Oak Bay High grad set to sing Upstairs

Genevieve Charbonneau, with Genevieve and the Wild Sundays, performs at Oak Bay Rec Centre's Upstairs Lounge Friday, Oct. 23

Oak Bay High grad Genevieve Charbonneau performs with Genevieve and the Wild Sundays tonight (Oct. 23) in Upstairs Lounge at Oak Bay Rec.

Between weekends of recording, Genevieve Charbonneau sandwiches a homecoming concert at Upstairs Lounge.

The 1993 Oak Bay High grad headlines Genevieve and the Wild Sundays tonight (Friday, Oct. 23). After laying down tracks all weekend they’re ready to belt out some harmonies.

“We really like to play up the harmonies. We love to sing; we love to sing together,” Charbonneau said. “It felt productive but also kind of unsatisfying because we didn’t get to sing.”

The all-female quartet is known for those harmonies, its catchy award-winning songs of Vancouver-Island-based Charbonneau and original folk-roots music.

Wild Sundays is rooted in folk and old-time country, incorporating bluegrass rhythms, Americana, pop, and a whole lot more.

“I’m excited about (Upstairs Lounge). I think it will be a nice atmosphere. I like that you can get a drink and dinner and bring kids if you want,” Charbonneau said.

“We’re going to hold some songs for the CD release concert in the spring but there will be one or two new songs … a little preview.”

It’s the first album for this foursome, though they bring extensive musical experience. Charbonneau and Kelly Sherwin (upright bass/vocals) are long-time members of award-winning vocal ensemble Balkan Babes, singing traditional folk music of the Balkan region.

Sherwin also contributes a bluegrass sensibility (Flash in the Pan and Ain’t Dead Yet), while Laura Carleton (percussion/vocals) brings a background of choral music (Vancouver Island Chamber Choir) and West African percussion (Moondance Dynamic Arts).

Chandra Crowe (mandolin/vocals) adds training in Greek, Turkish, Balkan and Middle Eastern music (Yiddish Columbia State Orchestra) into the mix.

“I hope to reach maybe a new audience, we’re still pretty new together,” Charbonneau said, adding they’ve been performing together two-and-a-half years. “It’s been mostly house concerts which goes to a select audience.”

After a summer full of festivals, they appreciate the opportunity for a full-length show.

“We haven’t done a full-length show for a while. We did a lot of festivals in the summer and those are just one set.”

At the recent Vancouver Island Music Awards, Charbonneau’s debut solo album Updraft garnered a 2014 Producer of the Year Award for Marc Atkinson, and her song “Farmer Ain’t in the Dell” was nominated for Country Recording of the Year. In March 2015, she was chosen to be the featured Open Mic artist of the month on the popular website FolkAlley.com.

Doors open at 6 p.m. for those seeking dinner and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. in Upstairs Lounge, Oak Bay Recreation Centre, 1975 Bee St.

Tickets are $12 advance at Ivy’s Books and Oak Bay Recreation Centre reception or $15 at the door or online at beaconridgeproductions.com.

Get a taste of the music at genevievemusic.ca or genevieveandthewildsundays.com.