Thursday, May 6, 2010

Your Song @ Cantos - Salute to Elton John

In sync with the Alberta Ballet’s production of Love Lies Bleeding, the Canto Music Foundation invited prominent Calgary musicians to perform their choice Elton John song, Wednesday evening, May 5, 2010. The result was Your Song: Calgary Artists Salute Elton John, featuring Elton John’s song writing piano. The performing artists included Simon Fisk with Sheldon Zandboer, Kris Demeanor with Anne Loree, Matt Masters with Earl McCauley, Donald Ray Johnson, Lynn Olagundoye with Chris Maric, Onalea Gilbertson and Jay Crocker. They used the piano that Elton John used to write hundreds of songs, probably between the late 1960s and early 1970s.

My favorite performances of the evening were Kris Demeanor, with Anne Loree on keys, doing "Western Ford Gateway" from Elton John's Empty Sky album; Donald Ray Johnson performing a very spiritual version of Elton John's "Border Song," and Onalea Gilbertson finishing the evening with "Your Song." Earl McCauley and Matt Masters performed a country song from Elton John's Tumbleweed Connection album that was very good. Their bassist and backup singer played some very smooth bass riffs. (I wish I could remember her name.) Charismatic Andrew Mosker, Cantos' executive director, hosted the event. In between performances he added trivia about the musicians, Cantos, and, of course, Elton John. He also spoke of their plans for the King Eddy site where Cantos will be moving their collection, setting up sound and recording stages, and reviving the Blues at the Eddy. Definitely something to look forward to.


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