Once again, the creators of the famous Birdie Song will be making their way to Lacombe to play at the annual Knights of Columbus Oktoberfest celebration.
Allan Broder, vocalist and tenor saxophonist who also acts as manager for the band, said that Lacombe’s Oktoberfest is one show the band looks forward to every year.
“It’s a packed house, it’s sold out every year,” said Broder. “The people love what we’re doing and they treat us lovely and we just love going back there.”
Broder further complimented Lacombe and its Oktoberfest celebration by commenting on the beauty of Lacombe and of the venue and the incredible cooperation of the organizers.
A desire to entertain is what keeps The Emeralds doing what they do, said Broder. He added he enjoys the atmosphere of the band’s shows and seeing people having a good time.
“The people come to have a good time and that’s what we give them. We always end up pleasing everybody because we play a little bit of something that everybody likes.”
Oktoberfest celebrations are something of a specialty for The Emeralds.
Broder added that the band has been playing Oktoberfest shows for 30 years and have a good amount of traditional German Oktoberfest music in its repertoire.
He said The Emeralds spent a lot of time playing German clubs early in the band’s infancy which pushed the band to learn some traditional German music. He added the band taught themselves the German style of music by listening to tapes and trying to mimic the sounds.
“(Those clubs) were our bread and butter for a lot of years. Naturally we tried to satisfy them as much as we could by learning music that they enjoyed back in Germany.”
The Emeralds have been making music since the band formed in 1970. Broder said the members were brought together by mutual beliefs that the kind of music they liked to play was lacking representation in the music industry.
All of The Emeralds share a passion for performing and a deep love of music, said Broder. He added that he himself was attracted to music through a love of the saxophone, the instrument he now plays. Broder said he grew up listening to saxophone music and always loved the sound of it.
Since the band’s formation more than 40 years ago, The Emeralds have performed all over the world and recorded 30 albums. They have also gained global fame through the huge hit The Bird Dance.
This will be the sixth annual Knights of Columbus Oktoberfest. The event is a fundraiser for the Knights, who then use the money raised for a number of projects within the community.
Lacombe Knights of Columbus Chair Tim Timmons said that since the first event, Lacombe’s Knights have given back about $21,000 to the community in various projects. Timmons said in the past the Knights have supported the Lacombe Athletic Park, the Lacombe Skateboard Park, FCSS, the Lacombe Food Bank, Father Lacombe School and various other organizations.
Oktoberfest takes place at the Lacombe Memorial Centre on Oct. 19. Cocktails are at 6:30 p.m. with supper beginning at 7 p.m. Timmons said the supper will feature traditional German cuisine such as bratwurst, sauerkraut, pork loin and all the fixings.
Tickets are still available from any Knights of Columbus member or from The Culinary Gift Shoppe.