We had our first performance of 2017 in March at a senior’s residence in West Vancouver. It was an opportunity to learn some songs that were new to us yet familiar to them. We ended with two sing-along songs that were well remembered. However, just to be sure we provided song sheets in 18 font!
As of April Jan retired and it was off to Belize for a vacation. Sig did not want to bring his guitar as the last airplane trip not only cracked the case but also the guitar. But what would a vacation be without music? Jan found a place in Belize to rent a guitar for three weeks. It was locally made and the sound improved when the multi-coloured strings were replaced with some from C. F. Martin.
Traveling with a guitar certainly opened doors for us. In San Pedro on Ambergris Caye, our host, Jack had us at a beachside jam within half an hour of checking in to his place. Jack knew where all the live music was playing every night.
On Caye Caulker we stayed at Gumbo Limbo (named after a local tree). Our hosts Ben and Aria were very pleased to hear our music. When Ben saw Sig’s guitar he offered up his own beautiful, expensive guitar that he had yet to learn to play. We had eaten dinner at a local bar-b-que so we ended up serenading them and other guests while they ate dinner. Ben provided some excellent wine. (insert picture of Gumbo Limbo)
In June we played three original songs for the storytelling group “Around Town Tellers” in Nanaimo. Our songs had to fit with their theme for the evening of “Leave ‘em laughing”. Sig’s songs did just that. Later in June we were invited back to the seniors’ residence in West Vancouver to help them celebrate Canada’s 150th Birthday. Each night leading up to Canada Day they were having performers who would represent music from different regions in Canada. We were asked to represent music from Ontario. What a rich selection of Canadian music from that province. From Gordon Lightfoot to Tragically Hip to Tommy Hunter and of course a few sing-a-long songs including the theme from the Canada Pavilion from Expo 67 – Something to Sing About.
In August our friend Denise had the great idea of going in the MS Bike ride through the Cowichan Valley. She had to fundraise for the entrance fee. Jan asked, “How could we help?” We performed a two-hour house concert which helped to raise over $1300! What a fun evening with door prizes, fabulous food, and weather that cooperated.
In September we were asked back to the Around Town Tellers. This time the theme was Only in Canada. Sig’s songs about the poor choices teenagers make, life on the prairies and wishing for time back with your roots were well received.
Jan has started taking mandolin lessons!
November saw a couple in Ladysmith celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary. We were honored to be hired to play the music for this milestone. From waltzes to old time rock and roll it was wonderful to see great-grandchildren dancing with the older generation. To be asked to share in this event was a pleasure.