Matlen Starsley Band will be joined by the Blue Voodoo in a concert Nov. 13 at the Chief Sepass Theatre in Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Matlen Starsley Band will be joined by the Blue Voodoo in a concert Nov. 13 at the Chief Sepass Theatre in Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley-based bands blend sounds for hometown crowd

Blue Voodoo and Matlen Starsley Band share the stage for a Fort Langley concert Nov. 13

Fort Langley frontmen for two bands are blending their sounds in a full-capacity concert next weekend in their hometown.

Blue Voodoo and the Matlen Starsley Band are sharing billing on a live concert happening at the Chief Sepass Theatre next Saturday evening, Nov. 13.

And, according to Matlen’s Dennis Matechuk, it promises to be “tremendous show.”

He called it a “coming out party after COVID.”

For Blue Voodoo, which came together in 2000, this is the first live show for the full four-piece blues band since early 2020.

“We’re back,” said guitarist and vocalist Ted Tosoff. “It’s been a long time. But we’re back at it. We’re back to playing, and getting back to entertaining people.”

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Same has been the case for the five-member band (three of which call Langley home) in the Matlen posse – who haven’t performed before a real crowd in close to two years.

For Saturday’s show, each band is expected to perform for about 75 minutes. Blue Voodoo starting things off.

One good thing to come out of COVID for the local musicians – lots of time to rehearse and record. And that’s just what both bands have been working on.

In the past six months, Voodoo released a new EP, which charted #4 on the Roots Music Report in Canada and is getting international play.

“That’s what we did over the course of COVID, to stay sane,” Tosoff said.

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So to did the Matlen Starsley Band. A lot of jamming, writing, and recording.

This band, while a relative newbie at three-and-a-half years old, consists of veterans in the music industry.

They’ve all played in cover bands and tribute shows, and wrote music for other artists for years. But each member, who Matechuk called “of vintage age,” shared a passion to do something different. They all sought to write and perform strictly original music, and now, that’s exactly what they’re doing.

Matlen released its first 10-song album in 2019, garnering considerable airplay for their roots-meets-southern-rock music, Matechuk said.

And he sees this upcoming show as a pre-celebration of sorts for their second album – called Stronger – set to come out next spring.

They’ve already released two song to radio, but fans will have a chance to hear an additional five new songs at the Nov. 13.

“This will be the first time these songs have been performed live and we’re anxious for feedback from a live audience,” Matechuk said.

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Show will be at full capacity

When planning for the concert began back in mid-September, COVID protocol limited them to only half the normal audience, so it was topped out at 150 people.

Just with friends, family, and die-hard fans, the show quickly sold out, said Matechuk. But then the provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry changed the rules late last month, and now show organizers are hoping to sell out the full 300 seats.

As of Friday, Nov. 5, they still had room for another 100 music lovers.

There are many places still not opened up for live entertainment, at least not shows of this calibre and size, Metachuk said.

While the dualing bands hope to lift the roof of this Fort Langley venue, Metachuk acknowledged that many spectators are still not feeling comfortable with big crowds, so he and Tosoff wanted to assure guests they understand and will be entertaining under strict pandemic rules. For instance, he said, there will be no dancing allowed.

“All COVID protocols will be followed,” Tosoff echoed. “It’s a chance to enjoy a night out – safely.”

Tickets for the show are $43.45 and available in advance through Eventbrite. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., with music expected to run from 7 to 10 p.m.

“It’s going to be a fun time getting back up on stage and having a chance to connect with people who support the band, who enjoy the music,” Matechuk concluded.

Fort LangleyLive music