The most-read entertainment story on the Western News website in 2014 was actually published in 2013, but it outlines the comeback story of an artist who will be back in Penticton soon.
The article Celtic Thunder singer given second shot at life explored the second chance given to Celtic Thunder’s Ryan Kelly.
“It is crazy to think that about this time last year I was still in the hospital and in a coma,” Kelly told the Western News in September 2013.
The life-altering accident gave Kelly a new perspective on life.
“I feel like I was given a second chance and I look at life very differently. I took a lot of things for granted and now I have taken a step back to see how lucky I am. I think that is why I connected to the songs on Mythology so much,” Kelly said.
Celtic Thunder return to Penticton in 2015 with the most-loved songs from their catalogue in the Best of Celtic Thunder tour visiting the SOEC on March 13.
Out for a rip?
For Canadians who frequent YouTube, one question was likely heard more than any other this year: “Out for a rip there bud?”
In the Western News’ second most read entertainment article, hip hop artist and self-proclaimed “Canucklehead” B Rich (Brendan Richmond) racked up over 5.7 million views in 2014 bringing his Canadianisms front and centre for his hit song Out For a Rip highlighting the hoser accent.
He toured Canada, stopping at The Elite in Penticton July 12.
The origins of what has become a Canadian catch phrase known around the world are as folksy and small town as one would expect.
“I grew up in a small town in Ontario and it was a thing everyone said, ‘Just going out for a rip.’ But, it was when I was on my way to my parent’s house out in the country and pulled into this gas station that I always stop at that there was this young hockey kid pumping the gas and he stuck his head in my window and says, ‘Just out for a rip are ya bud?’” Richmond told the Western News in July.
While the quirky and utterly Canadian song may be his claim to fame, Richmond expressed hopes of expanding beyond the one hit, using the song and the tour as a launching pad for his career.
“I’m not looking to write a whole album of hoser rap. I like it, but I don’t want to do too much and for it to get old. My solo stuff is normal hip hop. I grew up blue collar so it’s a lot about that,” he said. “For now, I’m just out here working hard and taking this song across Canada,” Richmond said.
Shooting up to the third most-read article of 2014 in a matter of weeks, the announcement that the king of controversy and master of the bizarre, Marilyn Manson, will be coming to the SOEC had shock rock fans extremely excited.
“This is an absolute dream come true. I would never have expected it in Penticton, but this is probably the coolest thing that’s ever happened to this town,” Jonathan Wall, an avid Marilyn Manson fan, told the Western News earlier in December.
Wall joined around 20 other fans who lined up at the SOEC to grab tickets the minute they went on sale Dec. 19.
The Hell Not Hallelujah tour is coming through Penticton on March 28.
The biggest entertainment event in Penticon was undoubtedly in the headlines multiple times from the lead up to the festival itself, readers were eager to get in the know. The festival was held in Penticton for the first time after moving from its decade-long home in Gibbons, Alta.
Grammy-winning rap duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis headlined the festival that brought high-caliber artists like Canadian rapper Classified, rockers of Sail fame Awolnation, the soothing sounds of City and Colour and the thrashing energy of Rise Against.
“Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are definitely one of the biggest bookings we have had for sure. It took almost eight months to confirm the date,” Boonstock promoter Colin Kobza told the Western News in March.
Boonstock also incorporated local acts such as Kelowna’s The Wild!, Maiya Robbie, Aidan Mayes and Mandy Cole.
Attendance averaged out to about 9,000 people each of the three nights for the mid-summer festival on July 31.
The announcement that the punk rock staple Dropkick Murphys were heading to Penticton was the fourth most-read article of 2014.
Fans were excited to get involved with the notoriously interactive live show put on by the group as they stomped into the SOEC Sept. 28 bringing their adrenaline-pumping Irish/punk rock mix to the South Okanagan.