Legendary Rock Still Lives with the Gary Cable Project

The stellar performance of classic pop rock hits of the late 1960s through to the early 2000s wowed the ‘less than sell out’, yet experienced fans at Penticton’s Cleland Theatre. Given the joy that permeated the theatre as the concert took the audience on a journey, future engagements will no doubt sell out quickly.

Proving their musical versatility, the Gary Cable Project brought back to life familiar tunes from a broad range of artists including Chicago; Steely Dan; The Kiki Dee Band; Tears for Fears; Vince Gill; Huey Lewis & the News; Tina Turner; The Guess Who; Kansas; Marc Cohn; Earth, Wind & Fire; Toto; Coldplay; Van Morrison; Chris de Burgh; Danny McBride & China; Supertramp; Whitney Houston; Pablo Cruise; J. Geils Band; Wild Cherry; and spoiler alert, in the encore, Lighthouse – a nod to special guest Danny McBride’s brother Bob’s songwriting.

The Gary Cable Project describes itself as a nine-piece Pop/Rock band with a full horn section, comprised of ‘A-List’ live and session musicians. These celebrated musicians have performed and recorded with the likes of Aerosmith, Barbra Streisand, Joe Cocker, Bryan Adams, Michael Bublé, The Pointer Sisters, David Foster, Natalie Cole, Chris de Burgh, Stuart Copeland, Chilliwack, Powder Blues, Nickelback, Ian Tyson, Sarah McLachlan, Ray Charles and more!

The nine-piece ensemble includes:

Gary Cable (piano, keyboards, lead and background vocals, musical director and arranger) from Kelowna now, has lived a life of lawyer by day, musician at night. Originally based in Edmonton, he has played in numerous bands and built an impressive network of musical colleagues.

Aaron Anderson (drums & percussion) who now lives in Armstrong, co-founded The Goods and has played with members of Trooper.

Gord Maxwell (bass, lead & BG vocals) of Vancouver is bassist and a vocalist for Canadian Music Hall of Famers Chilliwack. His voice and songwriting were part of Juno-nominated One Horse Blue, plus he played bass and harmony for platinum Stony Plain recording artist Ian Tyson for 20 years. He also is one of the three “Gords” in The Gords along with Gordon Lee Worden and Gord Matthews.

Gordon Lee Worden (guitar, keys, lead & BG vocals) joins Maxwell as one of The Gords. He recently ended a nine-year stint as lead guitarist for Ian Tyson, and has played alongside Nick Gilder, Sweeney Todd, Mike Reno, Sue Medley, and Lisa Brokop.

Robert Walsh (guitar, lead & BG vocals) settled in Edmonton after stints in Montreal and Toronto. He was a member of retro-rockers Johnny Jetblack and the Comeback touring with Rene Simard. He co-fronted a band called The XMEN which predated the movie franchise, has an ongoing collaborating partnership with Andrea Menard, and was a member of the Edmonton Symphony. For him some career highlights were being featured with the Pointer Sisters, Renee Fleming, Petula Clark, Tom Cochrane, Luck Mervil, and playing Frank Zappa music with two of the band’s ex-members.

Steve Hilliam (saxophones, BG vocals) of New Westminster is one of the most sought-after players on the West Coast. He has played saxophone with Otis Rush, Long John Baldry, Gino Vanelli, and Warner recording artist Colin James “Little Big Band”, to name a few.

Vince Mai (trumpet, keys, BG vocals) has been known by Cable since kindergarten has released CDs as a solo artist. As a trumpeter, his work is on hundreds of recordings for TV, feature films, commercials, and albums. He has shared the stage or recording studio with talents like Sarah McLachlan, Michael Bublé, Tom Jones, David Foster, The Temptations, Natalie Cole and so many more.

Bob Rogers (trombone, BG vocals) is a beloved long-time music educator from Revelstoke who now lives in Vernon. He has had freelance performances on stage and in the studio with Motown greats The Temptations, The O’Jays, Natalie Cole, Aerosmith, and former members of Payolas.

Ariana Whitlow (lead & BG vocals) who was born and raised in Edmonton toured the world with Saturday Night Fever: The Musical. She has performed with symphony orchestras across Canada with legends David Foster, Chaka Khan, and Steven Page. She opened for Blue Rodeo and performed alongside Canadian superstars Brett Kissel, Corb Lund, Tyler Hamilton and Mark Masri.

Danny McBride Featured

Danny McBride, lead guitarist for longtime singer Chris DeBurgh for 12 years, and also known since he moved to the BC Interior for his paintings of ladies in hats, was special guest for the Penticton, Vernon and Kelowna events. His skills were featured in Van Morrison’s Into the Mystic, Chris DeBurgh’s Lady in Red, his McBride & China’s You Can’t Treat Love That Way, and he returned for the encore. Clearly, he loved this collaboration and had a great time both on stage and when glimpsed in the wings grooving on the band’s numbers.

Sole (Soul) Female Wows

The sole female Whitlow blew away the audience with her vocals and charismatic performances. Belting out Tina’s Proud Mary was a bit of a tribute, too, for McBride given Turner was his godmother. Mustering her best Turner moves cost her a button on the back of her dress and added some personal challenge to keep the top of her dress in place throughout the first half.

Featured in numerous selections, she gave a stunning rendition of a medley of Whitney Houston’s songs.

Community Foundations Win, Too

Cable wove informative and warm stories to introduce each song and performer. Every musician was highlighted in some way through one song or another.

The community foundations of the region are recipients as each show donated proceeds. For Penticton, the Community Foundation of South Okanagan Similkameen; in Vernon, Community Foundation North Okanagan; and in Kelowna, Central Okanagan Foundation.
Each had a silent auction with a selection of wine from O’Rourke’s Peak Cellars, chocolate from Chocxo, and a signed Sabian drum cymbal from the band. Additionally, a Stratocaster guitar signed by Burton Cummings will be awarded to the highest bidder over the course of the three evenings.

Everyone wins in attending a performance in a smaller venues such as the Cleland Theatre. The experience is far more intimate with a closer proximity to the performers. In this case, the Gary Cable Project was particularly accessible to the audience – even joining them for a meet-and-greet in the foyer following the concert.


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