boozy Australians and played gigs with a pack of mongrel musicians. There were pub shows, garage demos and backup vocals.

During her year abroad, she discovered she wanted to be a singer. Again.

In 2006, Plaine returned to her home province of Saskatchewan. She had not planned to live in Regina, but quickly found a home in the city’s arts community. The scene was small and welcoming. She decided to stay.

By this time, Plaine’s notebooks were filled with words and melodies. She left her job to perform full-time in early 2010.

“It just feels good to sing for people. It’s what I do the best, more than anything. It’s about time I’m doing it for a living,” Plaine says.

She performs March 20 at the venue formerly known as Joe’s Garage in downtown Courtenay.

Because of limitations set out in the rules for the special occasions license, tickets must be purchased in advance of the show and are available at Bop City.

This show is sponsored by The Society For Artistic Development Comox Valley.

For more information, phone 250-702-6456.

Just Posted

Comox Valley Chamber looks back on recent achievements

Chamber of Commerce Week Feb. 18-22

What to do on Family Day in the Comox Valley

Looking for something to do this Family Day? Here are some suggestions:Courtenay… Continue reading

Deported Courtenay man who came to Canada as a baby granted chance at return

Len Van Heest was deported to the Netherlands in 2017

Highland Secondary student wins Horatio Alger scholarship

Jenna Leggett grew up on Read Island where there was no electricity and no roads to her home

Trudeau’s principal secretary, Gerald Butts, resigns amid SNC-Lavalin furor

Butts categorically denies the accusation that he or anyone else in the PMO improperly pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould

Lost a ring? This B.C. man will find it for you

Chris Turner founded The Ring Finders, an international directory of metal detector hobbyists

Poverty coalition has high hopes for B.C. poverty reduction strategy

Funding allocation expected to be released with 2019 budget

‘How did we get here?’: B.C. mom of transplant recipient worries about measles outbreaks

Addison, 7, cannot get a live vaccine because she has a heart transplant

Steelhead LNG stops work on Kwispaa LNG project near Bamfield

Huu-ay-aht First Nations ‘deeply disappointed; Steelhead says funding is the problem

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh calls for public inquiry over SNC-Lavalin questions

Vancouver member of Parliament Jody Wilson-Raybould resigned from cabinet last week

Canadian airlines waiting for guidance from Ottawa over X gender option

Major U.S. airlines said they will change their process so passengers can identify themselves along non-binary lines

Moose Hide campaign takes message to Canadian schools

Campaign launches new K-12 education platform

Most Read