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Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo and Fall Fair In Merritt BC

The Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo and Fall Fair is an Annual Tradition.

Don your hat and pull your boots on.

 

Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo and Fall Fair in Merritt BC Canada – The Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo will be held on Saturday, August 31st – Sunday, September 1st, 2019 in Merritt, British Columbia. Held at Nicola Valley Rodeo Association grounds here in Merritt.

Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo

Because pictures can tell a story, I wanted to add quotes that represented the cowboys, cowgirls, and everyone who loves to watch, admire, and cheer these amazing athletes on who truly love what they do. Enjoy the pictures along with Cowboy and Cowgirl Quotes.

 

Merritt Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo.

To Demonstrate How To Ride a Bull.

“If your not makin’ dust your eattin’ it”  Cricket,  June 3, 2008

Although It Looks Easy, She is Just That Good.

“If my boots and spurs ain’t here, I’m probably riding and drinking beer. Horses are God’s gift to cowgirls as an apology for men.” Andrea, June 3, 2009

To Be Sure You Have a Strong Grip.

“Learn this well, the last ride is never the last ride. And the end is not the end.” Richard Rowland

Furthermore This Takes Two.

“A Cowgirl is a woman with guts and horse.” TS

Subsequently The Saviours Are On Hand.

“A true cowboy knows love, pain and shame but never cares about fame.” Anonymous

Longest 8 Seconds Ever.

“The only good reason to ride a bull is to meet a nurse.” Anonymous

While Riding The Bull Is Hard, Getting Out of Danger Continues.

“Ride E’m Cowboy, don’t let them throw ya down.. You can’t make no money if ya hit the ground, Ride E’m Cowboy, don’t let them throw ya down, You’re the toughest Cowboy in town.” Juice Newton

Again, 8 Seconds.

“Pain and rodeo go hand in hand.” Snake, April 1, 2009

Granted They Make it Look Easy.

“It aint worth fussin’ about unless the bone is showin’ or you ain’t got no feelin’ in it…even then you should cowboy up and walk it off.” Mat, October 21, 2008

To Be Sure You Can Not Use Both Hands.

“If you haven’t fallen off a horse…then you haven’t been ridin long enough.” Unknown

Furthermore it Begins Early.

 

“I took to the life of a cowboy like a horse takes to oats.” Anonymous

“No man should have cowboys boots in his wardrobe. That’s fair enough, isn’t it? Unless you’re a cowboy, of course.” Paul Weller

Truly This Should Be An Olympic Sport.

“The horse is a mirror to your soul. And sometimes you might not like what you see in the mirror.” Buck Brannaman

Truly a Joy to Watch!

“Cowgirl Up! Means to rise to the occasion, not to give up, and to do it all without whining or complaining.” Whitney, November 9, 2008

Do Not Try This At Home.

 

“Some cowboys have to much tumbleweed in their blood to settle down.” Ken Alstad

The Next Time You Want to go Trail Riding, hold on. Tight!

“If you climb in the saddle, be ready for the ride.” Ashton Jennings, April 10, 2013

Can You Say Cute?

“A cowboy is a man with guts and a horse.” William James

Time to Run!

“Bull riding is probably the most dangerous sport in the world in terms of head injuries.” Jonathan Gottschall

Furthermore Bull Riding takes Guts!

“Rodeo careers can end without warning, as quick as the next try at an eight-second ride.” John Branch

To Demonstrate how Cowgirls Cool Off.

This is pure “Relaxation”

If it was easy, everyone would do it.

“When you’re young and you fall off a horse, you may break something. When you’re my age, you splatter.” Roy Rogers

This time I Got Err Done.

“True cowboys are the ones who aren’t afraid to get dirty.” Lane Frost

Moreover its all About the Spectators.

“A good old rodeo never hurt anyone.” Taylor Kitsch

When it Takes a Team.

“A real cowboy doesn’t have to say they are a cowboy you know, the smell, the expression and the heart tells itself. ” cowgirlmaine, November 19, 2009

When you are in the Bull Pen.

“There never was a cowboy who couldn’t be throwed; there never was a horse who couldn’t be rode.” Shaelynne, March 8, 2008

 

In Conclusion

The Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo will be held on Saturday, August 31st – Sunday, September 1st, 2019 in Merritt, British Columbia. Held at Nicola Valley Rodeo Grounds. Attending this event is truly a Nicola Valley Experience you wont forget.

Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo

CONTACT INFORMATION

Nicola Valley Rodeo Association
499 Lindley Creek Road,
Merritt, British Columbia

Phone
(250)-378-5059

E-mail
nicolavalleyrodeoassociation@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don Messer Country Music Legend Mural

Canadian Country Music Hall Of Fame

“Don Messer left a celebrated legacy. He was one of the first Canadian artists to be a recording, radio and TV star, as well as, play live concerts all at the same time. “

Don Messer Country Music Legend

Don Messer

Merritt BC attractions, the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame and the Merritt Murals, both feature Country Music Legend Don Messer. The country music venue and murals are located in the community of Merritt BC Canada in the Nicola Valley.  The community is also the “Country Music Capital of Canada”.

Don was a Canadian band leader, a radio broadcaster, and a defining icon of folk music in the 1960″s. 

Born in 1909 in Tweedside, New Brunswick, Don was the youngest of 11 children. It all started at the age of five, while learning fiddle tunes with Irish and Scottish influences. Consequently, by the age of seven he was playing fiddle for square dances on a regular basis fine tuning his craft.

Destined To Be A Merritt BC Attraction

By the time Don was a teenager, he had amassed a collection of hundreds of reels, and jigs, including breakdowns and other pieces for his fiddle. Moreover he was playing endless square dances, and country dances as well as weddings and other parties. At the age of 16 he moved to Boston, Massachusetts where he received formal music lessons, where he learned to read and write music. In short Don Messer created a fiddle style to operate within a band context. As He put it,

“I play the melody and let the accompaniment fill in the details”

Merritt BC Murals Selfie Photo

Merritt BC Attractions and Legends Must Start Somewhere

Messer began his career with radio. In 1929 at the age of 20, he moved to Saint John, New Brunswick where he joined CFBO radio station. As a result Don became a bandleader recruiting musicians to play on the radio in Saint John. Early recruits Charlie Chamberlain, Duke Nielsen, and Ned Landry formed the New Brunswick Lumberjacks. These band members stayed with Don for the next 39 years.

Messer led a smaller group, the “Backwoods Breakdown” which made up of Charlie Chamberlain, Julius ‘Duke’ Nielsen and Don Messer, himself. He used this group, for personal appearances throughout the Maritimes and Northeastern USA.

“There’s something about my music that seems to upset the emotions.”

Setting The Stage 

Messer, one of the Merritt BC Mural Attractions was hired by CFCY  Charlottetown in 1939 as their Music Director. It was here he formed the band “The Islanders” and became “Don Messer and The Islanders”. CBC picked up Don Messer and the Islanders show. By 1944 it was airing three times a week.

Formed around 2 of the original members, Charlie Chamberlain and Duke Nielsen, the show established itself as the most popular on Canadian Radio and would  continue for almost 20 years.  The singer Marg Osburne joined the band in 1947 and became (with Messer and Chamberlain) the artist most identified with the Islanders.

Because of the huge success of the radio show. Messer and the Islanders began to appear outside the Maritimes. Their first tour was in Ontario in 1949. They made 18 tours by 1969, including a centennial trip in 1967 that lasted 3 months and covered 61 centers.

This Fiddler Of Canada

His credits include combining many different Canadian fiddle traditions. As a result, he played a relatively straight, and unadorned melody line, with great precision and assurance with little ornamentation, rhythmic nuance, or expressiveness.  His style influenced others, as it was clean, straight and neat. Marked by its down to earth simplicity.

Don Messer’s Television Era

In 1956 Don Messer and The Islanders began to appear regularly on CHBY-TV, Halifax. Soon followed by “The Don Messer Show’ in August 7, 1959 and continued as the “Don Messer’s Jubilee”.

Fiddler Night In Canada

The show was super popular and won over a wide audience. It was so popular it won top spot in the ratings two years in a row, beating out “Hockey night in Canada” and “The Ed Sullivan Show”. Over the next nine years it reportedly was the second most watched show in Canada next to “Hockey Night In Canada.”

A Show For Canadians To Meet

As has been noted, the show was notable because it had a regular guest performer time slot. Giving rise to many Canadian folk singers through national exposure, including Stompin’ Tom Connors, Catherine McKinnon, and fiddler Graham Townsend. There were many others including a young 10 year old fiddler named Jim Elliot.

Don Messer never took anything for granted. He had already suffered the vagaries of CBC management for 20 years in radio. CBC offered no long term security. But it did provide a platform for him to share his music with the nation.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Coming To An Abrupt End

Don was handed a telegram on April 14, 1969, saying that the Don Messer’s Jubilee was cancelled. Don was very upset, the fans were revolting. CBC received hundreds of phone calls, as well as, thousands of letters. The cancellation of the show generated many complaints including former Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, who was a fan of the show. The fans organized a demonstration on Parliament Hill, even raising questions in The House of Commons. Consequently, a syndicated version of “Don Messer’s Jubilee “originated from CHCH-TV, in Hamilton Ontario in 1969, and ran until Don Messer’s death in March of 1973.

Legacy of Don Messer on the wall of Merritt BC Mural Attractions

Don Messer left a celebrated legacy. He was one of the first Canadian artists to be a recording, radio and TV star, as well as, play live concerts all at the same time.

Messer was inducted in into the Canadian Country Music Association Hall of Honor in 1985 and, with Chamberlain and Osburne, into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame in 1989.

 “My music is not Western or Cowboy music. Our tunes have been around for two or three hundred years. They’re folk tunes passed from generation to generation.”

Visit Don Messer`s Mural in Merritt BC and downtown walking tour.

Merritt BC Canada Country Music – Merritt Murals

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame

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Downtown Walking Tour Merritt Murals

Merritt BC Canada Murals

Featured Country Music Musician : Johnny Reid

“One of the biggest lessons is to keep your feet on the floor. Just keeping grounded and not really getting above yourself and always trying your best to be yourself.” Johnny Reid

Country Music Artist – Johnny Reid came to Canada at the age of 13. Thinking that Canada would give his children more than they received from their home in Scotland, his father moved Johnny and his brothers to Ontario, Canada.  Most importantly, the move exposed Johnny Reid to the Canadian country music scene.

In short,  songs like, “Another Day Another Dime”, “Born to Roll,” “Dance with me,” “Fire it up” propelled Johnny into the spotlight in the Canadian country music industry.

Singing Career Taking Off

In 1997 Johnny Reid released his debut album “Another Day Another Dime.” However, this album produced no singles.  Consequently, in the year 2000, Reid released his second self titled album which produced three singles. Therefore “Givin’ Up on Me” was the first single to be released and reached top 45. The second single “Runnin’ Wild” charted at 50. Lastly, the third single “She Don’t Wanna Hear” hit 41 on the Country Charts.

Born for Country Music

Johnny’s third album “Born to Roll’ was released in early 2005. As a result, the single “You Still Own Me” was released in 2004.  The song hit the top 20 and the album topped out at #5 on the Canadian Top Country Albums Chart. Topping #19 was the second single from this album “Sixty to Zero”. Moreover, Reid reached the top 10 with his third single “Missing and Angel.” The fourth single “Time Flies” also hit top 10, as well as, the song “Gypsy in My Soul” made #12.  In short this album was Reid’s first certified Gold Album.

“We can’t run from our roots. You’re fifteen or sixteen and ears are pinned to radio, or, today, smartphone and a track comes on and you’re suddenly engrossed. You hear it on many levels – melody, lyrics, message; rhythm and instrumentation.” 

2007 – 2009

The new single “Love Sweet Love” was released in and around April 2007 from his new album “Kicking Stones”. In addition, a number of chart topping singles came from this album including songs like “Kicking Stones”, “Darlin”, “Thank You” and “Out of the Blue.”

“Dance with Me”, Reid’s fifth studio album was released in 2009. From this album Johnny reached #1 on the Canadian Top Country Albums chart. The first single released from this album was “A Women Like You” and it reached #4 on the country charts. “Dance with Me”, as well as, “Old Flame” also made into the top 10.

2010 – 2015

After that, in 2010, Reid’s next studio album “A Place Called Love” hit the country music airwaves. The single from this album “Today I’m Gonna Try and Change the World” was released in June of that year. In addition, Reid also played at Parliament Hill on Canada Day for Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip.

During the year of 2012 ” Fired Up” made its debut.  Carolyn Dawn Johnson and Serena Ryder collaborate on this album on four songs and a DVD about the making of the album.

Reid also released his second Christmas album entitled “A Christmas Gift to You” in October of 2013. The first Christmas album “Christmas” was released in November of 2009.

November 2015 Reid released “What Love Is All About” Kardinal Offishall is featured in a duet with Reid. “A Picture of You” was the first single from the album, as well as, a second single called “Honey Honey.”

Johnny Reid Wins Awards

Country Music Artist – Johnny Reid is a winner of many country music awards.

  • Firstly, in 2005, Johnny won Independent song of the Year for “You Still Own Me” at the Canadian Country Music Awards.
  • Then in 2006 and 2007 he won Chevy Trucks, Rising Star Award, Independent Male Artist of the Year, Independent single of the Year “Missing an Angel”, as well as, Independent Male Artist of the Year.
  • Soon later, in 2008 Johnny won Top Selling Canadian Album “Kicking Horse”, Male Artist of the Year, Album of the Year “Dance with Me,” Video of the Year “A Woman Like You,” Male Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year “A Woman Like You”, as well as, a Top Selling Canadian Album “Dance with Me” from Canadian Country Music Awards.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Awards Keep Coming for Johnny Reid

  • As a matter of fact, soon later, the Juno Awards came calling in 2010.  Reid won Country Album of the Year for “Dance with Me.” Reid also won Songwriter of the year “Dance with Me,” Top Selling Canadian Album “Dance with Me,” as well as,  Fans Choice Award from the Canadian Country Music Association.
  • 2011 was no different with Reid winning Country Album of the Year “A Place Called Love” and Video of the Year “Today I’m Gonna Try and Change the World” from the Canadian Country Music Association.
  • In 2012 he won Top Selling Canadian Album “Fire Up.” 2013 was a Juno for Country Album of the Year “Fire it Up” along with CCMA Top Selling Canadian Album “Fire it Up”.
  • Reid wins continue to pile up between 2014 – 2016 with a Juno for Adult Contemporary Album of the Year “A Christmas Gift For You,”  CCMA Fan’s Choice Awards (2014), Top Selling Canadian Album “A Christmas Gift For You” Fans Choice Award (2015), followed up with a National Achievement Award from SOCAN Awards.

The Early Years of Country Music with Johnny Reid

Johnny Reid was born John Kirkland on August 21 1974 in Lanark Scotland. After that, in July 1988 when he was 13 years old,  Johnny’s father moved him and his brothers to Canada where he thought they would have a better life.

Reid graduated from high school in Brampton Ontario in 1992. Followed up with an education at Bishop’s University in Lennoxville, Quebec. It is here at university where Johnny was a kicker for the varsity football team. More importantly, he met his wife at university. Moreover, Reid and his wife moved to Nashville to pursue his country music career.

Marriage is Good For Johnny Reid

“All of that music I heard growing up came from my mother’s record collection. Stax Records, Alabama, soul music – stuff with a lot of beats and a lot of rhythms really influenced my songwriting process.” Johnny Reid (FYI Music News)

In 2015 or 2016 (dates have never been confirmed) Johnny married his college sweetheart Jennifer. Together they have 4 children, 3 boys and a girl.  Reid’s wife Jennifer is a very well known blogger. If you’d like to check out her blogs go to A Woman Like You.  Sound familiar? It is the title to one of Johnny’s hit songs written about Jennifer.

“My ma and her friends would get together on a Friday and a Saturday and the record player would be on and they’d be listening to the Supremes, Wilson Pickett, Solomon Burke – great singers and great songs.” Johnny Reid (FYI Music News)

Johnny Reid Country Music

Michelle Bacon (Experience Nicola Valley) / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Merritt BC Murals and Johnny Reid

Johnny came to Merritt in 2009 to play at the Merritt Mountain Music Festival (now the Rockin River Music Festival). Soon later, in 2015 the president Kenny Hess made the decision to Move the Rockin’ River Music Festival to Merritt from Mission BC.

Soon later, the Merritt Mural Project was created in 2005. They are part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Merritt Murals were painted by muralist Michelle Loughery.

Merritt BC Murals Selfie Photo

There are other Merritt BC Canada attractions besides the Johnny Reid Merritt BC Mural. One of them is the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame’s Walk of Stars. In short the stars includes one foot print and over 75+ hand prints located throughout the downtown Merritt area. Consequently, finish your touring with a visit to the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.

Downtown Merritt BC Canada also offers a vast array of gift stores, clothing retailers and places to eat.

Merritt BC Murals Johnny Reid

Michelle Bacon (Experience Nicola Valley) / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Reid’s highlights of coming to Merritt

Furthermore, Reid was very moved by the youth he spoke with while visiting Merritt BC.  In short, the history of what the youth had been though as well as the changes they had to make resonated with Reid.

“It’s very humbling to look at yourself on a wall in a community you have only visited two times. It is a very cool thing to look back on later in life. It will be pretty great to show my boys.” Johnny Reid

** In conclusion, the information resources accessed for this article includes Johnny Reid.com, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook , as well as, FYI Music News.

Featured Country Music Musician : Johnny Reid

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

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Lisa Brokop Merritt BC Canada Murals

Lisa Brokop Merritt BC Murals

Journey to Merritt Murals

“I love what I do. Every note I sing, whether in studio or on stage, is true. It hasn’t always been an easy road. There has been many curves, bumps and detours. But really, it is the love of the music that motivates each step I take in the business. It keeps me moving forward.” Lisa Brokop

Lisa Brokop is a Canadian Country Music Singer/Songwriter featured on the walls of  the Merritt BC Murals. Born June 6, 1973 in Surrey, British Columbia, Lisa made her presence known in the entertainment world by the age of seven. It was then she started performing with her mother, who was a seasoned accordion player.

At age twelve, Lisa started sitting in on jam sessions with various country music bands throughout Vancouver, BC. By age fifteen she joined a touring band and was off to the races. It was obvious she was destined to be featured on the walls of our Merritt BC Murals located in the Nicola Valley in the community of Merritt BC Canada.

Sweet 16 And Beyond For Lisa Brokop

1990 at seventeen, Lisa released her debut single, “Daddy Sing To Me”. The song reached the top ten on The Canadian Country RPM Charts. In addition, “My Love”, her debut album, followed in June of 1991.

After graduation Lisa moved to Nashville, Tennessee to further her country music career. While performing at local clubs, Brokop caught the attention of The Nashville Network. The network began to play the video for Brokop’s single “Time To Come Back Home”. As a result they had Lisa make a guest appearance on The Ralph Emery Show. This appearance and a thirty minute showcase resulted in Lisa Brokop getting a record deal with Patriot Records.

Melvina White (Experience Nicola Valley) / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Lisa Brokop Harmony

Before Brokop began recording her second album, she starred in the 1994 film Harmony Cats, where she played a country singer who leaves home in search of a big break in Nashville. Lisa Brokop contributed to the movie’s soundtrack and her cover of Tammy Wynette’s 1968 number one hit “Stand By Your Man” was issued as a single.

Back On And Off The Winding Road Of Recording

Lisa Brokop’s second album released the single “Give Me A Ring Sometime”, in June 1994. The single made the top 20 in Canada, but unfortunately it only reached No. 52 on the US Billboard Chart. Nevertheless, her first major label album. “Every Little Girl’s Dream”, was released in September of 1994.

In the meantime ‘Give Me A Ring Sometime’ was charting. However, many Canadian radio stations refused to play Lisa’s music because the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunication ruled that ‘Give Me A Ring Sometime’ did not have enough Canadian Content in the song. Nevertheless, Brokop’s album went on to produce two more top 40 singles in Canada with ‘Take That’ and ‘One Of Those Nights’.

1995 And Lots Of Change

By 1995, the album was certified Gold by the CRIA, for sales peaking 50,000 copies. Included in 1995 was a nomination for Top New Female Vocalist at the Academy of Country Music Awards. Also in 1995, Patriot Records closed its doors and Brokop transferred to Capital Nashville.

Lisa released her third album ‘Lisa Brokop’ the following year. The album did not do so well. As a result none of the album singles reached the top 40 in Canada or The United States. The failure of the album ended her relationship with Capital Nashville.

Consequently she decided to take some time off and focus on song writing. As a result, some country music stars took notice and started recording tracks she penned, including Reba McEntire, Terri Clark, and Pam Tillis.

Lisa Brokop Selfie Photo

Change Brings Opportunity

 Brokop signed with the Nashville division of Columbia Records, in 1998, where she released the single ‘How Do I Let Go’. The song reached the top 20 of The Canadian RPM Country Tracks chart and received a nomination for “Socan Song of the Year” at the 1998 Canadian Country Music Awards Show.

In July of 1998, Lisa released in Canada the album, ‘When You Get To Be You’. It produced five more singles, including ‘What’s Not To Love’ that peaked at No 21. And, soon later, ‘Better Off Broken’ peaked at No. 8 becoming Brokop’s highest charting single on The Canadian RPM Country Tracks chart in 1999. The album was not released in the US and as a result Lisa Brokop left Columbia Records at the end of 1999.

Undeniable Change

In 2000, Brokop ventured on her own and launched Cosmo Records. It was under this label she released her fifth album, ‘Undeniable’.  Lisa Brokop received in 2001 two Canadian Country Music Association awards for Independent Song of The Year for ‘Something Undeniable’ as well as independent Female Artist of The Year.

The album’s third single, ‘I’d Like To See You Try’, won Brokop Independent Song of The Year as well as Independent Female Artist of the Year in 2002, from The Canadian Country Music Association. 2003 saw her receive another Independent Female Artist of The Year award.

Country Music In The Merritt Mountains

Lisa’s hand print was taken in July 1995 at The Merritt Mountain Music Festival (now the Rockin River Music Festival). Followed soon after by the unveiling of the hand print in Merritt, BC.

Again Lisa returned back to Merritt BC on Sunday, July 8, 2001 for her performance at The Merritt Mountain Music Festival. Followed, soon later, by the 10th Anniversary of The Merritt Mountain Music Festival in 2002. Then again she returned to Merritt at the launch of the Walk of Stars in 2003. Lisa was the main attraction for the gala which was a huge success.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Merritt BC Murals Downtown Walking Tour

Because of her desire, talent, passion, perseverance, and dedication to her music Lisa has definitely earned her place on the Merritt BC Murals. Lisa’s mural is located on the side of the Home Hardware building. There was a special ceremony for Lisa to unveil, and sign her Mural in 2006.

Her mural rests on the side of the Home Hardware building located at 1701 Voght Street. Her hand print is located at 2076 Coutlee Avenue.

The Merritt Mural Project was created in 2005. The Merritt BC Murals were part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Merritt Murals were painted by muralist Michelle Loughery.

Back On The Road And Going Strong

Brokop’s seventh album ‘Beautiful Tragedy’, was released in August of 2008. As a result, it featured a top 20 hit ‘Break It’.

In 2013, Lisa returned to commercial country radio and had success with songs ‘Let It Burn’ and ‘Love Me If You Can’ both of which were produced by fellow Canadian superstar Carolyn Dawn Johnson.

Lisa put together the new musical venture, ‘Lisa Brokop: The Patsy Cline Project’ where Lisa pays homage to one of country music’s greatest ladies. The project features some of Cline’s classic hits like ‘Sweet Dreams’ and ‘Walkin after Midnight’ as well as some of her own material written specifically for the project.

“I’ve come full circle with this project,” Brokop says. “When I first started singing, I would sing some of Patsy’s songs because I didn’t have any of my own. They are still among some of my favorites today and I am so excited to have the opportunity to honor this amazing lady and the incredible music she gave us!” 

You can visit Lisa Brokop on her website, as well as, her Facebook page.

Merritt Downtown Mural Walking Tour

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Hall of Fame

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** Information resources includes Lisa Brokop website, Wikipedia page, and social media page.

Lifestyle Expo – Merritt BC Canada

A Merritt Country Run Event

“I was not disappointed as I was fortunate enough to connect with some very good quality people. Some for the very first time.”

I recently attended the Lifestyle Expo in Merritt BC Canada in the Nicola Valley. The expo is a lead up event to the annual Merritt Country Run being held today Sunday June 9th, 2019. As I start writing this blog the Merritt Country Run is about to finish and the winners probably have already been decided.

Lifestyle Expo Booths – Merritt Country Run

Congrats Merritt

A congratulation is in order to the winners of the running event. Woot! Woot! And I would also like to say thank you to all the participating runners and to the volunteers who worked endless hours in preparation for the event. The Merritt Country Run features a 5 km, 10 km and Half Marathon route. Consequently, the participants arrive for the running event from all over British Columbia, Canada and beyond.

Lifestyle Expo

However, lets get back on point and discuss the recent Lifestyle Expo I attended at the Civic Centre in Merritt BC Canada. To sum it up the premise of the Lifestyle Expo is to encourage, and educate a healthy mental and physical lifestyle when living in the Nicola Valley. Secondly, the event showed the many benefits of a healthy outlook on life. Lastly, lets not forget, we all can use a healthy reminder and encouragement now and then.

Experience Nicola Valley Bloggers

Merritt Tourism is a Lifestyle

Tourism Nicola Valley (TNV) and our friends at Experience Nicola Valley (ENV) were in attendance supporting the Lifestyle Expo event. The Experience Nicola Valley exhibit on site was there to promote the many tourism and adventure opportunities available in the valley as healthy activities, as well as, introduce the new TNV programs promoting participating businesses, non profits, clubs and societies.

Meet Experience Nicola Valley

At the Lifestyle Expo the community bloggers who maintained the booth and who took the time to talk with visitors were Melvina White (Country Music Blogger), Rob Lee (Outdoor Blogger), Jordyn Lee (Youth Blogger), Monique Robinson (Community Blogger), Jano Howarth (Arts Blogger) and Tania Stewart (Eco Blogger).

Live Health Seminar at Lifestyle Expo

Good People. Good Event.

However, you know what is really encouraging at any of the events I have attended here in the Nicola Valley are the good people we meet from the community. It was also positive to see that City Councillors Tony Luck, Adam Etchart, Melvina White and Mike Bhangu made an appearance at different times during the show. Each taking some time out of their busy schedules to interact with various exhibits and attendees. Good on them!

Everybody enjoys being around positive and happy people and at this event I was not disappointed as I was fortunate enough to connect with some very good quality people. Some for the very first time. Lastly I have learned from experience that it is important for local tourism leaders and city representatives to show support by making an effort to attend community initiatives like the Merritt Country Run and the Lifestyle Expo.

Massage with Country Music Blogger

Lifestyle Exhibitors

At the Lifestyle Expo in Merritt there were businesses, services and associations from the Nicola Valley and Kamloops. Some of which the crew at Experience Nicola Valley have blogged about and many are participating members on the Tourism Nicola Valley website. I was fortunate to have had a chance to meet with some very nice and professional people manning the booths for:

Crossfit Merritt
Sara Ross Massage
PFN Coaching
Q101
Canadian Tire
Runners Sole
Brambles Bakery 
Planet Women
and more…

Merritt Country Run and the Lifestyle Expo

Canada country music

Merritt BC Murals

Downtown Murals Digital Walking Tour

“George Canyon and Canada Country Music go hand and hand.”

George Canyon is a celebrated Canada country music artist and songwriter. Here in Merritt BC Canada , the “Country Music Capital of Canada”,  there is a mural celebrating George Canyon painted on the walls of the City Furniture building. The George Canyon mural is one of 20+ murals located throughout the community forming part of the Merritt Murals Art Walk.

Canada country music in Merritt

Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Canada Country Music Star

George Canyon and Canada Country Music go hand and hand. George knows full well what I mean, as he rose to become one of Canada’s biggest country music stars in the early 2000’s! Still playing to live audiences, George has won countless accolades and awards over his career, including Juno Awards, CCMA Awards, and ECMA Awards and many more.

Canada Country Music

George has recorded 12 albums. His debut album, ‘One Good Friend’, was certified Platinum. With a career of  country hits like “Just Like You”, “I Believe in Angels”, “Drinkin’ Thinkin’”, “Daughters of the Sun”, “I Got This”, “I Want You To Live”, and “Slow Dance” it is no wonder George is a well known Canadian country music artist.

“If I won, I’d probably go unconscious, … Which would be bad, because then there would be no acceptance speech.” George Canyon

Life With George

Frederick George Lays, best known by his stage name George Canyon, was born on August 22, 1970, in Pictou Country, Nova Scotia, Canada. He was actually raised in Fox Book, Nova Scotia and then in Hopewell, Nova Scotia. Before the stage lights, awards, and movie gigs, music has always been an aspiration for George. But his love for his family, wife Jennifer and children Kale and Madison, always come first. The dream of country music had to wait. Supporting his family with a guaranteed paycheck was more important so he worked as a bylaw officer to support them.

“You’re a pleasure as a lover, you’re a treasure as a wife” George Canyon

Merritt BC Murals Selfie Photo

A Star Was Born

In 2004, with Jennifer’s support, George set out to compete on U.S.A. Network’s “Nashville Star”. It is an American Idol-type show with a country twist. As a matter of fact, those who know George are well aware of the talent and passion he embodies. Therefore they were not surprised that he was a hit on the show. George did not win. He came very close to winning the show but, more importantly, he had won the hearts of country music fans throughout the world.

True North Strong and Free

George Canyon is also a highly regarded humanitarian. For example, it is no secret George Canyon supports the hard working men and women of the Canadian military. Therefore, in honor of his support George was appointed Honorary Colonel for 14 Wing Greenwood Air Force Base in Nova Scotia in 2008.

Furthermore, he was also made the first ever Colonel Commandant of the Royal Canadian Air Cadets by The Honourable Peter MacKay in 2011. Moreover, he was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in honour of his ongoing work with the Air Cadets and other charities. Lastly, he was recognized by the Canadian Country Music Association with the Humanitarian Award in recognition for his work with the Canadian military.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

George Cares

Among his many identities, Canyon is also a proud Canadian. Like many in Canada George is a huge hockey fan. He roots for his team, the Calgary Flames by singing the national anthem during their home games. Good guy George is also a spokesperson for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). A charity close to his heart starting from when he himself was diagnosed with Type-1 Diabetes at age of 14.

The Sky Is The Limit

George was an air cadet with ambitions on serving his country. He was told at an early age that his diabetes would make being a pilot in the Air Force impossible. However, in 2009, things changed after learning more about what it means to live with Type-1 Diabetes. George made the decision to make some adjustments to his diet and lifestyle. Consequently with the advancements in insulin pump technology, George beat the odds by passing all the medical tests and got his pilot’s license.

Merritt Murals and Music 2.0

The Merritt Mural Project was created in 2005. As a result the Merritt BC Murals were part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Merritt Murals were painted by muralist Michelle Loughery.

Merritt BC Canada Country Music – Merritt Murals

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

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** In conclusion, you can learn more about George Canyon on his Facebook, and Wikipedia pages, as well as, his website.

Merritt Murals

Merritt BC Canada Murals

Featured Country Music Musician – Tim McGraw

“Chase your dreams but always know the road that’ll lead you home again.” Tim McGraw

Merritt BC Canada Murals – Tim McGraw is one of the Merritt Murals in the Nicola Valley located in downtown Merritt BC Canada. There are over 20 murals in downtown Merritt BC which is also the Country Music Capital of Canada.

Downtown Merritt BC is also the home of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame. Today,  I will be sharing with you some information about the Merritt BC Canada Murals and country music superstar Tim McGraw.

Merritt BC Murals Downtown Merritt Tim McGraw

Michelle Bacon (Experience Nicola Valley) / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

The Story of Tim McGraw Before The Merritt BC Canada Murals

Country music artist Tim McGraw wasn’t always interested in music. As a matter of fact he originally thought that he would be a professional baseball payer. Unfortunately, during his college years he injured his knee and could no longer pursue that career. Which is a good thing for us Country Music Fans.

Baseball To Country Music

He learnt to play guitar during his college years, after and during baseball. Although, at times, his roommates often hid his guitar claiming that he was hard on the ears. Subsequently his determination never wavered. He would still play and perform for money.

In 1989 Tim’s hero Keith Whitley died. As a result, when he heard the news, Tim dropped out of college and moved to Nashville to pursue a career in country music.

Accomplishments of  Tim McGraw

There is no shortage of amazing songs written and performed by Country Music Artist Tim McGraw. In short some of my favorite country songs are “Don’t Take the Girl”, “I Like it, I Love it”, “It’s your Love”, “Just to See You Smile” and “Red Rag Top”.

Tim has accomplished so much since his first demo single was released in 1991.  At that time, the single “What Room Was the Holiday In” didn’t perform well on the charts. In fact, his first self titled album “Tim McGraw” released in 1991 did not resonate well with the country music fans. But persistence always wins.

Merritt BC Canada Murals Honor Country Music Hits

McGraw’s second album entitled “Not a Moment Too Soon” released in 1994 was much more successful. His single “Indian Outlaw” not only raced to the top of the charts, it also created a lot of backlash from people who found it offensive to Native Americans. This only helped the sales of the single. Since then Tim has racked up many different awards over the years.

Platinum Albums

1994

CMT

Male Video Artist of the Year

 

Academy of Country Music

Album of the Year

 

 

Top Male Vocalist

 

Billboard Awards

Top New Country Artist

 

Billboard Magazine

Top New Country Album

1995

American Music Awards

Favorite New Country Artist

1997

Billboard Magazine

Single of the Year “It’s Your Love”

 

CMT

Video of the Year “It’s Your Love”

 

 

Male Artist of the Year

 

CMA

Vocal Event “It’s Your Love”

 

Billboard Awards

Country Single of the Year “Just to See You Smile”

 

CMA

Album of the Year “Everywhere”

1998

Academy of Country Music

Single of the Year “It’s Your Love”

 

 

Song of the Year “It’s Your Love”

 

 

Video of the Year “It’s Your Love”

 

 

Top Vocal Event “It’s Your Love”

1999

Academy of Country Music

Male Vocalist

 

 

Vocal Collaboration “Just to Hear You Say that You Love Me”

 

CMA

Male Vocalist

Album of the Year “A Place in the Sun”

2000

National Father Hood Initiative

Father of the Year

 

Academy of Country Music

Male Vocalist

 

Billboard Awards

Male Artist of the Year

 

CMA

Male Vocalist

2001

American Music Awards

Favorite Male Country Artist

 

Grammy Awards

Best Country Collaboration with Vocals “Let’s make love”

 

CMA

Entertainer of the Year

 

Billboard Awards

Country Artist

 

 

Male Country Artist

 

 

Album Artist Country

 

 

Country Single Artist

 

 

Country Album “Greatest Hits”

2002

American Music Awards

Best Country Album “Set This Circus Down”

 

 

Favorite Male Country Artist

2003

American Music Awards

Favorite Country Male Artist

 

Radio Music Awards

Country Male Artist

 

American Music Awards

Favorite Country Male Artist

2004

People’s Choice Awards

Favorite Country Male Artist

 

Radio Music Awards

Country Male Artist

 

CMA

Single of the Year “Live Like You Were Dying”

2005

American Music Awards

Album of the Year  “Live Like You Were Dying”

 

 

Best Male Country Artist

 

Academy of Country Music

Song of the Year “Live Like You Were Dying”

 

 

Single of the Year  “Live Like You Were Dying”

 

Peoples Choice Awards

Favorite Country Male Artist

 

Grammy Awards

Best Male Country Vocal Performance  “Live Like You Were Dying”

 

CMT

Most Inspiring Video  “Live Like You Were Dying”

2006

Peoples Choice Awards

Top Male Performer

 

Grammy Awards

Best Country Collaboration with Vocals “Live We Never Loved at All” with Faith Hill

2012

CMA

Musical Event of the Year  “Feel like a Rock Star” with Kenny Chesney

2013

Brits Country Music Association

International song of the Year “Highway Don’t Care” with Taylor Swift and Keith Urban

2014

People’s Choice Awards

Country Music Icon

2016

CMT Music Awards

Video of the Year “Humble and Kind”

The Country Songs Keep On Coming

Some of Tim’s best songs include “It’s Your Love”, “Humble and Kind”,  “Live Like you Were Dying”, “I Like it, I Love it” and “Highway Don’t Care” just to name a few.

Tim’s 1994 album “Not a Moment Too Soon” and his 2000 “Greatest Hits” album are both 6x Platinum. Together with “Not A Moment Too Soon” which went #1 in the first week on the charts. Likewise, “All I Want” released in 1995 reached 3x Platinum.

Merritt BC Murals Selfie Photo

Family Life

McGraw was born in Delhi , Louisiana, USA on May 1 1967. He grew up thinking his father was Horace Smith. In the light of finding his birth certificate Tim learned his Father was really Tug McGraw. In short, he was only 11 years old when finding this out. He eventually got to meet his real father but it wasn’t until he was 18 that they started to form a closer relationship.

Family Is Important

In 1996 Tim McGraw and Faith Hill married and had 3 beautiful girls. As a result Tim’s desire to be a good father and to have a regular family became priority number one. Consequently, Tim coaches his girl’s baseball and basketball teams.  Ultimately, the family loves to spend time on their 200 acre ranch just outside Nashville. Highlights include bonfires in the back forty, hang out on tailgates, pick guitars and having a few beers.

“It’s the most relaxing place in the world” Tim McGraw

Not only a Country Artist

Tim has done a number of movies over the years. Firstly, he performed in a movie called “Black Cloud”.  Secondly, in 2006, he played Rob McLaughlin in “Flicka”. A role he didn’t really want to do but after reading the script he couldn’t say no.

Flicka Movie Staring Tim McGraw

“Flicka” is a movie about a young teenager who dreams of one day taking over her fathers (McGraw) ranch.  Subsequently she tames a young mustang which her father sells. In conclusion she schemes to win a dangerous horse race in order to win back Flicka.

“I didn’t want to play a rancher. I didn’t want to have a cowboy hat on, I wanted o get away from that in the things I do. But, I read the script and fell in love with it. As hard as I tried to say no, I couldn’t.” Tim McGraw

Lastly, a few of his other movies include “The Kingdom” in 2007, The “Blind Side” in 2009, “Country Song” in 2010, as well as, a prominent role in “Tomorrowland” with George Clooney in 2015.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Merritt BC Murals

In downtown Merritt BC Canada there are many amazing Country Artist Murals. Together, with the “Walk of Stars”, they have become one of Canada’s biggest outdoor art walking tour. While you are here checking out this mural why don’t you take a moment and head over to the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame.

The Merritt Mural Project was created in 2005. The Merritt BC Murals were part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Merritt Murals were painted by muralist Michelle Loughery.

Walk The Merritt Murals

It’s such a neat thing to be able to step back in time while reading about the inductees. But, on your way you can check out some of the other Merritt Murals in the Nicola Valley. Also, take some time and have a bite to eat at one of the great coffee shops or restaurants in Downtown Merritt BC.

Lastly, you can find the Merritt BC Canada Mural – Tim McGraw at 2151 Coutlee Ave on the side of the Copper Valley Mechanical building.

Walk of Stars

Moreover, on your digital tour of Merritt BC Canada Murals you can also have a look at the over 100+ “Walk of Stars” around Downtown Merritt. There is also one food print, can you figure out who it belongs to? The stars also have QR codes.

Merritt BC Canada Walk of Stars

Merritt BC Canada Walk of Stars – Tim McGraw

Merritt BC Canada Murals are such an amazing part of our community. In addition we “Merrittonians” love and are very proud to be the Canadian Country Music Capital. More importantly, being able to share these Country Music Artist Murals with everyone who comes here to visit, or by you sharing these blogs about them makes me feel very fortunate.

In conclusion you can follow Tim McGraw on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and his web page.

To sum it all up there really are so many of his songs that I love. Which of Tim’s songs are your favorites? Comment below and let us know.

Featured Country Music Musician – Tim McGraw in Merritt BC

 

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

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** Information resources include Tim McGraw website, Wikipedia and social media pages.

Merritt BC Canada Murals

Casey Clarke Country Music Television and Radio

Merritt BC Murals in the Nicola Valley

An on air and TV personality that has been a great ambassador and friend of Merritt BC Canada

The Merritt BC Murals in the Nicola Valley feature a country music personality named Casey Clarke. A name sitting near the top of the list in the country music world of television and radio. If you love listening to country music it is a safe bet you know who Casey Clarke is.

The Start Of The Broadcasting Career

Casey was born and raised in Edmonton Alberta, Canada. It was here on the prairies, growing up, where Casey found his calling in broadcasting. Casey Clarke started his  television and radio career at a very early age too. Radio first came calling for Casey Clarke in Westlock, Alberta at CFOK Radio Station. Soon later he was behind the mic with Mountain FM Whistler/Squamish BC.  Everyone who knows Casey could see that Casey’s broadcasting career was off and running.

Melvina White (Experience Nicola Valley) / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Casey’s next stop was Vancouver, BC, Canada where he jumped on board with “The Satellite Radio Network” and was syndicated on 71 radio stations across Canada. Followed later by an offer to join the team at Silk FM at which time Casey made the move to Kelowna, BC, Canada. Casey took a liking to his radio career and kept moving forward. He was once heard saying,

“This is such a dynamic field filled with unbelievable challenges!”

The Television Career Begins For Casey Clarke

1997 took Casey Clarke from Kelowna, BC to Calgary, Alberta, Canada to join the Country Music Television show known as CMT. Clarke served as Director of Programming at both CMT Canada and Country 95.3 (Hamilton/Toronto-Canada’s most listened to Country Station). While at 95.3 he organized Canada’s largest free outdoor Country show every Canada Day.

“The face of CMT” (Country Music Television) according to some was Casey Clarke)

Casey’s 15 year radio stint has earned him the title, “the face” of CMT. Casey Clarke is one of the most recognizable personalities in Canada in the country music industry.

Casey Clarke Awards and Credits

In 2009. The Country Music Association World International Awards, honored Casey Clarke with the broadcaster of the year award. This award recognizes outstanding achievement, by a radio broadcaster or syndicated radio reporter. The award recognizes that Casey has made important contributions for the development of country music, in his/her country outside the United States.

Merritt BC Murals Selfie Photo

Back to Radio

The Casey Clarke Show” as well as “The Casey Clarke Countdown” is syndicated on radio stations across Canada. As a result they are both active in major and secondary markets. Casey hosts a variety of artist album specials on national radio as well. He is also the main radio personality conducting onsite interviews with the headlining artists, at all major Canadian Country Music Festivals.  As well as his radio programs. Clarke’s company Casey Clark Productions also co-produced “The Chevy Cross Canada Countdown” which Clarke hosted for seven seasons.

In 2012 a show on CMT that Casey was involved with, “Employee Of The Week”, won the”Program of The Year Award” from the Canadian Country Music Association.

Casey Clarke’s Merritt Mural

The on-air and TV personality has been a great ambassador and host for Merritt BC Canada. He has commanded the stage of The Merritt Mountain Music Festival, as well as, the stage for some Walk of Stars Gala events. He has been a staple at the “Rockin River Music Fest” since 2015. Casey will grace the stage again at the 2019 Rockin’ River Fest.

Casey has continued to support the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame for many years. It was his dedication to the country music scene in Merritt BC Canada that earned him his space on a wall forming part of the Merritt BC Murals. Casey Clarke’s Mural can be seen at 2015 Nicola Street. He is on the wall with his colleague, and country music singer”Beverly Mahood”.

Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Merritt BC Canada Murals

The Merritt Mural Project started  in 2005. Furthermore, the Merritt BC Murals was part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”. A project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Muralist Michelle Loughery painted the Merritt Murals.

Still Connecting with Country’s Biggest Stars

Casey is currently the Program Director for the Morning Show for Stingray Country 100.7 in Kelowna, BC. He has held this position since January, 2013. Radio and Event Host Casey Clarke shows no signs of slowing down.

Follow Casey Clarke on his website, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

 

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** Information resources includes Casey Clarke website, and social media pages.

Paul Brandt – Merritt BC Murals

Merritt BC Canada Murals - Paul Brandt

Downtown Merritt Digital Walking Tour

“Yeah I’ve been Alberta Bound for all my life. And I’ll be Alberta Bound until I die” Paul Brandt

Paul Brandt is a country music artist featured on one of the Merritt Murals in Merritt BC Canada in the Nicola Valley. Therefore if you have never checked out the Merritt BC Murals then you should put it on your to-do list when visiting the Canadian Country Music Capital of Canada in Merritt BC Canada.

Paul Brandt – Born Country

Paul Rennée Belobersycky, (aka Paul Brandt), was born on July 21st, 1972. By the same token if you live in Canada and listen to country music then you have most likely heard of Paul Brandt. Born in Calgary Alberta , Paul was raised approximately one hour away in Airdrie, Alberta, Canada. As a matter of fact Paul started his career as a nurse. He worked as a Pediatric RN until his hit song “My Heart has a History” from his debut album “Calm Before the Storm” made the country music charts in 1996.

Rob Lee (Experience Nicola Valley / Mural Painted by Michelle Loughery

Paul Brandt Live In Merritt

Paul Brandt played in the Country Music Capital of Canada a couple times over the years. Therefore has gained a larger following within the region of the Nicola Valley. As a result Paul has been a popular performer playing twice at the Merritt Mountain Music Festival (now called the Rockin River Music Festival). He first played in 2005 and again in 2009.

“Everything in my heart I’ll give you. Everything in my soul, it’s yours”, Paul Brandt 

A Country Music Career

In 1996, Paul Brandt entered the country music charts with his hit country music single “My Heart Has a History”. The break through country music hit song put him on the radar on the international stage. Consequently, this recognition propelled him to be the first male Canadian country musician to reach the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart in the United States in 24 years.

Paul Brandt’s History of Country Music

Brandt’s first attempt at country music came with his first demo with A&R records at the Warner Canada office.  In addition the demo was sent to their colleagues at Warner Nashville. To clarify, this was an attempt to find a country music singer of which the two branches could work together on. Paige Levy of Nashville A&R was impressed with the country music talent of Paul Brandt. As a result Paige Levy forwarded the demo to Hit Quarters in hopes of putting a larger spotlight on Paul Brandt and his potential as a songwriter.

On The Road To Nashville

Because of this increased exposure, Paul headed to Nashville to develop his style and country music talents. As a matter of fact, the move to Nashville helped spearhead some collaborative efforts in songwriting with some experienced country music stars. Ultimately it was a smart move as it elevated Paul’s song writing skills. Because of this focus on his song writing skills Paul created the album, “Calm before the Storm”. From there on in, the albums began to roll out.

“Yeah I’ve been Alberta Bound for all my life. And I’ll be Alberta Bound until I die”, Paul Brandt

Brandt’s second album, “Outside the Frame”, album did not have the same success as “Calm Before the Storm”. Determination and a never-quit attitude fueled Paul’s passion for song writing and performing. This passion for country music led to his third album “Thats the Truth”. Three albums later in 2000 he released his Canada only album “What I want to be Remembered for”. And take it from me, there is plenty to remember about Paul Brandt.

Brand-T Records Was Born

After this Paul started “Brand-T Records” with geat success. That is to say that his own label earned him numerous awards. It seems that being unsigned helped Paul Brandt up his game and produce an acoustic album, “Small Town and Big Dreams”.  In the light of his new direction, the album earned him the CCMA Album of the Year. But that was just the beginning.

Paul Brandt Selfie Photo

This Time Around For Paul Brandt

His follow up album, “This Time Around” earned Paul the CCMA Album of the Year and the song “That’s What I Love About Jesus” earned him a GMA Canada Covenant Award. In short, the album had legs as it went platinum in Canada. Consequently other hit songs were recognized on the air waves like “Leavin'”, featuring Keith Urban and his remake of  “Convoy”.  Lastly, from the same album, “Alberta Bound” was released. This song was a tribute to his home province of Alberta, Canada.

Then Comes Risk

The album, “Risk”, was released in 2007.  Soon later the Canadian Juno Awards came calling in April 2008 and awarded Paul the Country Recording of the Year.  Not to mention in May of 2007 the first single, “Didn’t Even See the Dust,” was released. Consequently you should know that in 2007 in Canada the single “Dust” was one of the 20 most played country music songs in the nation.

Life Is In The Song

The momentum kept building for Paul. In addition, in September 2011, he released the album “Give It Away”.  Soon later, in October 2012, he continued with the follow up gospel album named, “Just As I Am”.  In short, Paul’s collection of songs referred to many of his personal life stories detailing the story of  Paul’s childhood and growing up in Canada.

Paul Brandt Inducted Into The Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame

Canadian Country Music Awards

Paul has been fortunate enough to win multiple awards including Male artist of the Year/Album of the Year and Videos of the Year.

Canadian Country Music Awards (courtesy of Wikipedia)
  • SOCAN SIN Cng of the Year: “My Heart Has A History” 1996
  • Male Artist Of The Year 1997
  • SOCAN Song of the Year: “I Do” 1997
  • Single Of The Year: “I Do” 1997
  • Video Of The Year: “I Do” 1997
  • Male Artist Of The Year 1998
  • The Male Artist Of The Year 1999
  • Male Artist Of The Year 2000
  • Video Of The Year: “That’s The Truth” 2000
  • Male Artist Of The Year 2002
  • The Album of the Year: Small Towns and Big Dreams 2002 
  • Album of the Year: This Time Around 2005 
  • CMT Video of the Year: “Convoy” 2005
Country Music Association
  • Global Artist of the Year 2005
CMT (United States)
  • Top New Male Artist 1996

GMA Canada Covenant Awards

  • Country/Bluegrass Song of the Year: “That’s What I Love About Jesus” 2005
  • Seasonal Album Of The Year: A Gift 2007 
  • The Seasonal Song of the Year: “A Gift” 2007 
  • Album of the Year: Just As I Am 2013 
  • Artist of the Year 2013
  • Country/Bluegrass Album of the Year: Just As I Am 2013 

Juno Awards And Paul Brandt

  • Country Male Vocalist of the Year 1997
  • Male Vocalist of the Year 1998
  • Country Male Vocalist of the Year 1998
  • The Best Country Male Vocalist 1999
  • Best Country Male Artist 2000
  • The Best Country Male Artist 2001
  • Country Recording Of The Year: Risk 2008 
  • Allan Waters Humanitarian Award 2008
Western Canadian Music Awards
  • Outstanding Country Recording: Risk 2008 
Other Awards
  • Alberta Music Awards Lifetime Achievement Award 2011
  • Canadian Country Album of the Year “Give It Away” by iTunes Rewind 2011
  • Awarded HRM The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal 2013

Canadian Country Music Hall Of Fame

In 2017 Paul Brandt was inducted into the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame. The venue is located in Merritt BC Canada and celebrates the accolades of Canadian country music singers, songwriters, producers and builders. From the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame one can easily access the over 20+ murals in the community featuring country music artists.

Merritt BC Canada Murals and Walk of Stars

Throughout the downtown area one can find paintings of many of your favorite country music stars.  Located at 2025 Coutlee Avenue in Merritt BC is Paul Brandt’s mural which is on the side of the City Furniture building. Equally important to mention are the Walk of Stars located throughout the community. The Walk of Stars is a collection of hand prints (and one foot print) located throughout the community featuring various artists who have visited Merritt BC.

The Merritt Mural Project was created in 2005. The Merritt BC Murals were part of a successful program called, the “Merritt Youth Mural Project”.  To clarify, it was a project designed for working with local young artists and “ youth at risk”. Merritt Murals were painted by muralist Michelle Loughery.

** Information resources includes Paul Brandt website,  Wikipedia page, and Facebook and Twitter social media pages.

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Hilly Half Marathon in Merritt, BC

Scenery in the Nicola Valley Can’t be Beat

“The views are worth every bit of the challenge” –Andrea

Running in Merritt is the subject of my first ever blog.  Mary Jorgensen,  as a new comer to Merritt BC Canada, was disappointed by the fact that there wasn’t a run in Merritt so she took the bull by the horns, got a small band of like minded people together, and the Merritt Country Run was born.

They’re off and running in Merritt, BC, Canada

The Merritt Country Run provides four different distances. Namely,” 2Xtrack(800M)”, 5K, 10K and the 1/2 Marathon.  Of all the distances the 1/2 Marathon is the ultimate “running in Merritt” experience.  Whereas runs on the Stanley Park Sea Wall are flat and easy, this run is hilly and really tests your endurance. While the route may be hilly our participants say:

“The views are worth every bit of the challenge” –Andrea 

The Views While Running in Merritt, BC

The race starts at Voght Park, with the first part of the journey travelling beside the Coldwater River.  However, after the first kilometer you meet your first challenging hill.  This part of the run travels North East and gives you views out over the City’s golf course and the grasslands of the southern interior.  If you have ever seen a wrinkle dog then you get the idea of what the grasslands look like.

View of Golf Course and Grasslands

View of Golf Course and Grasslands

The good thing is that when you reach the top of Juniper Hill you have over 8 kilometers before the next one! Your reward at the top of the hill is running through the Bench Subdivision.  The fragrance of the pines as you run along Mountain Way screams out “Summer Vacation.”

While I could go on about the views, I will only cover three more spots.  When you travel along the City’s Truck Route you get to see the booming metropolis  of Merritt, BC.  Secondly, when you are running out along Lindley Creek Road you get a magnificent view of the Nicola River as it flows down to the Fraser River at Spences Bridge.  Finally, your last leg borders the Coldwater  River where the babbling sounds of the river sooth your soul as you roll to the finish line back at Voght Park.

Merritt Country Run

The Booming Metropolis of Merritt

Merritt Country Run

The Home Stretch beside the Coldwater River

Come for the Running in Merritt enjoy the Nicola Valley

The temperature can be warm at this time of year so we start the half marathon at 8:00AM.  If you are coming from out of town it is best to come the day before.  You have many choices of accommodation from first class hotels, motels, B&B’s and of course camping.

To get full service camping you need to choose the in town sites of Claybanks RV or Moon Shadows RV Park.    Choosing Monk Park provides you with all the comforts of a Provincial Campground on the shores of beautiful Nicola Lake.  Alternatively, if you are into more rustic, Kane Valley and Lundbom Lake provide lakeside camping with minimal fan fare.

If this is not your year to attempt running in Merritt then remember that the Country Run is always the second Sunday in June.  You don’t have to wait for the run to enjoy Merritt.  Go to Experience Nicola Valley to get the scoop on all the exciting things to do in the Nicola Valley.  After all, we are just a hop skip and jump away from Vancouver (3 hours), an hour + from the Okanagan and 45 minutes from Kamloops.

There will be more news on the Running in Merritt in the coming future so stay tuned.

Merritt Country Run in the Nicola Valley