One of Penticton’s most promising musicians, Beamer Wigley, will be headlining this week’s Thursday Night Throwdown at the Penticton Legion.
Despite his youth, having just turned 13 earlier in November, Wigley is not worried about being able to please the Legion’s mature crowd.
“I love ‘60s music, it’s right up my alley so I’ll be doing a lot of oldies and mix in a couple of songs that I wrote,” he said.
From the onset, some people who meet Wigley don’t take him to be a serious musician because of his age, though he counteracts those impressions through meaningful interaction.
“I try to be really confident, look them in the eye and act really mature.”
For those whose first impression of Wigley comes through an on-stage performance, his level of confidence and charisma can make it hard to believe he’s only 13.
He is not anticipating going through a rebellious phase in his teenage years, instead he hopes to solidify a profession in music.
“The goals I’ve set are to work my hardest, be the absolute best I can be and then some,” he said. “Hopefully after enough work hard, someday I’ll reach my goal of playing the Grand Ole Opry.”
Based in Nashville, Tn., the Grand Ole Opry is “the show that made country music famous,” Wigley said. “All the greats have played.”
Wigley said it feels “all natural” to be up on stage, and has always felt comfortable reading a crowd.
“It’s all about how the audience reacts, you gauge your performance off your audience,” he said.
Since becoming fascinated in the world of music, Wigley has looked up to Keith Urban as his idol, whom his music is largely influenced by.
“His music tells great stories and he’s an amazing guitar player,” he said.
Wigley is especially proud to embrace the country genre because of his age.
“There’s been lot of 13-year-old pop artists but it’s a little uncommon to see a 13-year-old trying to break out in the country format.”
He’ll be performing at the legion as a soloist, though Wigley is the leader of a local band, and the other three members are about twice his age – guitarist Dustin McGifford, bass player Collin Croft and drummer Joshua Ertman. The band is preparing for a special performance planned for February, though details have yet to be announced.
“We have so much fun playing together, it’s awesome,” Wigley said.
Wigley expects his band to stay active at least as long as his career in music is contained in the Okanagan, unsure if they will want to tag along when it’s time for him to hit the road.
Thursday Night Throwdowns begin at 8 p.m. each week at the Legion. Wigley’s performance is on Nov. 19 and guests are asked to bring a non-perishable food item instead of admission.
“We are very pleased he has decided to perform a set of music in support of our Thursday Throwdown and the Legion members are thrilled to have such a young performer play the Penticton Legion,” said Roger Carr, public relations and second vice president of the Legion.