Spark Radio, KMRE-LP 102.3 FM is hosting Petunia and the Vipers at 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 14, at the Spark Museum of Electrical Invention Event Center, 1312 Bay St.
“We’re excited to welcome Petunia and his band back to Spark — he performed at the museum in 2009 — and to invite everyone who supports community radio to come celebrate our 10th anniversary on the air,” says KMRE general manager Suzanne Blais.
I love a guy who can yodel.
Suzanne Blais, general manager of KMRE
Blais says she has seen Petunia twice at the Green Frog.
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“Such a lot of fun,” she says, “and he can yodel. I love a guy who can yodel.”
The band is known for its surprising mix of music; from country tunes and rockabilly to Spanish ballads, French chansons and Latin rhythms.
Petunia, who is originally from Quebec and is now based in Vancouver, B.C., says the “full shwankin’ five-piece band” will perform from their latest album, “Inside of You,” which Petunia says is perhaps more obscure than their previous albums, with more sophisticated music, or, at least, the arrangements are more complex, he says, so “it takes more listening time to get ahold of things.”
Petunia listens a variety of music, depending on what’s on the dash of his truck.
Plus, he says, there are old-fashioned, souped-up modern takes on music. He describes his music as “springboarding from the past and diving with elements of the past into a whole new idiom, a whole new era of old-fashioned sounding music, but new music nonetheless.”
He says listens to lots of varied music at different times, “depending on what’s laying around the dash of my truck.”
Blais says that “just when you might be tempted to pigeonhole them as ‘old-timey’, they play a song that doesn’t fit that label, and it’s just as wonderful. I liked that they were eclectic, eccentric and surprising — and just a really good time.”
Museum volunteer Anthony Arena, who is on a first-name basis with Petunia, says they seem to be a perfect fit for Spark Radio: antiquity meets history meets modernization, he says.
And, he says, all of the band members are “world-class songsters.”
“They have so much history of music in their fingers and voice,” Arena says.
The event, which is limited to ages 21 and older, will have refreshments, and beer and wine sold separately to those with valid ID. Proceeds benefit KMRE, Bellingham’s community radio station, to replace equipment damaged a recent windstorm and to increase the station’s reach.
When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 14
Where: Spark Museum of Electrical Invention, 1312 Bay St.
Cost: $15 at Brown Paper Tickets, or go to kmre.org and click on ‘Petunia & The Vipers Benefit’ for details. Tickets also will be at the door.
About the band: petuniaandthevipers.com.