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'Spacey folk' band to play Turner Valley

“Folk, old country Americana with a little spaciness.”
SCENE-Leaf Rapids
Manitoba's folk band Leaf Rapids will play Beneath the Arch at Turner Valley's Flare n' Derrick Community Hall on April 30.

Some stellar folk will land in Turner Valley next week.

Manitoba band Leaf Rapids is set to play in the Beneath the Arch concert series on April 30 at the Flare n' Derrick.

“People have described us as cinematic folk,” said Keri Latimer, vocalist for the quartet.

“We try not to get in the way of the songs too much, and I grew up on the prairies, so that openness probably comes from the big skies — not too much clutter,” said Latimer, who grew up in Alberta.

The band’s singer/songwriter, Latimer also plays guitar and theremin, and fronted the Juno-winning band Nathan in the early 2000s with her husband Devin, who plays bass.

The two are paired up in Leaf Rapids with couple Chriss Dunn playing guitar and Joanna Miller delivering drums and harmony vocals.

The Manitoba resident looks forward to returning to Alberta.

“I grew up in Lethbridge and Calgary, half-and-half, and somehow landed here,” Latimer said. “I’m excited to come back to Alberta actually.”

She played Beneath the Arch previously with Nathan, but the band parted ways as lives changed.

“It was too hard to keep on the road as everybody grew up — my partner in the band Shelley Marshall, she became a doctor,” Latimer said. People's lives changed and we had to reconfigure.

“We haven’t been there with our new entourage, but we’ve played a lot in Alberta.”

That new band came to be when the two couldn’t stop making music.

“We were looking for something new, Devin and I just couldn’t quit and I can’t seem to quit writing songs, so Steve Dawson approached me and asked if we wanted to produce a record on his label,” Latimer said.

“So we had to come up with a new name and formed Leaf Rapids with my husband and I as a duo at first, but then it’s grown into a four piece now with Joanna Miller and Chriss Dunn.

Their 2015 album Lucky Stars is an ethereal take on the folk genre, what Latimer described as “folk, old country, Americana with a little spaciness.”

The titular song for the 2019 album Citizen Alien takes a pluckier tone, inspired by the equally plucky tale of Latimer’s great-grandmother, a Japanese immigrant to Canada.

“My great-grandmother was a picture bride (similar to a mail-order bride)," Latimer said. "And she worked as a barber when she got to Canada for her sight-unseen husband.

“She stabbed somebody in the leg (with scissors) who was groping her during a haircut."

Much of the band's material looks back on their heritage.

“Most of the songs are inspired by true stories from our ancestral histories of our settler ancestors.”

For tickets and information visit

Brent Calver

About the Author: Brent Calver

Award-winning photojournalist for the Okotoks Western Wheel and
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