A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted through a volunteer organization that I work with to see if I would be interested in helping put together a show with Sean McCann, former founding member of the Celtic Newfoundland band, Great Big Sea. I remember feeling immediately excited – Great Big Sea was an instrumental band in my youth, and I listened to a lot of their music as a teenager. Sean had gone off to produce his own music, and his style of music became incredibly raw, meaningful, and the kind of music that just speaks to my soul.
Needless to say, helping Sean throw a show would be a dream come true. To add a second layer of awesome to this, my friend Allan and I had been long talking about hosting a community Newfoundland Jigg’s Dinner, so this opportunity had way too much synchronicity not to say yes to.
Along with many talented people, I got to work planning the event, and in less than three weeks time managed to pull together a venue, design and print the tickets, the poster, and putting out the press release arranging all of the media and marketing for the event. Because I’m currently freelancing for my local newspaper, I also had the unique opportunity to interview McCann before he came out for the show.
The third layer of awesome came in a really heartwarming package. I would soon be stepping down from an arts organizations that I have been a part of for a number of years and is near and dear to my heart. This event seemed like an incredible opportunity to be the first official fundraiser for the new organization with the added bonus of the entire proceeds going towards the brick and mortar for the new performing arts facility that is currently being constructed in my hometown. Everyone came together in such an amazing way, that in the end, we raised over $3,000.
We completely sold out of Jigg’s dinner that night, and ended up making dinner for over 130 people, and had nearly 150 people in attendance that night. I’m not sure if any of us expected that many tickets to sell going into it (I had the idea of 80-100 in my head) but in the end I am so thankful that we had this opportunity, and it was a cool experience to cross off our bucket lists.
In between sets, I had to chance to head into the green room to chatting with Sean and his band-member Chris Murphy (not the Chris Murphy from Sloan, he assured me, who I coincidentally met last year at The Wild Mountain Music Festival). At one point Sean turned to me and said with a laugh “wow, you really make even me feel lazy!”
After they returned to the stage, Sean dedicated a song he wrote called “Good People” to me, with an incredibly sweet dedication. In highlight reel of my life, this will be one of the moments that plays.
A huge thank you to fellow Hintonite Tina Hollett for capturing this moment for me on video!