Saturday, July 13, 2013

Ness Creek, Bengough, Yippee!

It is officially festival season, and for The Lonesome Weekends this year that means Ness Creek and Gateway!  Last year we were pumped to play our first festival outside of Regina - Judy Mergel's Wood Mountain at the end of August - and while it was an awesome experience with plenty of generous hospitality, the two festivals the band'll be playing this month have got everyone very stoked.

At Gateway in Bengough, there is an incredible lineup that features Steve Earle and The Dukes along with Corb Lund and The Hurtin' Albertans, but apart from these heavies nearly every other band is from Saskatchewan, many of whom we're friends with and/or have shared stages with!  Way further north, Ness Creek features many a fine act, but I am personally most intrigued to see Crooked Creek, who I last saw 11 years ago.  A perennial favourite up there, just to know that they are still givin' 'er is inspirational on many levels.  Is it just because of the hippies?  There's only one way to find out!

The boys in the band are all over the place in terms of what they are expecting from these festivals.  If there is a consistent anything to comment on, it would have to be that Marsh is just keen to play.  With his band.  And hang out.  With his band.  Is it just that he's just happy to rock and roll on a more local scale as opposed to the international stardom that Rah Rah affords him?  Come on out and find out, but do so before the booze starts flowing, you know....well, if you are reading this, you just know!

Devon's a little bit more keen on the proceedings on offer, looking forward to checking out a lot of bands and camping in hopes of countering the hungover tent sweats when the morning sun is blazing.  Apparently this is a genuine fear of Prpich as well.  I now know that maybe I should not share a tent with him!  Thank god Pamps, Kale and German Karl will be there to hold his hand through all sorts of trial and tribulation!  Dev's also excited at seeing Mary Gauthier, as she does a killer version of Fred J. Eaglesmith's "Your Sister Cried", Tyler is pumped to see Blue King Brown (Australian Afro funk?), Sleights would enjoy sharing a stage with Shotgun Jimmy, while not a few of us are amped up to see Steve Earle.  Is it a vain hope that somewhere along the line we get to hang out with the man, share a stage, or perhaps even a cigarette?  Or is it more likely Tyler is f$&*ing going to request "Copperhead Road" and all our credibility gets shot in one drunken request?  It is unfortunate - or not, depending on your angle - that we can't share some adult pops with the man, but at the least none of us will be bringing our dog who happens to be vegetarian along, so no abuse will be incurred on that level... 

There will be more to discuss in a post post-festival, but on a personal level I could not be more thrilled about playing Ness Creek.  11 years ago I was intent on relocating to a tropical climate for a female, as cliched as that might sound.  My world got rearranged and better focused while jamming around a campfire light at Ness in July 2002, with a vibrant stranger from Regina.  After all was sung and done, I said nay to the tropics and said yea to making music on any level in Canada.  Somehow music got put to the side as the stranger and we wound up making more babies than tunes for a while, then life slowly turned a dad into a musician that became a member of a killer band that just happens to be playing Ness Creek in less than a week.  Ness Creek is full circle time for me, and I am grateful beyond words to all the musicians I've ever played with, the organizers of both festivals, my kids and my partner.  As Kurt Vonnegut once said, "Watch out for life.  It'll get you!"  And as I might add, "You should let it."

Or as Marsh might say it, "Kiss The Bottle"!  See ya'll down the road.....


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