Stillhouse Songwriter Sessions - Fall Series Show #39

Eric Kane and Elliot Niven demonstrated their vocal chops and excellent guitar skills during the sound check of the Jim Beam Stillhouse sessions #39,

signalling to the audience that this was to be a special musical evening. And, from when the music started in earnest through to the end of their second set, the pair continued their vocal and guitar mastery while also showcasing their amazing song writing abilities.


This, the second session of the Track on 2’s Jim Beam sponsored music series for the fall of 2021 (and 39th show overall), was held in the warm and inviting confines of the Funky Monkey restaurant, a space ideally suited for acoustic live music. With high tables at the back and well spaced lower tables moving forward to the slightly-raised stage, there are no poor seats in this house. The sound is always excellent in this venue as well. The close atmosphere extends to the musicians as they sit beside each other, watching their fellow performer captivate the audience.


The decision between Kane and Niven as to who would go first came down to a paper-scissors-rock game, which determined that Eric Kane was first up.


Kane, frontman and founder of the band Kane Incognito, has channeled the death of his brother into a number of beautiful and from-the-heart songs. His observation that you can’t always control life, but you can control who and what you love became his first song of the evening, “Diagnose Me”, with lyrics such as “drowning in you, we lay a brother down, we have to slow down” were really breathtaking. Kane’s repertoire included other personal songs – a ballad about deciding between conflicting desires was especially poignant… “drowning in thoughts of you… drowning in you”.  The Track on 2 audience was also treated to the premiere of a brand-new Kane song, “Set Free”. He also showed his playful side with a cover of John Denver’s “Country Roads”, which had the audience singing along. This man’s strong voice was phenomenal.


Both engaging and intense, Elliot Niven’s contribution to the evening was similarly wonderful. Niven started with his “Copper Bottom Blues”, using his guitar for percussive effects. Later, he gifted the audience with a song he’s played on electric guitar many times before but never as an acoustic version, and played an amazing Louisiana blues song, “How Long?” using a finger slide to amazing effect. On top of all those great songs, he also played one song the audience particularly loved - “Red Wine and Weed”, which was accompanied by a lovely story.  By the end of “Red Wine and Weed”, the audience was singing along with Niven. Truly fun!


This concert ended with a peaceful easy feeling. The singers stayed on, talking to folks from the audience who wanted to share their thoughts as the rest of us finished our drinks and reflected back on this lovely evening.


An added bonus to the night was the Sunny 94 radio host, Tank Montana, whose wit and charm provided the perfect bookends for the evening as he first introduced the artists and then closed out the show, expressing the audience’s heartfelt thanks for a wonderful night. 


These two gentlemen are playing next at Festival Place in Sherwood Park on October 30th, a show certain to be excellent.


The next show in the Jim Beam series is October 27th, featuring Duane Steele and Jaywalker.