South Country Fair is extremely proud to continue to present incredible artists from our local region and far, far beyond. The Inaugural SCF #36 will bring you performances from AntiDoping (Mexico), Benj Rowland (Ontario), Doghouse Orchestra (Ontario), Deep Dark Woods (Sask.) Ellen Froese (Ontario), L’omlette (Alberta), The Lucky Ones (Yukon), Mike Tod Band (Alberta), Peter & the Wolves (Alberta), Sierra Noble (Manitoba), Shred Kelly (B.C.), and more to come!!

ANTIDOPING is a Mexican band originally from Coyoacán, Mexico City, founded by the brothers Manuel and Pedro Apodaca in 1992. Considered a reference of reggae in Mexico and one of the most important groups of the genre in Latin America. The music of Antidoping combines elements, roots and forms of the cultural mosaic of the city, with the rhythm and flavor of the Rastafari movement to create an alternative within the expressions of the country’s musical medium and offers those who listen to it, the possibility of being sensitized in body, mind and soul through a fresh and committed reggae capturing their experiences within a range of concepts that affirms their convictions towards respect, fun, peace, reunion with nature and humanity. With this formula, they have conquered the hearts of many followers around the world throughout their 32 years of uninterrupted trajectory.

BENJ ROWLAND: Surrounded by a captivating ensemble of musical instruments, including the bouzouki, tenor guitar, hurdy-gurdy, accordions, and a foot keyboard synthesizer, Benj Rowland creates a mesmerizing sonic experience that beckons audiences to immerse themselves in his world of music.As a self-described “community-trained” musician, Benj Rowland approaches folk music with a deep-rooted reverence for tradition, having honed his instrumental and performance skills within the vibrant tapestry of his culturally rich upbringing. Hailing from this musical heritage, Benj’s compositions reflect an amalgamation of various influences, such as Celtic, Cajun, Oldtime, and Balfolk. After an extensive journey spanning over 15 years, during which he was a member of various musical ensembles, Benj embarked on a solo career following the release of his 2022 album, “Community Garden,” produced by Joel Plaskett.Throughout his career, Benj has shared the stage with a plethora of renowned artists and contributed hismusical talents to numerous albums by fellow musicians. Additionally, he has recently ventured into the realms of scoring and live performance for theatre and dance, expanding his artistic horizons.

DOGHOUSE ORCHESTRA: Emerging from the vibrant music scene of Toronto, ON – Doghouse Orchestra is a collective that has captivated audiences with their boundary-breaking sound. This group has quickly become a staple at the iconic venue The Cameron House, where they take the stage every Sunday night. Led by bassist Matt Coldwell, the ensemble weaves through a variety of styles crafting a sonic experience that defies categorization. With their intoxicating blend of genres, soulful grooves, and spontaneous improvisations, they continue to push creative boundaries and offer a sound that is both timeless and irresistibly modern.

THE DEEP DARK WOODS: Originally from Saskatchewan and now based on the east coast of Canada, The Deep Dark Woods take up a deep tradition of forlorn storytelling, drawing lines from Celtic folksongs to country blues, John Fahey to Shirley Collins. Lush and devastating, Boldt’s gothic surrealism is stark in detail and full of emotion, a murder balladeer for our time.

ELLEN FROESE is what you’d call a “prolific artist”; committed, too. She’s amassed a resolutely solid body of work and, with a variety of projects, achieved more than some many years her senior. For Each Flower Growing, Froese’s fourth full-length, produced in collaboration with the Sheepdogs’ Sam Corbett, is her most accomplished statement to date, drawing on her established sound as a folk & country-based singer/songwriter while incorporating a wider frame of reference in the rich production, supple instrumentation, and overall sonic soundworld. It’s much harder to pin down than any simple description can convey, making it all the more worthwhile to check out.

L’OMLETTE weaves threads of soul, jazz and punk into colourful, emotionally honest tapestries. The Calgary art-rockers dart between progressive and new-wave rock rhythms and synth-led dance pop, tied together by commanding, current concepts and melodies. Frontwoman Meg Benedict’s fierce vocal, saxophone and synth stylings are underpinned by guitarist Alex Klipper’s thoughtful, driving riffs, Matthew Lowe’s infectiously melodic bass lines, and Peter Cormier’s double-duty drumming and backup vocals. The result? Something to chew on – a vivacious, heady, danceable, thought-provoking performance.

THE LUCKY ONES are a band from the Yukon Territory. They grew up listening to the music of their parents, and their parents’ parents before them.​ Their unique brand of country-roots music imparts traditional arrangements with a contemporary disposition, reminiscent of old-time dances in hotel taverns and barrooms, barns, kitchens, and saloons.

MIKE TOD BAND: Mike Tod is a wry and raspy tenor who sings with conviction and candor. He sings well-worn traditionals, researches their roots, and shares them in a fashion that feels authentically of another time, while still firmly planted in the present. He forges old-time songs into historical epics, conjuring visions of western portraits and weathered landscapes.

Over the past decade, the nomadic singer has earned his voice the old-fashioned way. He’s grazed on the origins of old-time music and studied deep into the history behind the songs. He’s worked on ranches and sheep farms, travelled North America, and played on stages from the Calgary Stampede to small town public houses in Cape Breton.

PETER & THE WOLVES: Howlin’ Pete Cormier started this band in 2011 with rhythm at the roots, and the purpose of creating a hoppin’ dance floor at every show. He writes his songs in the style of the great rock n’ rollers from the 1950s like Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly. Over the years, it has grown into a powerful touring act, traveling the world with a rotating line-up.

SIERRA NOBLE: Entering the music industry at a young age can have profound effects on an artist’s personal and professional journey, and Sierra Noble knows this well. The Winnipeg singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer, released their first album of traditional Métis fiddle music as a teenager, followed by the well-received Possibilities, and later, City of Ghosts. Over the course of these albums Noble honed their skills as a songwriter while garnering widespread attention, which led them to opening for Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi, and Johnny Reid, and as a featured performer for the 2010 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. Noble’s original music has been included in TV shows such as One Tree Hill, Switched at Birth, and Parenthood, and in films such as CBC’s Humboldt: The New Season, 40 Weeks, and Fostering Hope.

SHRED KELLY: Emerging from the majestic landscapes of the Canadian Rockies, Shred Kelly is a powerhouse band that seamlessly blends elements of alternative, folk, and rock music. With a captivating live act that leaves audiences in awe, they have become a mainstay in the Canadian music scene. But it’s not just their energetic performances that set them apart—Shred Kelly’s heartfelt songwriting strikes a chord with listeners, connecting deeply as each band member brings their eclectic musical influences to the table, shaping the group’s unique musical direction.

With an impressive track record of touring across Canada, the United States, Europe, and the UK, Shred Kelly has made appearances at renowned festivals such as Kaslo Jazz, Ottawa Blues Fest, Winnipeg Folk Fest, SXSW, Reeperbahn and many more. Furthermore, the band has shared stages with esteemed acts such as The Dead South, Elliott Brood, and The Cave Singers, leading to their reputation as a dynamic live act whose show is described as a joyous celebration of life.

STARPAINTER is a folk rock band from Lethbridge, Alberta. They wear their influences on their sleeves, showcasing old-school songwriting craftsmanship and an affinity for gently psychedelic alt-twang tones. The band’s second full-length, titled Rattlesnake Dream, was released in June 2023 on Neon Moon Records.