It has been more than ten years since Michael Kaeshammer tickled the ivories in Campbell River.
The Sidney-based pianist will be making up for his long absence by filling the Tidemark theatre with his renowned boogie-woogie sound on Saturday, Feb. 5.
While the energy fans have come to expect from him will be there in abundance, local music lovers can expect to see a more mature version of Kaeshammer.
“You learn a lot as an artist,” he said. “I’ve noticed in the last ten-or-twenty years that I’ve grown from someone who likes to show off on the piano to someone who uses the music to connect with people more.
“Because for me the audience is definitely just as much a part of the band as anyone on stage.”
The heavily-percussive Chicago style of playing is almost 100 years old. When it originated, bravado went hand-in-hand with the notes.
“With boogie-woogie piano, there was a lot of contests where people were trying to outplay the other player – like, hey, I’m better than you!” Kaeshammer said.
“But that’s not the point of music really,” he said he’s come to know.
Accolades, achievements, and the opportunity to play on big stages with international stars have been terrific, but Kaeshammer still values getting to perform for a Vancouver Island crowd.
He referenced an October show in Nanaimo giddily.
“We had 400 people in there, and I think it was the first show with more than 50 people I’d played in more than two years,” Kaeshammer said.
“You looked out into the audience, and you could tell everyone was happy to be out in a room sharing music, and I think that bonded everyone.”
Campbell River concert goers can expect an engaging experience with a four-piece band. The headliner noted anyone who likes blues, boogie-woogie, or jazz, will definitely have a good time.
For those who can’t attend in person, a live streaming option is available as well.
Visit tidemarktheatre.com for more information.