From across Canada and across the Atlantic, The Banff Centre will kick off its new The Club Series, this fall.
The Club Series was created with the goal of putting indie and emerging artists in front of music lovers in the Bow Valley.
Up first will be Vancouver’s Juno Award-winning Said the Whale, with Regina’s Rah Rah opening on Sept. 23.
The five-piece Said the Whale offers a sunny blend of West Coast acoustic rock, while seven-piece indie rockers Rah Rah were named Best New Canadian Band and Best New Indie Band by iTunes in 2009.
“The Banff Centre has always brought in world-classs artists from around the world,” said David Cseke, assistant manager presenting, “but we wanted to start a new series and thought we’d look at up-and-coming indie and emerging artists.
“In the past, we’ve had a theatre setting, but The Club offers a licenced, cabaret-style venue. You can have a beverage and relax and chat with other Bow Valley residents.”
For now, The Club Series has booked four artists this fall – retro rocker Micheal Rault (who was recently opening for Bedouin Soundclash) is in on Oct. 2, Juno-nominated Danny Michel plays solo on Oct. 6 and the fall series will wrap up with Icelander Ragnar Kjartansson’s Country & Western Hour, Oct. 18.
The series will extend into winter with a couple of artists already booked.
“Ragnar is at The Banff Centre on a visual arts residency,” said Cseke. “In Iceland, he’s pop royalty on par with Bjork. We said it’d be fantastic if he could play the club while he’s here and he’s going to be joined by (jass musician) Davío Pór Jónsson and (artist and videographer) Ásdís Sif Gunnarsdóttir.
“He rarely does a performance of this type, with art and a performance at the same time, so it should be a very interesting night.”
Openers Said the Whale, said Cseke, “are working on their third CD and they’re a fantastic band which is well-known and will create a buzz to kick off the series.
“We’ve tried to really mix it up with the artists. We’re promoting mostly Canadian music and we’re trying to keep tickets prices low ($15) so everyone can experience these artists. In bigger cities, you’d pay $25 or $30 to see these artists and if you pay for three artists in the series, it’s only $33.
“We want to keep ticket prices low, promote the artists and hopefully the community will come out and experience these artists. We’re going after quality artists with this series and I think it will be a love fest all the way around.”