The Vernon Folk-Roots Music Society kicks off their sixth season with The John Wort Hannam Trio on Sept. 14 at the Vernon Prestige Lodge and Conference Centre. (Contributed)

Trio kicks off Okanagan Folk-Roots season

John Wort Hannam plays Sept. 14 at Prestige Inn

Paul Tessier

Special to The Morning Star

John Wort Hannam writes and sings about real stuff. Some of his songs are deeply personal and then there are the fun songs, like about being a winner at the local meat draw.

He’ll kick off season 6 for The Vernon Folk-Roots Music Society on Sept. 14 at 7:30 p.m. at the Vernon Prestige Lodge and Conference Centre. The Trio also plays Penticton’s Dream Cafe Friday, Sept. 13 and Kelowna’s Lantern Folk Club Sunday, Sept. 15.

Wort Hannam isn’t afraid to take chances. For most folks, quitting a steady teaching job to write songs might seem like a risky proposition.

Not so for the singer-songwriter from southern Alberta.

“It really didn’t seem like that big of a deal to me back in 2001,” Wort Hannam said.

“It’s just what I wanted to do. I’ve never been afraid of trying something new. I just thought, ‘If it doesn’t work out and I fall flat on my face, I’ll just pick myself up and try something else.’”

Eighteen years later, he’s a highly regarded musician who puts out what he calls, “Lyrically-driven western Canadian roots music.”

As he looks back on his career, he’s quick to admit his music, and especially his songwriting has evolved. “At first, I was mimicking the songwriters I admired. Gradually, I found my own voice. I realized I needed to write about my own experiences.”

He chuckles as he sees the progression in his songwriting. “I did a show a few nights back and realized I was comfortable doing a raw, honest song about some of my past struggles with mental health followed by a light-hearted song about winning a steak at the meat draw at the local Legion. It’s me and it’s authentic.”

Major life events have also influenced his art of songwriting. In fact, his whole outlook on life shifted when he became a father at the age of 44. Charlie is now seven and Wort Hannam now has different priorities. “I decided to not tour as much and stay closer to home. It made me re-think everything.” He also wrote a heartfelt song for his son Charlie, called, Song For A Young Son.

Wort Hannam is performing with Jason Valeau on upright bass and Scott Duncan on fiddle. “We have a real fun time on stage together. I guess it shows because people always comment on our super chemistry on stage.”

For Wort Hannam, performing live still provides a sense of deep satisfaction. “Really connecting with an audience is what it’s all about,” he explains. “There’s nothing more gratifying than having someone come up after the show and say, ‘Thanks for writing that song. That’s exactly how I feel and wanted to express.’”

The Vernon Folk-Roots Music Society kicks off their sixth season with the John Wort Hannam Trio on Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Vernon Prestige Lodge and Conference Centre. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., showtime is 7:30 p.m. Tickets $30, $25 for members. Food and alcohol will be available at the show. Tickets through ticketseller.ca (250-549-7469), Expressions of Time bookstore (2901 30th Ave.) or at the door if available (cash only).

Receive a 10 per cent discount on purchases at the Lodge Kitchen and Bar and at Don Cherry’s Sports Grill with proof of purchase on the day of show. Learn more at vernonfolkroots.com.


@VernonNews
newsroom@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Festival of all things spicy kicks off Friday

Organizers say Sizzle keeps getting bigger and bigger

RDOS board remuneration, expenses come to $500,000

Costs presented in Statement of Financial Information

LocoLanding flowers brighten seniors’ day in Penticton

The many flowers that bloom in LocoLanding during the summer brighten the day for seniors

Affordable housing project in Okanagan Falls ready for tenants

South Skaha Place now accepting applications for affordable housing units

‘It’s almost surreal’: Penticton fire chief, sidekick Sammy recap rescue mission in Bahamas

Chief Larry Watkinson and Sam the disaster dog spent 8 days assisting a search and rescue team

‘Time to take action:’ Children advocates call for national youth suicide strategy

Council wants Ottawa to make reporting of suicides and attempted suicides mandatory for data collection

Swedish rock band Ghost bringing full-scale performance to South Okanagan

The Swedish rock band’s Ultimate Tour Named Death arrives Sept. 21

Canadian inflation decelerates to 1.9% as gas prices weaken

August was the sixth straight month that price growth was 1.9 per cent or higher

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

B.C. population on pace to fall behind Alberta

Provincial population could reach almost seven million in 2043, but Alberta is growing faster

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

Most Read