Tim Collins / News staff
The Sooke Folk Music Society has announced that they will be presenting Mike Demers as the performing artist at their second Coffee House of the season.
A Victoria musician, Demers has had a long career dating back to the early 1980’s, but for the past three years he has been the lead singer in a Roy Orbison tribute group called The Lonely, with whom he’s toured throughout Canada.
That Roy Orbison connection is a natural choice for Demers, who has always admired, not only the theme and structure of Orbison’s music, but the passion and heart-broken beauty of the lyrics and music. In a way that music is a reflection of Demers’ own approach to music.
A fan of many musical styles, Demers also sings with a trio called Smash Hits, which performs songs from the 60’s and 70’s and, in his “spare time” he sings and plays guitar with The New Waves, a dance party band that plays hits form the late 70’s and early 80’s.
An active songwriter, Demers has shared the stage with a host of musicians, including Leon Russell, The Posies, The Odds, Pursuit of Happiness, where he featured his original songs and old favourites alike.
It all started in Edmonton for Demers, where he earned his chops touring across the prairies, gaining experience as a musician and learning what it meant to be on the road as a performer.
He moved to Vancouver in 1983, where he completed a diploma at Capilano College in Music Therapy. Following graduation he worked with youth and their families on Greater Victoria as a youth worker while still playing and composing in his “off-hours”.
Demers decided to follow his musical passion full time in 2017 and is now looking forward to bringing his music to audiences across Canada.
In the near future Demers plans to travel the length and breadth of Vancouver Island producing solo shows and bringing the songs of musical icons such as Roy Orbison and others to Vancouver Island communities.
When he isn’t playing tribute sets that feature the music of others, Demers’ own songs are a mixture of pop rock and folk that reflect his singular observations of life on the West Coast.
The Coffee House takes place at Holy Trinity Anglican Church on Saturday, Oct. 21. Doors will open at 7 p.m. with an open stage at 7:30 for budding performers, anxious to perform for a live audience.
Demers will take the stage at 9 p.m.
Admission is $7 for adults and $2 for children. More information on future performances or on the Folk Music Society can be found at Sookefolkmusicsociety.com.