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New song “Once You Know,” now available online in support of the On Root Project in Haida Gwaii

Back in July, I was invited to travel to Haida Gwaii, BC to participate in an artist residency organized by the good folks behind the On Root Project.  The purpose of this project is to expose various artists to the beauty of the old growth forests, to contrast that with the devastation of the clear cuts, and to create an artistic work from the experience as a result.

Interacting with the community through shared stories and song was a powerful and rewarding experience, and I left with a heightened understanding of what proper stewardship of the land means.  Unfortunately, clear cutting and overfishing are accelerating at unsustainable rates, and a pooled community effort is needed to protect and regulate the wellness of these vulnerable ecosystems.

I composed “Once You Know,” in support of the On Root Project’s mission to raise awareness, and to help create dialogue regarding positive solutions for the long term health of our forests and oceans.  Knowing is one thing, but knowledgable action is of most importance.

What can you do?  Download “Once You Know,” here, and share/post/re-post this link.  The song is available for free, and sharing widely with those you think would connect to this is encouraged.  If you feel compelled to financially support this initiative, any contributions/donations will be payed forward to the efforts of the On Root Project in their pursuit of strengthening land and ocean stewardship practices in Haida Gwaii and beyond.

Once You Know

“Once You Know,” is presently available on Bandcamp, and will be available on Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, and all other platforms very soon.

Playing The Woodstove Festival with PK Tessmann Nov. 4th/5th in Cumberland, BC

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Here’s where you can catch PK and I this weekend in Cumberland:

Saturday, Nov. 4th, 6:30 The Abbey (Cover your CV Friends)

Saturday, Nov. 4th 9 PM The Abbey (PK and Michael full set)

Sunday, Nov. 5th,  4:15 Abbey (S.A.D. Songs in the Round)

Over $7000 raised for Music Therapy at SJMA, and playing the Honda Celebration of Light Festival Second Beach Stage with special guests, Aug. 2nd, 4pm

Huge thanks to everyone who requested covers and contributed, shared, and encouraged my efforts in the Covers for the Cause campaign put on by Music Heals. Total amount raised for the music therapy program at SJMA (St. James Music Academy) is close to $8000!!!

As an amazing bonus, I’ve been given the opportunity to perform at the Honda Celebration of Lights Festival on the Second Beach Stage, August 2nd, at 4pm.  I will be bringing on some special guest artists to join me for this special experience, so come down and celebrate with us!  Artist names will be revealed here soon :).  The Boom Booms will be playing later that evening, and are a band not to be missed!

Amazing work to all the musicians who raised funds for music therapy through the Music Heals covers campaign. In one month, the artists involved and their supportive audiences raised over $17, 000 for music therapy! How cool is that?!?

You know what else is cool?  Donations and the opportunity to request covers from your favourite local artists are going to continue to be open, so if you’re looking for something special to contribute to, or know an artist who would love to be a part of this, send them to coversforthecause.com.  I am always happy to take further requests, and you can contribute for that here

Thanks again everyone!!!  See you on a big stage on the 2nd of August!

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July 17th last day to request a cello cover like this one (Bare Necessities) and raise funds for Music Therapy!

Very exciting news! The Music Heals fundraising campaign “Covers for the Cause,” comes to a close on Monday, July 17th at midnight!  I have had a ton of fun so far with this project, and currently, we’re sitting at just over $2000 towards music therapy!

Yesterday we cracked the $1000 mark, which allows me to direct the funds where I would like it to go.  I am so thrilled about this, as it is going straight to the music therapy program at The St. James Music Academy (SJMA), where I have seen music therapists change the lives of children, and their teachers.  Massive thanks to all those who have supported and requested so far!

Lastly, Music Heals announced that the artist who raises the most funds will get a chance to perform at the Celebration of Lights Festival on August 2nd in Vancouver, opening up for The Boom Booms (One of my favourite Vancouver bands!  You need to see their show!).

This is a huge opportunity, and I am currently in 1st place (only by $100).  I would love to utilize that performance opportunity to bring light to this very special school (SJMA), and how music therapy is an integral part of it.  Any support is most welcomed – Donations and requests for cover songs on the cello can be made here.

Here is the latest Covers for the Cause video, dedicated to Tania, Diana, Matt, and Liam, and features Ireland’s fantastic whistle and Uilleann piper, Chris McMullan.  Disney/Jungle Book fans, enjoy this version of the Bare Necessities 🙂

West Coast Tour with PK Tessmann, July 4th-July 9th

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It has been a while since I played on Vancouver Island, and I am thrilled to be coming back for a short tour with award winning musical Islander/songstress, PK Tessmann.  We’ll be doing a few shows on the island, and a couple on the mainland.  Check below for dates/locations, and email for info if you’d like to attend a house concert:

July 4th Ladysmith, BC, House Concert w/PK Tessmann, 7pm (email michael@michaelaverill.com for info)

July 5th – Cumberland, BC, Rare Bird Bookshop w/PK Tessmann, 6:30pm

July 6th – Quadra Island, BC, Kameleon Cafe w/PK Tessmann, 7pm

July 8th – Mission, BC, House Concert w/PK Tessman, potluck dinner 5pm, show at 7pm (email michael@michaelaverill.com for info)

July 9th – East Vancouver, Notional Space Concert w/PK Tessmann, 6:30pm

Request a song to be covered on cello and help support music therapy through Covers for the Cause

Ever wanted to have one of your favourite tunes re-interpreted by me on the cello? Here’s your opportunity to do so and support music therapy in Canada.

Music Heals launched a new campaign to raise support and awareness for music therapy called Covers for the Cause,  and I jumped onboard to participate.  I just finished one request for Billie Jean by Michael Jackson (Thank you Nicole!), so if you’re wondering what this may look like, check this out:

Why on the cello you say??  Why the heck not!?!?!  Playing the cello is a new adventure for me, and I’ve been loving it!  I thought it would be a great personal challenge to see if I could make covers happen this way, and I welcome your requests with open arms :).

Deadline to request and donate is July 17th, so if you want to take part, either as an individual or group, do so soon.  You can contribute and request on my page here. If you’re not into the cello challenge, there are many great musical friends of all genres involved I would highly recommend contacting below:

Dawn Pemberton (Soul/R&B), Sadie Campbell (Roots/Rock), Chicken-Like Birds (Ragtime Country Blues), Luca Fogale (Soul/Folk), Dom Fricot (Rock), Sam Lynch (Heart ache Electric Folk), Colleen O’Connor (Jazz), Elle Wolf (Rock), Alex Maher (Soul/Hip Hop), Chase Your Words (Pop/Punk)

Either way, only good can come from more support for music therapy as a means of recovery and growth.

 

New live video from The Acoustic Guitar Project Vancouver at St. James Hall

Back in November 2016, a great cast of Vancouver based artists (at the time) and myself took part in the global songwriting initiative called The Acoustic Guitar Project (Click the link to learn more).  It was an absolute delight to share the stage with Chicken-Like Birds, Joline Baylis, Kristina Lao, Sadie Campbell, and Tanya Gallagher, and to have them all backing me up with this goofy tune.

Hope it brings a smile to your day, and a reminder that if you ever want to pick up the guitar, it’s never too late to learn!

Thanks Doug Tombe for filming and producing this video, and The Rogue Folk Club for hosting this grand event!

Upcoming workshops and shows in June

Lots of fun ahead this month in the bay!

I’m honoured to be leading a couple of classes this weekend for the Georgia Strait Guitar Workshop for the second time.  Last year was an absolute blast, and can’t wait to jam with everyone again!

On Saturday, June 10th, I will be MC’ing and performing in a very special event hosted by the Left Coast Labour Chorus at the Russian Hall in East Vancouver.  The night is called Just Voices:Union Made, and is a celebration of labour and union efforts, past and present, through song and story.  It will be a wonderful evening with performances from the Re:Sisters, Gram Partisans, Griffin and Holdstock, and the Left Coast Labour Chorus.  Great people, great music, great place = wickedly enjoyable evening!

Show information and tickets can be found here

For more info on shows in June, visit http://michaelaverill.com/shows/

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