Big Season Finish For The St. Lawrence Stage 7 May 2011 by Reg Coffey
Morrisburg ON – This was the last concert of the season for the St. Lawrence Accoustic Stage Performances Inc. and it was a big one. Not only did they have 6 different artists/groups perform but they also have silent auction and raffle that was conducted by none other than Melanie McDonald of General Electryk fame.
The performers for the evening were, in order, Stephanie Coleman, Roxanne Delage, Derek Roche, Catalina (Rebekka and Colby), David Simard and Roses. Each artist performed three songs.
This is my fourth review of the St. Lawrence Stage productions this year and I just want to point out something to you readers. I am neither a musician nor a journalist. OK, I do have a couple of acoustic guitars sitting in a closet that I haven’t even restrung in five years much less played them but then there are people that will tell you that I never really could play them. I have also never taken a journalism class or even a creative writing class. What I am getting at is I am just an ordinary person who likes to go to music concerts. I am audience, with a camera.
I tend to heavily plagiarize the brochure the program that is produced for the concert. I don’t know who writes it but they are very poetic in their descriptions of the featured artists and also very honest. A lot of times I just can’t think of any better words to use so I steal them, just look for the quotation marks.
So first up for the evening was Stephanie Coleman. She is a singer/songwriter from the Cornwall Area and a repeat performer at the St. Lawrence Stage. From the moment she started singing I knew this was going to be a special evening and I was going to be recording a lot of performances. I’ll let her video speak for her talent.
Roxanne is another Cornwall singer/song writer with oodles of talent and stage presence (she performed in her bare feet). No I don’t have a foot fetish. It’s just that her stage presence gave the impression of a free spirit and her performance confirmed that. I couldn’t decide on which song to post as a video so I combined all three.
Derek is a very talented musician who I’m afraid that I may have upset (slightly) when I compared him to James Taylor. Apparently, he gets that a lot. So in order to properly describe this very talented and unique performer I am going to default to the brochure material.
“ Derek Roche from Ottawa is a versatile singer, songwriter and musician who plays a variety of styles from folk to soft rock, country, regae, blues, funk and jazz on a variety of instruments including guitar, flute, piano and percussion.”
This brother and sister duo are rising country stars from Maitland, Ontario. Their big “Nashville Sound” has earned them a contract with Sun Records based in Nashville. This is not their first appearance at the St. Lawrence Stage and hopefully it will not be their last.
“Borne at the foot of the mountains on the northern coast of British Colombia, David Simard now calls Montreal Home. Described as an Avant-garde folk singer, David has been getting some due attention. As a result of his captivating live shows his name recently appeared on the Montreal Mirror list for “Best Country/Folk Act 2009”.”
In my opinion they are going to have to come up with a new category for David. I found his performance to be melancholy and haunting but at the same time fresh and exciting. If the name tragically hip wasn’t already taken, I would say that was the best description I could come up with. I hope he returns to the stage in the future.
“With soaring vocals comparable to those of Joni Mitchell and Kate Bush, Roses is turning heads, but what might capture your interest more, is the vulnerability in her self expression, and the honesty that are her words set on a backdrop of folk/alt-country, for this EP, Roses self titled first, is a real gem.”
I’ve just been listening to the Roses CD that I bought after the show and I can’t think of any better words to describe what I hear.
You can only imagine my surprise when at the end of the program the St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage board members got up on stage to thank all the volunteers and performers for a successful season and then did this….
It made my day, if not the whole year. Thanks to the members of the board Jeanne Ward, Derek Hunter, Bill Carriere and Sandra Whitworth and all the volunteers for putting on a great series of concerts.
Next Season at the St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage.
The 2011/12 season kicks off on September 24, 2011 with Juno award winning artist Serena Ryder.
Now that is one I will not miss. Hope to see you there. You can check out all of the scheduled concerts at their web site.