Shanneyganock at Rocking Horse

Celtic band brings its authentic maritime sound to Oceanside Saturday

East coast band Shanneyganock comes to Nanoose Bay’s Rocking Horse Pub on Nov. 5.

They are well loved on Canada’s East coast and the award winning band Shanneyganock will be hitting Vancouver Island this weekend to bring a taste of their Newfoundland sound to our West coast.

Shanneyganock is one of the stalwart beloved bands whose thoroughly authentic maritime sound is the real thing and they have been invited to make a stop in Nanoose to share their rootsy heartfelt folk songs.

For one night only they will be performing at the Rocking Horse Pub on Saturday, Nov. 5.

You can thank legendary Canadian group Spirit of the West for convincing the Newfoundlanders to play out this way.


Spirit of the West drummer Vince Ditrich said they recently went east and performed a tremendous live concert with Shanneyganock in St. John’s, Newfoundland and because they had so much fun with the group, they wanted to bring the band and all things Newfoundland to these parts. Ditrich, who lives in Nanoose Bay, can’t say enough great things about Shanneyganock.

He said in St. John’s they are home town heroes and for good reason.

“They are as authentic as you can get. I take personal interest in the group because of the calibre of the people,” stated Ditrich.

The band formed 15 years ago when Mark Hiscock and Chris Andrews were double booked at a small pub in St. John’s. Rather than cancel one performer, the owner suggested they play together and so was born Shanneyganock. Joined by long-time bassist Bob Pike, and Billy Sutton on drums, the group has since charmed many through their stirring ballads, powerful shanties, and rib-rattling jigs and reels.

In St. John’s musical circles Hiscock has been recognized as a master of the button accordion and a professional folk singer and folk musician since he was in elementary school.

Andrews started his first band while still wearing a uniform too, and his burly voice and muscular guitar playing have anchored many a stage ever since.

Their seven CDs have been featured on Home Brew compilations, Warner Record’s Atlantic Standard’s compilation and “Ed’s Up” on OLN Network with The Barenaked Ladies.

2007 marked four Music Newfoundland and Labrador award wins for the group including Entertainers of the Year.

Their newest album, Vol. VII, again won the boys the prestigious, Entertainers of the Year at the 2009 Music NL awards.

The band just released their eighth album, Live on George Street, with a DVD to be released around Christmas.

Ditrich said a show like this one will be very intimate, extremely rare and a lot of fun.

Andrews said it has been a while since they have been to the Island and he noted that Vancouver Island often gets ignored when talking about cross Canada tours much like Newfoundland.

“They always say Vancouver to Halifax … cross Canada. What they should be saying is Vancouver Island to Newfoundland.”

Ditrich said their folk songs with traditional button accordion, mandolin and banjo are delivered with a joyful charm that has got to be seen to be fully appreciated.

“We write and play what we know.  It comes from our lives and from our experiences,” said Andrews.


Tickets for the November 5 show are $12.50 in advance and can be purchased at Cranky Dog Music in Parksville. Tickets are $15 at the door.



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