HUMBOLDT — Juno award-winning Canadian folk artist Valdy will be bringing his music to the Community Gathering Place for one evening this August.
Humboldt is one of three stops in Saskatchewan for the Ottawa-born talent this summer. His Sunday night show on Aug 4 follows a mini music festival in Prince Albert the night before, and a church fundraising event in Regina the previous Friday.
The folk artist said he writes songs that portray a human condition.
“The whole range of emotions. The whole range of cultural expression,” he said. “As long as there's a good human story in there that people can relate to – that's a good backbone [for my music].”
Valdy, who now lives in the island town of Salt Spring, BC, was known nationally for his 1972 single “Rock and Roll Song.” He will be touring with it and other songs from his 18 album collection, the latest of which was released in 2017. Saskatchewan and Ontario are the only two provinces receiving him during his August driving tour.
Despite the name, Valdy’s hit single is a folk tale about the “mismarriage of having the wrong performance for the wrong audience – a Shakespearean performer at a thrash fest.” Now 74 years old, Valdy still performs the song in the original D chord of its release, which he said is unique for a singer his age.
“Most performers lower everything by at least a minor third,” he said.
Although this will be his first Humboldt show, Valdy said he knows the province well through decades of performances with the Kinsmen and Kinettes Telemiracle and tours with the Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Council.
“Saskatchewan people are kind of a real audience,” he said. “If you're good, you know it. They let you know. And if you suck, you get to know that, too. There's less hand tickling and false smiles.”
Valdy said he expects the Sunday show in the middle of the summer to be a good “introductory gig” to Humboldt – although he said he appreciates the farming community’s prior commitments to their crops.
“I don’t want to take people away from their life's work,” he said.
Tickets are available in advance at Main Street Music and Books and the Community Gathering Place.
The concert will be on Aug. 4 starting at 8 pm at the Community Gathering Place.