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Roots duo The Small Glories bring beautifully matched harmonies to the Empress

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JD Edwards and Kara Luft are The Small Glories. They take the Empress Theatre stage at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3 in the Center Stage Series.

The Small Glories, a powerhouse duo known for their stirring harmonies, high-energy shows and finely crafted roots tunes, are performing at the Empress Theatre on Thursday, Oct. 3 at 7:30 p.m.
The concert is the second in the Empress Theatre’s Center Stage Series.
The duo, Cara Luft and JD Edwards, are a musical tour-de-force based in Winnipeg.
Now touring for their second album, the critically acclaimed Assiniboine & The Red, the pair were thrown together purely by accident for a Winnipeg show in 2012.
Luft and Edwards eventually joined their complementary styles and beautifully matched harmonies in a union that seems to be sparked in musical heaven.
Both Edwards and Luft had expansive solo careers before creating The Small Glories.
The JD Edwards Band produced gritty country rock with strong blues and soul influences for more than a decade, while Luft was a founding member of the hugely successful trio, The Wailin’ Jennys.
The Small Glories’ debut album, 2016’s Wondrous Traveler, mixed Luft and Edwards’ own individual material, cover versions, and collaborative bluegrass gems, while the new album, whose title refers to the rivers that intersect in Winnipeg, has a sprawling feel of wide-open spaces that evokes the vast Canadian prairies.
The material of a Small Glories concert is welcoming in terms of subject, folk-pop melody and instrumentation — songs of love, loss, and environment, delivered with soaring, interwoven vocals on various combinations of stomping claw hammer banjo, guitar and harmonica.
A Small Glories performance is about what happens in-between the songs, and the band jokes that they often take more time to introduce a song than it actually takes to play it.
“The feedback we get from a lot of audiences is that it’s not just about the music for them,” Luft said. “It’s the whole package.”
The Small Glories duplicate and reinforce each others’ many strengths while allowing their distinct personalities to shine through, resulting in a live show that is as heartwarming as it is hilarious, as finger- picking proficient as it is relatable, and as Canadian as, well . . . it’s very Canadian.
Up-coming Centre Stage concerts:
• Suzie Vinnick, Nov. 2.
• Colleen Brown and the Joni Mitchell Songbook Jan. 25.
• Leaf Rapids and Blue Moon Marquee, Feb. 20.
• Braden Gates and Russell deCarle, April 18.
For more information, contact the Empress Theatre at 403-553-4404 or info@macleodempress.com.

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