For the 14th year, singer-songwriter Shari Ulrich will perform alongside Barney Bentall and Tom Taylor as Bentall Taylor Ulrich.
The trio will take the stage at the Knox United Church in Parksville on Friday, Oct. 1, and Saturday, Oct. 2.
Ulrich recalls first playing with Bentall and Taylor in November 2007 at a songwriter concert on Bowen Island.
“We just got together to do a Bluebird North, in the round, kind of show on Bowen Island where both Barney and I live,” she said. “And it was just so wonderful. They’re both such great writers and the camaraderie was wonderful. And so we decided to do another and another and another. And 12 years and two albums later, we’re still doing it. And it’s just a really important part of all of our m usical lives because its unique and the brother and sisterhood between us is a wonderful thing to be able to steep ourselves in once or twice a year.”
Ulrich said the success of them playing together for so long is that they all have a great deal of respect and love for one another’s music. That it is a pleasure, as a musician, to be able to support her counterparts when they play their songs, and to also have them support her.
“Also between our temperaments and the history that we do have, just to be able to be together and talk about our lives and what’s going on in the world, and have that connection is a really rich part of our lives. We really look forward to it, that special time that we get to hang together.”
Bentall Taylor Ulrich released their first album, ‘Live’ at Cates Hill, approximately a year after first playing together. Their second album, Tightrope Walk, was recorded eight years later, in 2015, with the help of Ulrich’s daughter, Julia Graff, and her partner, James Parrella.
As a group, Ulrich said the Knox performance in early October will be the group’s second time playing the venue.
She said their last performance on Quadra Island mid-September was the only other time they’ve played together since February 2020.
”There are are no words to describe how great it felt… We love getting to spend that time together because otherwise we’re all off in our corners doing our own things,” she said.
For their upcoming performance at the Knox, Ulrich is excited, not just for chance to perform again, but to return to the venue itself.
“(Churches) are one of my favourite venues to play. They have great sound. And I love that more and more churches are opening up to being concert venues because they often make the best ones – the visuals and the comfort and seating. And people are always wanting that.”
Since the beginning of the COVID pandemic, Ulrich pivoted to online streaming shows, but said she also enjoyed the break from constantly planning and working through the logistics and organization involved with live shows. One of her focuses for the past 18 months has been her autobiography, where she plans to detail her adventures and life as a musician.
“Being a musician, being an artist in any medium, is really about sharing the story. So this is just another way to do it, perhaps a little more literally than in a song.”