Gilday set for Lougheed show
Leela Gilday will be playing the Loougheed Centre on Aug. 9. Supplied
The Jeanne and Peter Lougheed centre will be welcoming Juno award winning Canadian singer Leela Gilday.
It will be the first time Gilday performs in Camrose when she comes on Aug. 9. Gilday has an impressive resume, along with her Juno, she has won two Western Canadian Music Awards as well as being named the Aboriginal Female Entertainer of the Year.
“I actually attended an arts camp in Camrose, but that was many years ago so this is the first time I’ve returned [to Camrose] since then,” she said. “We love performing especially in theatres or festivals, just to bring the full band and do a show, I’m just really excited to be coming to Camrose.”
A graduate of the University of Alberta, Gilday has performed all over the world, including Denmark and Japan. Coming to a smaller community like Camrose is something Gilday enjoys.
“I love the small town vibe, people come and they come with open hearts and they really take you seriously, they really give you their full attention,” she said.
People attending can expect some new music off of Gilday’s fifth album due out tentatively next spring.
“There’s actually a few songs that we’ve played a couple of times so far and they’re gaining momentum and we’re going to playing those to give them wheels for the album,” she said.
Gilday’s songs can be about some heavy subject matter, but during her shows Gilday likes to keep it light.
“While the subject matter is sometimes quite serious, I like to have a light tone to my shows and we like to joke and laugh,” she said. “It’s a passionate show. What can I say, I write about what I know I’m always very honoured to share my stories with people.”
Gilday, who is from the Dene nation, has been writing a lot on reconciliation recently, which can be a tough topic to grasp.
“It’s a difficult one to for a lot of people to wrap their minds around, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike, so music is a great connector,” she said.
A lot of the songs Gilday writes deal with some of the issues Indigenous people deal with every day.
“I just write about the north, the Dene nation, I write about a lot of things that have been recently in the public eye,” she said.
“All of the main things we deal with in our daily lives as Indigenous people, including murdered and missing Indigenous women, and residential schools. These are things we deal with on a daily basis in our lives, so they’re not theoretical issues.”
Gilday hopes people who attend her show will get a positive experience and feel uplifted and empowered. She hails from Yellowknife, the capital of Northwest Territories with a population of just under 20,000 people.
“People are extremely warm and extremely community oriented, because the land has such a huge and powerful presence in the north, it makes it all the more important to rely on your community,” Gilday said. “When people come up north they realize that there’s vibrant and strong communities here, and lots of amazing people come from up north.”