We welcome the Harmony B’s for our Canada Day Celebration at Desboro Music Hall. It all happens between the Strawberry Supper and the Fireworks. PWYC (Pay What You Can). We’ll have lots happening:
~ Join us for a little Open Mic between sets from 7 – 8pm, 8:30 – 9:00pm-ish, 9:30 – 10pm-ish. We’ll have a guitar and piano. You bring your singing voice and songs or whatever you want to perform. Please sign up when you arrive.
~ The Harmony B’s play at 8pm & 9pm and the dance floor will be open.
~ Our Concession Stand will be open for snacks and drinks.
HAPPY 150th CANADA!
Opening Act: Graham Nicholas
Desboro Music Hall 2018 Concert Series
All Ages Doors Open: 7pm, Music Starts: 7:30pm
Tickets: Limited Advance: $20, Regular: $25
*Advance tickets are only available up to the Box Office hours the weekend before the show or we run out (Note: there is a limit of 25 advance price tickets)
LONESOME ACE STRINGBAND
The Lonesome Ace Stringband brings grit, skill and abandon to old-time, Appalachian folk songs and fiddle/banjo tunes. The members are Chris Coole on banjo, John Showman on fiddle and Max Heineman on bass. Together they bring a deep respect for the roots of the music, a keen sense of innovation to the performance and material, and a passion for the sound that transcends both. 2018 will see the band release it’s 3rd album “When the Sun Comes Up”, which takes a step away from the traditional repertoire of the first two recordings and features the songwriting of all three members. Since they’re inception in 2008, LAS have developed the kind of instinctual rapport, that only comes from seasoned musicians logging many hundreds of playing hours together. This is old-time music for today’s old soul.
With the release of his new album, Dial Tones and Pretty Notes, Graham Nicholas has created an emotionally resonant world inhabited by troubled and love-hungry characters. Never alienated for their insecurities, his characters are instead respected by the empathetic voice of an honest songwriter. The album finds Nicholas honing in on his concise form of storytelling and refining his irreverent sense of humour. Coupling the narratives with a backing band that harkens back to the likes of The Heartbreakers, Travelling Wilburys and The Byrds, Nicholas’ songs have found the right balance of warmth and grit. It was recorded and produced by Graham’s longtime collaborator Aaron Comeau (Skydiggers, Al Tuck) at his studio The Trailer. Not only has Graham Nicholas maintained an extensive and country crossing touring schedule, he has also shared the stage with the like of Ron Hynes, Catherine Maclellan, Old man Luedecke, Del Barber and Daniel Romano.
Opening Act: The Crew
Desboro Music Hall 2018 Concert Series
All Ages Doors Open: 7pm, Music Starts: 7:30pm
THE YOUNG NOVELISTS
When they first met, Graydon James and Laura Spink had no idea that they would be married one day — much less touring the world together as The Young Novelists. Since the band’s inception in 2009, they’ve played stages across the U.S. and Canada, released three full-length albums, won numerous awards and continuous praise for their unmatched, effortless harmonies. But for their new album in city & country, the Toronto-based band decided to travel out of the city and in to small-town Ontario in order to connect the two places. After years of firsthand experience combined with historical research, James and Spink wrote over 30 songs inspired by a dozen Canadian towns. From that set, in city & country was born — a collection of ten songs that tell the universal stories of both parallels while highlighting the differences, similarities, and everything in-between.
They both grew up in Ontario; Spink in Peterborough, James in Verona, a small eastern town with a population of a mere 1,800. They both moved to Waterloo for university, where they met via community theatre; but it wasn’t until James decided to refocus his career from drummer to frontman that they combined their talent musically. “I had written a bunch of songs and recorded them in my basement, mostly for posterity,” says James, “I asked Laura to sing harmony on some of the songs and it instantly had this magical vibe.” Shortly after James released his solo album Goodnight, Young Novelist (2009), he realized that in order to perform live, he needed to assemble a band to match the record’s full sound. After recruiting some musicians he had met over the years and touring the east coast as a six-piece, the band decided to stay together, becoming Graydon James & The Young Novelists. Between 2011 and 2012, they released two albums: live at dublin st. church (2011), and in the year you were born (2012). However, it became clear that Spink was taking on more lead vocal duties. By the time they recorded their next album, made us strangers (2015), it made the most sense to simply shorten their name to The Young Novelists.
While their upcoming album in city & country will technically be their fourth album, it is their third studio album and second under the current moniker. Their last record made us strangers landed them a Canadian Folk Music Award for New/Emerging Artist, a Vocal Group of the Year nomination, and reached top 20 on !earshot’s and Stingray Music’s (formerly Galaxie) folk charts. The same year, the band won the Grassy Hill Connecticut Folk Songwriting competition and James received the Ontario Art Council’s prestigious Colleen Peterson Songwriting Award. But 2016 was an even bigger year for the two — Spink quit her job as a scientist, they packed their things (and their five year old son Simon), and went on a massive North American tour. After over 100 shows, including a 10-week stint on the road, the pair returned to Toronto to start working on in city & country, drawing inspiration from their travels.
Set for release on May 4, 2018, The Young Novelists recorded in city & country with the help of JUNO-winning producer Howard Bilerman (Arcade Fire, Leonard Cohen, The Wooden Sky). Recorded at Bilerman’s Hotel2Tango studios in Montreal, the duo returns with their classic him-and-her vocals, with James playing acoustic guitar and Spink on percussion and vibraphone. For the album’s fullness, they enlisted the help of bassist Derrick Brady, drummer Rory Calexico, and guitarist John Law.
“It was a new experience – being away from home and recording,” Spink says, adding, “It was magical to be in a beautiful, new (to us) city, spending our time and creative energy in a great studio, working with fun and fantastic people who were equal parts talented and devoted to the project.”
The album opens with “Two Of A Kind” a sentimental ballad inspired by the town of Goderich; keyboardist Jeffrey Louch shines on the almost-love song that tells the tale of a woman trying to choose between two men. The album continues with the delicate, mellow “Back To The Hard Times,” but this time, focusing on Spink’s vocals, perfectly complemented by violinist Lana Tomlin (noted for her work with Canadian band Stars). The song is inspired by Ridgeway, a town on the shores of Lake Erie, and compares two very different kinds of sadness: the failure of an old amusement park and a friend’s relationship ending. “This sort of thing happens in lots of small towns – an industry is built up and torn down. We tried to combine aspects of the grandiose industrialist dreamer who started the Crystal Beach Amusement Park, and the small-town kids who tried their best and got their hearts broken there.” The album takes a leap on track 5 with the upbeat, energy-packed “Come Round Again”. Written about a Bonnie & Clyde-style heist in Halton Hills, the song’s adrenaline draws from a guitar-heavy intro and super catchy hook — it’s a challenge to not airdrum along to this one.
The title track, “City & Country”, ties the album together in more ways than one; listening wise, the track brings together the entire studio band (including cellist Justin Wright). Inspired by Toronto, Waterloo, and his hometown of Verona, James’ reminisces on crucial times and places in his life. “This is really a song about my experiences living in a major city and a small town, and the fact that I think there are more similarities than differences.” No matter where you’ve lived, the dichotomy that exists on in city & country is universal; it’s not just a memoir of the duo’s experiences or the histories of small towns, it’s about appreciating where you’ve been and where you’re at — and finding the good and bad that lies within both
The Crew is a folk/trad band from Ontario. Made up of multi-instrumentalists, this brother-sister group writes and performs songs full of heart and rhythm, the kind you can’t sit still to. They braid flavours of the east coast, power-house vocals, and a pulsing folk drive seamlessly to make their signature Crew sound.
Main Act: The Unseen Strangers
Opening Act: David Lum
Desboro Music Hall 2020 Concert Series
Doors Open: 6:30pm, Music Starts: 7:30pm
THE UNSEEN STRANGERS
The Unseen Strangers have ambitiously cultivated a musical identity shaped by good old-fashioned bluegrass, the limitless barrage of contemporary musical influences, and a curious sense of humor.
Newgrass ambassadors, The Unseen Strangers favor innovation over convention. For their newest album, Stranger Places (April 1st, 2016), the band challenged the limits of what they are capable of, exploring the gamut of what can be done with strings. The result is a collection of fun, stunning songs featuring inimitable instrumental performances.
The seven-part instrumental kick off “Ice Jam” launches the listener on an expansive journey through nine original songs, including the three-piece horn section funkiness of “Old City Jail” and the psychedelic newgrass epic “Square Trance”. The Strangers also pay homage to their bluegrass roots on “Wicked Lover” and the freight train inspired barnburner “New Railroad Blues”.
For Stranger Places, the band simplified their approach to the studio with quick, concise live off the floor sessions. The band teamed up with Toronto, ON based engineer and producer Andrew Collins (Creaking Tree String Quartet; Foggy Hogtown Boys), recording the album over several months in 2015.
The band was started in 2008 by Adam Shier, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and driving force behind The Unseen Strangers. Adam fell in love with the sound of Bluegrass while attending college in Halifax and was soon recruiting his best friends to be in a Bluegrass band. The band quickly recorded an album and were excited to win a Music Nova Scotia Award in 2009 for Bluegrass/Country Album of the Year. The group has grown immensely from these small beginnings but a similar goal remains, to play new energetic bluegrass music with respect to the incredible lineage of its tradition.
The Strangers approach to bluegrass is open-ended yet inclusive; they’ve been on the roster for several forward thinking festivals, including Delfest (hosted by bluegrass legend Del Mccoury), where they won the band competition in 2013. The Unseen Strangers continue to add to their diverse festival resume while consistently developing their sound both onstage and in the studio.
“They have music that engages all the senses and leaves listeners longing for more.”
~ Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine
“Stellar mandolin, guitar and banjo shredding that sounds straight out of Tennessee”
~ Exclaim! – ON, CANADA
“These guys are good”
~ CBC Radio –
“The Unseen Strangers aren’t pretending to be cowboys. They’ll interrupt themselves for an instrumental breakdown of I Like To Move It…”
~ The Globe and Mail – ON, CANADA
“Unseen Strangers pushes the limits of stringed jam-band wildness to new heights. ”
~ The Aquarian – NJ, USA
“The expressiveness heard in their lovely ensemble brings a natural quality to their sound, forming a honest and genuine relationship with the listener.”
~ KAOS Radio – WA, USA
“At their most creative, the music is nearly irresistible, leaving you wondering what’s next and always coming through with a new turn to relish.”
~ Grayowl Point
~ Pete Wernick – “Dr. Banjo”, Hot Rize
“Bluegrass Band Competition Winners 2013”
~ Delfest – MD, USA
“Country/Bluegrass Song of the Year 2012”
~ International Acoustic Music Awards
Born and raised in Vancouver, David made his way across Canada, spent a decade in Winnipeg before settling in Hamilton. Infusing a blend of contemporary folk and roots, his influences include renowned Canadian singer/songwriters such as Bruce Cockburn and James Keelaghan, as well as American blues artist Keb ‘Mo and folk-rock duo The Indigo Girls.
His songs are as varied as the landscapes he has travelled through, and his versatile guitar style traverses folk, blues, pop and everything else in between. His intimate voice will draw you into his world, filled with tales of quiet desperation, longing and triumph of the human spirit.