20 Reasons Why You Need to See Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts This Weekend

Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts are an in your face, hard rocking, soul crushing band from Winnipeg. Their on stage energy is like that of a world class rock band. Bringing flavours of bands like the Who or The Stooges, it’s a treat for your eyes and ears, an experience that you don’t always get to have in this day and age.

I have had the pleasure of taking pictures of Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts for the last 10 years. They have shaken my soul and moved my mind into a space that people write movies about.

The pictures here are from their show at The Windsor, it was an epic night of channeling guitar gods and rock & roll stars. I highly recommend that you come check them out this Saturday at Shannon’s Irish Pub.

Now, for your viewing pleasure,

20 Reasons why you need to see,

Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts

So get your asses off the couch this weekend and support some awesome local music! Write it down, share it on Facebook, or hell, why not just get it tattooed!

Dr. Rage & The Uppercuts

Saturday, May 9 @ Shannon’s Irish Pub,10 p.m.

With Special guests Cat Jahnke, Irene Sas and Amanda ‘Big Momma’ Fandych!


The soundless song: The photograph

Standing just past the stage with music in my ears, my imagination takes me everywhere. I absolutely love the feeling I get when watching a band perform. The raw energy that they give to their audience makes an everlasting connection. I have been lucky enough to been able to get some photos of these experiences and want to share them with you.

Rage 7 grips

Dr.Rage&The Uppercuts Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Cat Jahnke & James Rewucki Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Sons of York Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Ariel Posen Photo By: Amanda Fandych


LONG TERM ENEMY Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Federal Lights Photo By: Amanda Fandych

Live at the westend flo

Flo Oramasionwu Photo By: Amanda Fandych


Dirty Catfish Brass Band Photo By: Amanda Fandych

wedding 33

Dirty Catfish Brass Band Photo By: Amanda Fandych

I can only imagine after seeing these pictures that something inside of you is dying to go out and see some live music right now! To help you on this quest here are the links to the bands and artist that are in the pictures above. So get out there and support some local music!

Dirty Catfish Band

Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts

Cat Jahnke

Flo Oramasionwu

Federal Lights

Long Term Enemy

Sons of York

Drag You Down: The song that got me up.

Photo By: Milanyila Vargas @ PACE Cultural Night

I mentioned in a past blog how I sort of got started. Now, I want to talk about the processes of writing and performing and what that has done for me. I write what my head and heart tell me to write, sometimes it makes no sense to me at the time just a bunch of words complied on a note pad. I usually have three or four versions of a song till I finally like one. There are some songs that take me a couple of hours to write and others it has been years writing a song adding and chaining lyrics as I grow and change.

There is one song that really means a lot to me, it’s called “Drag You Down”. When I was 19 I met an older man    who I thought was the real deal, someone who finally loved me. So like an idiot, I got married, things went very badly, he turned me into someone I didn’t even recognize. His manipulation and abuse made me think I wasn’t worth anything, and even after my divorce I felt that way for a long time.

I never got to say what I wanted to say to him, I hated him, and the worst part is I hated myself. That is where Drag You Down came from. It was everything I wanted to say to him but instead I got to let everyone else know.

Writing that song helped me heal and getting up to perform it in front of people was also very much a part of that healing process. I never really talk about what happened or how I felt during that relationship and song writing has really given me a platform to open up and share.

Here is the video of Drag you Down, from when I was asked to open up for the beautiful and talented Cat Jahnke.

Just Past the Stage


Photo By: Amanda Fandych

Whiskey in hand, eyes fixed on the stage,

The feeling that no one can explain.

A grin appears on the face,

With just a glance to an empty space.

Surrounded by the strange and the peculiar.

The music drives us to that same yet very different place.

Feeling alive and dead all in the same time,

Just wishing the song won’t end.

Just past the stage I see what it is,

it’s you and me and them,

stick around for one more round,

Another tune, another you.

What’s a girl to do?


Photo By: Amanda Fandych

For those who don’t know me and even some that do, might not know that I am a singer songwriter. Well, I’m trying to be and I’m going to share my little story of how I got started.

It was about two years back and I was working on a song, and I wanted to make it real. I know that sounds a little nutty but I never shared with anyone that I sang, except drunk at a few party’s long ago. I am lucky enough to have a very talented uncle who has been very supportive of my pursuit into music. Not only is this talented musician my uncle, he is one of my best friends, the crazy thing is he never even knew I was interested in singing. So on that night, with no heads up, I sent him an e-mail of the song I was working on. I asked him to be brutally honest with me and if I sucked just let me know. Next thing I know I get an email right back asking if I wanted to come over to his studio to work on it. I came over the next night and Unky helped me with some of the lyrics, sat down and recorded bass, piano, drums and guitar and blew my mind. The night before I didn’t  think I was any good and I got to watch my three chord tune, turn into a real thing.

Here is the song that got me started, it may not be great but something I am still very proud of.

That’s how this journey has started, I still cringe when I hear this song but it reminds me to push myself to become something better and expand my creative experiences. Sometimes we just need to take that leap into the darkness and let whatever happen just happen. I don’t regret taking that leap, I do regret not doing it a lot sooner.

I am asking all of you, sometime today or the next few days, to do something that you always wanted to do and be the movement you want to see.

My Interview with James Hiebert of The Xanad00ds

I am excited to share with you an interview with James Hiebert from The Xanad00ds, for you that are unaware of their music I ask James to describe their sound in a few words and he said it is like, rock music plus dance music = awesome, they take a ton of different forms of dance music and infuse them with rock. I saw them play a few weeks back and they are great, they have such a great vibe and feel that just makes you feel good.

James has been in the music scene for almost 20 years, playing everything from country to soul. His love of music started as a child thinking of songs and making them up in his head, but didn’t really pick up an instrument till he was 21. After playing martial arts and a list of full contact sports, then after a surgery and a doctor’s advice, to look into a new hobby, james picked up a guitar. Immediately he felt inspired, he started writing songs and has never looked back.

He wanted to start playing in bands as soon as possible, he sang with his first band, but after musical differences but no hard feelings he took another direction. James wanted to focus on writing songs, He has played with other bands, and one blues band that took him on a tour of Western Canada two years in a row, also playing a big blues festival out in Penticton.

Now with the Xanad00ds, which are releasing their first album after 4 years in the making. This album they wanted to focus on what they do best and really follow their hearts. They started off with their rock roots but as they jammed they wanted to incorporate the danceable music with the rock sound. This album offers a mix of rock and grove style music that everyone will be able to enjoy and give the people a taste of their different influences.

I asked James about what advice he would have for the new comers coming into the music scene. He say’s you have to follow your heart, sometimes people go through rough times, which he is no stranger to, and use that to write what is in your heart, it can be a healing process. Write what is in your gut and if it feels good do it. For people starting off, and want to get out there it takes a lot of hard work and dedication. It takes playing shows and being on social media, you gotta bust your butt and put in the time just to get a bite, but it is worth it and if you can hire a publicity and manager, so you can focus on being a musician and writing and playing shows.

We talked about the local music scene which he loves and goes on to say, we have some amazing artists and the scene is phenomenal. Its great working with band members who play with different bands because it helps build that musical community.  The community really supports one another, and there are people who are doing some great things. They are doing it for the love of music. The music venues are great, you can go to a place like Times Changes and everybody knows your name. Some of his favourite venues are places like Shannon’s Irish Pub, which has been like home to them, and The Park Theatre, where the Xanad00ds album release party is at this Saturday. But checking out La Garage, Maw’s Eatery, The Kings Head and so many other  great new venues, you are going to find some great music and great people.

It was great to sit down and talk to James, he is a local musician who has been around and been making music for years. He knows what it takes and has a great deal of passion for his music and for the Winnipeg music scene. I asked him whats next for the The Xanad00ds and they hope to plan a summer tour and film and release some new music videos as well look at doing a concept album, something they have been wanting to do for a while.

I recommend that everyone that can get down to the Park Theatre tonight for The Xanad00ds album release party, which is going to be an awesome time. Playing with them are  Those Guys – A Cappella, DJ King Cabernet Events, Thebahatizz, and Moon Tan.

Tickets are $12, Doors open at 9 and the show starts at 10! Don’t miss this night, it’s going to be amazing with so much Winnipeg talent. I know I’m going!

Big Momma wants to know – where were you?

 I have to say that this weekend was one of the best for Big Momma, I got to get out see many amazing local musicians, got to meet a celebrity and he seemed to be pretty impressed with me and set up some wicked interviews, that will soon follow.

Okay, first off who did I go see. 

On Friday night I went to Shannon’s Irish Pub and saw Lindsey White, this was my first time seeing her live and WOW! Her band is tight and her vocals were powerful. Besides Lindsey being an amazing performer she is a super cool chick and I recommend that anyone who gets a chance to go see her go and do it.

I know I am about to name drop but I don’t care, the drummer was the drummer for the Crash Test Dummies, Mitch Dorge. He is a great guy and was super friendly and sort of made my night. And I am hoping to be setting up an interview with him too.

Crash Test Dummies were a Winnipeg band incase you didn’t know, but maybe you know this song.

Saturday Night!

Again I found myself at Shannon’s Irish Pub, checking out another great local band The Xanad00ds, they are a mix of everything awesome and I am very excited to sit down and do an interview with them as well. They have an album release party coming up and it would be a great way to go see them and buy a C.D. or two.

Big Momma’s Thoughts

So, I try to attend as many of these events and nights as I can, one because I want to support our local talent, but two because I love music. The one thing that always makes me sad, is knowing how much these artists put out there for people and give such an awesome show, yet when I looking around I see an empty bar. Why is that?

I have a few things for you to ponder on till next time, but think if of the 20,000 local music fans spent $10 a month towards a band, weather it be a show or C.D., t-shirt, donation. We would look at an industry that would be making roughly $2,400,000!  Just some loose figures from Facebook, but I really think we can be the movement to make this happen!


So get out there and support some local music!

Are you a local virgin?

Oh no, I’m not talking about “that” but I’m glad you stopped in. Now that you’re here I have a few questions for you. Incase this is your first stop at Big Momma Presents, I am here to help support and promote local artists. The reason for the questions is I want to get to know you, I want to know everything about you! Each person that reads this should leave a comment to me on my blog, on Facebook, Twitter or wherever else you see me, if you see me on the street share with me! Big Momma is about community and I want to build one with you.

photo 1

Thats me.


Who is your favourite local band?

I know it’s hard to just think of one, so tell me a few. One of my favourite bands from Winnipeg are Bears With Technology, they are a crushing metal band. The lead singer pours out pure energy, he is the definition of what a front man should be. The guitar players could shred your face off and a drummer that looks like an animal behind his kit.

You can check them out on Facebook.


What has been some of your favourite experiences, with live local music?

For me it’s not necessarily just one experience that has stuck out in my head, but more the feeling I get when I go to a show. It starts when I get to the doors, have a friendly little chat with the door person as I pay for my cover. I work my way through the crowd or sometimes strut, to grab myself a drink. I look around to see all the faces I have seen before and wait for the band to walk on stage. Then when they begin to play its like the world outside turns off. The lights are low and the amps are loud, you can feel the bass shaking your core, and the drums rattling your soul. I zone out and it’s just me and them. Nothing else can compare to that feeling.

If you haven’t seen any local bands, why not? 

It’s okay I won’t be mad, but I would love to know some of the reasons why you don’t go. This will help me be able to help and understand you. I hope that sometime soon you will be checking out some great local talent and please share your experiences with me. If you don’t know where to start ask Big Momma and I will be more then happy to help you.

Thank You for checking in this week!

I’m going to leave you with a clip from a local artist Lindsey White, who is playing this Friday at Shannon’s Irish Pub.

Come check them out and maybe say hi to Big Momma too!

Winnipeg, help Big Momma and get involved!


Big Momma Presents is my heart and soul, I’m here to support, promote and find new local talent as well help showcase the already awesome local talent here in Winnipeg. I want to make a change and develop a new kind of scene and a strong community for musicians. I want to help  make their dreams come true.

I am tired of seeing musicians struggle to keep their heads above water or not even getting a chance to get in the water. And that’s why Big Momma is here.

The Big Picture

The plan is to start here in Winnipeg, yes the great cultural and talented city of Winnipeg. Big Momma Presents is going to start building a scene that is here to truly support our local music scene. Giving musicians, who might not have the support or even know what steps to take, a platform and support system. I’m going to do this with contests, support and promotions. Events that can help raise money for tours and albums and also help get connections to people in the industry.

Then after Big Momma Presents is setup here in Winnipeg go and build up hubs in other Cities across Canada. This would help not only other Cities but for the musicians to get connected and have someone they can reach out to when they are ready to hop in that van and drive across country!

Who knows maybe we could go world wide?

Check out some local talent right here!

This band is called Dr.Rage & The Uppercuts, one of my favourite Winnipeg bands,  here is an awesome song so after you listen check them out at http://power-of-rage.com.

If you know of a local band or artist share them with me, on Facebook, Youtube or Twitter.

Let’s be the movement!

The Movement; Can you dig it?

What happened?

For the few awesome people that have been following me, you might have notice a change in the appearance and the name of my blog. It is simple really, I decided to be the real me and not what I was hoping people would want me to be and I wanted to dedicate this blog to something I am passionate for and something that I need and want to see succeed.

This past week was very up and down for me, I wasn’t sure if the school was going to be the right fit for me. Don’t get me wrong I love being in school and I want to make money but I want to live a life where I love what I do and I do it the best.  Feeling unsure about my decision on Monday and needing to make a big change, I was greeted with a very pleasant surprise on Tuesday.The wonderful ladies from Prairie Yogi came and spoke with us that afternoon, they were there to tell us about Prairie Yogi (check them out at http://www.prairieyogimagazine.com) how they started and all the very, very, very hard work they had to put in and still have to put in. They gave me inspiration just to do it, you just have to make that first step, and that is what I did that afternoon.

The start

This is no longer A day in the life of Amanda Awesome, it is now Big Momma Presents! This will be focusing on supporting, promoting and finding local artists. When I applied for school I had a chance to enter a scholarship competition, we had to explain what our dream job would be and how UofWinnipeg PACE Program will help us get it, I want to be a local promoter, I want to help people get to where they deserve to be and this school and this blog are all steps towards doing that.

Here is my video!

I want to make sure I stay true to what I want to be and who I am, hence the change.

Just tell us already!

So I took the advise from the Prairie Yogi’s and I just went out and did something. I reached out to a local venue on Twitter (Until things are finalized I will keep it secret) and asked them if they would be interested in hosting an event to promote local artists and they said yes! I have been wanting to do something like this for years and never knew how to go about it and with a little bit of inspiration and one little step I am on my way! Im calling it ‘Scene the Unseen’, and it is a contest for local bands/singers/songwriters who may have not had a chance at preforming and giving them a platform to do so. There are a lot more to come as this is just in the beginning phases but I am on the search now!

I am asking for a little help from you!

Please share this around but more importantly I am asking you to go out and check out some local artists, whether it be at a bar or youtube, Facebook or twitter. Find something you have never seen before or a band that you thinks needs to be in the scene and share it around! If you share it to my Facebook https://www.facebook.com/BigMamaSoul,  my Youtube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCE5KEQt4GP-4EY0w4oR_RMg or my Twitter https://twitter.com/BigMommaSoul, I will pick one of them to write my next blog about!

Be The Movement!