Because sometimes they only come through at the last minute, and sometimes they are private functions, and sometimes it is more work to talk about the gigs than to play them, a handful of shows eked out lately that we never mentioned here on our blog, an omission we intend to now correct:
August 22nd, as suggested, we returned to the Trout Lake Community Centre for another delightful outdoor evening concert, courtesy of the Myrtle Family Band who invited us to open. Repeat customers were veritably outraged with delight. One precocious tot wanted us to make impromptu musical arrangements of all of their favorite nursery rhymes — perhaps a project for another time. Only one on this occasion.
September 8th we bravely traversed the Great Ice Wall in order to take up an invitation to perform at the Sh’Bang festival, located in the beautiful Lookout Arts Quarry south of Bellingham.
September 12th we descended into Calabash’s caged basement between drag lip sync acts to enjoy a slice of cake and blitz through a blisteringly short set (prior to an Accordion Noir Festival visit from our visiting Bay Area pal Renee de la Prade on the radio) at the Catalogue of Independent Arts’ launch party for this season’s installment of their “See Seven” catalogue of arts events — for which we were paid in the following swell ad in their pages:
(Now all we need is some more recent gushing copy for our press kit!)
Then we performed Sept 19th at the Stanley Park Rowing Club, an organization counting among its honorary membership British royals who write in with letters of congratulations when their rugby clubs reach a century of age. There we played in support of one of the few Vancouver political organizations with which we could share a room without having to hold our noses: the end-of-summer BBQ of municipal party COPE. Despite preparing a set of old folk songs for, well, old folks, we ended up jamming instrumentals during supper (Fred Bass wanted to know: is that what is called klezmer?) and then, after Ben West spoke at length on many weighty matters, ripping through our power set for the youth slate. (Then getting lost in Stanley Park, then giving Norway’s accordion siren Guro von Germeten a ride back to Geoff Berner’s place from her Accordion Noir radio appearance!)
(Photos courtesy of AHA Media. SpongeDev not depicted due to late arrival 8)
Finally, despite rodents and humans coming together to coordinate elaborate preparations, we did not manage to field a physical presence last night, October 6th, at the eleventh annual Horace Phair party in Portland over Columbus Day (Wyoming Johnny did, but it takes at least two to be a “we”. Blackbox’s excuse is his accordion’s tapeworm.) Nonetheless, hearkening way back to the ridiculous technological underpinnings of our initial association with our jolly chums there, we managed to set up a videoconference through Google+ Hangouts (Skype wouldn’t return a picture from our end!) and after some awkward small talk played a set as an international duet over broadband, Johnny live in a Portland Saluthaus living room with a banjo and Blackbox in HIS Vancouver living room on accordion and banjo-ukulele, with guest Plank appearances for the first time from his pets Jim Casy the cat and Pickles the dog. Songs We Never Play Anymore came out for fans from way back, and were sung along to with minimal latency, making for the second most memorable tele-presence at this year’s party. If you can’t be there, this was a distant consolation prize, but a virtual party is better than a kick in the pants. We will drown our sorrows in turkey.
Did You Know that the Creaking Planks have a fan page on Google+? Strange but true.