AIR HEAD ARRON takes the BC Championship for the 2nd time!
Yea… we’re super late bringing this info to the table. Please forgive us. What can we say? We got busy and maybe a little lazy. But here is the re-cap of the 2nd annual BC Air Guitar Championships from Kamloops!
Night of the Brave Souls
Kamloops was host to the Air Guitar BC Championships for the second year in a row, this time at the small and intimate home of the Kamloops Players, The Stagehouse Theatre, and it was a true provincial showing with competitors ranging from Kamloops, 100 Mile House, Kelowna and as far as Burnaby. The show was hosted by Paul Rancourt and his hilarious improv troupe “The Freudian Slips”. Three former Slips are in Toronto right now studying at Second City. On deck for judging were: Justin Bentley, Justin plays in a multitude of different bands in Kamloops, in all styles from acoustic folk, metal and jug; Nicole Clay, Nicole has been described as having the voice of an angel and sings for The Breeze and Shattered Blue; Okke, Okke is the former bouncer of The Blue Grotto Night Club and has thrown out air guitarists for 10 years; Kelly Norwood, Kelly is a luthier, hot rod artist, guitar collector and world famous pin-striper; and, Caroline Dick, former producer of Kamloops Burlesque and genuine badass.
After the Slips warmed up the excited crowd, the Competitor Round started off with Ben “Rock Kickass” Johnson kicking it old school with Bob Seger’s Old Time Rock N Roll. The judges, having just started with the Collective Arts brew, gave modest scores to the first performer. Mason “Hooch Gordon” Pridham melted faces in 2017 and was back again with System of a Down’s Stealing Society. Rising from the ashes, Mike Daniels, winner of Air Guitar Alberta 2015, came reborn from the future as “Zack Lazerblade” and went slow motion to an intense remix of A-Ha’s Take On Me. A Brave Soul from last year that made the finals, Jesse “Doctor Mantis Toboggan” Bochek came out of his cage to The Killer’s Mr. Brightside. Caleb “The Swamplord” Campbell, a first time competitor destroyed his air guitar to Tsar Bomb’s Burning the Masses. Finishing the presigned competitors, last year’s champ, and Canadian Vice-Champion, Aaron “Air-Head Air-Ron” Shufletoski, ripped out to Led Zeppelin’s Communication Breakdown.
After more of the Slips, four Brave Souls answered the call with amazing performances. Andrew “G-Tar” Cooper brought an awareness of the air that is rarely seen to Bon Jovi’s Living on the Prayer. Erik “Magic-E” Stephany couldn’t resist rocking to Tenacious D’s Master Exploder. Out of nowhere, “Ali-Star” channeled former World Air Bronze Medalist Johnny Utah and flipped himself all over the stage to Jimi Hendrix’s Purple Haze. Lastly, Taylor “T-Bone Johnson” McCallum brought sexy back to Air with The Darkness’s I Believe In A Thing Called Love.
After the scores were all tabulated, and the final five were announced, it was revealed that the Brave Souls completed a major upset and snagged three of the final spots! It was anyone’s to win heading into the final round, with Guns N Roses Sweet Child O Mine being boosted into the lead for the compulsory song.
First up, finishing in fifth, Ali-Star continued his flipping ‘air’odymamics on stage, however, the judges felt he didn’t take enough consideration of his guitar and the scores reflected it and he was unable to crack the top three. Next up was T-Bone Johnson, who again was sexy enough to boost his score to finish in third place. G-Tar Cooper took this chance to explore the physics of Air and, while he didn’t make the top three either, we hope he will return again next year. Zack Lazerblade brought out the big guns (a lit-up wristband) and rocked hard to a solid second place finish. Lastly, the returning champ, Air-Head Air-Ron, used the intimate setting to get up close and personal with the judges, winning the title for the second year in a row.
Big thank you’s to Samantha at Collective Arts Brewing for hydrating the judges and competitors, Erik Stephany for serving the drinks, GK Sound for helping with stage lighting, Bex Binder for running light and sound, Josh Sunderman for being the official score keeper, Spikey Mike O’Brien of Art Battle Kamloops with promotion of the event, Chimera Theatre and The Freudian Slips for hosting the event, Drew and Kammerce Promotions for supplying the prizes and especially Kayly Erno of Infernol Art Productions for running the 50/50, Brave Souls sign-up, and Ballot Boost Station!
See below for a series of blurry photos that tell the tale of sheer speed and flurrious shredding.