Up On Cripple Creek
The songbook of The Band seemed like an obvious choice for Front Porch to tackle after the positive response to the Tyson tribute, The Gift.
Levon Helm’s passing meant that none of the lead singers in The Band were with us anymore and an era had ended. The two obvious choices to handle much of the vocal work in Up On Cripple Creek were Front Porch alumnus Doug Andrew, from Vancouver’s Circus In Flames and Calgary’s J.R Shore. Like Andrew, Shore is able to get to the emotional core of Band tunes and deliver the compelling delivery storylines and imagery without emulating Helm, Danko and Manuel.
This project also opened the door for guitarist Gord Matthews to join Front Porch and there are few guitarists who can own both the technical chops and intense dynamics that Robbie Robertson served up as an instrumentalist.
As expected, Up On Cripple Creek showcases classic tunes from The Band’s Capitol Records discography with It Makes No Difference, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, The Weight, King Harvest and When I Paint My Masterpiece being show stoppers.
The cast also dives into the post-Robertson effort Jericho, spins out selections from The Last Waltz, and folds in a few gems from the solo recordings of Levon Helm.
Up On Cripple Creek has proven to be a show that resonates just as strongly with young roots and Americana music fans as it does with the generation that first heard some of these tunes.
Up On Cripple Creek has played before enthusiastic audiences all over B.C. and Alberta including five sold-out performances at The Ironwood Stage and Grill in Calgary, The Bert Church Theatre in Airdrie, The McLab Theatre in Leduc, The East Coulee Festival in Drumheller, The Butchart Gardens concert series in Victoria, The Dream Café in Penticton, The Salmon Arm Roots & Blues Festival, The Capitol Theatre in Nelson, Festival Place in Sherwood Park, and Blue Frog Studios in White Rock.
“It’s as if the boys in Front Porch are channeling The Band….a great, great show.” Allison Brock, host of CKUA’s Wide Cut Country