Archive for November, 2009

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The Shreve Trio 1940

November 30, 2009

Group: The Shreve Trio
Home: Chatham Ontario Canada
Circa:  1940’s
Members:  Artis, Norma, and Carol Shreve

  The three sisters began singing in the C.C.I. High School Glee Club which turned into performances at high school concerts.
  Their talents were taken further when their director (Bessie Bracken) decided to take them on the road as a trio. From there, they played for radio and movie theatres.
  The sisters got together and sang once again at their family reunion in 1999 at the former fugitive slave settlement at North Buxton ON.

2009 Update:
Artis:  (now Artis Lane) went on to become a well known artist, and award-winning African American sculptor and painter. Her works were included on the sets of the “Cosby Show” (Bill Cosby’s hit television series in the 1980’s). There is plenty of information on her art online if you wish to read further. At age 21, Artis moved to Detroit and married.


If video does not appear, watch it here.

Visit Artis online here.

Source: Chatham-Kent Black Historical Society, You Tube, Artis Lane & Jim Shreve.
By S. Beaulieu
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Wilf Lancaster Orchestra 1967

November 29, 2009

 

Wilf Lancaster Orchestra 1967


Thank You to Wilf’s daughter Cheryl, who replied to the archive with this great information.

  My dad began playing the drums in bands in and around Chatham about the mid to late ’30s.  He played at Erie Beach, and in Chatham the band played at a couple of outdoor dance pavilions during the summer and the Pyranon Ballroom as well. 

  This was war time and dances were held most evenings.  As I mentioned to you in an earlier e-mail, big bands were playing in Detroit and the Chatham Musicians’ Union agent would travel to Detroit, meet with the band’s booking agent, and if and when a convenient day was determined, that band would travel to Chatham to play a one-night gig.  The Musicians’ Union rules at the time dictated that if an out-of-country band was playing, an equal number of Canadian musicians had to be on hand at the dance hall and paid according to union wages.  As dad’s band was the house band at the Pyranon Ballroom, he and his musicians were paid to be in attendance and to play during the big name band’s intermission.

Click to enlarge

  In 1966, dad began putting his dream of a band reunion together with several of the old members.  The First Annual Reunion of the Big Band Sound of Wilf Lancaster was held in October, 1966.  The curtain rose to the playing of ‘With A Song In My Heart’ (his theme song chosen in 1938).  The hall was absolutely packed.  I was indeed privileged to be a part of that night, as my dad had included a part for organ in the arrangements.  The band went on to play monthly gigs at the Pyranon and were hired to play at various clubs’ annual dances.

  Due to poor health, he was forced to give up playing.  On Friday, November 13th, 1970, the curtain came down on the band.  As we were playing the theme song for the very  last time, I looked over at my dad and saw one big tear trickling down each cheek.  It was all I could do to keep playing.  On that night, the baton was handed over to Fred Foster (now deceased) and Bill Pritchard.

  Dad passed away in June 1973, but I know he would be so very happy to know that his band continued to play well into the 90s, under the name of ‘The Lancaster Band’.

(The full band picture was taken in 1967 at the Kinsmen Auditorium.)
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Jani Jakovac 2004 CD

November 29, 2009

Artist: Jani Jakovac
CD Release: Take Cover
Year: 2004
Home: Chatham Ontario
Resides: Vancouver

Notes: Jani records a collection of songs by other artists that she likes, which makes “Take Cover” a great  name for this collection of covers.

Bio:
Who is this Jani anyhow? Where has she been hiding? Well, actually it is Jani (jay-nee) Jakovac (jack-o-vack) but who she is can be as tricky as the name. Because she is many things. She is a singer, songwriter, pianist, actor and an athlete to name a few. She’s funny, she’s intense, she’s energetic, she’s controlled, she’s sweet, but don’t ever get on her bad side…not so sweet. She is chic while she owns 6 pairs of slippers and wears flannels to bed. Clearly, she is a Gemini with issues.
          She studied drama and played varsity volleyball at the University of Guelph in Ontario. The day after graduating, she moved to Vancouver to pursue an acting career. This led her to few acting roles and many bartending jobs. She then moved to Europe to benefit from something else she had put many years into…. volleyball.  She played and coached professionally in Denmark for three years.
          So, that was where she’s been “hiding”. If hiding was her intent, this would be about the only place this 6 foot blonde could have remained inconspicuous. But inconspicuous she definitely was not when she was hopping up on stages in Copenhagen and joining bands in impromptu performances.
          Growing up in a house that thrived on music, it was always a part of her, a necessary element of her being. She knew she could sing, but strangely enough, she did not think it was “a big deal”. And since the only people that had ever heard her sing were friends and family, Jani assumed that they were merely being polite when they told her that she had talent. Belting out the blues or luring people into a trance with her sultry sounds was just her own act of passion. But the response to her music made it undeniably clear that people wanted to hear more. The music she writes is a soulful mix of the different styles she grew up listening to. The diverse music she appreciated were just a turn of the radio dial away from one another. The stations were numerous. The stations were from Detroit.
          She grew up in the small city of Chatham, Ontario, 45 minutes over the border from the Motown.  Her influences, ranging from classical to funk, are revealed in every song that she writes. Her often autobiographical lyrics leave audiences thankful for the living she has done. No, music has not been the only part of Jani’s life, but it has been the strongest, most dynamic, most necessary, always with her, traveling to every place she has been. The ever positive, vibrant, energetic Jani, admits that her music is a therapeutic device that she has used for many years to keep the smile on her face.  Audiences are thrilled she has lived enough life to have stories to tell with her songs and young enough to make it interesting.

Visit Jani online. Visit her website to order the CD.
http://thejanireview.tripod.com
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Jani Jakovac 2003 CD

November 29, 2009

Artist: Jani Jakovac
CD Release: This Is Her Life
Style: Vocal and Piano
Year: 2003
Home: Chatham Ontario
Resides: Vancouver

Tracks:
01. this is her life
02. lovin’ you
03. I’d rather be
04. strips me bare
05. she has no name
06. closer
07. something borrowed
08. take it back
09. the score

All music & lyrics by Jani Jakovac
Recorded in Vancouver B.C.
Cover photo by Carmen Day

Notes: This is her second recording, but her first to the public.
  She grew up in the small city of Chatham, Ontario, 45 minutes over the border from the Motown.  Her influences, ranging from classical to funk, are revealed in every song that she writes. Her often autobiographical lyrics leave audiences thankful for the living she has done. No, music has not been the only part of Jani’s life, but it has been the strongest, most dynamic, most necessary, always with her, traveling to every place she has been. The ever positive, vibrant, energetic Jani, admits that her music is a therapeutic device that she has used for many years to keep the smile on her face.  Audiences are thrilled she has lived enough life to have stories to tell with her songs and young enough to make it interesting.

Visit Jani online here.

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Bradley J. Preston 1983

November 28, 2009

Artist: Bradley J. Preston
Release: 45 RPM Single
Year: 1983

Home: Chatham Ontario
Genre: Country vocalist
Born: 1951

Note: This is Bradley’s first professional recording.

Tracks
Side A: In The Spring The Roses Always Turn Red (Dorsey Burnette)
Side B: You Gave Me A Mountain (Marty Robbins)

  Bradley J. Preston is currently a singer with the popular local country band “The Melody Ramblers”.
He has taken an extra step by recording a single and producing 1000 copies at his own expense of $5,000. This effort to branch out has taken Mr. Bradley to a career touring the U.S.A., Canada, and over seas.

  In the 1970’s, Chatham was a hot spot for musicians with around 400 people in the local Union. There were more venues (Clubs, bars, legions etc) to play in Chatham than most surrounding cities offered. Bands would play six nights a week at a venue than move on to the next. They would have the calendar year booked solid before the year started.
  Then, the drinking laws changed and venues were only able to offer bands two to three nights in a row to play. If you wanted to make a living playing music, you now had to travel to find the work. Bradley chose to pursue music and this took him on a journey into places he had never been before. It was a risk, a chance, and an adventure. Bradley went for it. S. Beaulieu

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Jani Jakovac 2001 CD

November 28, 2009

Artist: Jani Jakovac
CD Release: Jani Jakovac
Year: 2001
Home Town: Chatham Ontario
Resides: Vancouver

Tracks:
1. Walk Away
2. Who Will I Be Now
3. Sacrifice
4. The Score
5. I’d Rather Be

Note:  She studied drama and played varsity volleyball at the University of Guelph in Ontario. The day after graduating, she moved to Vancouver to pursue an acting career.

About the CD:
  This was a 5 song demo cd meant for record labels.  Three of the songs were my originals, one was an original a guitarist/friend of mine wrote and one was a cover song of a Dutch artist I had come to appreciate while living in Europe. I hadn’t come into my own style yet and it is far from the music I now perform.  This change of style is very apparent in the first rendition of my song “I’d Rather Be”.  I later recorded a jazzy version of this song on the “This is Her Life” cd.  My live performances at this time were few and far between and playing the piano in any live performance was not part of the mix yet.  It was a gig that I was performing with two guitarists and a hired pianist that I first discovered people might be interested in listening to me play and sing as I performed one original song that night.  That was the beginning.  What really spurred on the solo act was a stand-up bass player that was to play a one set gig with me (him playing every song and me only playing on 2) cancelled on me 5 days before the gig.  I quickly had to learn a set’s worth of songs and perform on my own.

Visit Jani online here.

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Bradley J. Preston 1991

November 27, 2009

Click to enlarge

Artist: Bradley J. Preston
Year: 1991
Location: Desert Storm, The Gulf War

Home: Chatham Ontario
Resides: Nashville
Genre: Country vocalist
Note: Drummer Dave Foltz is also from Chatham.

  Bradley has been out on the road working hard, but has been very fortunate to perform on a tour that only a select few could ever get the chance of doing. Playing for the Military in a war zone is the experience of a life time, combining the happiness music brings to people in the most crucial and trying times, to the reality of people surviving under extreme conditions in the world. I thought the article should be shared with Bradley’s home town, to show the effort and risk he has made to share his talent and love of music world wide.

Continued article from “The Gulf View” from the above picture:
  “We were out at places in the middle of the desert to do some performances,” said Bradley J. Preston, lead singer for the band. “They really appreciated the show. Soldiers literally came up crying after the performance, especially since they hadn’t seen anyone in awhile.”

  The five-member band, out of Nashville, played favourites from Diamond Rio, Clint Black, Bob Seger, Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson, Hank Williams JR., the Kentucky head Hunters and more. The two hour show entertained about 400 people at Khobar Towers.

  Country and western fans crowded the asphalt in front of the stage to line dance and two step to all their country favourites. Temperatures in the 80’s made the evening a pleasant, outdoor gathering at the base’s open air stage.

  “This was our third show in the Dhahran area,” said Preston, whose group volunteered for the DOD Over-seas Shows. “We had about a month to get ready to come on this tour, but we’d do it a gain in a second.”
 
  The group played for Army and Air Force men and women at the base’s two recreation facilities before Monday evening’s concert appearance. The group dedicated one song to the Army’s Tennessee Volunteers Reserve unit on temporary duty to the area.

  The band travelled to remote locations in the Saudi desert and throughout Kuwait to entertain soldiers supporting Desert Storm. Preston travelled with steel guitar player Kelley Greene, bass player Art Bittner, lead guitarist Robbie Wilson and drummer Dave Foltz.

  The band left for the United States Thursday, but not before making an impact on the military members still in the Middle East, and not before being affected by the people here.

  “Thanks for the entertainment,” one soldier said between sets. “And thanks for coming all the way out here to do it.”

 

Bradley’s Background:
Bradley has played in several local country bands in Chatham including the Melody Ramblers, along side country music star Michelle Wright. He has recorded several singles over the years with his first coming out in 1983. He moved to Nashville and has toured heavily throughout the U.S.A. and Canada . This current tour of the Middle East will also take him to England and Germany.  In 1988 he appeared on the Ernest Tubb Show which broadcasts from Nashville and is host to the top country recording acts. Bradley is also the first Canadian to sign with King’s Universal Label, as well as being the first Canadian to appear on the Nashville Network show “You Can Be A Star.” In 1992, Bradley returns home to perform at the Festival of Nations next year, followed by a tour of Eastern Canada.

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Bradley J. Preston 1987

November 27, 2009

Artist: Bradley J. Preston
Release: 45 RPM Single
Year: 1987
Home: Chatham Ontario
Genre: Country vocalist

1987: Bradley cut this single in Nashville but still lived in Chatham at the time. He was travelling back and forth.  The local country singer first travelled to Nashville in 1982 and will move there next year.

Side ADon’t Take My Sunshine Away (J. Foster – B. Rice)
Side BTonight Your Baby’s Coming Home (G. Sutton – B. Sherrill)

Produced by: Louis Wright

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Bradley J. Preston 1986

November 27, 2009

Artist: Bradley J. Preston
Release: 45 RPM Single
Year: 1986
Home: Chatham Ontario
Genre: Country vocalist

  Bradley cut this single in Nashville but still lived in Chatham at the time. He was travelling back and forth. 
  Preston has been working hard as a singer and has been entering several contests to help gain exposure and branch out musically. He has won many of them.
  The singer has been performing for many years and most recently with the Melody Ramblers. At this stage, Bradley is just starting to work his way on to the international scene but is keeping his day job until the time is right. There is no question that his hard work ethics and level head are the reason for the many good times ahead that he will encounter.

Side 1: A Thing About Trains (Ben Hewitt)
Side 2 If I Never Do Get Over You (Sure – Fire Music)

Produced by: Louis Wright
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Bradley J. Preston 1995 CD

November 26, 2009

Artist: Bradley J. Preston
CD Release: Self Titled
Year: 1995
Genre: Country Music
Home: Chatham-Kent Ontario Canada

Notes: Bradley co-wrote Tracks Five and Seven with Producer Michael Francis. The album was recorded with sessions in Toronto and Nashville. Bradley had moved to Nashville for four years but around this time he had moved back to his home in Chatham and settled. The single “As Long As It’s Raining” has charted nationally and cracked the top 50 in Europe.

Tracks:
01. Amen Kind Of Love
02. As Long As It’s Raining (b. Hill & C. Rawson)
03. We’ve Got Love (S. Hogin, B. Lee)
04. Lonesome 77203 (J. Tubb)
05. All The Love I Had For You (B. Preston & M. Francis)
06. I Love You I Need You Good-Bye (B. Heatherington & L. Satterfield)
07. Don’t Get In The Way (B. Preston & M. Francis)
08. The Old Man (T. Dodson & A. Laney)
09. That’s All I Know About Love (S. Hogin, D. Gillon & A. Laney)
10. Natural Reaction (B. Hill & T. Hiller)

If you would like to purchase this CD, please send cheque or money order to:
Maple City Records
P.O. Box 1678
Blenheim , Ontario
NOP 1AO

2009 Update:

   Below is an interesting tidbit Preston had mentioned in our talks of  ‘the road life’.

   Current Country star Deric Ruttan (Guitar, singer and hit song writer) played in Preston’s band in 1992 through 1994.  The Bracebridge born musician had 5 Top Ten singles, (including the hits, “When You Come Around”, “Shine”, and “Take The Wheel”), and earned him a “Best Album” nomination at the 2004 Canadian Country Music Awards. “Male Vocalist” and “Rising Star” nominations followed, as did the Grand Ol’ Opry appearances, and a high-profile national tour. In 2004 he was named “Best New Solo Country Artist” at the Canadian Radio Music Awards. Stateside though, Ruttan’s artist career was about to be eclipsed by his songwriting success.
  Deric Ruttan has also co-written hits for Dierks Bentley. Bentley’s debut “What Was I Thinkin'”, was a #1 Billboard hit. Deric has written 24 hits to date for various top artists, but earned his dues touring at an early age with the likes of the ‘Bradley J. Preston Band’.
S. Beaulieu

Watch the CD preview on You Tube below.

If video does not appear, watch it here.

All songs produced by Peter Sullivan except 1,2,4,5,7 produced by Michael Francis for DDP Productions.

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Social Code ROCK ‘N’ ROLL Release

November 21, 2009

Band: Social Code
Release: ROCK ‘N’ ROLL
Date: 2009
Style: Rock
Home: Alberta
Chatham Connection: Travis Nesbitt (vocals) was born and raised in Chatham Ontario Canada.

Band Members:
Travis Nesbitt – Vocals
Logan Jacobs – Bass
Ben Shillabeer – Drums
Morgan Gies – Guitar

Official band note: During the “freezing cold of an Edmonton winter” with producer John Travis, who made a name for himself working with such heavyweights as Kid Rock, Buckcherry and Sugar Ray.  It strips away the pop punk and radio flavour-of-the-day tracks that Social Code had been known for, and delivers the red meat of the music. From the gloriously grinding and noisy first single Satisfied and the catchy as all hell Buy Buy Baby to the heavy, boogie rocker Fight For Love and the surefire heartbreak, prairie rock anthem I’m Not OK, the 10 tracks draw on influences as seminal as Springsteen, Zeppelin, The Stones, Cheap Trick and The Black Crowes while being entirely true to the band’s own sound.

The band will be playing Chatham Sunday Nov.22 2009 at Encore.

Track Listing:
Rock ‘N’ Roll
Nothing Left To Lose
Satisfied
Buy Buy Baby
Real Girl
Fight For Love
You Never Know What You Got Until It’s Gone
Stay
I’m Not Ok
Too Late For Tomorrow

Credits:
Produced by John Travis
Mixed by Mike Fraser
Additional Production on “Satisfied” & “I’m Not Ok” by Logan Jacobs

Note: I have been lucky enough to share shows with Social Code a few times and I can tell you that they are a great bunch of guys who are appreciative of the scene.  Usually headliners get cocky and fill the stage with gear leaving opening bands with little room to do anything.  When playing with these guys, they offered to share drum kits and do whatever possible to make it easiest for all bands to get a fair shake in stage show and ease of transitions. These guys deserve your support and it is nice to see that they have maintained their Canadian courtesy & politeness despite such a jaded world they travel upon. I am not a band ass kisser by any means, these guys have worked hard and do it the right way. S. Beaulieu

Social Code Discography:
1999 – Binbox – as Fifth Season
2001 – Patiently Waiting – as Fifth Season
2004 – A Year at the Movies
2007 – Social-Code
2009 – ROCK ‘N’ ROLL

Visit Social Code here.
Listen to Social Code
here.

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Maple Shade (1977)

November 21, 2009

Click to enlarge

Band: Maple Shade
Home: Chatham Ontario
Circa: 1977
Genre: Popular music of the time.

Members
(Left to right)
Robbie Robertson – Vocals, keyboards
Doug Colletti – Vocals, Guitar, Bass
Tony Meriano – Vocals, Drums

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Melody Ramblers 1978

November 21, 2009

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Band: Melody Ramblers
Home: Chatham Ontario
Circa: 1978
Style: Country Covers
Band History: Ran from 1953-1994 with various line ups.

Members:
(Back Row)
Bruno Pinsonault – Bass
Mark Buckwheat – Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
Larry St.Pierre – Drums
Dan St.Pierre – Guitar
(Front Row)
Dennis Smith

Notes: Mark Buckwheat would later join the band Home Grown.

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Melody Ramblers 1988

November 21, 2009

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Band: Melody Ramblers
Home: Chatham Ontario
Year: 1988
Style: Country Music Covers
Sound man: Dan Barette

Above  Photo
(Left to Right)
Dan St.Pierre – Guitar
Eugene Beaulieu – Bass, Vocals
Wendy Jenkins – Vocal
Brad Preston – Guitar, Vocals
Larry St.Pierre – Drums
Rene Brousseau – Pedal Steel

Photo: St. Joachim, Ontario

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Melody Ramblers Form

November 20, 2009

Band: Melody Ramblers
Home: Chatham Ontario
Year: 1953
Band: 1953-1994
Style: Country and Western Covers

Original Members:
(From left to Right in above photo.)
Joe Barnier – Guitar
Marie Barnier – Vocals
Louella Barnier – Vocals
Francis Barnier – Drums
Ralph St. Pierre – Fiddle
Joe Demers – Pedal Steel
Rita Demers – Vocals
Theresa St. Pierre – Vocals
Sherley St. Pierre – Guitar

  Who would have thought when Sherley St. Pierre and his wife Theresa formed a small country music band “The Melody Ramblers” that they started a country music tradition. Even though country music styles have changed over the years, the name “Melody Ramblers” had lasted 41 years.
  Sherley St. Pierre performed in the band from 1953 to 1975, but the band carried on and has always involved several relatives.

   In these early years, they did not have a bass player in the band, so the bass was simulated with the pedal steel guitar when needed. You would never know the difference by listening to it.

  The very first live shows the band did were for $35 a night in the 1950’s. It was not unusual for them to perform two shows a day on the weekend, often doing something like a wedding in the day time and a night show at an establishment. Some of the places they played in these early years were Big Point, Stoney Point Club, Port Lambton, Chatham Polish Hall, Blenheim, and Tilbury. The group also performed at the Pyranon Ballroom in Chatham.

*  Sherley St. Pierre was honoured and inducted into the Grande Point Hall Of Fame.
* Photo of Sherley with his Dobro Above:  Taken Oct. 2nd 1949. He was only 17 in this picture (Born in 1932), just four years before forming the band. 
* Gear photo: (Sherley St.Pierre) 1952 Gibson ES-5, his 1964 Gibson Titan III amp and even his old microphone. This is the gear he used way back in the day with the Melody Ramblers.

Photos donated to the Chatham Music Archive by the St. Pierre’s.

By: S.Beaulieu

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Advanced Green (1983)

November 19, 2009

 

Band: Advanced Green
Release: two song 45 record.
Home: Chatham Ontario Canada
Year: 1983
Formed: 1983
Music: Covers and originals
Style: Rock

Members:
Jeff Parker (28) – Vocals, Guitar
Steve Fowler (29) – Guitar
Brent Hunter (30) – Bass
Pat Crone (28) – Drums

History :
• Pat & Brent were members of ‘The Force’ that would later name change to Manpower
• Jeff was the front man for ‘Hat Trick’ and his solo projects
• Steve is best known for his solo work, collaborations with major acts and performing in Quadrant

  The band made waves quickly, drawing attention for their song writing. They captured first place and the rock category for their song “Long Nights”. They also received an honorable mention for their song “Get to the Point”.

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Texas 1983

November 19, 2009

Click to enlarge

Band: Texas
Formed: 1980
Disbanded: 1985

Genre: Southern Rock and Country.

Members
(Clockwise from Left)

Les Hoffman – Lead guitar
Mark Wolfe – Drums
Waide Holland – Keyboards, Vocals
Randy Young – Bass, Vocals
Eddy Larsen (Ole) – Guitar, Vocals (Front)

Notes:
The band ran from 1980 to 1985 and was a road band. During this time, a new kind of country was emerging with bands like Alabama and the popularity of southern rock with the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd. Texas was a popular cover band to see during this period of time. It was common for a band to play the same venue for six nights a week then move to the next.

Eddie Larsen and Waide Holland played together in their high school aged band “Zeke and the Moonshiners”. Zeke and the Moonshiners would later change their name to “The Missing Links”, the most popular rock and roll band to record a vinyl LP from this area in the sixties. Their old buddy drummer (from The Missing Links 1966) Bill McGrath became a booking agent in Toronto for high end acts and took on Texas as a client. This favour helped give Texas the ability to develop quickly and professionally into a solid band with greater opportunities.
Texas toured Ontario from Quebec to Michigan playing night clubs and shows which included a concert in The Royal York Hotel, Toronto.   Texas also wrote and recorded several original songs slated for their first album.

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Chatham Music Archive Article 2009

November 18, 2009

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 ‘BAND’ING Together 
Posted By ELLWOOD SHREVE
Chatham Daily News Nov.14th 2009

  If you have a favourite local band still playing or from when you were younger, try checking out the website www.chathamusicarchive.com created by Shawn Beaulieu.
   In a short period of time, the 35-year-old Chatham resident has compiled an impressive amount of information on local bands and musicians, including photos and small biographies, which are listed by both name and year released.
   Beaulieu began the project about four or five years ago as a blog, but since being laid off six months ago, he has been able to devote several hours a day to the website.
“All of a sudden it turned into more than a hobby and all of a sudden it got bigger and bigger,” Beaulieu said.
  He has been a part of the local music scene as a member of the band Foster Child, which became the Janet Theory.
  Beaulieu credits the help he has received from Jeff Mifflin, who works at Strings N’ Things and is the guitarist with The O’Hara Brothers band. He said Mifflin was able to access photos of several local bands that have been displayed at the local music store over the years. He also noted the members of the 1980s group Manpower, which have teamed up again this year, “got me into a lot of this.” Beaulieu said the website is getting the attention of several local musicians, past and present, noting people have been coming to him with information. Beaulieu is impressed with the wealth of musical talent and the wide range of genres that has come out of the Chatham-Kent area, and wanted a way to show that to the world.
  He has done extensive research at the Chatham Public Library, gathering information dating back to 1889 with the formation of the Chatham City Band. There is plenty of interesting information on well-known older bands, including the Melody Ramblers, which once boasted current country music star Michelle Wright as its lead singer. When Wright left to pursue a solo career, she was replaced by Wendy Jenkins, who also enjoyed success with the popular band. Then there is The Missing Links, including members John, Fred and Eddy Larson and Bill McGrath, whose 1966 album “It’s Link Up Time,” was produced by Paul Shaffer, best known today for his long stint with the David Letterman Show.
 
   The site is also filling up with information on several local bands from today’s era. Beaulieu said the website can also serve as a resource for bands that are looking for musicians with certain skills or local clubs that want to hire local bands to play. “I only knew about 10 per cent of the bands when I started doing this,” Beaulieu said. “There’s a big scene going on, but nobody knows each other.”

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Fat Doug and the Sinners (1997)

November 17, 2009

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Band: Fat Doug and the Sinners
Genre: Blues Band
Home: Chatham Ontario
Year: 1997
Circa: 1997-2000
Format: 75% Covers, 25% Original Music

Members:
Vocals: Lionel Shadd
Guitar: Doug Dewitte
Guitar: Andy Tattersall
Bass: Dwayne Stephens
Drums: Scott Meriano

Note: Chatham’s hardest working blues band. A brilliant line-up of young and enthusiastic musicians who had that real love for music, like only Detroit (or its neighbouring towns… umm like Chatham) could enjoy.
  The band played steady in and around Chatham in a scene that was thriving with many venues to play. In Chatham alone, the Parkview, Blind Dog, Beatniks, The Nest, The Royal, GT’s, Chappies, and Eightball, were all home to Fat Doug and the Sinners. The bar scene was great in 1997 and this band held its ground with their own little twist of blues and extra talent per band capita. This particular line-up of the ‘Sinners’ ran from 1997-1999.
 
Side Note:  I just got to mention that when I turned 19 and began playing the bar scene, I did not own a proper guitar that could stay in tune for three sets a night. Doug was more than kind to let me borrow his guitar for shows around Ontario until I was able to afford one. I didn’t even really know Doug yet at the time. I think that is a special note to make about our music scene. Everyone did all they could to help out other bands. There was no real sign of competition. Many cities are cut throat, and Chatham was not like that. It meant allot to me then and I still see that community vibe lasting into 2009 as I write this. I can also say from meeting all the guys in this band, anyone of them would have done the same.
 S. Beaulieu.

Above picture taken in 1997 at the Festival of Nations (Kiwanis BandShell).

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Bethune Murray (1928)

November 17, 2009

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Composer: Bethune Murray
Instrument: Piano
Famous Song: No One Knows What a Two Cent Stamp Can Do
Style: Snappy Fox-trot Music.
Home: Chatham Ontario
Year: 1928

Bethune Murray, Chatham musician and composer who earned success in Chicago.

  Bethune, the youngest of the children, is probably the best known of the family. He was one of the first blacks in the Chatham area to receive the A.T.C.A. (a music degree) from Toronto Conservatory of Music and he was also an excellent artist.

  Prior to his move to Chicago, Bethune played the piano for one of the theaters in Chatham in the days of silent film. When he moved to Chicago he met and married Louise Ann De Loache. He had a short-lived, but good band in Chicago called The Canadian Ginger Snaps. The problems of being a bandleader became a burden to Bethune so he began to play solo at the better nightclubs in the Chicago area. He also played regularly at the Chicago World’s Fair (Ida Murray Burks also performed at the World’s Fair with the William Henry Smith Chorus.)

  Bethune was also a songwriter. His most remembered song was “No One Knows What a Two Cent Stamp Can Do.” He wrote the lyrics and music and had it published in 1928.

Source: Ida Murry Burk.
Chatham-Kent Black Historical Society,  177 King Street East, Chatham On. Canada.

Note: The foxtrot is a ballroom dance. In the beginning the foxtrot was originally danced to ragtime performed by a ‘Big Band’.

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Home Grown (1981)

November 17, 2009

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Band: Home Grown
Year: 1981
Home: Chatham Ontario
Formed: Late 70’s, ran for 4-5 years.

Members
Clint Benoot – Pedal Steel, Guitar
Mark Buckwheat – Guitar, Vocals
Phil Hernandez – Bass, Vocals
Gary Saunders – Guitar, Vocal
N/A – Drums

Note: Tony Meriano would later become the drummer for Homegrown.
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Laura Moelker (2009)

November 16, 2009

Name: Laura Moelker
CD Release: Unfolding Stories
Year: 2009
Performance: classical concert pianist
Home: Chatham-Kent
Resides: Hamilton

Notes: The CD is a collection of classical piano music from Chopin, Mendelssohn, Gershwin, and Schubert.

Official Bio
  Laura Moelker, a native of Chatham, Ontario, is a classical concert pianist with a profound love for music. Her outgoing personality, remarkable enthusiasm and precision at the piano have given her enormous success and praise from audiences.

  Laura grew up in Chatham, Ontario where she began taking piano lessons at the age of 5. Born into a musical family, Laura received unending support from her parents and siblings. She continued taking lessons and received numerous awards in local music festivals, including the O.R.M.T.A. award, which she received in 1999. This only encouraged Laura to continue in her musical studies. In 2002 Laura moved to Hamilton, Ontario where she continued studying music at Redeemer University College under Dr. Christiaan Teeuwsen and world-renowned pianist, Valerie Tryon. In May 2006 she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in music (piano performance). Upon graduating Laura continued her classical training with the Royal Conservatory of Music and in January 2009 graduated and received her ARCT diploma in piano performance.

  Laura now works as a freelance musician in Hamilton, Ontario and is currently involved in various musical activities within her local community.

Visit Laura online here.   
Listen to her music here

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Unity release CD (2009)

November 16, 2009

Band: Unity
Release: God’s Will Be Done
Year: 2009
Genre: Spiritual, Contemporary Christian
Home: Chatham-Kent Ontario

Note: The release contains 11 original recordings. Songs about everyday Christian life, songs exemplifying charity, to songs that teach Christian values in an uplifting spirit, from light hearted stories to medatative moving ballads. All part of God’s Will being Done.

Members:
John Couture – acoustic guitar, vocals
Marc Caron – harmonica, vocals                                       
Brian Benoot – bass, violin
Dean Robert – guitar, bass, vocals
Ruth Mazan – 12 string acoustic, vocals
Tina Pumfrey – keyboard, vocals
Paul Caron – main percussionist, backing vocals

Tracks:
01 A New Beginning
02 Your Big Plan
03 God’s Will Be Done
04 Jesus Understands
05 Searching
06 Four Falls
07 Hands and Voice
08 Jesus Took Me Back
09 Cry Me a River
10 Collection Plate Blues 
11 Welcome Me Home

Buy or preview their music online here.
You can also buy the CD at Gospel Text Book Store and St. Michael’s Catholic Shop.
Visit them online here.

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The Larsen Brothers 1966

November 15, 2009

Band: The Larsen Brothers
Year: 1966
Home: Chatham Ontario.

Members:
Eddy Larsen (Ole) – Vocals, lead guitar
John Larsen – Bass
Freddy Larsen – Organ
Robbie – Drums

Future: Many will know the Larsen Brothers for their later name change to ‘The Missing Links’ who toured extensively and released an album in 1966. Ole would also go on to many other popular local bands including ’Texas’.

Past: Before ‘The Larsen Brothers’, they were called ‘Zeke and the Moonshiners’.  They were a great rowdy party band that dressed up as hillbillies and kept the crowds hollering to their crazy on stage antics.

Notes:  The Larsen Brothers were cleaned up by their management to prepare them as a band who would go out and tour in bigger venues and classy establishments. It happened, and they were loved by the audience and the club owners alike. They had full page  adds in major entertainment papers,  in major cities,  with the likes of Chuck Berry.

    The picture of the guys with the accordions was taken in the 50’s. This was the Larsens before they moved to Canada from Denmark.  The picture includes sons Fred and John with their Dad Harry Larsen. The other brother Eddy (Ole) was not in the picture playing because he was not old enough to play an instrument at that time. The young Larsen’s played European style dance for polkas. The family moved to Canada around 1958-59.

   The Larsen brothers come from a musical family. Their father was a multi-instrumentalist in Denmark for over 35 years. He played on TV, Radio, night clubs and a date as a gypsy violinist for a travelling circus.

2009 Update: I was at John Larsen’s house today to pick up photos’ from him.  We were talking with him and my good buddy Kiley (John’s son). I can assure you one thing. Even though over 44 years has past since this band formed, John is still a cool cat. He can also thank the many years of noted work with the ‘Chatham Pool Sharks’ swim team for giving him his great health today. Each member of the Larsen family has gone on to do wonderful things for the community, whether it be for the youths of today, or the adults who demanded the best in entertainment. S.Beaulieu

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Home Grown (1983)

November 13, 2009

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Band: Home Grown
Year: 1983
Home: Chatham Ontario
Formed: Late 70’s, ran for 4-5 years.

Members
(Top Row)
Clint Benoot – Pedal Steel, Guitar
Mark Buckwheat – Guitar, Vocals
Phil Hernandez – Bass, Vocals
(Bottom Row)
Gary Saunders – Guitar, Vocal
Tony Meriano – Drums

Notes: The band teamed up with Bothwell song writer Bonnie Kirschner Hind to record her song as a Terry Fox Tribute. 
   The song was released to radio stations across the country. 1000 rpm records were made.
                
               Outside of the band, Clint and Tony were also the faces every musician in town knew. They were both partners at Musical Strings ‘N’ Things, who opened their doors for business in 1972.

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Leah Morise 2006

November 13, 2009

 Artist:  Leah Morise
Release: Take Me Anywhere
Year: 2006
Genre: Folk, Jazz
Home Town:  Chatham-Kent
Resides: London

Notes: This is Leah’s debut CD. The former self-described “Chatham farm girl” – now Londoner -is far more likely to laugh than cry, and her music reflects this sensibility. You can hear this laughter and joy in many of her songs; just try to listen to the infamous “Panty Song” without giggling.

Leah has been performing in musical theatre and playing gigs around London and Southwestern Ontario. She’s performed on CHRW, Rogers and London’s New PL, as well as at the Home County Folk Festival.

Tracks:
01. Heart of Many Colours
02. The Panty Song
03. Teddy Bear
04. Peaceful River
05. Street Light Shining
06. Big Wide Strum
07. She’s a Gemini
08. Almost Halfway
09. Jean 2:42  
10. You Wet My Whistle
11. Too Happy to Sing the Blues
12. Fruition
13. You Can Take Me Anywhere

Visit Leah here or here.
Preview or/and buy her new CD here.

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Jay Allan 2009

November 13, 2009

Artist: Jay Allan
Release: The Wrong Direction
Year: 2009
Genre: Country
Home: Bothwell

Notes: Ontario singer/songwriter Jay Allan has been writing songs since the age of 14. Today Jay is a dedicated and driven country music singer songwriter with an original sound.  As an active member of the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA), SOCAN and the Songwriter’s Association of Canada (S.A.C.) Jay is being recognized in the Canadian Country music scene, performing at many music events and festivals including opening for great Canadian acts such as Jimmy Rankin, Julian Austin & Doc Walker and releasing his first single ‘Rumourville’ to country radio across Canada.

Tracks
 1.
Rumourville…3:07
 2. Hollywood…3:43
 3. Winning Streak…3:06
 4. Fishing for Memories…3:29
 5. She’s a Tease…2:57
 6. Midnight Run…3:27
  7. Picture of Life…3:36
  8. Someday We’ll Talk…3:23
  9. Crinan Creek…2:56
10. S.H.O.P…3:15

Click on video below to hear two samples from this release.

If video does not appear, watch it here.

All songs written by Jay Allan Schnekenburger        
Visit Jay online here and here.

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Jay Allan 1998

November 11, 2009
jayallan_cover_1998

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Artist: Jay Allan
Release: Please Don’t Change
Year: 1998
Genre: Country
Home: Bothwell (Chatham-Kent)

Notes: Ontario singer/songwriter Jay Allan has been writing songs since the age of 14.

Tracks
1.
Please Don’t Change….3:50
 2. Home Sweet Home…3:09
 3. The Way That I Do…3:37
 4. High School Dance…4:43
 5. Silver Clay Road…3:50
 6. Square One…3:26
 7. I’m Gettng By (Lonely All the Time)…3:16
 8. Sam (Reflections of a Man)…3:20
 9. Until It Was Gone…2:14
10. Sure, I Could Say…3:20
11. (Not Just Another) Face in the Crowd…3:30

All songs written by Jay Allan Schnekenburger        
Visit Jay online here and here.

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The Great Moustache Ryde

November 11, 2009
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 Band: The Great Moustache Ryde
Home: Chatham-Kent Area
Year: Circa 1982
From: Road Band

No Info Available

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Rondeau Pavilion 1964

November 11, 2009

 

 

Club: Rondeau Pavilion
Year: 1964
Built in 1952 by Maurice Smyth
Location: Rondeau Park Ontario
What: Hottest dance club around for decades.

Note: People would drive from a hundred mile radius to party at the Pavilion, and there is no way I could do the Chatham Music Archive without mentioning this place and what I have been told about it. Nothing was like it for miles and miles and the kids would do anything to make it every night.

  • The club drew 1,500 on average every Saturday night
  • People came from Sarnia, Windsor, Detroit, London and everywhere in between
  • Ages 12 – 20 were the scene for the infamous dances held
  • The rules were strict but were respected and followed by patrons
  • Bands included The pharaohs, The Fiends, Sally and the Bluesman, The American Breed, MC5(in 1969)
  • Bob Seger and Alice Cooper played there regularly as struggling musicians before becoming famous
  • The Hops (DJ’s spinning what the kids wanted to hear) were the high lights for the kids
  • Popular Dj’s for the years the Pavilion were most packed were Bill Saunders and Paul Dusten
  • Bill Saunders became the DJ in 1964
  • The place is also memorable for its closing song “The Sand and the Sea”
  • Girls waited against the wall for a guy to ask them to dance, that was the era
  • The guys constantly walked clock wise around the hall
  • Mr. Smyth sold Rondeau Pavilion in 1975, attendance was dropping as policies changed to the park
  • The pavilion was the third and last dance hall at Rondeau
  • Rondeau is Ontario’s second oldest provincial park, which was established in 1894, a year after Algonquin Provincial Park.
    Main Source: The Weekender, May 10th 1980 By S. Dudley

    Email your info & pictures to:
    chatham_music_archive@hotmail.com

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Doug Sanford 2000

November 11, 2009
dougsanford_2000

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Name: Doug Sanford
Role: Conductor
Home: Chatham-Kent
Resides: British Columbia
Year: 2000

Note: Doug is coming home to Chatham to conduct a show at the Cultural Centre with Orchestra London. Doug has performed with some of the best Canadian orchestras and orchestras from Austria, Germany, Poland, Switzerland, and Czechoslovakia,

High School: President of the CCI band.
Age 10: Plays the clarinet in the Chatham Concert Band.
2000: On the Board of Directors of Orchestra Canada and conducts two different orchestras including Toronto and Okanagan.

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Conductor Doug Sanford (2002)

November 11, 2009
dougsanford01in1998_2002

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Conductor: Doug Sanford
Orchestra: Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra
Year: 2002
Home: Chatham Native

Sanford was appointed artistic director and conductor in June 2002. He filled this roll until 2008. In 1998 Doug conducted two orchestras, The East York and Okanagan Symphonies.

 

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John Peneycad Near The Cross (1998)

November 11, 2009
johnpeneycad_1998

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Vocalist: John Peneycad, 32
CD Release: Near The Cross
Year: 1998
Resides: Chatham
Music: Gospel Music
Appearances:  The peoples Church in Toronto (Nationally Televised)
  100 Huntley Street
  

  This is the second CD release from John who has been receiving praise for his work on a larger scale than he expected. On Nov. 6th 1999, he won the covenant award for “Inspirational Song of the year”, along with nominations for Album of the Year and Favourite Male Vocalist. “Empty Cross” is not only the song that won this for John, but it was also the first song he ever wrote.
 
John is active with his music and travels through out Ontario sharing his music.
Photo by:  E. Shreve CDN

Update: 2002 saw John and his family move to Moose Jaw with his new work after 13 years in Chatham

 

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Wendy Jenkins Debut Album (1983)

November 11, 2009
Artist: Wendy Jenkins
Release: Self Titled
Format: Vinyl LP
Genre: Country and Western
Year: 1983

Notes: The CD contains a mix of original music and covers.

  At age 21, Wendy is lucky to live two good lives as one.  By day, she works as a quality control technician after graduating with honors from Ridgetown College. By night, she is a country singer with her single “Look out Love” that is in the top 50 of the country and western Charts.
  Wendy has also been performing in ‘The Melody Ramblers’ for the past two years. They are a popular local country band that originally formed in 1953.
  The new album was recorded in Nashville and Toronto.

Tracks:
01. He’s Cheatin’ On Me
02. One Big Happy Family
03. Walk Softly When You Go
04. (Just) Two Lonely People
05. Look Out Love
06. Turn The Light On
07. Rivers Of My Mind
08. I Did My Best (not to love him)
09. Blame It On The Rain
10. It’s Not Me

Photos: M. Martin

Music Samples in the video below

If video does not appear, watch it here.

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Quadrant band 1975

November 5, 2009
quadrant_1975

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Band: Quadrant
Year: 1975
Style: Rock
Home: Chatham Ontario

Members
Steve Fowler – Guitar
Mark Tremblay – Keyboards
Bob Wilson – Bass
Rick Chrysler – Drums

  Quadrant was probably the most popular local band at this time and all that without any vocals. The band was a cast of brilliant musicians in an era where prog rock was coming to be championed.
 The cool story about this band is that they were being scoped out by the same management company as RUSH, who were on the verge of international success, but before anyone knew that Rush would ever achieve it. This music style was still new and the buzz around Quadrant was huge. The only problem with signing the band would be the fact that there is no vocalist. This creates a marketing block for the record labels who don’t know how to sell this creative music.

It is also worth noting that some of the bands original material sounds similar to what Rush would put out on their next record. It is true that Rush could have easily had Quadrant’s demo (passed to them by management) and took some thoughts from it.  It is best to leave that tidbit as a mystery, but the fact is Quadrant was an innovative and talented band from here. S. Beaulieu

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Kevin McMillan in 2009

November 5, 2009

Name: Kevin McMillan
Musical: Singer (Baritone, later tenor)
Year: 2009
Born: Listowel, Ontario
Chatham Connection: Moved to Chatham in 1987 with his wife and son. (His wife is from Chatham)

1983-1986 – Master’s  and Doctoral degree (Juilliard School New York)

Mr. McMillan has received 4 JUNO nominations and won a GRAMMY award in 1992
Kevin is the founder and president of the Capitol Theatre Association

  KEVIN MCMILLAN is one of Canada’s most respected singers and pedagogues. His career has spanned over 20 years with more than 700 concerts, 15 professional recordings, a Grammy award, a Gramophone award and numerous Juno award nominations.
  Critics have praised his “elegant voice” and “singularly remarkable interpretive skills” in appearances with virtually every major North American orchestra, including the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the San Francisco Symphony.
  He has also established a presence in Europe, with appearances in the major concert halls of London, Berlin, Barcelona, Hamburg and Prague. He has worked with such conductors as Herbert Blomstedt, Pierre Boulez, Sergiu Commissiona, Raphael Frühbeck de Burgos, Sir Andrew Davis, Charles Dutoit, Neeme Jarvi, Jesus Lopez-Cobos, Kurt Masur, Sir Roger Norrington, Hellmuth Rilling and the late Robert Shaw.
  After preliminary schooling at the Universities of Guelph and Western Ontario in Canada, Mr. McMillan studied at the Britten-Pears School in England, and attained a Master’s Degree at the Juilliard School in New York. His primary focus has always been the oratorio and orchestral repertoire, and his vocal flexibility and scholarly musicianship have afforded him a broad range of styles and periods – from Monteverdi and Bach to Britten and Penderecki.
  Despite an unfortunate farming accident 25 years ago that left him a partial paraplegic, he has had the opportunity to perform operatic roles in concert performances. Mr. McMillan is one of Canada’s pre-eminent recitalists. He has been described as an “outstanding Schubertian” whose “voice of glowing freshness and beauty is at the service of an intelligent, lively and distinctive personality.”
  In the Don Wright Faculty of Music at the University of Western Ontario, he not only mentors a large studio of singers, but also teaches IPA Diction for Singers and coaches the Bach Aria Group. In Chatham, ON, he is the founder and president of the Capitol Theatre Association – a group responsible for the restoration and renovation of this historic theatre into a fully equipped 1,200 seat performing arts centre.

Notes: McMillan was featured in the CBC TV profile, The Music Must Go On. He founded the Chatham Capitol Theatre Association in 1996, for which he received the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal in 2002.

Visit his website here.

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Helena Landon 1927

November 5, 2009
helena_landon1927

Miss Helena Landon 1927

Musician: Miss Helena Landon
Musical Position: harpist and soprano soloist.
Year: 1927
Home: Chatham Ontario Canada

Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William R. Landon of Chatham Ontario

  Helena is documented as being one of the most outstanding musicians from Chatham and has travelled far and wide making a name for this city through her charm and abilities.

Recent work: Helena has performed in many places in the U.S.A. under the direction of the Orpheum circuit and the Publix Productions of New York City. She is currently in L.A. for the winter of 1927.

There is an article on Helena in the CDN Nov.9th 1927.
The above photo was printed in the same article noted.

 

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The Singing Teentones Reunion 1984

November 3, 2009

Group: The Singing Teentones
Year: 1984
What: Reunion
Affiliation: Evangel  Community Church (Sandy Street)
Choir Director: Ruth Kerr (nee Cornelius)
Home: Chatham Ontario
Style: Church Choir Group
Formed: 1961

Members:
Ruth Kerr, Dawna Neilson (nee Lucas), Pat Apthorpe, Joy Ott (nee Cornelius), Bob Hillman, Rebbeca Spicer (nee Sass), Judy Edgar (nee Abbott), Routley, The Grevans, Eunice Zielonko (nee Tomen), Gary Kivell, Linda Johnston, Carol Anne Mackness (nee Magee), and John Cornelius.

  The group was a young award winning choir group who travelled on weekends throughout Ontario, Quebec and the U.S.A. in the early sixties.
  Only six of the fifteen members still live in Chatham.

Photo by Anne-Marie Demore
Source: CDN June 19th 1984

 

 

 

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Junipur 1997

November 2, 2009

Band: Junipur
Release: self-titled
Year: 1997
Home: Chatham-Kent

Junipur, self-titled.  This recording was the first big deal for Spur of the Moment Records.  What can be said?  It is great and was recorded in only 5 hours!  There are hard rockers, poppy wonders, and even an offensive song regarding the circus.  If it wasn’t for these guys, where would Spur of the Moment Records be today?

Tracks
01 
nova scotia
02  empty
03  happy face
04  vw
05  circus song
06  bug
07  signature
08  sweet pain
09  coat
10  jay
11  spider b

  How did they meet? John and Adam were playing around, trying to get somethin started with a fellow named Jon Rose. After they called it quits, they stumbled into Matt Maillet, and soon after Matt introduced himself to Phil Dennis in the halls at school. The rest is history…… After performing at the Blenheim District High School Battle of the Bands in May of ’97, Junipur had secured a place in Spur of the Moments’ lineup. They played with Ben Srokosz’s former band Paisley, (leading to their eventual recording with him), as well as Apocalypse Revolver and local noise band Promise of Chaos. Junipur released their first self titled album, and immediately spread the word. They started playing shows in Chatham, at the CAW hall, and at UCC and CK High Schools. They played a great show with Sonic Unyon Records artists ‘The New Grand’ in Ridgetown, and made quite an impression at Groundstock in Wallaceburg. Soon after it was the Embassy in London, Ontario, and then Molson Sunfest, in summer of ’98, where they clearly controlled the crowd despite performances by a number of talented local artists.

  In July of 1999, Junipur played their final show in Thamesville, Ontario to a crowd of friends, family, and a few new and appreciative faces. The show was truly a culmination of their short lived career, featuring nearly every song the band has ever recorded. The event was video’d for a possible release but after watching the emotional show, Ben decided that the tape would instead be put away as it comes across more like a funeral than a celebration. The performance was powerful and memorable, but one can’t deny the looks on the bands’, and fans’ faces.  (Disbanned 1999)

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Ben Srokosz – 2005 Release

November 2, 2009

Artists: Ben Srokosz
Release: all the broken hearts
Home: Chatham-Kent
Year: 2005

Note: Ben plays all instruments.

  After a five year hiatus, Ben Srokosz is back with “all the broken hearts.”  The songs span those five years, with moods and subjects that reflect the metamorphasis of an indie noise songwriter into a pop driven musician.  Let these 12 songs take you back to the days that Much Music was hyping Sebadoh or chasing the Superfriendz around the entire country.

TRACKS
01  meaning to say
02  fortune
03  the pain
04  impossible
05  my worst mistake
06  life in a small town
07  the road
08  i need you still
09  sleep all day long
10  between us
11  broken hearts

Visit online http://www.spurofthemoment.ca

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Ben Srokosz – Fourth CD

November 2, 2009
Ben_2000Srokosz

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Artists: Ben Srokosz
Release: the grass is greener
Home: Chatham-Kent
Year: 2000

  Who would have known that after three full length albums Ben would still be a solo artist.  Partly due to fizzled out band attempts and a lack of patience, Ben brings us his 4th release, an EP entitled “the grass is greener.”  It is a play on his move to BC.
  The EP features 7 new songs, a cover of “Listen” by Eric’s Trip, and 2 unreleased songs by Ben’s short lived band, Touch Green.
  There you have it, “the grass is greener.”  Be it in someone else’s life or home, or province, or country all Ben could do was write some songs to tell his friends how hard it was to leave, how much he missed them, and how he hoped to return.

Tracks:
01  take a look back
02  the picnic joke
03  ai
04  listen (Eric’s Trip)
05  5 years old
06  the world is waiting
07  its how the story goes
08  name to a face
09  catch the drift
10  everything you want is out of here

Visit online http://www.spurofthemoment.ca

 

 

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Ben Srokosz – choose to decide

November 2, 2009
bensrokosz1999

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Artists: Ben Srokosz
Release: choose to decide
Home: Chatham-Kent
Year: 1999

  Ben’s third album brings change, expansion and experimentation to his music.  New song structures, better production, and a slightly different sound keeps things fresh and satisfying. 
  This is clearly a personal document; “choose to decide” comes in the wake of Touch Green’s break-up, reflecting the band’s influence on Ben’s new music. 
  Best of all, the sound of “choose to decide” is open to many possible directions.  Songs like “fog” and “good to know” tell us that Ben is moving into more uncharted territory and is taking more of the melodic side of his sound to the forefront.

Tracks
01
  why so shy
02  a long way home
03  good to know
04  i’m so tired
05  this day is strange
06  over and under
07  words for june
08  summer
09  the garden
10  its all a matter of thinking
11  blame the names
12  sleep
13  fog
14  just a second
15  mountain skies

Visit online http://www.spurofthemoment.ca

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Ben Srokosz – forward / gradual

November 2, 2009
BenSrokosz1998

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Artists: Ben Srokosz
Release: forward / gradual
Home: Chatham-Kent
Year: 1998

  Ben Srokosz’s 2nd album, Forward/Gradual was recorded to 8-tracks between May 13 and May 28th, 1998 in Ben’s bedroom and shed. It was the first CD release by Spur of the Moment Records. The album wavers between an upbeat celebration and a dark, almost regretful rememberence.

Tracks
01
  forward / gradual
02  personal best
03  one weekend
04  twice, gain
05  before the fall
06  your face
07  afternoon
08  hospital white
09  doubtful
10  perfect life
11  every day i do the same
12  on the escarpment

Visit Ben online here.

 

 

 

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Ben Srokosz 1997

November 2, 2009

Artists: Ben Srokosz
Release: self-titled
Home: Chatham-Kent
Year: 1997

Note: An unexpected release to say the least.  The self-titled debut has indie rock written all over it, with the music composed, recorded, produced, and released entirely by the artist.  An appreciation for this kind experimentation is important when giving the album a first listen.

  The fact is, Ben was not planning on releasing this material and was only documenting demos for possible band use.

  A little rough around the edges, Ben Srokosz was played for friends and family only to receive a mountain of friendly praise and encouragement.

So, slap a cover on it, dub a few copies on a tape deck, and you’ve got yourself the birth of Spur of the Moment Records. Years later Ben would discover how far the tape had travelled, receiving phone calls from CBC radio and other local press to find out what this record label was all about.

Tracks:
01  from the mind of…
02  expiration date
03  blinded
04  in between
05  fireworks & green stars
06  down by the shores
07  :33 seconds
08  night
09  i wander
10  beauty transcends
11  be true
12  send off

Visit Ben online here.

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The Singing Sisters 1967

November 2, 2009


Group: The Singing Sisters
Release: LP
Year: 1967
Label: Calvary
Home: Chatham Ontario Canada
Style: Religious

singingsisters_1967

 

Members:  Mrs. Mcphail (22) and Virginia Golubov (16)

Above PhotoVirginia Golubov, Mrs. Paul Mcphail, ‘Singing Sisters’ with Album of Sacred Songs released today, May 5th 1967.

  A few of the songs included are “His Name Is Wonderful”,  “Held By His Hand’,  “Lord, I Need You”, and “It’s In Your Hands”. The album does not contain original material, but the girls hope to someday write their own music.

  The girls also play their own instruments on this album and have been singing and playing organ, piano and accordion for eight years.

Source: CDN May 5th 1967

If you have a copy of this LP, please email us at:
chatham_music_archive@hotmail.com

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The Long Lots Debut CD 2009

November 2, 2009

Band: The Long Lots
Release: The Long Lots
Year: 2009
Style: Rock
Home: Chatham-Kent

Members
Jay Amerlinck:vocals,guitar.
Jeff O’Rourke:bass.
Jason O’Rourke:drums.
Gary Jongbloed:guitar.

Notes: The Long Lots self titled debut captures all the raw energy of their live performance. Crowd favorites “In Mexico“, and “Candlelight” are an indication of the rock classics we can expect from this 5 piece for years to come.

  If you were alive in the Ontario Indie Scene in the mid 90’s, chances are you came across several of the brainchilds of Jason Amerlink and Gary Jongbloed…..the guitar duo of The Long Lots. Jason fronted two very successful bands, “Velma“, and “The Huskies“, making his mark at indie shows across Southwestern Ontario. After the demise of The Huskies, Jason met up with old pal Gary Jongbloed to form Arecibo, a guitar driven group reminiscent of Tristan Psionic or Polvo. Arecibo were regular openers for the local scenesters but never fully made the scene themselves.

Now the two are bound by blood……brothers in law and are bound by a new band…..The Long Lots. And these guys aren’t fighting to make any scenes today…they are the centre of the indie rock scene in Chatham Kent. In the spirit of brotherhood, they are teamed with ther brotherly rhythm section of Jason O’Rourke (drums), and Jeff O’Rourke (Bass).

Armed with a Blazing live show, The Long Lots are headed to your town. Make sure the fridge is stocked.

Buy the CD here:
Visit the band online here or here.  

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