New concert series aims to bring back the Christmas spirit

Submitted photo. Prince Albert musician Larry Krause and his band will be in six north central Saskatchewan communities as part of the Timberline Christmas concert series. The series opens on Nov. 24 in Christopher Lake and ends Dec. 3 in Spiritwood.

Christmas on the family farm is a staple in small town Saskatchewan, and Prince Albert singer Larry Krause hopes to draw on that tradition with a new Christmas Concert Series.

Starting on Nov 24, Krause and bandmates Garry Larson (guitar) and David Sinclair (bass) will play six Timberline Christmas Shows in North Central Saskatchewan. Krause said Christmas traditions have faded in recent years. He’s hoping the new concert series will change that.

“It kind of harkens back to the days when people used to run around and have Christmas concerts in small one-room school houses and that type of a thing,” Krause said when asked about the inspiration for the show. “Christmas has always been a special time of year for a lot of people, including myself, and with the way things have gone the last few years, a lot of that build up towards the Christmas season has been lost. There are no events going on that allow people to get into the Christmas spirit. That’s what we’re hoping to try and recreate with these concerts.”

Krause and his band will travel to Christopher Lake (Nov. 24), Shellbrook (Nov. 25), Prince Albert (Nov. 26), Debden (Dec. 1), Weirdale (Dec. 2), and Spiritwood (Dec. 3) for Christmas performances. The song lineup features a mixture of familiar traditional songs, along with some original Christmas music written by Krause himself and recorded on his Christmas album ‘Who is this?’

Submitted photo.
Larry Krause (right) performs with Garry Larson and David Sinclair on the Timberline Music Show. The musical trio will tour six north central Saskatchewan communities in November and December as part of ‘A Timberline Christmas’.

As with the concert series, Krause looked to his roots in rural Saskatchewan when composing a few holiday songs of his own.

“I’m a rural-based type of person,” he said. “We still live out on the acreage and I’m looking out at the snow on the Spruce trees as we speak. That all helps create that imagery that people have in the back of their mind of a rural Christmas or going back to uncle and aunt’s or Grandma and Grandpa’s on the farm, that type of thing.

“There’s a number of songs that relate to that type of emotion and those kinds of memories, and then too, there’s the meaning of Christmas type of a thing. While some of my Christmas songs have a secular type of sentiment to it, they all kind of come back to the main reason we’re celebrating the day.”

Krause credited a number of local businesses for sponsoring the concert series. Without their support, he said, it would be difficult to get a first-time concert series off the ground.

The Nov. 24 show will not only serve as the kick-off for the Timberline Christmas Series, it also signals the return of the Live at Broda Lounge concert series out at Christopher Lake. Krause serves as the Live at Broda Lounge producer and said the response last year was so positive they decided to do it again.

“It was public demand,” he said. “Last year, the hall had barely gone quiet and people from the Gary Anderson Recreational Centre were asking, ‘Can we do this again next year?’

“We looked at it and we looked at what we did last year, we did some tweaking to it because every time that you look back, hindsight’s 20-20, and hopefully the lessons that you learned will allow you to move forward in a positive step, which I believe that we’ve done.”

Live at Broda Lounge features one show a month at the Garry Anderson Community Centre in Christopher Lake. The list of acts includes Regina’s Blake Berglund (Jan. 19), and Prince Albert singers Janaya (Feb. 15), Taya Lebel (March 15) and Donny Parenteau (April 19).

Krause said it wasn’t hard to get the acts on board.

“Performers are always looking for a place to play, myself included, and I guess that’s part of the reason I created this in the first place,” Krause said. “The last few years, things have gotten a little bit off track and an awful lot of performers were looking for venues so that they could get back going with their programs. The Broda Lounge afforded us the opportunity to come out and do a concert, and this is just a continuation of that.”

Tickets for both A Timberline Christmas and Live at Broda Lounge are on sale at Lakeland Liquor, or by calling 306-961-4694.