Tag Archive: Joel Plaskett


Vancouver Folk Fest 2011 – Day 2

Day 2 was a short day at the Vancouver Folk Fest for me due to having a gig with my band Versa back in Victoria that night. My friends and I arrived at the festival grounds that day just in time to see the Grit and Wisdom workshop. This grouping included the crowd favourite Justin Townes Earle and, one of my favourites, Jim Bryson. The weather took a turn for the worse on the morning of Van Folk Fest Day 2 and we were greeted by a soggy crowd. Fortunately, the rain had stopped by the time we arrived and we were perfectly happy to sit on the damp grass using our makeshift plastic bag mats. (Incidentally, garbage bags are a great thing to bring to a rainy festival!)

Justin Townes Earle

After a nice relaxing acoustic workshop to start the day, we decided to hit the beer gardens. Unlike all too many of the large festivals, the gardens at the Vancouver Folk Fest came with a great view of the stage and prices were kept reasonable. From our camp in the drinking area we saw the Changes in Latitude workshop which featured Joel Plaskett, Elliott Brood, and the Fugitives. It was great to hang out at the tables while still having clear sound and sightlines to the musical action still going on.

Jim Bryson

I had time to see one last thing on Day 2 before I needed to catch the ferry home, so I left my friends to enjoy their malted and hopped beverages and I headed over to Stage 3. Here I saw Imaginary Cities play the last two songs in their concert set with the full band. The group sounded great and I was glad I’d get another chance to see them on Day 3.

Imaginary Cities

Unfortunately I missed the rest of the action for the day which included a workshop with Dustin Bentall, and the entire lineup on the Peak Stage that night (Danny Michel, The Burning Hell, Buck 65, and Elliott Brood). I was particularly choked about having to miss Buck 65 as I also didn’t get the chance to see his one other appearance at the festival, and it has been far too long since I’ve seen him perform. The word from my friends is that I missed out on a most excellent evening.

Imaginary Cities

My photos of Day 2 at the Vancouver Folk Fest can be found here.

Advertisements

Imaginary Cities

I arrived at Jericho Beach Park for the 2011 Vancouver Folk Fest at the tail end of Gillian Welch’s set. I wasn’t familiar with her Americana folk, but the large crowd already gathered at the Festival seemed to LOVE her. (Now that I’m home and reading a bit on Gillian Welch, I see that she had a hand in putting together the amazing soundtrack for the movie O Brother Where Art Thou – cool!)

MCs Lana Gay and Tariq Hussain

Next we were treated to a tweener set by Imaginary Cities. (For those unaware, a tweener is an act that plays between larger acts. They serve as the entertainment during gear changeovers. They are usually lesser known acts and are usually performed as stripped down sets with easy to set up acoustic instruments.) Though the band usually performs as a five piece, the songwriting duties in Imaginary Cities are shared by Rusty Matyas and Marti Sorbit. True to the tweener form, this set was just Marti and Rusty and an acoustic guitar. The duo played selections from their Polaris Long Listed self-titled album Imaginary Cities, and sneaked in a great cover of the song “Mexico” by Cake.

Joel Plaskett

Closing out the first night of the festival was Joel Plaskett. Ever-changing his lineup of backing musicians, this time the group was billed as the Joel Plaskett Emergency. I was excited for this, I hadn’t seen the Emergency configuration (which usually plays more of the rock songs in Joel’s massive catalog) in years. The Vancouver Folk Fest version of the Joel Plaskett Emergency was a trio: Joel on guitar with a bass and drums backing him. The group played a mixture of new and old songs, which was fitting given his recently released greatest hits and b-sides collection called Emergencys, False Alarms, Shipwrecks, Castaways, Fragile Creatures, Special Features, Demons and Demonstrations: 1999-2010. The highlight of the evening for me was the closing song “Extraordinary”. I have a great video of the performance from that night that looks amazing, but sounds horrible due to some off-key singing from the crowd ringing loud and clear over everything else. I’ll spare the internet from having to hear that, and you’ll just have to trust me on how great the song was. (OK fine, it was my off-key singing. Still, no one wants to hear that.)

Joel Plaskett

My photos of Day 1 at the Vancouver Folk Fest can be found here.

New Stuff! New Stuff!

Yeah, I’ve been ignoring the blog lately. But I have some cool things to share, so hopefully you forgive me.

First up: The new City and Colour album, Little Hell, will be released June 7th. The official video for the first single, Fragile Bird, is set to be released soon. To help get you excited about it, check out some behind the scenes footage of the making of the video.



Second: Joel Plaskett!! This man can’t just put out a single album at a time. His last work was a triple album (appropriately entitled “Three”) and this summer he’s set to release two split 7 inches (one with Shotgun Jimmie and one with Jeremy Fisher) and a B-sides and rarities album.

Here is Joel’s contribution to the 7 inch with Shotgun Jimmie.

And here’s a song off the upcoming B-sides and rarities album “EMERGENCYs, false alarms, shipwrecks, castaways, fragile creatures, special features, demons and demonstrations”. (Yes, that’s the album title.)

Catch Joel Plaskett this summer at the Vancouver Folk Fest which runs July 15th-17th. (Pssst… word has it that he’ll release a new album this fall too. Keep an eye out!)

Barenaked Ladies and Joel Plaskett with Peter Elkas at the Save On Foods Memorial Arena, April 6th 2010

Gordon was probably the first cassette tape I owned as a kid and I’m sad I wasn’t able to see BNL before Steven Page left the band. Admittedly I haven’t listened to a BNL album in years, and Gordon is probably their only album I own, but I couldn’t pass up the chance to see the band perform some of their greatest hits. Throw in the opener of Joel Plaskett accompanied by Peter Elkas, and I was sold. I’m impressed how Joel always manages to keep his show fresh. I’ve seen him live a few times now and he always brings something a little different to the mix. This time it was a stripped down set, just him on guitar and keyboard and Peter Elkas on guitar. He played a lot of material from his most recent release Three. It seemed that most of the people around me weren’t too familiar with his work (was I the only one singing along there?), but the crowd perked up when he started into his hit Nowhere With You. As for BNL, they are nothing short of seasoned pros. Like I kind of mentioned above, I’m not a big fan of the new material, but I was thoroughly entertained by their set. It’s pretty obvious that they have a lot of fun doing what they do.

View the entire photo set here.

 

Sam Roberts with Matt Mays at the Save On Foods Memorial Arena, June 12th 2010

This was a night of pure rock and roll. Going to this concert was a bit of a last minute decision for me. The next morning I had to get on an early flight to Texas to make it to a conference, and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go out the night before I had to fly. I sucked it up and went out anyways, but I was unorganized and was still packing my bags when Matt Mays took the stage. I’m still kicking myself for missing his set. The Canadian icons 54-40 played the second slot (which I was totally surprised at – how were they not the headliners?!).  Unfortunately none of my photos of them turned out, but their set was basically a soundtrack of what I grew up listening to. Thank you dad for educating me so well in Canadian rock. Sam Roberts closed the night. He played a good mix of new and old songs. I particularly enjoyed the songs that Matt Mays joined in on. (And what a photogenic guy Matt Mays is! I’m so happy how well those shots turned out.)

View the entire photo set here.

 

Owen Pallett with Snowblink at the Alix Goolden Hall, May 10th 2010

Owen Pallett (who at the time had recently changed his stage name from Final Fantasy) hit town in support of his new album Heartland. He cancelled his last scheduled show in Victoria (his Rifflandia 2009 set) due to a bad case of the flu, and the audience seemed glad that he was able to return so soon. Heartland is a beautiful album with some gorgeous arrangements. This new album was recorded with an orchestra so I was curious to see how he would approach performing these pieces, as his stage show is normally just him on his own. He brought support, but it was only one other musician who played some guitar and some drums. It was just enough to add that extra oompf to the new work.

View the entire photo set here.

 

Sasquatch 2010!!

How can I accurately sum up one of the best weekends I’ve ever had? It turns out that I had to miss the first day and a half of Sasquatch to attend a good friend’s wedding. Even though I wish I hadn’t missed the National, Vampire Weekend, Caribou, and the Hold Steady (to name a few), I still had an amazing time. Can I pick one highlight? No. Here’s a few though: It seemed that everyone at the festival came to the main stage to see LCD Soundsystem. It was one epic, massive dance party. If I have to live with only seeing LCD Soundsystem just once before they called it quits, this wasn’t a bad show to go with. Japandroids put on an most excellent set. While waiting for Japandroids to take the stage, we met the Dan Mangan t-shirt guy (who I originally mentioned here). In the middle of MGMT’s set a bunch of large balloons were released on the hill, it was one of those great festival moments. The Seattle Rock Orchestra probably had one of the most underrated sets of the festival. I had a hard time convincing my friends to join me for this one, but I don’t regret going solo. Their entire set consisted of them covering songs from Arcade Fire’s album Funeral. Checking out the internets soon after Sasquatch last year I discovered that they have also covered David Bowie. Doing another quick internet check while writing the last bit of this post, I find that in the last year they have tackled both Queen and Radiohead. (Friends: SRO is playing Sasquatch again this year and they’re doing Radiohead covers! You’re being told now that you’re coming to see this with me.) At Sasquatch last year the band had about 20 musicians on stage ranging from strings to brass to singers to the more traditional rock band setup; they’re not called a rock orchestra for nothing. (By the way, does anyone want to start a band like this? I would totally get behind a project like that. It looked like it would be a lot of fun.) I absolutely CANNOT wait for Sasquatch 2011!

View the entire photo set here.

 

I have lots more photos still to upload, so you can expect a Flickr Pics Round Three… well… eventually.