|Posted on 30 September, 2015 at 14:50||comments (1)|
This summer has been incredibly busy for Sweet Saturday. We have toured a bit into Alberta, released a new EP (Dance, Sing, Love – available on iTunes! ) and enjoyed one of Saskatchewan’s finest gospel jamborees! We whizzed right through summer and are diving right into fall. Today we had the best time with our friend and photographer, Andy Hamilton. Before we ventured out though, Karen, Jaimie and I got all glammed up by the ever talented makeup artist, Caitlyn Dixon. She brought her massive supply of makeup (including some fantastic eye-lashes that I personally enjoyed A LOT) and helped us complete our vintage inspired, classic look. Andy Hamilton found an old farm yard in the middle of town and balanced us on half way dissolved hay bales and challenged us to look directly into the sun. Jaimie, it turns out is willing to sacrifice her retinas for the sake of the perfect photograph! Karen and I worked really hard just to have our eyes open even a little bit and Darius is apparently a professional; workin’ it like He was modeling for the latest issue of ‘Bow Ties and Accordions’ monthly! We all laughed more than we have in a long time and enjoyed being together without worrying about arrangements, blending our voices or deciding what instrument Darius should play. We had our instruments with us to make us look like a legitimate band and when we did play them, we all started to play completely different songs. Poor Andy said it was the worst song he’d ever heard! Hahaha! We had so much fun today and we are impatiently waiting to see what kind of magic a Caitlyn Dixon and Andy Hamilton combination came up with!
As many of you may know, Sweet Saturday won a contest that allowed us to sing the Canadian National Anthem! Last week we did just that! We worked hard to overcome the overwhelming echo in the stadium and sang our hearts out. It was amazing! Like nothing I have personally, ever experienced! It was so fun watching the warm ups from the sidelines and watching the stadium fill up with the sea of green. The most exciting moment though, was at the end of the song when the crowd burst with Canadian pride and the fireworks shot off adding the perfect punctuation to an already exciting moment. What wonderful people we have in our province who support sport and art and all things local. It was wonderful to be a part of something so proudly Saskatchewan.
We have a busy schedule coming up this fall including recording a Christmas single, performing at a pumpkin festival and entertaining at private functions. Please keep in touch with us, check out the schedule and when you make it out to a show, come and talk to us! We want to meet our fans and supporters and would love to know how you heard about us.
Good Night Friends!!!
P.S. Check out the photo gallery and the music link for great video and pics of our latest adventures!!
|Posted on 12 February, 2015 at 14:20||comments (0)|
So much has happened in the last little while! We have been busy planning and preparing for a busy year. We are planning to head into studio in the spring to record a new single and there are rumors of a concert being planned in Moose Jaw for the spring! Stay tuned for more details about upcoming excitement!!
We recently had the privilege of attending a workshop in Regina with the prestigious Tom Jackson from Nashville, Tennessee. Jaimie and I particularly enjoyed his sense of humor and we all found him very down to earth. We especially enjoyed the team of experts he brought with him. We learned more about stage presence and about how to connect with our audience in ways that we have always wanted to but didn’t know how to. You will have to let us know how we do the next time you see us at a show.
Sweet Saturday with presenter Tom Jackson (Jan. 2015)
Sweet Saturday had the chance to work with presenters at the Tom Jackson workshop on 'performance skills'. (Jan. 2015)
Another recent development for Sweet Saturday is the addition of the very talented instrumentalist and our friend, Darius Wilson. Darius has certainly set the bar higher for us and has brought a new look to Sweet Saturday. In fact, we were recently told that we should all try to look more like Darius at our shows. He was of course delighted to hear such things and well…we are still deciding if we can manage that! All kidding aside though, we are very happy to have welcomed Darius into the band and love all that he brings to the group.
As you may have noticed, this week Sweet Saturday is releasing a series of three acoustic session videos to YouTube. We had a great time filming these live videos, and enjoying the wine and cheese that accompanies such endeavors. A huge thank you goes out to the audience of special fans that joined us for the performance and to the guys at SplitArt Media that filmed and edited the video production. SplitArt did a great job and have such enthusiasm for projects like this one.
Sweet Saturday on set for the live Acousitc Session Video Series. Photo Credit Jeremy Ratzlaff SplitArt Media. (Jan, 2015)
Last but not least this week we have the distinct honour of performing the Canadian National Anthem at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts. We are privileged to sing at the opening ceremonies, the closing ceremonies and a few draws in the middle. We can’t wait to make Moose Jaw proud and to help welcome some great athletes to ‘The Friendly City’.
|Posted on 6 August, 2014 at 0:45||comments (0)|
Mandy and Jaimie sat down to have a conversation about “Right Here”, a song from Sweet Saturday’s new album “Joyful”.
Jaimie: Mandy, to get started; tell me about what this song is about.
Mandy: Well, this song is about the challenge of communicating with people who can’t communicate with you in traditional ways. I know a lot of people who struggle with sensory or social communication challenges, and this song is a way to tell that we love them, that they are not alone, and that they have lstove and support even when they don’t realize it. My son Jude has had some developmental delays over his life, and his typical behaviours are so repetitive and sometimes alarming that it seems like you can’t reach him. This song is my way of telling him that I’m always there for him.
Jaimie: It was really great for me to hear you talking about communication from a parent’s perspective! As you know, I’m a speech-language pathologist, so I deal with communication day in and day out, but there is something so powerful about hearing about Jude’s struggles from a parent’s perspective. For example, I work with a lot of kids who cannot communicate, or who are very frustrated by their struggle to get their messages across to others. Because I work in schools, I see teachers and staff who care deeply about their students, but nothing can match a parent’s understanding and love for his or her own child. You talk about seeing the person Jude truly is despite his difficulties, and desiring to see that person “break through.” This is a viewpoint that people who aren’t the parents of the child may have a hard time adopting, because we often see only what is on the surface. It is so heartbreaking to see your child struggling, but you express so much hope for who he will become! How did you start to write this song?
Mandy: The first ideas about this song were specific lines in this song. For example, in the chorus there’s a line that says, “When the way the world spins causes you to tremble.” It’s a reference to being overwhelmed by life.
Jaimie: When I heard your first version of the song, that line definitely stood out! I know there are a few more powerful lines, like where you said, “I see the way you dance when the world’s too close.” What does that mean?
Mandy: Some of the repetitive behaviours that I talked about before are walking on tiptoes, walking on heels, and spinning for extended periods of time. We call this Jude’s ‘dance’, and when he’s overwhelmed, or when “the world’s too close”, this is what his does.
Mandy: There is something really wonderful about collaborating with musicians you respect, to create a song. When I brought this song to you and Karen, and then to Darius, it felt like a safe place. What was it like for you to collaborate on this?
Jaimie: Haha, well, I’m always amazed that you can write something so personal and then trust us to work on it with you! It was a blast to work with Darius as well, because he has so many amazing ideas for music and lyrics! He was coming up with lyric ideas faster than we could keep up! You were so open to the ideas that we had for lyrics, or harmonies.
Mandy: It’s great to work with someone who has so much experience in the music industry (Darius), and the thing I appreciate the most is that when you leave you feel like every idea you had was a good idea, even if you didn’t end up using it.
Once you write a song and begin performing it, it’s not really your own song anymore. Everybody takes a piece of it and makes it their own, whether they listen to it and love it, or whether they perform it with you as well, or whether they do a cover of it. You can’t hold onto a song too closely if you want people to feel it as deeply as you do.
Jaimie: That’s one thing I really feel about this song – you’ve poured so much emotion into it from your personal experience, but I believe that anyone who has a child can relate to the idea that their child is more precious than any other treasure! It’s so beautiful. What do you hope that people will take away from this song?
Mandy: Children and adults can both struggle with effective communication, and often with coping strategies. The worst thing a person can feel is that they are alone. I hope if nothing else, people realize that it’s okay to lean on other people. You don’t have to struggle alone. It’s okay to be supported, and most importantly, there are people that love you and want to help you.
And to the people who are supporting others, I know you are exhausted. So am I! Fight the good fight. You are not alone either, and all the work that you do is meaningful and important. Don’t forget to take care of yourself. Your loved ones need you to be as well as you can be.
If you connect with this song, please share your stories with us. Every time we hear about how this song has touched someone, it encourages us and makes it even more meaningful.
Here is the link to our new video
If the video won't load you can follow this link to find it on youtube.
|Posted on 21 July, 2014 at 1:20||comments (0)|
Welcome to the Sweet Saturday Blog! We will try and post some stories and updates about our shows and adventures here for you folks to peruse through.
We are now back at home after our weekend at the Sandy Creek Gospel Jamboree, and what a weekend it was! We had so much fun this weekend meeting new people, singing our favorite songs and enjoying the weekend with our families and each other. We were privileged to meet other talented groups and families and listen to their incredible harmonies. We very much appreciated those incredibly talented musicians who inspired us with their musicianship and their dedication to God’s work in their lives.
Another notable accomplishment for us this weekend is the release of our new EP ‘Joyful’ which features four of our own original songs! We are proud of our work and cannot wait for everyone to hear it! Recording was a bit of an adventure in June; we were able to use a wonderful space in our church and had the privilege of working with some very talented and generous musicians. We recorded some of our tracks during a lightning storm which made our electric guitar sound even more electric. Every time the lightning would strike, the guitar amp would buzz and hum making it a challenge to get a clean track. Our sound engineer, Cam was very patient though and it all worked out perfectly! Cam was very dedicated and spent hours working at recording tracks, editing, mixing and fixing our little details. He recorded tracks for us even when he was sick and should have been at home sleeping! That is dedication to the job, if I have ever seen it!
We were also fortunate to have Darius, our friend and oh so talented musician to help us produce and perform our music. He has been very supportive and dedicated as well. He spent lots of time with Cam working out the final details of the mix and coaching us along to produce our best work. Not only is he talented, but he is also a good sport. He learned and performed a Glockenspiel solo for our last performance and seriously rocked it out! It was one of the cutest things we have ever heard! Way to go Darius, you really do fit right in with us girls. Darius is an organ player by trade and also plays anything else with keys that resemble a piano. He is always so happy to groove along with us and really adds so much to our sound. We love having him play music with us! Darius’ look is super groovy too. He is always thinking about his ‘look’ and manages to really fit in with us girls. This weekend, he sported a pink gingham bowtie, a plaid bowtie and of course the classic black bowtie during different shows.( Until this weekend I had never considered that there might be a bowtie that wasn’t the classic black….now I know.)
Darius sporting a bowtie and an accordian...it's a good look, Darius!
We really should take some time and thank our families for letting us have this great hobby. We spend countless hours rehearsing, performing (and lately recording) and they hold down the fort at home. They come and help us set up for shows, haul our gear around, be our sound guys, take multiple takes of our YouTube videos, listen to our songs again and again and again and tell us they love our music even after hearing the same songs for three hours straight. They tolerate us independently practicing obnoxious instruments at home and even offer encouragement to keep practicing when we get frustrated. So, thank you for helping us out, encouraging us and being patient with us as we learn new instruments.
We can’t wait to see you at our shows and want to encourage you to come and chat with us. Thank you for supporting Sweet Saturday, coming out to our shows, buying our CDs and telling us how much you love our music.
Stay posted for more updates on our web page and as always “anytime is a good time to pick up an instrument or raise your voice in song”.