I happened to see Kevin Barber on the street the other day, but I had no idea what plans he had been cooking up. As I rolled down my car window to wave hello he shouted, "The show tonight is number 100 and it's going to being freakin' amazing!"
Then he continued on his way, walking the dog or picking up a kid at school or something. Everything else was same as it ever was. Just another autumn day in a typical Hammertown neighbourhood. Maplewood Avenue. Adelaide Hoodless School. Gage Park.
Little did I know that a couple of hours later all hell would break loose in Barber's tiny basement studio. "Enter The Metal" is what happened. Varga was in town. And they were the perfect act to test out the new sound, lighting, and acoustic environment of the Barber Shop studio. Decked out with new paneling, new sound board, microphones and the usual multi-camera array, this is no longer any ordinary basement! But the essential difference is the talent and commitment of the hosts Kevin Barber and Ryan Cannon. Their partnership has stood the test of time; they've stuck to their weekly schedule and have broadcasted live each Wednesday night for 100 weeks straight.
In the podcast world, the biggest obstacle is simply keeping it going. Having already surpassed 99% of other podcasts in that regard, now the Barber Shop is shining brighter all the time as its library of archived video of Hamilton musicians grows larger.
If only the musicians themselves would remember it. Archived video of yourself being interviewed and performing live? A full hour long program where you are the headliner? HD video and sound? Easily sharable web content? It's all sitting there in the Barber Shop archive waiting to be viewed.
The Varga episode is absolutely killer. The band laid it down for real in that little basement studio. The neighbours must have been shouting "WTF!" but nobody would hear their cry for the wall of sound. You can read up on Varga aat their website vargahq.com, and you can view all of the Barber Shop programs at barbershoppodcast.com.
Joe Varga (vocals and bass), Dan Fila (drums), Sean Williamson (guitar), Adam Alex (guitar)