Jack and May come out to play

The Sooke Folk Music Society presents an evening at the coffee house

Jack and May perform for the Sooke Coffee House

Our Sooke Folk Music Coffee House this Saturday, April 21 should prove to be most entertaining as we present Jack and May.

Some of you may remember them from the early fall of last year, when they did a spot at our open stage. May’s song about her romantic obsession with George Strombolopolis was a big hit.

What do you get when a stand-up comic and a seasoned musician get together to form a musical duo? You get Jack and May! Jack has played in rock bands, jazz combos, duos and as a solo performer in folk and pop genres. May is a writer and stand-up comic who has performed her original songs since 2008. As a duo, Jack and May draw from an eclectic repertoire to entertain audiences in coffeehouses and folk clubs around the Island.

Here’s Jack’s story:

“My parents loved barbershop harmony, and my mother also liked Elvis Presley, even taking me to see Elvis perform in his gold lame suit at Maple Leaf Gardens. So maybe that’s why, at a Christmas party for the S.P.E.B.S.Q.S.A. (Barbershoppers), I got up and did an Elvis impression. It drove the pre-teens wild, even though I didn’t even know how to play guitar yet.

“I had formed a rock and roll band playing local dances and performing such poignant tunes as Travellin’ Man  and Does Your Chewing Gum Lose Its Flavour on the Bedpost Overnight? At a concert I mimicked Bobby Rydell singing and dancing to Wild One backed up by my band.

“I was performing folk music in coffeehouses in Guelph and Toronto, but it wasn’t long before the enthusiasm for the folk era would wane.

All this finally led him to Victoria, where he and May Brown hooked up as a couple and a performing duo.

May’s story is equally as interesting.

“The newspaper review of my first singing performance describes how I strode onto the stage, walked up to the mike stand and stared at the microphone two feet above my head. I was five years old and I was supposed to sing a Russian hymn. As I began to sing, the audience fell silent, and when I finished, they erupted into loud applause. I remember looking out at that sea of faces and thinking, ‘I could get used to this’

“I grew up in Fruitvale, B.C., and I was swept up in the British invasion of the 1960s. My parents bought me a Suzuki guitar and my brother taught me a few chords, all I needed to sing and play the protest songs of the day. I left the music behind for marriage, motherhood and a writing career, and when I stepped on stage again in the 1990s, it was as a stand-up comic.

“In 2008, I picked up the guitar again and started writing songs, that’s where I met Jack.and music, and as a duo, we’ve been having a blast.” Please join us this Saturday, April 21 for an evening of fun entertainment from this engaging duo.

It happens at Holy Trinity Anglican Church, 1962 Murray Road.

Doors open at 7pm with open stage at 7:30 and our feature at 9.