The only thing better than listening to the new album by Rosie & the Riveters is hearing them live. The Aviary played host to the energetic foursome on the evening of Friday, May 4th and the forth was with them.
The evening was pushed into motion by the immense talents of local artist Vissia. She blends small-town ethos into big city big sounds. A great blend with energy, personality and ability, Vissia held the crowd with her soulful singing and masterful command of her Gretsch guitar. I could have listened to more without complaining. Fortunately, she is coming back in June for another evening at The Aviary.
After a short break, the house chatter and background noise transformed into a wall of sound and Rosie took the stage. Rosie is a collective composed of Farideh Olsen, Alexis Normand, and Allyson Reigh, and according to their engaging stage banter, Rosie is also in their drummer and all of us. Rosie isn't so much a name to hang their pillbox hats on as a way of projecting a message through music. And they do it very well.
Their three-part harmonies on swing songs such as 'Show Me The Money' are tight, and they throw in flourishes of dancing and engaging stage antics that only add to the lyrics and talented musicianship. They all take turns contributing to solo singing as well as playing a variety of instruments, Alexis handles the bulk of guitar work and is a very talented picker. They also used percussion masterfully with a drummer (I missed his name) as well as their use of various percussive items, wood blocks and even kazoo's.
They are all storytellers, not just in the lyrics but also in their stage banter and filling in the background story for some of their songs. They are witty, casual, funny and above all very talented singers and musicians. At one point they ventured into the centre of the audience to sing un-miked, and the crowd got into it which brought smiles to all faces. Rosie & the Riverters are not just a music showcase, they are a stage presentation and visual artists. I look forward to their next trip to our fair city of Edmonton.
Shout out to Philip and Mark of the Aviary and Steve Derpack of JCL Productions.
Norman Weatherly | weatheredmusic.ca
Photography | Joel Weatherly