By now, a good number of people have seen Kimberley Clark’s wonderful photos and videos that I shared on Facebook. I am so appreciative that Kimberley’s husband, Hugh, captured ETA Brent Freeman's encore performance of "Steamroller Blues"; otherwise, no proof would exist of what I get up to on Friday nights ;) What follows is my recap of Friday night’s show, in words, along with some still shots that I took during the evening. I try to include everyone in my photo recaps, but sometimes it isn't possible due to the quality of the photo or because of space restrictions. If you have photos you would like me to add, please send them along.
Friday, April 6th, 2018 will go down in ETA history books as one heck of a memorable night. I thought it was a treat last Saturday seeing Brent in a tux as Buddy Holly, and then in his Jerry Lee Lewis wig; but I have to say last night, for me, topped both of those performances. Until last night, I had only seen a YouTube video of Brent’s winning ETA performance at Collingwood, so I was pleased to see him in person sporting the white striped jacket from his win. He told us he was going to get “sparklier, and sparklier” as the evening went on--and he didn’t disappoint.
For his second set, Brent looked splendid in his gold jacket with rhinestone trim. He commented that the lights at the casino did not make his jacket sparkle. (In last week’s recap, I commented on how Matt literally “dazzled” on stage, so maybe Brent was reminded of that comment because I am sure he reads all my blogs…lol). Brent took the stage for his third set wearing a black jumpsuit with a green scarf, borrowed wig, sideburns, and silver glasses that completed the look. And the look was spectacular!
We were all so pleased that Brent chose Flamboro to wear his jumpsuit for the first time at a public show. He normally reserves his jumpsuit for private gigs. Most of the ETAs we see at Flamboro opt not to wear a jumpsuit because ETAs are not provided with a proper dressing room, and it is easier to change into a different jacket on stage for each set.* After last night’s fantastic reception to his “new” look, that was met with whistles and "wows" from the audience, I have a feeling we will see a lot more of Brent in a jumpsuit at public venues.
The comment I heard the most last night from the ladies who attend almost every ETA event at Flamboro, and who know Brent, as I do, from being in charge of the music for ETA Matt Cage’s shows, was that they did not know he could sing like that. I didn’t know that either! Up to last night, the only singing we heard Brent do at Flamboro Downs, was the high pitched female voice he did as backup during of one of Matt’s song. So we were all amazed at Brent’s deep, powerful voice when he effortlessly belted out the big Elvis songs of the 70s, from “American Trilogy” to “Hurt”. Brent's win at Collingwood was for the Early Years, but after last night's stellar performance, we hope he will include a jumpsuit set in all his Elvis tribute performances.
Brent’s tech person for the evening was Alexya who did a splendid job of cueing the music and acting as Brent’s scarf lady when he handed out scarves. Their height differences led to a humorous comment from Brent as he bent over backwards so Alexya could put the scarves around his neck. Another source of humour during the show was Brent’s friend, fan, and amateur photographer, Buck O’Dell, who was the brunt of jokes about their mock ‘bromance’. It was all in good fun, as the photo will attest.
During Brent’s encore song, “Steamroller Blues”, Brent’s girlfriend, Suzy, in a surprise move, jumped on stage. And even more surprisingly, Suzy asked Dot, Kimberley, and me to join her. It was such fun being part of Brent’s backup singers and dancers for the final song.
In conclusion, I would definitely add last night’s show to the list of most entertaining evenings at Flamboro Downs. With Brent’s natural gift for showmanship, it was more like a party than a show. Brent has a way of making everyone feel that they are an important part of his show. He addresses people by name if he knows them, and he makes personal contact with new faces in the crowd. ETAs know that the wonderful people who attend their shows add to the success of the evening. Dot, Barb, Linda, Maria, Marian, Kimberley, Susie, Suzy, Sona, Bertha, Buck, and Frances, to name a few--all lovely people, and dedicated ETA fans and friends, made Friday night's show so much fun. I am looking forward to seeing you all at the next show! Best regards, Carolyn.
*Both ETAs Kevin Mills and Bruno Nesci wore jumpsuits during their Flamboro shows; and ETA Sylvain Leduc spoiled us by wearing a different jumpsuit for each of his three sets during his first time at Flamboro Downs. But generally ETAs wear a 50's sport jacket or 60's speedway jacket for quick , convenient costume changes.