On December 10, indie rock group Full Deck’s set was a part of the inaugural Band Night at York’s Timbers Lodge Social Grill, which brought owner Elias Khoury great pride as he intends to make this a staple feature at Timbers. The event occurred just before the Universities winter break, and at a time where the Omicron variant began hindering holiday plans.
For Khoury, they say that in regards to Band Night, they desire to further utilize the location as a centre for the community to gather and feel comfortable.
“The crowd is not there just for our food and drink, they are there to support the band. That is the real success story of the night. A successful night for us isn’t just the bottom line, it’s how we can bring people together to support their fellow students, to showcase their talents and abilities, and to offer them a venue where they can practice their craft in preparation for the next steps they are going to take.
“When they succeed, we will take pride in being able to say we played a small part in helping them hone their craft and realize their dreams,” Khoury adds.
Gabriel Lepore is the bass guitarist of Full Deck and a third-year film production student. For him, Band Night brings a whole new opportunity to Timbers.
“I think Timbers could very well become a place where York artists can showcase their talent to others.” Lepore is confident that events like Band Night can lead to inspiration for people to step onstage and potentially collaborate with other York artists. He further states, “This pub has the potential to be a central location where York artists can grow.”
The latter half of 2021 saw the potentiality of live music making a full-time return to society’s everyday life, prior to the rising cases caused by the Omicron variant. Since January 30, Ontario has begun lifting restrictions once again and come February 21, the province will transition into its next stage of reopening, which will see gathering capacities increase and removing capacity limits in indoor public settings where proof of vaccination is required.
With discourse surrounding this topic surfacing every day, restlessness from Canadians, and provinces making decisions to remove COVID-19 restrictions in certain areas (such as Ontario’s removal of the vaccine passport system come March 1), will York students start to feel more inclined to go out to seek and support new artists?
According to Lepore, the transition into the “social nightlife” will go very slowly.
Ultimately, however, he feels that once people are comfortable and feel safer, an unfathomable amount of people will have the desire to be out, “especially to support different bands/artists and businesses. There are already so many supporters for different bands/artists out there and I think that support base will only skyrocket once venues start to open.”
“People are longing to get out of their house and have an active social life,” Lepore infers.