Good Times & Hard Times at the Log Drive Café

When we were thinking about a possible theme for the next Log Drive Café, we wanted something that would help incorporate the talents of our friends from songcircle, Rodney Norman and Carol Michalyna. Rodney has a huge repertoire of English music hall songs and Carol often sings Irish songs, and many in both categories are comic in nature. We also wanted to showcase the duo of Neville Miller and Gail Anglin, who have developed a very professional show with a variety of songs in close harmony. Gail is also a well known storyteller in Ottawa. 

Ranald came up the Good Times & Hard Times theme, and I think it will be an interesting focus for the evening. What strikes me as I think about my repertoire through this lens is that many songs combine comedy and tragedy: the tune may be cheerful and comic while the subject matter is tragic; the events may work out very well for some of the characters but not so well for others; or the same characters may experience good times and hard times within the same song.

I will post more information about each of the singers in the coming weeks, but in the meantime I hope you all mark your calendars and share the information with others in your networks. See you on September 27.

Good Times & Hard Times
at the Log Drive Café

Neville Miller & Gail Anglin
Rodney Norman & Carol Michalyna
Ranald Thurgood & Maura Volante

Friday, September 27, 2013

Abbotsford Recreation Centre
950 Bank Street across from Lansdowne Park
Doors 7, music 7:30 to 9:00
$7 at the door

Let’s laugh together and perhaps shed a tear as we sing along with traditional folk songs, led by three pairs of singers presenting the tragic and comic aspects of the human experience. Doomed love affairs, practical jokes, industrial accidents and buffoons of all kinds come to life in these old songs.

Each pair will take centre stage while the others (along with the audience) add their voices on the choruses. These duos have been singing together for many years and all six singers have sung together frequently at songcircles and concerts.

The Log Drive Café, a venue for traditional singing, was initiated in 2012 as an all-ages program of Abbotsford House, a recreation centre for older adults. Everyone attending is encouraged to sing along, in this intimate and welcoming setting, with tea, coffee and goodies available to sweeten the experience.


About Maura Volante

Maura Volante is a talented and experienced performer. Although she has written many songs over the years, her main focus these days is traditional folk songs. These are songs that have stood the test of time and have an enduring quality that speaks directly and clearly to the human experience. They also tell us about our history. Because these songs are not commonly sung in these post-folk-revival times in which folk music generally means singer-songwriter material, Maura has taken on the project of helping to keep this valuable material alive. Her specialty is Canadian folk songs, but she knows many songs from the British Isles and the USA as well. All her concerts and other programs are designed with group singing in mind. Whether in a concert, a tour, a social gathering, a classroom, a festival or a conference hall, Maura creates an encouraging atmosphere, relaxed and inclusive. She uses her strong voice and facilitation techniques to bring out the best possible music with these voices in this moment. Maura firmly believes that everyone can sing and, moreover, that everyone has a right to sing and be part of group singing activities, without judgement or criticism. No matter what the various skill levels of participants may be in any group singing activity, it always sounds good in a group, because the voices naturally attune with each other. Maura also teaches and calls contra dancing and simpler forms of traditional dancing suitable for all ages, often incorporating group singing into the dancing through the use of play party songs, which are sung by the whole group as they dance.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s