By Al Beeber on July 28, 2021.
COVID silenced the music but with pandemic restrictions eased, Tom Price and his band are back hitting all the right notes.
Price was a founding member of popular Lethbridge musical act Tom & Curt which made many fans here and elsewhere starting in the 1970s. Originally a duo with singer/guitarist Price and bassist/vocalist Curt Stuckert, the band later added drummer Tom Callaghan to the mix.
Now Price, who was first part of a band called Anything Goes way back in 1969 with Vic Vogt, has started playing Saturday night shows in his driveway at 6 Notre Dame West, just north of Nicholas Sheran Park.
The gigs started last summer and now Price and a trio consisting of bassist Roy Bartz and drummer Matt Lipinski are back entertaining anyone who cares to show up with a lawn chair.
Bartz, just recovering from a broken wrist and fingers, has performed with many local outfits including Trevor Panczak while Lipinski played with Doug Jenson and the renowned Jenson Interceptor when they were popular in the 1970s along with other groups here and elsewhere.
Over the years, Price has played with many talented musicians and he looks back with fondness on his career.
“I had Curt Stuckert and Tom Callaghan as partners for a long time. And we got tight, sticking together. That’s a real blessing.
“In order to accomplish something you have to stick together. And now Curt’s retired and Tommy has been busy with his things so Matt Lipinski is my drummer. He’s played with me probably off and on for 20 years.
“We’re playing for our demographic. I don’t want to get into a place and see a bunch of kids that want newer music,” he said.
The band plays a little country, a little old-fashioned rock ‘n roll, “just about anything,” Price said.
“I spend a lot of time doing a single act in seniors homes and sometimes I do a duo with Roy and occasionally we’ll do a trio,” he added.
“It’s a tough game,” he says of live music.
“The only place we would consider playing now is the casino,” said Price.
“When you’re playing in clubs, it’s four hours a night. A lot of the times we get people phoning us, we’re gonna start at 7 and we’ll be finished by 11” but with the driveway shows, the band doesn’t have to carry around a lot of equipment and plays their own hours.
“We just set up out there and do our thing,” he said of his driveway shows.
“We’re on the waning side of our careers. But we’ve had a hell of a good career. . .the little Saturday concert thing was a godsend last year,” he said.
“I really enjoyed it, Matt’s enjoyed it and Roy’s enjoyed it,” Price said.
“We really had fun,” last year, Price said.
Price played in another band for five or six years which included Lipinski and Price’s brother Darren on guitar and Jack Horn on bass.
He and Stuckert first started performing together in the early 1970s, he recalled.
“When we first started it was back in about ’71, ’72. Tom Callaghan joined us in 1978 so we played five or six years.”
In 1986, Price started in the insurance business and the other two stayed on the road but in the mid-1990s, the band got together again before Stuckert decided to retire.
“We had the best times of our lives. If you ask Roy, myself or anybody I’ve played with – Tom, Curt, Matt, we can look back and say they were the best of our lives. If you don’t have good partners, it doesn’t matter what you do.
“These guys are all dependable, Curt and Tom Callaghan, Matt and Roy, you can depend on them. If you get lost in a song, they’re there and they’ll pick you up and carry you through it.”
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