SMOKE SIGNALS: Cultural Centre offers new concert series

SMOKE SIGNALS: Cultural Centre offers new concert series

(Photo: Wikimedia)

By Marvin Louie

Osoyoos Indian Band

Spring is here and the sun is out and it’s time to go and find “bloody adventure,” as a good friend of mine once said.

A good place to visit during the spring time (summer as well) is the award winning Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre (NDCC), which was established in 2002.

It’s a great place to visit (I was retail/assistant manager there for 12 years) to learn about the history of the Nk’Mip Band as well as enjoy an interpretive walk in the desert along with attending the now famous “Snake Show” and also watching some youngsters dancing in their regalia. You can look on their website for more information about hours of operations and programming schedules.

Something new and exciting that the NDCC will be presenting this spring and summer is a concert series in which different bands from all over the map will be showcasing their unique musical talents to an anticipating audience. Promoter of the series, Alan Bleiken, says, “For the first two shows we are going in very different directions musically.”

The first band is Cuban based Adonis Puentes (singer-songwriter) who comes with a backup band (four to five pieces in total). He is a great representative of all that is so wonderful about Cuban music; vibrant and full of soul.

This show will be on June 1 to kick off the concert series. Chief Clarence Louie will be present to help kick things off and to show that the Osoyoos Indian Band is behind the project as well as give the evening a sense of dignity.

The second concert will on June 23 and will be more local in nature. Tiller’s Folly is a very successful, highly acclaimed roots Celtic/American band, made up of three very accomplished musicians who are based out of B.C.

Bleiken stated they are excited to be a part of something new and to play in our community.

The third act in the concert series is tentatively booked for August 3 and is an award winning blues act out of the Detroit area called “The Good, The Bad and The Blues.” They were finalists in the International Blues Challenge in New Orleans a couple of years ago. They are an absolutely wonderful, entertaining band and totally know how to play to a crowd. When I first heard the name (I’m sure I’m not the only one), I thought it was the making of an outdated Clint Eastwood movie. I mean, if Nicolas Cage can make movies on our reserve, why not “Dirty Harry” and “Go Ahead Make My Day?”

Call NDCC for details about the concert series (limited seating) at 250-495-7901.

Local OIB musician, singer/songwriter and marketing director Derek Bryson of the NDCC had this to say when asked about the upcoming concert series held at the cultural centre, his home away from home for almost 12 years:

“I think this is a wonderful opportunity for all music lovers, young and older generations. Bringing diversity through music to Osoyoos and to the Nk’Mip Resort will definitely show we can handle the responsibilities that other venues have when dealing with large-scale capacity crowds who want to listen to great music. Let the good times roll!”

Just a side note: OCTANE 94 gas is now available at the Nk’Mip gas and convenience stores in Oliver and Osoyoos. Another pump is being added to accommodate this. Whoever thought having extra gas would be a good thing? What a country!

Well, until next month, as one wise chief once said: “Be selective in your battles; sometimes peace is better than being right, especially if you’re married”.