Spotlight on Belle Plaine - The Storytellers - May 25th
Updated: May 4
Sometimes you find the music. Sometimes the music finds you.
Belle's music found us - an arrow straight to the heart.
A good friend suggested we come out for her show - that we'd like her music, and so we did. Within minutes of Belle taking the stage we were ensnared in her charming web of music, storytelling, and easy, humble, grace.
That night Belle, accompanied by Elizabeth Currie on bass and Jeremy Sauer on keys, performed songs from her 2012 album 'Notes from a Waitress'. Belle's voice was clear and powerful yet full of inflection with a vampish twinkle of humour. We loved it!
We've been die-hard fans ever since and take every chance we can to see her perform, whether solo, duet, or with band. Here's just a few examples of the lengths we'll go to catch a Belle show:
In 2018 we had her come all the way from Regina to play solo in our backyard for our 35th anniversary.
In September 2019 we did a road trip to Southeast Saskatchewan to catch Belle & band play a hockey-rink social in Oxbow.
In February 2020 we did an overnighter to Regina to see Belle & band with the Regina Symphony in what was one of the absolute best concerts we've been to in decades. A very cool part of that gig was that Jeremy Sauer and Steve Leidel (her drummer) transcribed all of her music for the symphony.
2016 saw the release of 'The Unrequited Love' - notable for the evident transition of her music towards roots/alt-country. Here's a link to Good Heart - from the album, an excellent example of Belle solo.
Belle Plaine is a national treasure - a true Canadian. She can sing like a hot-damn, was ready to leave on tour at a moment's notice and shot the shit out of a spoon with a BB gun from the 50 yard mark.
— Carolyn Mark
In 2018 Belle released her most recent album 'Malice, Mercy, Grief, and Wrath' to critical acclaim, including a JUNO nomination. It is an eclectic mixture of songs reflecting both the collaborative and individual sides of her musical personality. Here's links to some songs from the album that will give you an idea of the breadth of Belle's songwriting:
Golden Ring (featuring Megan Nash)
Is it Cheating (featuring Colter Wall)
On her third full-length release, Belle Plaine finds amplitude by accessing a sense of community. Having grown up in a Saskatchewan town of only 45 people, the artist has been stretching toward a new abundance on each record. With Malice, Mercy, Grief & Wrath, the themes are on the tin, and the grandiosity comes with the inclusion of many instruments, voices and characters.
One of the things we love about Belle is her penchant for doing wonderful covers - loving homages really:
Spirit in the Sky - Norman Greenbaum (featuring Bryce Lewis, Steve Leidal, Ellen Froese, Eliza Doyle, and hubby Blake Berglund)
Mercury Blues - K.C. Douglas & Robert Geddins (featuring Blake Berglund and Bryce Lewis)
Long Black Veil - Lefty Frizzell (featuring Steve Leidal, Blake Berglund, and Bryce Lewis)
Wichita - Gillian Welch (featuring Steve Leidal, Blake Berglund, and Bryce Lewis)
Town to Town - Zachary Lucky (featuring Steve Leidal, Blake Berglund, and Bryce Lewis)
Belle Plaine has the voice of an angel and the on stage presence of a seasoned professional. When she opens her mouth the audience stops their chattering to listen - works every time. I would highly recommend her as a superb addition to any lineup or concert series.
— Sandra Butel, Regina Folk Festival Artistic Director
More recently Belle started a blog, called Belle Plaine's Weather Report, sharing her reflections and experiences, and proving that she truly has a way with words - I highly recommend it.
Belle will be performing Wednesday, May 25th with Scott Nolan and Orit Shimoni in a songwriters' circle called The Storytellers. Tickets are just $25 and available by RSVP/etransfer to firstname.lastname@example.org (no fees) or thru Eventbrite. We hope you'll join us for this one-of, one-of-a-kind show!