By Joe Barkovich, Scribbler-at-large
WELLAND – Summer Music Festival Fridays are looked forward to by this music fan.
We have been to several, not all, and have not gone away disappointed.
One of the pleasant surprises: local talent that is featured on the floating stage off Merritt Park.
Such will be the case this Friday when the theme is Nashville: Country Classic.
It’s headlined by James Yorfido with an opening act by Ashlynne Vince. We’ve heard her previously and that’s the reason we hope to catch this week’s show.
This young Wellander is talent rich and personality plus. She is making her mark at local venues but also in the so-called big time. Music City, or Nashville as it’s formally known, is one of them. And performance wise, what happens in Nashville doesn’t stay in Nashville. Word travels fast and far. You might say it goes ‘cross-country.
My opinion about this young talent? Ashlynne can belt out tunes or croon you into mellow satisfaction, with a lot of other emotions in between. A singer-songwriter, she has much to offer.
Her mom Loralee provided this backgrounder:
“Ashlynne has had a very exciting few years. What started out as a regular at local open mics, turned into several trips to Nashville to record her debut indie album, Tidal Wave. While in Nashville, Ashlynne gained the interest of recording engineer, Rebekah Long, and Ashlynne was invited to complete an internship at the Tracking Room studio as part of her high school co-op. During her semester in Nashville, Ashlynne was picked up by Plateau Music and went on to record 8 songs, 2 of which made the Billboard Top 40 Indicator Charts and as a result Ashlynne was on the official voting ballot for Grammy nominations. She didn’t receive a nomination, but she did attend the Grammys in 2016 with her producer and her parents.”
Something else exciting in this 20-year-old’s blossoming career will happen this fall at the Canadian Country Music Awards in Saskatoon. There, she will be a performer in the Diamond in the Rough Showcase. After that she will be moving to Nashville “where she has secured a job singing on the Music City Strip on Lower Broadway as one of Tootsie’s singers,” according to the backgrounder.
Still, performing to a hometown crowd, which she will do Friday, is one of the highlights of the summer for her. I wish her all the best in her career.
Friday, Ashlynne has a dozen offerings on her set list, including: Stupid Love, her first Canadian-wide country single in Oct. 2016, Take Cover, the next song to go to Canadian Country Radio, with a release date Aug. 28, 2017 (written by Ashlynne and Maxsene Morgan), No Boys Allowed, which gained her an opening spot for Canada’s Country Music Male Vocalist of 2016, Brett Kissel and was her second single to radio in Canada, and Hands Off and Hang on to Me, both recorded in Nashville.
The performer has an appealing website where more details about her can be found. Have a look, at www.ashvince.ca
The Summer Music Festival 2017 concerts are competently coordinated by Don Romano and Ralph Belvedere, no strangers to the music scene here and further afield. A round of applause goes out to them.
Here’s a rundown of what remains on the schedule:
Nashville: Country Classic – Friday, July 28: Johnny Cash, Tammy Wynette, June Carter, Jerry Lee Lewis and more presented by James Yorfido. Guest Artist: Ashlynne Vince.
Welland Rocks on the Canal – Friday, August 11: The Associates, The Howling Horns and Heather Glaab.
Soulsville – Friday, August 18: Juno Award winner Lance Anderson presents the music of STAX Records, Otis Redding, Wilson Pickett, Sam & Dave, Booker T & the M.G’s, Eddie Floyd and many more Southern Soul artists. Guest Artists: John Finley, George Oliver, Jay Douglas and Cheryl Lescom.
The British Rock Invasion – Friday, August 25: Hot Rocks: Tribute to the Rolling Stones. The British Invasion with the music of The Beatles, The Dave Clark 5, The Kinks, The Who, Freddy and The Dreamers.
All concerts start at 7pm and admission is free.