EMERALD – This week, Courtney Hogan welcomes one of her closest friends and one of P.E.I.’s most successful musicians to her Emerald Ceilidh series.
Few could argue that Richard Wood would be one of the Island’s most well-known and accomplished musicians.
Having played all across Canada as well as the U.S., Europe, Japan and Australia, along with appearances for distinguished guests, Wood is a household name across the Island. Additionally, he has entertained Canada’s Armed Forces in Bosnia and Afghanistan. He has won three East Coast Music Awards and ‘MacLean’s Magazine’ named him one of the Top 100 Canadians to watch in the 21st Century.
“We call him ‘The Godfather,’” laughs Hogan.
“He’s the godfather to our son and is such an inspiration to him as well as the P.E.I. music scene. He sets the bar high with his second-to-none talent and stage presence.”
Their friendship on and off the stage becomes quickly apparent throughout the show, as Hogan admittedly reports it’s one of the few guests she actually rehearses with. “We got together a lot over last winter to jam out some new material together. There’s some pieces that can only be done when Richard’s around and I’m looking forward to trying out some new material Friday night.”
The fiery fiddlers will be joined on stage by Wood’s touring singer and guitarist Gordon Belsher. No stranger to the music scene himself, Belsher has entertained audiences for over 40 years.
He also has a recording studio in Guersney Cove and was honoured with a “Lifetime Achievement” award from Music P.E.I. in 2014.
“I just love playing with my favourite little redhead,” says Belsher.
“But when her and Richard are on stage together, I’m just a guitar player trying to hold on for dear life when they let those fiddles go.”
They’ll be joined on stage stepdancer Janelle Banks.
Banks has performed all over Atlantic Canada, including performances with one of P.E.I.’s “Anne & Gilbert.”
The Ceilidh takes place Friday evening at 7:30 p.m. This is the second last show of the season.
The Emerald Boxcar Pub & Grill will be open for food and drinks starting at 5:30 p.m. including their new express menu. Admission to the event is $12 at the door and the venue is licensed and air conditioned. All ages are welcome and CD’s, 50/50 tickets, and souvenir t-shirts will also be made available.