Pear a healthy helping of musical entertainment

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Pear 1

The pop-fiddle group Pear light up the stage at the Coronation Community Centre on Friday, November 22 as part of the Coronation Royal Performing Arts series.
ECA Review/K. Davis

It takes a certain quality of character to remain happily humble in the wake of major success: the modern-country duo Pear personified this professional and amiable manner in their on-stage style during their show at the Coronation Community Centre on Friday, November 22 as part of the Coronation Royal Performing Arts series.
The evening began with local Coronation School band, Content Deleted, playing a host of cover tunes ranging from the Beatles to the Rolling Stones. With teacher Dan Kinakin acting as emcee for the band, they set the mood alight with their enthusiasm and talent.
Pear then took to the stage and kept the room full of high-energy tunes from start to finish.
The husband and wife duo of Denis and Lynae Dufresne, accompanied by drummer/guitarist/vocalist Craig Bignell, shone with raw talent during their set, employing multi-layered vocal harmonies with ease and intermingling lyrical stylings with intense bouts of fiddle, guitar and mandolin.
Most songs were introduced with an often humerous, always personal anecdote about the song’s inspiration. Particularly noteworthy stories included a loving musical homage written after Denis pretended to forget Lynae’s birthday for a touch too long; and the tale of the band’s first ever ‘hate mail’, seemingly sent from a rabid fan of a ‘rival’ musical talent.
The band’s familial ties were beautifully apparent during their show, with smiles and subtle glances permeating the air between Lynae and Denis. This added a light touch of emotion and love to the performance that heightened a feeling of sincerity stemming from the duo.
Pear’s successes as a band are numerous. The pair have been nominated twice for a Canadian Gemini Award, headlined a tour of China in 2010 and most recently the band’s single ‘This Ain’t a Love Song’ won the 2012 International Songwriting Competition for the genre of country music, and the duo were honoured as 2013 Group of the Year by the Association of Country Music in Alberta.
The band formed in 2005 after Lynae and Denis grew weary of playing ‘second fiddle’ to opening acts and decided to branch out as a duo themselves. They note that their experience as backup players gave them insight into what constitutes a successful – and enjoyable – main act.
“We both found boredom from the stage when people were introducing their songs with the token ‘this next song is called this’. And it’s like, well, who cares?,” quips Denis. “I wanna know where it came from, and how it came to be. If it’s a good song there’s probably gotta be a good story behind how it came to be.”
Linae notes that the stories behind songs provide insight into the minds of the artists themselves.”
“It gives a more personal connection, which we think is really vital to growing and entertaining an audience,” she says.
Akin to their glowing personalities, Pear pride themselves on showcasing their hard-earned talents in entertaining their audiences.
“My wife and I are both fiddle players, and mandolin and some guitars,” says Denis. “We both started when we were four years old, and when you’ve worked at something that long, you kind of want to showcase that. And we enjoy doing that.”
The band uses vocal-based melodies frequently, including three part harmonies, to keep an electric and enjoyable flow to the show. And this engaging and diverse act has not been lost on fans, who express enthusiasm with increased interest and show attendance.
“We’re on a really nice path right now, and we don’t really wanna lose that momentum,” says Denis. “We’re releasing a new album early on in the new year, probably around April or May. We want to reach a bigger audience, we’re getting a lot of calls from the United States and Europe, which is really positive.”

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