The Vancouver-born son of roots-rocker Barney Bentall is pulling double duty Saturday night at Lucky Bar as he and his new band The Smokes co-headline a tour with emerging Canadian alt-country songstress Lindi Ortega. But Dustin Bentall and the Smokes won’t only be playing one set, they’re also Ortega’s backing band.
The two have the same agent in Canada and when Bentall heard Ortega was looking for a backing band, he suggested they take on the job. They all piled into one tourbus and have been clocking miles all over Canada and the U.S. The Victoria show is the last of the tour.
Bentall is promoting his latest EP Orion, his first with this new band, featuring Kendel Carson, Del Cowsill and Rich Knox.
Tickets are $20 at Ditch Records, Lyle’s Place and online at Ticketweb.ca. M
Country music in Victoria isn’t only for the trendy nightclubs of downtown. Montgomery County has been wielding their country twang the way country started — with rednecks. From opening for Canadian country music superstar George Canyon back in 2011 to the beer gardens of the Western Speedway, the Saloon stage of Sunfest and local haunts like My Bar and Tudor House, lead singer Wayne Montgomery and the band have taken on new country’s finest for the past three years, covering new classics like “Red Solo Cup,” “Put A Girl In It” and “The More I Drink.” The group may not be the youngest country act in Victoria, but they’re as country as it gets. According to Montgomery, Victoria’s pretty country too. “Cowboy culture might not be as strong in Victoria as in places like Shawnigan and Duncan, but it is here! Lots of our fans are young and lots are in full country attire. You can’t just buy that stuff at the Mayfair Mall.” Join the county crew Fri., Feb. 22 at My Bar (9pm, 310 Gorge East in the Hojo), take a drive to The Black Swan Fri., March 1(Shawnigan Lake) or at the Tudor House Sat., March 2. — By Colin Cayer
Spoken Word Festival
The third annual Victoria Spoken Word Festival (Feb. 27 to March 3) launches into space this year with more than a dozen spoken word artists from across Canada touching down in town, including Poet of Honour Johnny MacRae (pictured right), Victoria’s own Dave Morris and international celebrity poet Mighty Mike McGee. Events blast off Wed., Feb. 27 with Missie Peters and 2 Dope Boys at the Intrepid Theatre Club (8pm, 1609 Blanshard). Full schedule at Victoriaspokenwordfestival.com. M