What do Elvis Presley, Monty Hall, Charles Darwin, the Apollo 13 mission, Coronation Street, the Pope, Teletubbies, Jean Cretien, the Devil, God, George Bush and two grown men shopping at Value Village all have in common?’
They are characters that have made appearances in the songwriting of Dennis Lakusta.
This Saturday evening brings Dennis Lakusta to the Sooke Folk Music Society’s ongoing concert series at Holy Trinity Anglican Church.
Lakusta is a prolific artist and songwriter and credits his Cree ancestry, Monty Python and Jonathan Swift for his somewhat irreverent take on North American culture. Sacred cows… bring ‘em on. Lakusta delights in lampooning the lunacy he witnesses, both in himself and in the crazy world around him.
In addition to his razor-sharp wit, hisconcerts also offer up a multi-faceted feast of variety, colour and depth which all testify to a life well-lived. He has traveled the world and seen a lot, both good and bad, and his songs are a direct reflection of the people and experiences he has encountered along the way. Never one to shy away from thorny issues, Dennis’ subject matter includes; the invasion of Iraq, the obscene wealth and holdings of the Vatican, the blind and wanton destruction of our once beautiful planet, institutional racism and the Indian Residential schools, the Sue Rodriguez and Robert Latimer cases, the flagrant assault on our most basic rights and civil liberties, etc, all subjects that are not for the faint of heart.
Dennis’ third strong suit in songwriting is in the area of spirit and introspection.
Captain Kirk, Dennis claims, was wrong, space is not the final frontier. The ultimate and most profound voyage is 180 degrees in the opposite direction. It is within ourselves. For those who attend a Dennis Lakusta concert, expect to laugh, expect to cry and, mostly, expect to think.
Lakusta is currently active in 11 different art disciplines, each a singular career on its own, including; singer, songwriter, producer, composer, visual artist, photographer, humorist, author, inventor, activist and educator. This is truly a rolling stone who has no intention of gathering any moss. Lakusta tours the high school and university circuit with a wide variety of original programs dealing with hot button issues such as; a scientific understanding of the roots and origins of racism, the Indian Residential School System, Harper’s apology, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, as well as a unique program for art students titled Twenty Guidelines for Developing Artistic Character.
He now has 45 new compositions, many complete with lyrics and is preparing to produce and record his seventh and eighth CDs which he hopes to have out by the fall. Add to this a new and exciting photographic collection to be launched this year and you can see what ‘Golden Years’ means to this Renaissance man.
Please come and take in this talented and provocative West Coast songwriter. It happens on Saturday, February 5 at Holy Trinity Anglican Church. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the show commencing at 8. Tickets are available at the door and in advance at Shoppers Drugmart in Sooke.