Shaking, shimmying and jamming…

On Friday the 13th we welcomed Chris Coole, one of Canada’s foremost banjo players and member of the Foggy Hogtown Boys (, and Sam Allison, member of Sheesham and Lotus ( to play some tunes for us.
The morning began as the children were eating snack, listening to the tuning and strumming of the banjo in the other room. They all sat up a little bit more straight and were instantly intrigued. What was that new sound coming from the other room? They could not finish their snack fast enough.
Upon entering the performance room the children were instantly mesmorized with the two musicians in front of them. Chris and Sam had a plan to introduce the children to as many instruments as they could , and they did!
The set began with Chris on the banjo and Sam introducing the jaw harp to the children.
This is where the dancing began, and it did not stop for the entire hour (yep, hour!) of the performance.
Up next was a harmonica, but this was no ordinary harmonica. This was a special harmonica custom built by Sam. It was set into a horn. Intrigued by this large deep sounding instrument, the children stomped their feet to ‘Cotton Eyed Joe’.

Now came quiz time. What is the difference between a banjo and a guitar? Yep, the number of strings. The children began to count the 5 strings on the banjo and the 6 strings on the guitar.

No Blue Grass, Old-time Rag-time High-Steppin’ Mountain Music duo would be compete without the fiddle! As Sam pulled out his fiddle the children’s eyes enlarged. The climax of the performance, “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”!

I have to say that we were honoured that these two amazingly talented musicians took time out of their day to share their talent (and secrets – when you see them raise their leg that means that the song is ending) with us. Not only did we all learn so much but also had such a great time shaking, shimmining and jamming with them!
Thanks Chris and Sam!

March 14, 2009. Uncategorized. No Comments.