Bud’s Bar and Lounge in Invermere will continue to bring great music into the Columbia Valley when Andrea Ramolo and her band perform on April 27.
Ramolo is a tough-edged singer-songwriter who is on tour in support of her new CD,“The Shadows and the Cracks”. It’s been two and a half years since Andrea Ramolo released her first indie album “Thank You for the Ride”.
Since then she has criss-crossed Canada playing more than 400 shows.
“My travels have made me extremely rich with experience. Over the past few years I’ve learned more about the people and places in this country better than any book or map could have taught me. It’s extremely hard work to route the trip, book all the shows, secure key publicity, etc… but it always pays off. My duo partner Jason Skiendziel and I have played for 10 people in towns of no more than 200 to 15,000 people at big summer folk fests and outdoor corporate events. It’s been a blast and my songwriting has matured because of it. I have such a deep appreciation for our land and the diverse cultures that inhabit it. I think I’m pretty blessed to do what I do and I try not to take it for granted.”
Ramolo said she feels very lucky with the progression of her career. “My career in music developed pretty quickly and I think that my past experiences as a competitive dancer and actor helped me in teaching me certain skills that are also needed in the field of music. For instance, I’ve always been really comfortable on stage in a performance setting and love storytelling so engaging my audience is something I look forward to instead of fearing. I think the greatest challenge, especially for roots artists in this country, is how to find a way to make a good enough living doing what we do. Whether that’s coming up with the secret that will help pack live music venues again, or attempting to change the format of mainstream radio so that me and my pals across the country are getting enough exposure to have a decent following,” she said.
Ramolo went on to talk about how the way music gets to listeners has added some extra challenges for musicians. “And then there’s the decline of the record store. People used to line up to buy albums back in the day. Now, a lot of music if available for free and I think that’s devalued what artists do and what they’re selling. Canada as a country is pretty supportive of the arts, with granting foundations like FACTOR and the Canada Council for the Arts, both to whom I am extremely grateful. But I think we can still make the creative arts a priority and funnel arts money back into schools so that students grow up learning the value and importance of creative expression. So yes… the biggest challenge is making a decent living. I have had to juggle a few jobs on the side to make sure my rent is paid… I’m also a substitute teacher on the side.”
This will not be the first time she has played in Invermere and Ramolo is happy to be returning to a place where the people responded in a positive manner to what she does.
As for what people can expect if they come out to her show, Ramolo said “This is the first tour that I’m doing with a full band. It’s definitely a moody show, with moments of intimacy and beautiful instrumentation provided by my band. We’re also gonna rock a couple of songs and you may even catch me tap dancing. The amazing Sean Pinchin will be opening for our shows across the country and will also play lead guitar in my band. The songs are rootsy, with hints of blues, rock, folk, and country… and I’m hoping that people will be stomping their feet, singing along, or made to reflect. At the very least, it’ll be a great time.”