This past weekend, The Ramblin’ Valley Band was joined by Canadian champion fiddler Louis Schryer and together filled Live! on Elgin with a full evening of entertainment. The band played three sets, comfortably performing various genres, including country, folk, blues and rock, all the while alternating lead vocal duties between Matt, Trev, and Joe. They played covers of both classic and some lesser known songs, along with original material. Louis’ fiddle fit in with the band so effortlessly he could easily be mistaken as a long-standing member.
The band used the intermissions as an opportunity to mingle with their friends and fans. During the first set only a few less timid people took to the floor but by the second set the room was practically shoulder to shoulder with people dancing along.
I first saw The Ramblin’ Valley Band at CityFolk last summer. I dubbed them the happiest band of the festival as it was clear both in the way they played and by the big smiles on their faces that they were thrilled to be there. Little had change from then to this weekend at Live! on Elgin. The big smiles were still present and it is very clear that they are enjoying themselves on stage. Artists often talk about feeding off the energy of the crowd, but I find it is also true that the crowd feeds off the energy and emotion of the band. In the case of The Ramblin’ Valley Band it means it is impossible to watch and listen and not be positively affected by their joy.
The Ramblin’ Valley Band is:
Matthew Armitage (guitar, keys, harmonica)
Trevor Lubin (mandolin, guitar)
Joseph McDonald (guitar, slide)
Zach Ledgerwood (bass)
Pat Gray (drums)
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