AFL Anniversary Showcase: Big Otter Creek

Closing out the night for our showcase is a band that had been close to my heart since I moved to Toronto 6 years ago. Big Otter Creek’s Dan Gangon was one of the first people I met in the music scene here, and if you’re not sure who he is, just check out your facebook page and you will find you’ve got 18 friends in common and he has played music with about half of them.

As one of the band’s singers (sharing this role with fellow guitarist and equally wonderful John Bridgens), Dan’s undeniable rasp and alt-country style has made them a force to be reckoned with. Their current lineup of multi-talented dudes also includes Ben Healy, Jake Saenz and Jesse Shapiro. Since releasing the Orange Takes (from way back to Ep 3!), their sound has fleshed out with a third guitar, and new songs from both Dan and John that range from bluesy and plucky to shuffly and sweet.

The real shining star of Big Otter Creek is the fact that these fellas are so consistently them.

When a band changes their lineup (in this case losing one member and gaining two), it can be a catalyst in their demise or (also in this case) it can breath new life into their old tunes, and bridge the gap to new music. But the Big Otter Creek brand remains intact. There’s a phenomenon I’ve observed with people torn between the big smoke and the sticks energy of city folk stirred with their insatiable desire to get back to the country will always be a relatable notion to great Canadians, especially during our fleeting summers.

It’s not easy to toe the line between tight, harmonic guitar driven blues and softer, jangly country flavours, but BOC delivers in a big way. Don’t believe me? Better come see for yourself tomorrow night. You can tell me right to my face that I was right 🙂


RSPV already! 4 great and varied acts in one night, how can you go wrong?



About Jesse Daly

Jesse is a music fan and sometimes musician who lives and works in Toronto. When she's not spending her days painting soundwaves or the house, she's at Yuk Yuk's downtown telling guests to have fun and not heckle. Can you believe people still heckle? Crazy huh.

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