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Loving I HATE TODD and the Fermented Oranges at the Livery

29 Jun
Headliners I HATE TODD. Pictured are Nelson Sobral on guitar, Troy Larabie on percussion, Kev Carney on bass and local musician Capucine Onn on violin.

Headliners I HATE TODD. Pictured are Nelson Sobral on guitar, Troy Larabie on percussion, Kev Carney on bass and local musician Capucine Onn on violin.

By Diva Calista Powell
Since I have moved back to the county in March, I have been absolutely amazed at the talent that this area has to offer. I have always been a local music fan and enjoy checking out new artists so I was pretty excited to see I HATE TODD perform live at the Livery with special guests the Fermented Oranges.

The fellas from Fermented Oranges (whom I have had the pleasure of working with before with Blyth 14/19’s HuronSound Festival) rocked the house with their original songs and never cease to amaze the crowds they play for. Their punchy rock/funk riffs were striking, and that carefree beachy vibe was captured especially as they jammed out barefoot and in board shorts. It’s never a let down to see these guys play.

Cappy Onn’s violin school kicking off their set.

Cappy Onn’s violin school kicking off their set.

Next up was the headliner, I HATE TODD, the indie-alternative rock band out of Toronto. It intrigues me to see how a variety of instruments and musical styles can collaborate to make a unique sound-and they nailed it. Capucine Onn, local violin virtuoso had her Suzuki violin school start their performance with a beautiful symphonic rock piece and it was great to see kids of all ages showcase their talent. Then the party started as eccentric frontman Todd Preston came out with the rest of the band members to play their popular hit, “Zombie Love”. Their performance was theatrical and captivating to say the least, and their genuine good-time attitude was contagious. After watching their set, I came to the obvious conclusion that there are very few things cooler than a zombie-loving, violin-shredding, pop-rock band. It’s basically a scientific fact.

Thank you Cappy for setting up this unforgettable show!

To check out I HATE TODD’s tunes and lineup check out their website at For Fermented Oranges

The guys of Fermented Oranges. Aaron Voskamp on lead guitar, Dylan Bellinger on drums, Adam Wendler on lead vocals/guitar and Dean Reynolds on bass.

The guys of Fermented Oranges. Aaron Voskamp on lead guitar, Dylan Bellinger on drums, Adam Wendler on lead vocals/guitar and Dean Reynolds on bass.

House Concerts intimate live music experience

27 Sep
photo submitted

photo submitted

by Diva Susan Pye

Debbie Carroll is a very generous woman.  She and her husband Bill open their home several times a year on Sunday evenings, to share the performances of local and visiting musicians with Goderich and area residents (please refer to Debbie’s web site Riverview House Concerts for additional details).Debbie and Bill live in a lovely home overlooking the Maitland River, and on select Sunday evenings, invite  fellow music lovers to join them in appreciating performances in their living room overlooking the river.  It is an intimate setting ideally suited to enjoying musicians make music, a rare opportunity to enjoy this personal experience rather than view it on a screen as we so often do these days.Last Sunday evening my husband and I enjoyed Debbie and Bill’s hospitality and listened with great enjoyment to MIL, a trio from Joliette PQ.  Claude Methe (fiddle, vocals and guitar), Dana Whittle (guitar, vocals, feet yes feet and cajon) and Denise Levac (flute and vocals) usually play with the Quebec band  Dentdelion, but are presently touring small venues as a trio. The trio performed traditional French Canadian songs and tunes as well as  a few written by Dana.  They performed in French, but thanks to the introductions by Claude and Dana and of course, the universal language of music, no translation was required.  It was great fun!
We also had the pleasure of hearing talented local musicians David Walker and Paul Howe.  David sang show tunes, and including a lovely rendition of “With One Look” from the Andrew Lloyd Weber show Sunset Boulevard, with Paul accompanying on piano.So, bring some finger foods if you wish, and for a suggested donation of $20.00 you will enjoy listening to talented musicians and singers perform live in a comfortable venue, within minutes of your own home!
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From the website:  Owner, Debbie Carroll’s specialty is teaching early childhood music classes which involve the partnership of a child with a parent or caregiver.   She also has experience teaching and supervising classes up to the SK level.  Custom-designed mentoring may include private discussion, observation, feedback and/or repertoire. Also, anyone who wishes to simply expand on his or her selection and use of songs, rhymes and dances for young children will enjoy spending a few one-on-one hours with Debbie!
For more about Debbie’s mentoring programs, or her Children’s CDs visit her website.

Bachelicious Brown Bag Lunch

25 Jul
Tasty take-out lunches from Eddington's of Exeter

Tasty take-out lunches from Eddington’s of Exeter

by Diva Trista Russell

As I mentioned in my last post, the Bach Music Festival also featured free lunchtime concerts last week at the Trivitt Memorial Anglican Church in Exeter. As well, eight local restaurants offered take-out lunch specials to enjoy during the concert. I pre-booked take-out lunches for my Mom and I from Eddington’s the day before and picked it up shortly before noon last Friday. Eddington’s had a $10 lunch special which included a sandwich, fresh cut veggies and dip, cookies, and a drink. I had the turkey and brie sandwich with cranberry aioli, and my Mom had the smoked salmon and cucumber rye sandwich with cream cheese and fresh dill. Both lunches definitely hit the spot on a very hot summer day!

It did feel a little odd eating lunch in the church sanctuary, but many others of all ages were quietly enjoying their lunch while listening to the free concert. The Friday concert was titled “Fields of Gold” and featured local music graduates Melissa Bakelaar Van Rootselaar (flute), Aaron Neeb (horn), Katherine Napiwotski (vocal), and Michelle Roy (trombone). It was evident from listening to the 45 minute concert that we have lots of young musical talent from Huron County! The concert was an enjoyable way to spend a noon-hour in the summer and nice way break from my usual lunch-time routine.


A Great Week of Music in Exeter

25 Jul


by Diva Trista Russell


The Bach Music Festival of Canada held great concerts all last week in Exeter. It featured a classical music concert each night, as well as free noon-hour concerts. I went to the Tuesday night concert where “Capella Intima” performed and presented their programme “Celestial Sirens: Music of the Benedictine Nuns of Milan”. The evening featured sopranos Emily Klassen and Erin Bardua, alto Jennifer Enns Modolo, tenor Bud Roach, and portative organist Erika Reiman.


The concert featured vocal chamber music of the 17th century and included readings that detailed the controversial music during this time period. The Benedictine nuns were a major source of music in Italy in the 17th century as forty percent of young girls were sent into convents in the country. The nuns attracted many fans to their music and the church leaders struggled with their fame and the necessity of living a reclusive life. This type of music has only come to light in recent years, as more people are gaining interest in historically informed performances.


It was definitely a unique opportunity to hear this rarely heard music. I can tell you that these four singers are very talented and it was amazing to hear how they can reach such high notes and create beautiful harmonies. One of my favourite pieces of the night was “Regina Caeli” which starts out with two singers singing in echo but then join together to change into a harmony.


IMG_3363Each evening concert featured a reception in “Johann’s Pub” under the big white tent next to the Trivitt Memorial Anglican Church, where the majority of concerts were held.


To hear some of Capella Intima, visit the audio page of their website. I wasn’t able to take photos during the performance, but you can view these photos by Karen Brown.


All of this years concerts are over, but the Bach Festival of Canada will be “bach” in July 2014!



A few of my favourite things

14 Jun

By Diva Jenna Ujiye

Huron Country Playhouse

Last week I attended the Sound of Music at the Huron Country Playhouse with my friend Cindy. We made a night out of it, met a couple of other friends for dinner and then went to the show and then the opening night reception!

IMG_4688Nuns, love, kids, dance, singing and more, these are just some of the wonderful things I think of when the Sound of Music enters my head.

We all know the characters, but each time this play is performed the actors seem to make the characters their own. Jayme Armstrong plays Maria with strength and a wonderfully fun stage presence. I would have to say that the handsome David W. Keeley, who played the captain, had most of the ladies in the crowd ogling! The kids did an amazing job, their harmony’s were great! It was also exciting to see locals Lilly and Anna Bartlam star as Gretl and Marta von Trapp. I even got to meet them after the show!Sound of Music The Sound of Music

If you are looking for a great musical with many ups and downs and great music, make sure to book your ticket soon. They are sure to sell out! The Sound of Music runs at Huron Country Playhouse from June 4 to June 22. Here is the link to the website with more information:

Fireside Cafe hosts Youth Talent Brunch

8 Apr
Haley Boyle

Haley Boyle

By Diva Karen Stewart

The first Sunday of each month the Fireside Cafe in Wingham provides a stage for young musicians to perform to a local live audience.  On April 7th three young women were on the roster  – 14 year-old Maggie Durnin, 14 year-old Kendall Jardin and 17 year-old Haley Boyle.

Unfortunately we arrived too late to hear Maggie’s performance.  Boyle, a student from St. Anne’s Secondary School in Clinton, hails from Auburn and is a student of Scott Chow at Studio C.  She sang and played her guitar.  “It’s really nice to get out and get experience in front of people,” said Boyle “It really cool! I haven’t been playing too long.”   The final performer of the mid-day (11:30 – 2pm) event was Kendall Jardin who attends F.E. Madill Elementary School.  She sang all her popular performance pieces and played the piano for a few of her songs, and the guitar for the rest.  She’s a student of Scott Chow as well and says she enjoys playing the drums too. “It’s good experience to develop skills for a (music) career,” she said about what it meant for her to have an opportunity to play to a live audience.

I took a friend along with me to celebrate her birthday and we enjoyed the entertainment as well as a full breakfast buffet that included a substantial salad bar, scrambled eggs, french toast, waffles, bacon and sausage as well as a full dessert bar.  Tickets were just $16.99 per person.

Kendall Jardin

Kendall Jardin

Philip Stelzer, Proprietor of the Fireside Cafe, feels its important to give local musicians a stage and will continue to host artists and musicians regularly.  The next Youth Talent Brunch will be the second Sunday in June as Mother’s Day falls on May 5 when they’ll be offering a special buffet to honour all moms.  Also upcoming this month is Al Crawford of Late Night Rodeo.  He was a hit the last time he visited the Fireside Cafe!  Check the website or follow on Facebook at

Fireside Cafe

86348 London Road
Wingham, ON  N0G 2W0


Salad bar .. fresh & delicious

Salad bar .. fresh & delicious

Scrumptious Desserts!

Scrumptious Desserts!

Good Food, Great Music made for a Terrific Night Out in Brussels

19 Mar
LiveBluesTonight sign


Stuffed Salmon with White Sauce, Broasted Potatoes, Green beans and carrots.  Yummy!

Stuffed Salmon with White Sauce, Broasted Potatoes, Green beans and carrots. Yummy!

by Diva Karen

On Friday night I was doubly delighted by what I found in Brussels.  First a stuffed salmon dinner at Cinnamon Jim’s which was a delightfully presented with broasted potatoes and perfectly prepared green beans and sliced carrots.  I’ve never tried salmon like this before … it had a tasty herb stuffing and was topped with a nice white sauce.  Delicious!  My sister was my guest for the evening and she tried the Prime Rib which reportedly was as equally palatable.  To top off our meal we had the luscious baked cheesecake which was drizzled with chocolate and shamrock sprinkles in tribute to St. Patrick’s Day.

Jim’s own home-grown lamb was an offering on the menu and I have it on good authority from another diner (thanks, Paul Nichol) that it too was a great choice, however it was already sold out when I booked my reservation.

We went to the early dinner (6pm) as the second setting (7:15pm) was sold out.  And, at 8:30pm an award winning Canadian Blues Band from Owen Sound was scheduled to perform in the “Upper Deck” which was the second delightful surprise that awaited us that evening.

We were told we could go ahead to the performance space after our dinner and wait for the band to begin.  So, I brought along my crib board and a deck of cards.  And, we got to meet the band and watch them set-up for the show.

And, what  a show it was.  Jim Lee, owner of Cinnamon Jim’s, is committed to setting a stage for live Blues music in Brussels.  This week, the MacKenzie Blues Band, fresh off their trip to Memphis (Tennessee), thrilled the sold-out audience which included some familiar faces from Bayfield and others from Clinton and Exeter.

The bands own material was modern Blues with a bit of rock and roll and they added tributes to Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Susan Tedeschi — all of which were definitely appreciated by this live audience.

The lead singer, Tara MacKenzie is a classically trained vocalist and her back-up band was awesome – five incredibly talented musicians including her husband Trevor MacKenzie on guitar, Bassist Joel Dawson, drummer Mike Weir and Drew McIvor on the keyboard in his first appearance with the group.

I’ve attached a brief clip here, but you’d best check them out at their own website.

Musicians love to play to an attentive and appreciative audience … and for us there simply is nothing like a live experience.  Thank you!

Cinnamon Jim’s
401 Turnberry Street, Brussels, Ontario

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