Category Archives: Future Stars

Zoe Young’s “Cold Fish”

Meaford is full of young musical talent, as we saw this summer with all of the great young performers who were part of the Meaford Summer Concert Series at the town square.  Not all of them will go on to become musicians but it is likely that some will.

Here’s a special treat.  Zoe Young has only written one song and she doesn’t spend a lot of time performing but this one song is a great one, summing up in a wry way the attitude that some girls have about boys.  This is an informal video recorded in her sun/music room at home.

Zoe is part of a musical family.  Her mother Diana regularly performs at various open stages and her sister Eden was lead singer of an impressive band called “Cry For Ophelia” that was part of the summer series.

Zoe is taking a year off after graduating from high school.  She’s not sure what the future holds but she is preparing for it by building a “tiny house” in her parents driveway, simultaneously a learning experience and an exercise in independence.  When Zoe leaves home she will be taking her own home with her.

Enjoy this beguiling ditty, “Cold Fish”

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Jayden Grahlman

Jayden Grahlman will be playing the patio at Captains Corner from six to nine this Thursday, Aug. 25th.  His sound will be competing across the Market Square with another exceptional local talent, Drew McIvor, but Drew’s show at Terrace Thursdays is already sold out so fans of excellent music can migrate across the street.

In Meaford there is a small coterie of performers that get out often to play, catching the opportunity at both the open mic stages and at a variety of gigs.  Each of them has something special to offer and, playing as often as they do, they are getting better all the time.  One of these is Jayden Grahlman.

In addition to being an excellent guitarist, Jayden is a bright ray of sunshine everywhere he goes, with a disposition that makes you feel good just to speak to him.  And while he’s made his reputation locally as a guitar player, he is also a great songwriter.  These days he has added teacher to his resume, passing on his skills to young local players who want to learn guitar or ukulele.

The Road Heavy Strong Opener for Jeff Martin

 

The Road Heavy will join Jeff Martin on an Ontario tour over the next month

The Road Heavy will join Jeff Martin on an Ontario tour over the next month

Fans of good ol’ boys’ Southern Rock are going to like The Road Heavy when they open for Jeff Martin at Meaford Hall on July 12th.  To get a sense of the sound imagine a band with vocals shared by Gregg Allman and Allanah Myles for starters.

Pat James and Jules Cardoso add exceptional vocal power to the band.

Pat James and Jules Cardoso add exceptional vocal power to the band.

Those voices belong to Pat James and Jules Cardoso and when they join each other on a song it’s a bonus, like hearing your favourite rock singers in a duet for the first time.  With piercing guitar leads from Ryan Blake, solid bass and drums from Andre DeSilva and Jeff Cox, it’s a sound that’s going to set hearts thumping when it fills the Opera House.  The band is just getting started but they have the sound of road heavy rock warriors that have spent years in the trenches.

A new band with a bright future

A new band with a bright future

This is another one of those chances offered by Meaford Hall to see somebody before they get too big for our little town.

They’ve just released their second single, “Words Don’t Mean A Thing”, along with a video.  You can hear how the power chords and the lyrics are custom made to set off the talent of the two singers.  It’s a strong emotional song that brings back the era of classic rock when music was real and packed a punch.

Whatever the weather forecasts on Tuesday, you’ll be working up a sweat in Meaford Hall when The Road Heavy hammers out their set.

The show starts at 8 p.m., tickets are $35 and are available at the Meaford Hall Box Office

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To check out Jeff Martin’s music click on album cover:

To check out The Road Heavy’s music, click on the album cover:

 

Rain Couldn’t Dampen The Canada Day Party

We’d all been waiting every day for the rain to arrive.  The farmers needed it, the lawns and the gardens needed it.  Finally it came.  Unfortunately it timed its arrival to coincide with the outdoor festivities that happened downtown all day.  At the Market Square, where several hours of entertainment had been planned for the bandshell at the west end of the square, Amber Knott, coordinator of the day’s events, and Johnny Roy, who organized most of the live music, both scrambled to adapt, with the help of Chris Scerri, who was kicking off his Meaford Summer Concert Series as the climax of the day.  The stage and sound system were set up in the tent at the other end of the square where the Rotary Club was selling drinks along with hamburgers and hot dogs.

When Too Nice, the reggae band from Barrie, kicked things off at three the crowd was thin, many driven away by the rain.  But they brought a lot of energy and bounce to the stage from their first song, drawing cheers from those who were there, and coaxing the sun from behind the clouds.

Too Nice brightened up a rainy day with their infectious rhythms

Too Nice brightened up a rainy day with their infectious rhythms

The band ran through an entire catalogue of reggae and ska tunes, ranging from Desmond Dekker to Sting, with a lot of Bob Marley in the mix.  Their performance was worthy of a much larger crowd but  by the time they finished the tent had filled up and new fans gathered around to buy their CDs.

Johnny Roy was really the hero of the day.  He had booked all of the bands except the finale and he was on hand to make sure that each of them had the sound set up they needed.  And then he played with two of them.

River and Rock's Beaker Grainger grins at Johnny Roy the rock solid foundation of the day's music

River and Rock’s Beaker Grainger grins at Johnny Roy the rock solid foundation of the day’s music

The second band on the bill was River and Rock, built around the songwriting and singing of Beaker Grainger.  They started out with three originals and then followed them with several covers ranging from The Beatles to The Band.  As the afternoon progressed, the tent filled with more people.

Shane Cloutier, powerhouse guitarist, singer and songwriter

Shane Cloutier, powerhouse guitarist, singer and songwriter

Shane Cloutier’s trio notched up the energy with some great renditions of familiar tunes, many of them guitar centred to showcase Shane’s remarkable chops.  This is where Johnny Roy really had a chance to shine as part of a trio of excellent musicians, each of whom was full of energy and technique.  It was a rocking set that lasted through the dinner hour and had the crowd in the palm of its hand.

Emma Wright, the little girls with the great big voice, held the audience spellbound

Emma Wright, the little girl with the great big voice, held the audience spellbound

Emma Wright took the stage to sing three songs.  Tempting as it is to focus on the fact that she is a twelve year old girl,that is irrelevant when you hear her sing.  Her powerful voice carried away the audience and prepared them to welcome the feature act, Tyler Yarema and His Rhythm.

Tyler Yarema and his Rhythm

Tyler Yarema and his Rhythm

Tyler began by saying how happy he was to be back in Meaford and his band, with drums, sax and upright bass, lived up to their name from the start and through the entire set with songs that mostly dipped deep into the history of blues piano, from the beginning of the Twentieth Century when New Orleans was bringing a new fire to popular music that originated in the bawdy houses of the Storyville district where jazz was born.  The joint was jumpin’.  Dancers began to fill the empty spaces on the floor and at the front, where kids had hovered around the stage all day, they began a frantic display of acrobatic dancing complete with cartwheels.

Gracie returned the love of the crowd with an outstanding performance

Gracie returned the love of the crowd with an outstanding performance

When Tyler brought Gracie up on stage it was clear that the crowd remembered her from previous appearances and she was greeted with whistles and cheers before she sang a note.  She reflected the enthusiasm of the audience with a number of songs she made her own, from a reggae/jazz inspired version of Sam Cooke’s “Cupid” to a couple of dark Amy Winehouse songs that were vehicles for her impressive vocal chops.

The show carried through until the fireworks began and everyone in the tent was lifted to a party mood by a great day of music.

Happy Canada Day!

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