Local musical duo, Trin Potratz and Ariane Cote performed at the Club Alouette in Falher on April 8.
While they have performed locally at fundraisers, such as an event at Club Des Pionniers in Donnelly last October, this was the first local show they staged purely for the sake of playing music and being entertainers.
The money raised from the event is to go towards recording a demo, before flying down to Nashville soon to attend Trin’s cousins wedding and to seize the opportunity to perform in the home of country music.
“The idea is to raise some money towards getting in the studio in the next couple of weeks with producer Chris Macintyre who produces master demos here in his basement studio,” says Potratz, who performs under the name Trin James.
“It is the first attempt to get something on record that we can put on ITunes and sell copies at some of our shows.”
The demo will also be a useful means of spreading their musical message south of the border when Ariane and Trin visit Nashville for the wedding of Trin’s cousin Aaron Goodvin.
Trin and Ariane may also aspire to following in Goodvin’s footsteps, a Sprit River native that just bought a home in Nashville and recently released his debut album “Knock on Wood,” with Warner Music Canada that has such luminaries as Johnny Reid involved in the production.
“This will be my first time crossing the border into the US, so we are going down there to see the sights and what not,” says Potratz. “It is our first real trip to go out there, give it a go, see what we can accomplish playing in the bars while having some fun.”
And that spirit of fun is certainly front and center when Trin and Ariane perform as they never let things get strident, appearing as more skillful entertainers than their two years together might suggest.
At the Club Alouette, they got off to a running start with an immediate and sustained rapport with the audience. Unlike many performers, they do not treat performing music as a religious experience where everyone must pay rapt attention. They are there to entertain, and they encourage the audience to talk quietly among themselves, dance or sit and listen, whatever suits them best.
This is not to suggest that they do not put everything into the show, into the songs they have written and the covers they perform. Their enthusiasm for the music is infectious; they are still young enough that the sense of odyssey and the excitement of exploring things creatively are evident.
Trin and Ariane starting dating two years ago and began performing together around that time. During a competition in which Trin competed, Ariane joined him on stage for the open mic segment and the judges were impressed.
“She has always been a great harmony singer but that was our first time performing together and the judges came up afterwards and said that you guys would be crazy not to pursue this,” says Potratz.
“So, we went all the way and ended up in the finals at the Bud Country Entertainer of the Year in Grande Prairie.”
Last year they placed second in the Bud Country competition and ever since have been playing wherever they can.
Both Ariane and Trin play guitar and Ariane also plays the cajón, a percussion instrument that originated in Peru. They have also begun playing ukulele and have introduced the six-string banjo to augment their sound.
“We are an acoustic group right now but we are hoping to get a full band thing going as we go,” says Potratz. “In the meantime, we are working more on producing original music than getting the full band thing together.”
One of their upcoming performances will be at the MS Walk in Grande Prairie on May 14.