On Tuesday, November 30th, 2010, the Vogue Theatre played host to three bands with three very different, distinct styles. They drew a crowd as diverse as their music, but age and differences were forgotten with the first strum of guitar strings.
Alberta native, Michael Rault, was first to take the stage. He opened as a one man show, mesmerizing the crowd with his ability to sing, play guitar, and kick a couple of drums all at the same time. His vintage look complimented his southern, bluesy sound, and his quick tempo tunes kept our feet tapping along throughout his performance. This one man show wouldn’t stay solo for long, however. After a few songs, Michael invited his sister Emily on stage to accompany him for the rest of the set. Together they won over the crowd song after song, with a little help from Charlie Winston’s bandmates as well. Maybe genetics played a role, but this brother-sister duo fit together perfectly, with impressive harmonies and soothing vocals that had the crowd mesmerized at times, and on their feet, dancing at others. Vancouver definitely took a liking to the pair, and Michael even managed to steal a few hearts that night as a chorus of girls screamed, “I love you!” It was a great way to kick off an awesome night of music.
Next up was the musical stylings of Charlie Winston and his very talented band. There was no holding the crowd back as Charlie and the boys launched into their set full of big sound, and arguably bigger dance moves. Charlie Winston proved that he is a true performer in every sense of the word by showcasing his immense, diverse, range of talent, and charm. Throughout the course of the evening, he showed off insane beat-boxing, whistling, and dancing skills that we believe even fellow Englishman Chris Martin would be impressed with. We’re quite confident that he busted out The Worm at one point – man, he’s cool! Charlie fully owned the crowd’s attention, and incorporated lots of audience participation that the fans were happy to provide. He knew exactly how to work the crowd; hands waving, vocal chords straining, the audience was captivated and loving every second of his performance. Just when we thought he couldn’t do any more, he walked through the swarm of screaming fans surrounding the stage, jumped on top of a couple of vacant seats, and gave the screaming fans a truly up-close and personal performance. This is what music is supposed to be about. And while the talent pulsing through the Vogue that Tuesday night was outstanding on all accounts, for us – these guys stole the show.
With the crowd riled up and more than a few beers deep, it was time for Vancouver’s own Bedouin Soundclash to bring it all home. As their first notes echoed through the theatre, Vancouverites warmly welcomed them home with big cheers. Their smooth, reggae jams went down easy and it wasn’t long before plumes of smoke filled the air. The guys enlightened us with a mellow, soulful side, performing songs like, “A Chance of Rain”, and “Life is a gun”. A definite highlight was their performance of “12:59 Lullaby,” which Jay dedicated to Eon. This heartfelt song’s dedication brought forth a thank you from the humbled and oh-so-adorable bassist, and displayed bandmate love at its best. Then, to ensure no band mate went unnoticed, Sekou took the stage and graced the crowd with an insane drum solo, which moved him across the stage while never stopping his beats once. He’s no ordinary drummer boy, just to be clear. Off to the side, Jay and Eon watched and cheered with a look of infinite admiration in their eyes. The dynamic of this group warmed our hearts as we were able to witness the strength of their amazing partnership. If that wasn’t enough to win the crowd over, then the events that followed definitely would. Jay spoke humbly about the thrill of being at home and performing amongst family and friends. He went on to speak about his sister, a teacher, who continually inspires him to do good through his music. It was then that he welcomed to the stage a very special group of people who have served as an inspiration to him. They weren’t very tall, but they had big dreams, and even bigger smiles. Joining Bedouin center stage was a group of about 20 young kids from the St. James Music Academy, located in Vancouver’s downtown East Side. Together they sang, “Here I Am”, and in that moment the theatre united, and not one person was left sitting. It was incredible to witness these amazing kids doing something they loved, and seeing the pride and excitement on all their faces. Charlie Winston and crew, as well as Michael and Emily, then joined Bedouin and the kids on stage for a few final collaborations, including the feel-good classic, “Hey Beautiful Day”.
All of the artists put on a great show, and truly provided an awesome night of music. The cohesive dynamic of all three acts was undeniable and evident in the many collaborations showcased throughout the night. Each artist brought something new to the table, and kept the crowd not only on their feet, but dancing as if no one was watching. We don’t know where Vancouver was hiding all of these dance moves, but we definitely saw more than the average fist pump we have come to expect.
Thanks for a very memorable night, Vancouver. Let’s do this again soon. – Yours truly, Katie & Aleisha (@bottledsound)A Note From Jeremy: Looking for more photos? I’ve got you covered on Flickr. Like what you see? Stay in touch! Find me Twitter and Facebook, and don’t forget to give Katie and Aleisha a shout as well!