The question is often asked. Why do they do it? In most instances it is not for fame, fortune and/or fringe benefits. The answer is very simple. Painters paint, writers write, musicians compose and perform for no other reason than they just have to. It is just the nature of the artistic beast. They are not complete until they follow their compulsions. This somewhat self indulgent approach is one that we should be thankful for, particularly when, in this instance, there is such a positive outcome. Four singer / songwriters of The Kootenay Singer-Song Writers Circle got together to raise funds for the Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund by performing a concert of their original music at the Driftwood Concert house in Kimberley. The musicians included (the nice looking) Heather Gemmell, (the youthful) Clayton Parsons, (the wisdom of the ages) James Neve, and (the mature) Darin Welch. The venue was, of course, the Driftwood Concert House operated by Jen and Darin Welch on this their first year anniversary of presenting sustainable music programs for both musicians and patrons. The format of the evening was basically a traditional singing circle with each musician performing a piece before passing the “torch” onto the next performer. Yours truly, Rod Wilson, was the MC. Darin Welch kicked off the night with Simple City, followed by James Neve’s Blue Girl, Clayton Parson’s Everybody Knows my Name and Heather Gemmell’s global warming song. Through out the evening, five times around the circle, with a grand finale group rendition of Wagon Wheels, the only non-original song of the evening. The list of original songs performed included Pretty Water, Wilderness, The Last Wild Wolves (by Darin Welch); Please Take the Wheel, Candle by the Window, Come on Back to My Love, Passing Through Your Heart (by James Neve); Midnight Moon, Going on Down, September Sunday, Stay (by Clayton Parsons); and the outstanding instrumental The Tap Song (by Heather Gemmell). It was a night of memorable music in a perfectly intimate venue with superb light and sound and a very receptive and respectful audience. I know Darin likes to bring into town great touring performers for this venue but without a doubt this particular evening proved that local performers are more than a match for the imports. Well done guys – you raised over $400 for the Phillipines and with matching government funding that puts us well on the road to $1,000.