A Preview of Chris de Burgh’s New Album and What’s Coming .​.​.

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As for the Chris de Burgh …. he’s just doing his best …

 

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Chris de Burgh has certainly been around. From relative obscurity in the 1970’s globally to a global superstar in the 80’s, back to relative obscurity commercially in the new millennium.

de Burgh’s latest album is a masterpiece – musically.

In this a day and age of so many smoke and mirrors in the music industry, de Burgh’s latest body of work, sure to be lost in the iPod shuffle. A shame …

Starting with the title track, Hands of Man is part throwback with the sounds of Patricia the Stripper and part commercial with the sounds of Lady in Red. In between, it is just a very good record. Crisp production work brings de Burgh’s vocals and keyboards to the forefront.

Please listen to a preview of the album below. Please listen to some masterful tracks from the album Hands of Man, due out March 3rd, 2015.

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Kaki King; An Unforgettable Guitar Player!

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Multimedia and music. Good or bad?

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Friday night at Club Soda – check it out and make a decision.

Kaki King is just one of the latest guitar innovators and avant garde artists to come along. Combining unfounded guitar work with  lighting and visual effects, makes her unique.

How unique? Please listen to the conversation below and find out.

 

Kaki?

 

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Ask Dave the Bartender; What is the Best Single by an Actor or Actress?

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Sometimes – everyone is lost …

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Everyone with the exception of Dave the Bartender.

He is cool as a cucumber, hot as a dash of Tabasco and smoother than a fine, aged wine. Dave the Bartender hears everything, sees everything and passes this information along as best he can.

Or – does he?

Dave? The Bartender?

 

 

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Nuits D’Afrique; Razia – A Flavor of Madagascar

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Reggae is fairly common on an iPod. Calypso music? Bet the Harry Belafonte farm on it …

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Music from Madagascar? Not so much …

Meet Razia. Originally from Madagascar and a resident of New York City for the past twenty years. Razia – through voice and a blend of traditional Madagascar music and current sounds, is helping to bring attention to the problems in her native country. 

Please listen below as Razia explains some of those problems as well as an insight into some beautiful music which – for some reason, remains a mystery to North Americans.

Razia?

 

 

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Tragically …. Hip in Montreal. Concert Review

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If a person was ‘locked in the trunk of a car’ last night – they missed a solid rock show; nothing more – nothing less …

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It has been a while since The Tragically Hip were ‘ hip ‘ as far as ‘ skip – school – buy- tickets – smoke- a – joint – scream / sing – a – long’ goes. Twenty – two years since the album Fully Completely was released. Twenty two years plus twenty more ?  Explains all the ‘forty somethings’ in the crowd. Explains the age of the guys on stage …

Explains a lot.

Gord Downie – he of theatrical proportions, grasped the moment from the beginning of the night and ( like most good front men) never let go. The fans in attendance, as loyal vocally to Downie as Downie is to vocals. Rock n Roll (English Canada 101) grabs the primal instincts and demands a beer. A cheap beer in a dirty glass.

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The Hip reminded everyone that sometimes out of sight – out a mind ( new material – wise), can be a good thing. Hier soir, au Centre Bell, the group from Kingston,Ontario retained whatever Rock crown they held. Once upon a time the tunes, for some, were coming – of – age. The songs now are ageless.  Betty White, somewhere is smiling.

Face it - The Tragically Hip are a bar band who acquired bigger gigs as the years passed quicker than a shard of glass through a chain link fence. This type of music does not fade. This genre of ‘ Canadiana’ – a mixture of grunge with ‘ a little bit Country ‘, rests forever upon a shelf in a small town shed. Dusted off and played. Dusted off yet never covered in dirt.
Not yet …

This tour sees the group recreating their landmark album; Fully Completely.  A disc required in every Canadian’s collection. Filed between Rush and Neil Young with a lean towards the latter. It was evident – most of the Bell Center crowd shopped at Discus and last night, they heard a live studio version of that Discus purchase. Completely and fully. Note for note.

There were other gems tossed in last night and Downie, Sinclair, Fay, Baker and Langois were in fine form during the ‘ The Hundredth Meridian’ , ‘New Orleans is Sinking’, ‘Fully Completely’ and ‘ Eldorado’. Those four songs along with ‘ Blow at High Dough’ – worth the price of admission. Worth the price of frostbite.

Any complaints were placed in the age department yet hardly worth a mention. Downie at times appeared out of synch yet Downie ‘s career was built on idiosyncratic behavior so an unplanned rehearsal ‘ live’ , not unfounded. Chances are – the show,  more incomplete than soundcheck.

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The Tragically Hip sound was borrowed highly from the original punks of Rock n Roll.
The sounds of The Animals, The Kinks, The Who and primarily the Stones rushed frantically into dormant veins last night. The noises sent sexualized blood transfusions upon innocent and not- so- innocent bodies. Foreplay entered just after 8pm and by the end of the evening’s seduction – sweat blinded the eyes of the most jaded of souls and cigarettes were required.

Ironically –  The Tragically Hip did not screw around. Not fully or completely …

A Mar – illion Fans Can’t Be Wrong! An Interview with Steve Hogarth

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Marillion are unique …

 

9The Marillion Weekend 2015 – Canada will take place over 3 nights at the stunning Théâtre L’Olympia in Montréal. The concerts will feature a different show every night and will be based around the concerts that are taking place at the Marillion Weekend 2015 – Netherlands.

The Canadian convention, however, will be different in that there are no structured outside activities planned apart from the evening concerts and we will not be providing any accommodation for attendees. However, we plan to get some great support bands along so it WILL be 3 solid nights of great musical entertainment!

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If you have any questions please email convention@marillionweekend.com.

 

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Please listen below as Steve Hogarth – or, ‘H’ , explains what will be happening in Montreal and what has been happening with Marillion.

Steve also touches on several topics including songwriting and a new album which the band is just starting to put together.

H?

 

 

 

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Harry Manx; The Truth ….Twenty Strings or Not !

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If a musician releases a CD which is 80 percent instrumental – a certain confidence must be present. If said musician plays an instrument which is not ‘accepted’ commercially and releases the same CD; confidence reigns supreme.

Confidence and inner peace …

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Such is the case with Harry Manx.

A world traveler who appears to have discovered his inner being and a love for music somewhat foreign in nature. Foreign to a North American audience audibly perhaps yet as close to the soul as music can be.

Please listen as Harry Manx explains his inner peace as well as what his travels have taught himmusically and spiritually.

It’s about 20 Strings …

and the Truth !

 

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Justin Freer; Combining Live Music with Cinema – Chicken or the Egg?

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In this day and age of digital soundtracks, product placement via artists and / or their music in film, having a live orchestra in a movie theater seems strange. Archaic.

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Justin Freer is an American composer and conductor – intent on bringing the marriage of music and cinema back to the forefront.

Freer, also well-known as a record producer, created CineConcerts, an organisation dedicated to the preservation and conservation of musical scores for cinema and television by combining images to live music as in Gladiator Live.

An exciting and unique experience that will thrill both music and cinema fans.

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Please listen below as Justin speaks of his passion for cinema, how it began and whether or not his love of music came before or after the ‘movie cart’. 

Justin?

 

 

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Cecile Doo-Kingue; Do the Right Thing !

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Every once in a whilea musician comes along who utilizes their ‘voice’ to ensure people are not only aware of life’s realities, they act to undo the social injustices in the world …

Cecile Doo-Kingue is that musician.

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A resident of Montreal, this transplanted New Yorker continues to bring to the forefront issues not only race related, human related as well. It is a journey which continues as the building blocks to making Cecile the best person she can be.

To make humanitythe best they can be. 

Please listen to Cecile as she speaks of her feelings as well as her recent album. Touching on subjects such as art being a cornerstone to every culture, Cecile Doo-Kingue lets it all hang out.

Is anybody listening?

 

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Ask Dave the Bartender; Valentine Special Love Song Edition

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Everyone loves Dave the Bartender…

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Except for maybe his Mother … aside from her … how can Dave the Bartender not be adored?

He listens to problems, he talks about problems and more often than not – deals with problems every shift.

For the above reasons, Dave the Bartender enjoys Sunday evenings as he can relax and answer your musical questions …

Dave? The Bartender?

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Piers Faccini; No Melancholy Here …

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Sadness is in the eye of the beholder …

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Art is very personal. Unique to both the artists and the ‘customers’. Like a painting ‘hung out to dry’ at the local art gallery – depending on the mood, the creation can be perceived and may be created differently on an given day.

Thank goodness for art.

Born of Italian heritage in England,  Piers Faccini‘s album; Between Dogs and Wolves is discussed below in an intimate fashion. A unique occasion to listen to the perception of art from an artist’s point of view .

Piers?

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Montreal En Lumiere – Heymoonshaker; BeatBox Meets The Blues

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Two guys – one love.

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“Heymoonshaker” is a music duo from England. Daco Crowe, Beatboxing and Andy Balcon, Guitar.

They met in New Zealand and the rest is history.

A duo whose love for the Blues and each other ( in a friendship kinda way) has given the world a new way of listening to the legacy of Robert Johnson and Elmore James.

Please listen below to Andy and Crowe as they explain their partnership, their EP and The Blues …

Andy? Crowe?

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Ladies and Gentlemen; The Greatest Guitar Player Ever! Featuring Jerry Mercer on Drums …

Who is the greatest guitar player ever?

Steve Hill

Steve Hill

Steve Hill of Trois Riveieres, Qc can lay claim in Canada at the moment. Fresh off his four award evening at the Maple Blues Awards. Steve – on the heels of his second solo project – a force to be reckoned with for many years to come.

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B.B King is considered to be the best ever among his peers – present and those gone by. Mr. King is heralded as being the innovator. The man responsible for every guitar player who came after. From Buddy Guy to Steve HillMr. King is the King …

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Jimi Hendrix took King’s legacy and brought it to an entire different level. Stratosphere some may say. Hendrix’s riffs, chords and notes – still mysterious many years following his premature demise.

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Stevie Ray Vaughan. The only man since King and Hendrix to make  the most seasoned guitar man shake his head in disbelief. Another innovator with lightning quick hands and a ‘feel’ that cannot be taught.

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There are so many great guitarists, each unique in their very own way. Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Buddy Guy, Keith Richards, Jack White.

The list is as long as a broken guitar string blowing in the wind…

There is one guy whose name does not come up often enough. A guy whom Clapton and Jeff Beck have heralded as the best. A guy who recorded a version of a song made famous by Jimi Hendrix, a seemingly untouchable song, and perhaps outdid Hendrix.

Please listen below to that song as well as two others by

the greatest guitar player ever?

Please – judge yourself …

 

 

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Top Ten Things Overheard at the 2015 Grammy Awards

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Ah ….the Grammys.

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The award show to top all award shows …

An occasion where all the artists who wish they were musicians get together and collect phone numbers. Cleavage replaces talent and talent attempts to keep abreast.

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In all fairness, the majority of the nominees started out in music for the right reasons. In all fairness – the majority of those nominees are not American …

The Grammy Award show does have it’s moments. Memories created by words the microphones do not pick up. Verbal gems. 

Here now, are the

Top Ten Things overheard at the 2015 Grammy Awards.

10. Shouldn’t Tom Petty be receiving the award that Sam Smith just won?

9. Rihanna, Taylor Swift and Katy Perry looked great but … what does this have to do with music?

8. Hey Mom? I waved at that Stevie Wonder guy and he didn’t wave back? Your generation of stars are very rude ..!

7. Is John Mayer a legend or is John Legend a mayor? I always forget ..?

6. Is it true that Tony Bennett is Tom Jones’ father?

5. Um …sorry about that. I was calling an usher … Please get back on stage, I think you are supposed to be singing ….

4. I know they are not really playing their instruments or singing but we have to plug them in to make it appear as they are …

3. I don’t care what I just said  – unplug Madonna’s microphone! Quick!

2. Hey man – is there a place where I can hear some good tunes?

 … and the number one thing overheard at the 2015 Grammy Awards?

1. Hey? Who is that African American with Paul McCartney?

 

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Montreal En Lumiere Preview; Feb 19th – March 1st

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Montreal En Lumiere is in it’s 16th season. 

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Click on the link above to see all the activities which take place in and around Montreal.

Please listen below to discover some of the performers and what they may be playing at their shows.

Montreal En Lumiere …. lights, camera …. action!

 

 

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A Book Every Musician Must Read – Chapter Two

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Everyone is aware of  the book about positional foreplay.

Kama Sutra is the definitive ‘how-to’ book, the ‘Bible’ that is on ‘the tip’ of everyone’s fingers …

Lady Chaterley’s Lover? Yup. Most know …

These books were all penned as guidelines for the art of lovemaking.  Sex – for the inhibited …

9781554831258

Gern F, a singer and songwriter who was the front-man of one of Montreal’s most popular Indie bands, is now the guru of guidelines for travelling bands and musicians. Not because he has played in many groups. Not because he is Quebec’s version of Jon Bon Jovi.

Gern F is the guru because he has written a book that all musicians can relate to. Gern has penned a guideline filled with anecdotes and stories from the point of view of a travelling band. Gern F has penned  a Canadian version of ‘On the Road’ with the music BUSINESS as a backdrop.

Please listen to part two of my conversation with Gern, a former member of The United Steel Workers of Montreal, as he describes the contents of what should be – the most popular book in Canada with musicians of all types and levels of success.

Gern?

 

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Fleetwood Mac in Montreal; Time Stands Still …

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Fleetwood Mac are one of the biggest selling groups of all time. Over 100 million albums sold. Not so bad.

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Thursday, February 5th 2015 at the Bell Center in Montreal, they showed why. And then some …

Christine McVie is on board for the first time in sixteen years. Sixteen is sweet. Sixteen is an even number and now – Fleetwood Mac are even once more.

During the almost three hour, no intermission, no opening act show, Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham displayed their pleasure of having the ‘prodigal girl’ return. ‘Complete’ was the word  Fleetwood used …

 

Seldom does a group come along which places all the elements of the music universe in one tight package. Vocals as harmonic as Angels singing in heaven. A battery section void of any miscues. Songwriting as diverse as music itself. Lyrics as poetic as a romantic dinner by candlelight. Guitar solos straight out of the best ‘ how to’ book.

Fleetwood Mac has it all ….

 

Rumours – that 1977 album which everyone in the world owned or owns, was the flagship last night. A collection of songs which defined Fleetwood Mac and placed them into the upper echelons of Rock music. A Fleetwood Mac show, because of this – is also in the upper echelon of Rock concerts.

The evening commenced with The Chain. A link to that glorious album Rumours which immediately set the tone and lit a fire into the frozen mindset of the almost sold out Bell Center.

There is something sinister in Mac’s music. An underlying demonic tone which offsets the vocals of McVie and Nicks. A combination of Buckingham’s guitar work and skillful songwriting. Add Fleetwood’s crisp snare-work – no wonder it takes almost every band four albums to match Fleetwood Mac’s legendary disc.

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1. Second Hand News – Played

2. Dreams – Played

3. Never Going Back Again – Played

4. Don’t Stop – Played

5. Go Your Own Way – Played

6. Songbird – Played

Track list: Side Two

1. The Chain – Played

2. You Make Loving Fun- Played

3. I Don’t Want to Know

4. Oh Daddy

5. Gold Dust Woman – Played

Nine of Eleven tracks from Rumours played in a two hour and forty-five minute set. Nine songs which, with eyes closed, placed a patron last night  back in the basement on a couch in the late seventies and dreaming of the future. As in Dreams …

 

 

There were …. other songs.

Tunes which gave the band re-birth with an album called Tango in the Night. A cleaner, post – vinyl Mac which displayed Nicks’ talents and almost placed her above the band.

‘Everywhere’, ‘Seven Wonders’,  ‘Little Lies’ and ‘Big Love’.  Four tracks which made purists shudder in  1987 yet are now classics in the songbook of … ‘purists’. The fivesome, played and sang last night as pure and true to Fleetwood Mac’s second biggest selling disc.

Stevie Nicks is mystical. Some people have that ‘je ne sais quoi’ component embedded into their souls. Stevie, complete with a black top hat – is one of those special people. Her voice last evening as defining as is her role in Rock history. Along with Anne and Nancy Wilson of Heart, Nicks was a trailblazer in what was ( still is ?) a music landscape littered with males.

Chrisitine McVie, compared to Nicks is as mystical in a different way. Grounded yet with an air of mystery. The Ying to Nicks’ Yang. The ‘regular’ voice compared to Stevie’s distinctive singing style. Together or apart, a duo as important to music as Phil and Don Everley.

McVie and Nicks. A pair who caught Montreal in the headlights of a speeding vehicle of talent. The Bell Center? Dead in it’s tracks.

Nicks may have won the hearts yet it was Lindsey Buckingham who stole the show.

Much has been written of Peter Green, the original guitarist in Mac who is heralded as one of the best Blues guitarists to grace a stage or studio. Buckingham is the engine in Fleetwood Mac. Buckingham is the ‘new’ Peter Green.

Much as Joe Walsh adds much needed energy to an  Eagles’ show, Buckingham does the same with Mac. His guitar solos unmatched almost anywhere in the record stores. An unsung hero who is hailed by those in music yet seldom mentioned among the best by music fans.

Time after song, Lindsey displayed piercing riffs with equal amount of old fashioned panache. Screaming into the microphone with wild eyes, dancing from one end of the stage to another, Buckingham was having fun. His head, his gigantic head, bouncing on the giant screen behind the band, comical as a backdrop yet poignant in it’s size.

Egos seem to have always been the dagger in Fleetwood Mac’s dartboard. Larger- than- life size egos not able to fit inside the Bell Center. Alone or together.

Last night, it is easy to see why as McVie, Fleetwood, Nicks and Buckingham all took turns in the spotlight within the songs. Each member capable of headlining on their own. Each one ‘stealing’ songs along the way.

From Mick Fleetwood’s manic drumming style and even more maniacal personality to McVie’s contrasting performance. Buckingham’s energy to Nicks’ mellowness. All of the members to John McVie’s best interpretation of a Bill Wyman invisible stage presence. Like Wyman, one of the best, one of the ‘real’ bass players.

An enigma this band. A musical lottery – winning group of artists who created timeless music and thankfully, continue to perform and astound the masses.

Evenly and oddly ….

Over 100 million times ….

Easily more ….

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A Book Every Musician Must Read – Chapter One …

9781554831258

Everyone is aware of  the book about positional foreplay.

Kama Sutra is the definitive ‘how-to’ book, the ‘Bible’ that is on ‘the tip’ of everyone’s fingers …

Lady Chaterley’s Lover? Yup. Most know …

These books were all penned as guidelines for the art of lovemaking.  Sex – for the inhibited …

Gern F, a singer and songwriter who was the front-man of one of Montreal’s most popular Indie bands, is now the guru of guidelines for travelling bands and musicians. Not because he has played in many groups. Not because he is Quebec’s version of Jon Bon Jovi.

 

download (1)

 

Gern F is the guru because he has written a book that all musicians can relate to. Gern has penned a guideline filled with anecdotes and stories from the point of view of a travelling band. Gern F has penned  a Canadian version of ‘On the Road’ with the music business as a backdrop.

Please listen as Gern, former member of The United Steel Workers of Montreal, describes the contents of what should be – the most popular book in Canada with musicians of all types and levels of success.

Gern?

 

Buy the Book Here!

The Book Launch is Here!

Chick Pick N’ Mondays is Here!

Visit Gern on Facebook Here!

 

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Farewell Davidson; A Canadian Band to Watch For…

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How can anyone miss you if you don’t say farewell

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As in …. Farewell Davidson.

This band of young musicians who make their home base in Ottawa, Canada – are worth a visit. Live, on disc or listening right here.

How often does a band straight out of high school, win the first battle of the bands they enter? How about the first three they toss their guitars into?

Farewell Davidson are that band with more than a few catchy riffs on their debut EP.

Please listen as Zach and Alex talk about the origins of the band, the contests and what’s in store for this foursome.

Zach? Alex?

 

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