National Music Centre reveals 2020 winter lineup for Alberta Spotlight

December 10, 2019

Folk-roots act John Wort Hannam. Photo supplied by artist. 

The National Music Centre (NMC) will kick off the 2020 season of its popular monthly concert series, Alberta Spotlight, celebrating a brand-new batch of genre-spanning acts, plucked from the province’s own backyard.

Incepted in 2017, Alberta Spotlight was conceived with the goal of championing the music of Alberta, NMC’s home province, while also uniting Alberta artists and music lovers of all stripes at Studio Bell.

“For this season, we’re trying to look more outside of Alberta’s major cities, and into the smaller locales to showcase the artists making waves within them,” said NMC’s Director of Programs Adam Fox.

Alberta Spotlight winter schedule:

  • January 24—Grande Prairie “island soul” act Caleb Hart & Roca Roots with Infamous Ray at the King Eddy
  • February 13—Red Deer country-rocker Ryan Langlois at the King Eddy
  • March 19—Lethbridge roots singer-songwriter John Wort Hannam at the King Eddy

Born in the twin island nation of Trinidad and Tobago and now based in Grande Prairie, Caleb Hart seamlessly blends gospel, soul, reggae and soca into a mixture he’s aptly dubbed “island soul.” Prior to his solo work, he released music, performed, and toured extensively throughout Canada, Australia, and the Caribbean with his former reggae outfit, Tasman Jude.

Red Deer country-rocker Ryan Langlois spent years as the lead singer and co-songwriter for the CCMA award-nominated group The Boom Chucka Boys before the band broke up. But his musical journey didn’t end there. As a solo artist, he landed on the Project WILD Top 3 in 2018, received two Alberta Country Music Awards nods that same year, and continues to be one to watch on the scene with music that draws from songwriting greats like John Prine and Johnny Cash.

Hailing from Lethbridge, John Wort Hannam has been releasing Alberta-made, lyrically-driven roots music since 2003. Of the seven albums he’s released in that time, he’s racked up a JUNO nomination, a Canadian Folk Music Award for Best Album of the Year, a CBC Galaxie Rising Star Award, a Kerrville Texas New Folk win, and numerous Western Canadian Music Award and Canadian Folk Music Award nominations.

“I immigrated to Calgary from the UK when I was eight years old,” said John Wort Hannam. “Alberta is where I cut my teeth writing and performing. I’d be hard pressed to name a city or town in the province I haven’t played. And while the landscape and history of Alberta is more overt in my earlier recordings, my life experiences on the prairies of southern Alberta still influence my worldview, and colour the songs I write. The province has been good to me.”

Tickets for Alberta Spotlight events are on sale now. Please go here to purchase your tickets in advance.

NMC Members receive discounted admission to Alberta Spotlight, so purchase your membership online today! Details here.

More Alberta Spotlight acts with be announced in 2020. Special thanks to the Viewpoint Foundation for their support. Thanks also to media partners BeatRoute and TheYYScene.

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