BANFF – “Here I go, on a roll, heart feeling full, slow steady pull. Guess I’ll just savour it.”
The lyrics of Banff-songstress Amelie Patterson’s last single “Everything, Nothing", which was released in March, ring true as she savours a return to performing in the Bow Valley for the first time in more than 20 months.
“I am really delighted to check in with the pulse of my hometown again to see how people are, and just express my gratitude for their support. I want to see people out and enjoying themselves in this special community,” Patterson said.
Patterson, the inaugural poet laureate of Banff, will be performing at The Radiant, a venue that was able to get its feet wet in the music scene last year and hopes to build on that experience.
“As I’ve slowly gotten back into doing shows over the past month, people have been asking me if I’ve heard of the new venue called The Radiant,” said Patterson while laughing.
She describes the venue as an intimate venue for local artists and is eager to connect with her audience. Owner of The Radiant, Sebastian Hutchings, echoes Patterson’s sentiment and is excited about the return of live music.
“Live music provides moments of spontaneity, makes emotions tangible, and brings people together. While that is a very cliche thing to say, I think this past year has proven how true it is," said Hutchings. "People eating in a room together are not necessarily having the same experience. But add live music, especially music that is able to transcend every day experience, and there is an immediate connectivity."
Patterson’s music has evolved during the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the pandemic, she opted for songs that built to large emotional peaks and now she has transitioned to songs with harmonies and where she can share a dialogue with the audience.
“I like songs where I can tell a good story beforehand and the reason that I wrote it,” said Patterson. “Right now, I really enjoy playing more mellow, peaceful songs. I like to walk into a venue and feel like I am playing in my living room or your living room.”
Throughout the pandemic, she has worked on writing her music. Her focus has been looking at the pandemic as a positive and writing about things that inspire her and that she is thankful for. She admitted she is sitting on a lot of unreleased music and is excited to be able to test it out on a live audience.
“I have a fair amount of untested songs and I don’t really know the vibe of them until I perform them for an audience – until I feel that give-and-take," she said.
She said it’s easier to release new music when there are tour dates and new music. Patterson said before the pandemic she did not realize just how important live shows were.
“I always liked performing, but I definitely considered myself more of a writer than a performer. I never gave enough credit to the give-and-take that happens when you’re in a live setting. It’s informative – playing live.”
Patterson returns to the Banff stage on Sunday, Sept. 12 at 8 p.m. Visit theradiantbanff.ca for tickets.