Ghostkeeper, Gianna Lauren,. . . & A LOT More NOT at Sled Island. Pt. 4

by Carey Rutherford

Well. Hell.

http://www.calgaryherald.com/entertainment/unsinkable+sled+island+oral+history+near+death+resurgence+calgary+indie+rock+festival/9929274/story.html

There’s Good News and there’s Bad News.

The Good News Is:

As a little bit of a multi-media freak, your humble writer has begun incorporating audio clips from the +100 interviews that have been recorded since beginning this Live Music column for Examiner in 2009. Half of those were for other publications, but that still leaves 40-50 interview excerpts from folk musicians, rock bands, alternative groups and classical superstars (yes, an actual STAR!), with the purpose of giving you a peek at the enthusiastic sharing these artists inevitably demonstrate.

The ‘Star’ is below (which I did NOT publish in the now-defunct Examiner) to give you a taste. The lady herein has won Grammys, Junos, the Order of Canada, AND the Order of the British Empire. Definitely a force to be reckoned with, is Angela Hewitt: The Challenge of Bach

The Bad News Is . . . well, did you read the headlines??

Photo courtesy of Sled Island

Though the Sled Island festival was slated for June 19th – 22nd, there was so much interest and participation that events actually started on the 18th and at its peak was scheduled to continue to the 25th. By Wednesday the 20th, however, the rains were on and the river was rising, events were being reorganized, and the Sled Island website continued to reshuffle possible performers on stages to replace missing artists. cancelled stages, or whatever was happening.

However, with roads closing and downtown areas being evacuated, there was a great deal of uncertainty in the air.

Thursday would have been all that was necessary for your MUSICAlive! writer: 3 of the performers interviewed here (Mark Grundy, Gianna Lauren and Shane Ghostkeeper) would be performing in the southwest-ish quadrant of the city centre. And what’s a little (lot of) rain to music-lovers, anyway? C’mon, we can get through this, right?
The rest, as they say, is history: on Thursday morning, the Sled Island Music Festival organizers began announcing that they were pulling the plug, because of risks to performers and participants, and by Friday the Bow River flood plain in the centre of Calgary was a swimming pool. A swimming pool incorporating 20 residential neighbourhoods and the business centre of the city. No biggie.
In the Saddledome, (Calgary’s NHL arena) a five-minute drive from City Hall, the water reached the 25th row.

The immediate response for the artists who wanted to offer some assistance, somehow, was to re-organize into events to benefit the affected areas and citizens of our flooded city: a ‘Flood Island’ event occurred on the 23rd; other individual artists organized events that same weekend; and benefits continue to pop up in Calgary.
So, if you couldn’t manage the Sled because of a little water, try to get out to the numerous fundraising events that say things like “$10 MINIMUM DONATION 100% of donations and silent auction will be donated to flood relief aid.”

Ah, well: there’s still The Stampede!!! Yeeee-haaw!

June 28, 2014