PORT McNEILL—Port McNeill-raised singer Georgia Murray enjoyed a triumphant homecoming recently. And she wasn’t alone.
Murray, who competed last season in CBC’s Cover Me Canada music competition, returned to the North Island April 14 to headline a pair of well-received and stylistically diverse concerts at Gate House Theatre.
Georgia Murray and Friends, which included performances by singer-songwriter Ashleigh Eymann and violinist Kytami, was part of the Raise the Roof series to benefit renovations to St. John Gualbert — a.k.a. the A-frame Church.
Murray and friends — including guitarist Dave Parfit and DJ D Whiz — tuned up for Saturday night’s main show with an afternoon family matinee for more than 60 fans.
Eymann kicked off the show with a series of original and cover songs, accompanying herself on acoustic guitar or keyboard.
Murray then took the stage flanked by Kytami and Parfit for an acoustic mini-set that included a cover of The Animals’ House of the Rising Son and a soaring performance of the Murray-penned Won’t Get in the Way, featuring a sublime violin solo from Kytami.
Then D Whiz was called to the stage to lay down the beat and Parfit switched to electric guitar as the show took on a harder edge. The brief set featured a remix cover of Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta Love that Kytami punctuated with her blistering electric violin work.
Kytami, trained in both classical violin and fiddling styles, was given the final set to explore her latest musical orientation, a trip-hop fusion of violin with electronica, backed by D Whiz.
For her final number, the haunting Safehouse Anthem, she called Murray back to the stage to provide vocals. It was the first time the two had performed the piece together, and it went off without a hitch to leave the crowd cheering loudly.
Originally scheduled as an hour-long show, the matinee extended to an hour and a half and still left the audience wanting more. Thomas Wolfe’s quote to the contrary, Murray proved you can go home again.