Join the National Music Centre (NMC) and CKUA host Lisa Wilton for a concert and conversation with indie-soul darling Uyemi, psych-pop group Kue Varo & The Only Hopes, and alt-roots band Cold Little Crow in recognition of International Women's Day.
In addition to the event, visitors are encouraged to explore the stories and achievements of the many women in music who are woven throughout the museum, from Buffy Sainte-Marie to k.d. lang and Portia White to Avril Lavigne.
Uyemi is a singer songwriter from Calgary, Canada. She creates uplifting songs through the belief of affirmations in combination with a reflection towards personal development — in return birthing compositions of a diaristic nature that pull you in with a sense of relatability. From experience in the studio to a refreshing morning bowl of new sounds. Spotted in many acclaimed projects like the Arts Incubator, Canada’s Searchlight Top 100, RBCxMusic and a feature in Complex Canada, she was selected to perform at this year’s Play The Parks Presented by TD Music Connected Series in Calgary, as well as CIFF in 2022, who featured her single, “Mindful,” from her latest EP. Uyemi is a flowering bud in the industry and continues to explore life and music side by side.
About Kue Varo & The Only Hopes:
Like a magic gramophone found during a stay at a desert compound, the dusk-tinged songs of Kue Varo & the Only Hopes are ethereal yet immediate, shrouded in mist but immediately distinct. The titular Varo leads the group with lyrics, vocals, guitar and more, but her trusty Only Hopes help bring to life the music that carries her grit-marked, dramatic vocals through your ears and into your soul.It all began in 2021 when Varo connected with multi-instrumentalist Bob Quaschnick in her previous home of Montreal. The two found a heart-first songwriting dynamic that was akin to alchemy, birthing songs with a natural chemistry you can hear on tracks that alternate between breezy and severe. Finally, the lineup was rounded out by Matt Doherty on drums and Connor Harvey-Derbyshire on bass and synth. Cut to now and the band has been selected for residencies at Calgary’s Grand Theatre and the TD Incubator at Arts Commons, and appeared at major indie festivals Big Winter Classic and Sled Island.Not ones to lose momentum, the group has just released their debut track Feelin’ Lucky and will follow that up with an EP in spring of 2023. All of which was produced by JUNO Award-winner Russell Broom (Art Bergmann, Jann Arden, The Last Waltz Remembered), each track sheds a bit more light on Varo and her troupe. Their origin story, the changes they’ve gone through and even the occult influences behind their sound come into vivid focus, with hooks aplenty spread across songs that run from southern art-rock to gothic folk to psych-pop.
About Cold Little Crow:
Cold Little Crow is a five-piece, angst-folk, alt-roots band, based out of Calgary, Alberta, emphasized by dual female vocals, mandolin, and three supporting compatriots. Like a heavy soul with its head in the clouds, the band’s music carries both the darkness that floats on top of minor chords, and an excited energy that comes with a fast-snare and a rolling low-end.Built around warm acoustic melodies, complimented by some telecaster twang, locked rhythms and the aforementioned mandolin, the band is comprised of five friends who pride themselves on being those you can share a drink (or drinks) with. And while their influences cover musical styles the world over, the band has settled nicely into the comfy cabin that is Cold Little Crow; having been compared to the likes of Brandi Carlisle, Morgan Wade, City & Colour and Blue Rodeo.The outfit began as a song-writing, story-telling venture of Christina Renee, originally from Whitehorse, Yukon, though she has long been a northern transplant residing in various Alberta locales. Cold Little Crow then grew organically from that solo endeavour, adding members until these five misfits finally shared the same stage. The full circle moment came when Jules— fellow Yukoner and childhood friends of Christina— joined the group in late 2019.They released a debut EP in 2019, with the single Come & Go being released soon after. In late 2022, the band worked with Newfoundland-based musician and producer, the award-winning Ian Foster on new music set for release in early 2023.
About Lisa Wilton:
An entertainment journalist, broadcaster and photographer, Lisa Wilton has been talking about—and writing about—music her entire career. She hosts Traffic Jams on CKUA weekdays from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm.
Backbeat provides regular weekend activations for families, children, and general visitors of all ages, including pop-up music performances, hands-on activities, presentations from community partners, and more.