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First Friday’ Category

July 2014 First Friday @ Cheeky Monkey by Brian Hay

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July 2014 First Friday @...

There was definitely a festive summer vibe in the air during the July 4th First Friday at Cheeky Monkey.  The fact that is was perfect weather enhanced the dance-able music provided by THE DRIFT.  Below is a review written by customer and music aficionado, Brian Hay.  The first time Brian heard The Drift was during ArtWalk when we hosted several local bands outside the front of Cheeky Monkey.  The Drift being a relatively 'new' band of 3 seasoned musicians, Brian notes the changes he noticed between June and July's performances. Also adding to the nights high spirits was the smiling, friendly face of Alison Mahon here selling the  "SARNIA 100 YEARS" books.   This is a gorgeous book commemorating Sarnia's 100th anniversary, researched and written by the History Committee, a sub-committee of the Sarnia Centennial Celebration Committee.  The book includes more than 120 striking historical images of the city as well as ...

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SARNIA 100 Years Commemorative Book on sale during July...

Posted in: First Friday, Local Talent, Magazine and Books, News | 3 Comments

SARNIA 100 Years Commemorative...

The Community Round Table and the Sarnia Centennial Celebration Committee are proud to announce the release of Sarnia: 100 Years. This is a gorgeous book commemorating Sarnia's 100th anniversary, researched and written by the History Committee, a sub-committee of the Sarnia Centennial Celebration Committee.  The book includes more than 120 striking historical images of the city as well as a message from Sarnia’s own Chris Hadfield. “The History Committee enjoyed sharing stories about Sarnia’s history during the preparation of the book,”   said Alison Mahon.  “We hope that Sarnia: 100 Years will encourage more citizens to share their stories and learn about the history of our community.” Sarnia: 100 Years will be available in limited quantities in both soft-cover ($20) and hard-cover ($30) editions.

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June First Friday was Acoustic Buzz(ing)

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June First Friday was Acoustic...

The 3 piece band  called Acoustic Buzz made their debut on the night of the June 9, 2014 First Friday at Cheeky Monkey. The lead guitarist and singer, Kesenia Parent has performed here many times.  As a matter of fact, playing at Cheeky Monkey was one of her very first public performances.  From the start, we saw the talent she has and have enjoyed watching her develop and grow as a musician.  In fact, she is so good, she was accepted at Laurier University in their music program. Her band mate, Heather Brown is actually her cousin.  It was only recently they discovered each other musically.  Being related it is little wonder that they are able to harmonize so well.  Heather has performed at various venues like the Lawrence House "House Concerts'. Third member of the trio was Troy Draper.  His work on guitar rounded out their sound nicely giving it the fullness ...

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Erika & Sara – The Real Deal Singing Duo

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Erika & Sara – The...

The lovely and talented singing duo of Erika and Sara made a return performance at the May 2, 2014 First Friday here at Cheeky Monkey. To say it is a joy and pleasure to host them is a big understatement.  Besides doing  a great job entertaining the audience with their renditions of popular songs ranging from Johnny Cash to Coldplay, these two young ladies have added an ever growing list of self penned songs to their playlist.  Besides writing their own music, they have added other dimensions to their performances such as more harmonies, harmonica and switching off on guitar playing. They have been performing here at Cheeky Monkey for the last several years. We have watched them develop in that time from being shy and unsure to now being comfortable and talkative with their legion of appreciative fans.   This is not to say they have no room to grow.  They ...

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The Drift & Martha Finch’s Art Big April First...

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The Drift & Martha Finch&...

Tragically Hip, The Band, The Eagles, Simon & Garfunkel were just a few of the groups whose hit songs local band The Drift covered during the April 4, 2014 First Friday at Cheeky Monkey. The Drift is a 3 piece band consisting of Wes Beveridge (Guitar Vocals), Ron Webber (Bass, Guitar, Vocals) and Paul Eastman (percussion).  All the members are seasoned musicians with a long musical lineage in the area that are not only good performers, but also have a knack for knowing what songs please a crowd.  That was evident by the number of people bobbing their heads in time or dancing along. We are proud to say, this was the debut of The Drift and we know we will be hearing about them often playing other venues in the near future. On the walls of Cheeky Monkey, the eclectic artwork of Martha Finch is on exhibit and for sale.  For a well ...

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April 2014 First Friday with DJ2

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April 2014 First Friday with...

A fun evening of favourite songs to sing along to was provided by Danielle on keyboard, Joanne on guitar and Janet on lead vocals.  The trio are known as DJ2 (that's pronounced 'DJ squared).  Ranging from Anne Murray to Perry Como, they covered all the bases of hits from a by-gone era.  The audience enjoyed their enthusiasum and talent as did we.  These are not only three musically talented ladies, but they are also great humanitarians volunteering much of their time and energy to put smiles on the faces of those unable to get out to events like First Friday.  We are pleased they found time to spend with us and we look forward to them coming back again in the future. To view more photos for this evening, CLICK HERE

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Virginia Plain’s First Friday Debut

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Virginia Plain’s First...

WOW!  I'll say it again - WOW! We along with a roomful of fans were all blown away by the talent in the band VIRGINIA PLAIN.  This 5 piece band really has their act together with a tight and comfortable sound that usually comes from years of playing together.  Hard to believe they have only been Virginia Plain for a bit over a year with very few live shows under their belt. Their playlist of  originals mixed with cover tunes had a fresh, contemporary  groove.  Lead singing duties were shared by Matt Naylor, Zach McLaughlin, and Al Symeonakis with each picking the perfect songs for their vocal abilities.  Rounding out the band contributing to what Roland calls "a full band sound" are Dennis Graham on keyboard and Adam Bettridge on drums. Virginia Plain's take on a LCD Soundsystem's 'You Want A Hit' and Pink Floyd's 'Comfortably Numb' where huge crowd pleasers.  I thought their ...

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1st 2014 First Friday Fun…

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1st 2014 First Friday Fun&...

We would like to thank all the customers and music fans that braved the cold weather to join us at the first First Friday of 2014. Those that were here, felt if was well worth coming into Cheeky Monkey to hear the local band of ELEMENT OF SURPRISE PROJECT play and view the photographic artwork of CHRISTINE ROENSPIESS. The band played two hours of crowd pleasing classic hit songs.  Starting off with Neil Young's 'Cinnamon Girl', we all knew we were in for a good night.  ESP's versions of Steppenwolf's 'Born To Be Wild" and Jeff Beck's 'Freeway Jam' really caught my ears too. Darren Diamond on lead guitar and vocals (he's our mechanic from Best Automotive - talented in many ways apparently), Neil Whittle on guitar and vocals (formerly played here for the Streets reunion), Graham Dalley on bass and keyboards and Gerry Ostrihon on drums (played here last July with Cross ...

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Last First Friday of 2013

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Last First Friday of 2013

Ohhh the weather outside was frightful - but the music inside was delightful - it didn't show signs of stopped  - so let it snow let it snow let it snow.  Sing along! The temperature outside didn't matter.  Inside Cheeky Monkey it was warm and cozy thanks in part to the music of Mike Blackmore and his drummer Chris Hutton.  To carry the warm theme further, the underwater photographs by Christine Roenspiess provided a very tropical feel. Mike is always entertaining, despite his regular group of fellow muscians not being along with him.  Instead he had a 'guest drummer' in his long time friend Chris Hutton who has recently moved back to Sarnia.  This being Chris' first experience in the revitalized downtown, he express his joy at being part of the evenings fun. Mike playing acoustic guitar and sometime d'jembe, gave his original songs new twisted we hadn't heard before.  I particularly enjoyed a ...

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Album Mania Exhibit & Cornhuskers for Nov. 2013 First...

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Album Mania Exhibit &...

The walls of Cheeky Monkey are currently adorned with the Sarnia Photographic Club's interpretations of song or album titles.  It is interesting to see how some took titles very literally such as "Sand in the Vaseline" by the Talking Heads, while others are much more abstract such as the photo depicting The Rolling Stones song "Paint it Black".  From comical to serious they are all worth a good look.  The exhibit will continue until November 29th.  When you stop in be sure to cast your vote for The People's Choice Award. During the evening of the November 1st First Friday, the local band Paula & The Cornhuskers entertained the crowd with a few cover songs, but mostly originals done in a rocking country blues style.  Paula Loxton is the main lead singer and song writer getting inspiration from as diverse of topics as her Grandma as a young woman in the ...

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