Sherwood Brewery started hosting the Shaker roughly once a season to showcase local and regional musical talent. (Facebook photo)

COLUMN: Music Matters by Cameron Bell

Sherwood Shaker brings out best in local music

By Cameron Bell

“The best were smiling and amazed by his performance including Percy, Brad North and Wayne Sheridan,” says Daryl, reflecting on young Dylan Gagnon’s performance.

“Those three are the talent and the old guards,” he says, naming off regulars in the local music scene that attended the Sherwood Shaker last Sunday. Well known for his skills as a brewmaster, Daryl Tucker has also been involved in the local music scene for over two decades, starting with his role booking entertainment for George’s Pub in the ’90s.

Now that he has a venue to offer, it was a natural progression to start hosting Sherwood Sessions a few years ago, and the soon-to-be-infamous Sherwood Shakers more recently.

Inspired by similar events at a country bar in Calgary where Daryl worked for several years, he borrowed the name to start hosting his own celebrations of local music. After hosting a couple successful parties at the brewery that included food and music, he started organizing the Shaker roughly once a season, on the Sunday of a long weekend with a holiday Monday.

From mid-afternoon till the early evening, a local host manages the sign-up list and keeps the crowd lively for the open mic portion of the event. Food from local favourites like Kitimat’s PF Bistro is laid out on a long table amidst the brew tanks, and the audience oscillates between the patio and the bar. As the crowd grows later in the day, so does excitement for the headliner, a local band that caps off the event with a full set. Prize giveaways at intermission keep people excited about their favourite brewery, which also released the new Kasiks Kolsch beer in conjunction with the event.

Last week’s edition of the Shaker featured Nathan Meakes as the host, who also performed some grungy punk and rock tunes on acoustic under the name “Bulltrout.” Local bands The Counterfeit Saints and Rutabaga Dirtbags shared their unique and energetic sounds with the crowd, while YTRhymz brought some hip hop and rap to keep the day diverse and get the crowd’s hands in the air. Daryl’s favourite part of the afternoon is the actual jams, like Meg Hoole’s performance of Sweet Home Chicago with Percy and Jeff on guitars, Jerry on drums, and Kyle contributing some vocals.

And of course it’s great to see all the young, old, new, and experienced musicians getting on stage and sharing their songs with a supportive crowd.

The headliner for the past couple Shakers has been Fictional Kings, a tight four-piece indie rock band that always brings out a good crowd. I wrote last month’s article about those guys, but I have to give them another shout out for consistently putting on stellar shows and playing some of the most distinct and interesting rock music in the northwest.

As the night drew to a close there were plenty of calls for encores, shout-outs to Daryl and the brewery staff, and reminders to get home safe and enjoy the rest of the weekend.

With sessions every few weeks and shakers every few months, Sherwood has solidified their role in the music scene of northwest B.C. The shaker is an amazing opportunity to play, listen, and hang out with other music lovers, and a perfect incubator for new musical projects, like the common idea of starting a “big band” in Terrace that features all the musical talent our town has to offer.

“Craft music and music pair well!” as Daryl says, so we’ll see you at the next Shaker on November 10.

Music Matters is one of four columns by local writers that explore Northwest food, music, art and mental wellness.

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