Scott Woods taking ‘Old Time Country Christmas’ show on road

Scott Woods taking ‘Old Time Country Christmas’ show on road

Of course this event will be specific to the Christmas season.

YORKTON – Musician Scott Woods is familiar to many from varied performances in Yorkton through the years.

Woods will add one more visit to the list as he performs his ‘Old Time Country Christmas’ show at St. Andrew’s United Church Tuesday, Nov,14.

“I started playing in Yorkton back around 2001 or so with a show called Memories of Don Messer’s Jubilee,” Woods told Yorkton This Week. “It was a tribute to the CBC television show of the same name on TV from 1958-1969 – one of the highest rated television programs in the history of the CBC. Don Messer was a fiddle player and his TV show was a variety program not unlike what my show is – with singing, dancing, fiddle tunes, costumes and humour. 

“Since that tribute show, we have played several times in various venues from the school theatre — Ann Portnuff I think it was called — to the old legion building and St. Andrew’s Church.”

Of course this event will be specific to the Christmas season.

As a seasonal show how does Woods keep it fresh as a performer?

“Our Christmas show is very popular,” he began. “We make it a real Christmas program from start to finish. We respect the reverence of the classics like O Holy Night, Away in a Manger and Silent Night by treating them in a most respectful way, musically.  

“But then we take some fun tunes like Christmas in Killarney and sneak in an Irish jig, or maybe an old Jim Reeves treatment of the Merry Christmas Polka and get a couple good breakdowns or reels into the arrangement.  

“We have lots of costumes, and lots of step dancing by our drummer, 19-year-old Leo Stock, who just happens to be the two-time and current reigning Canadian Open Step Dancing Champion.”

Others in the show this season include “Naomi Bristow, known as Canada’s Yodelling Cowgirl, does a fantastic job with the serious pieces but she also breaks into a song called the Santa Claus Yodelling Song,” continued Woods.

“Backing her up is my sister, Kendra Norris on piano and covering the bass. Kendra is a champion fiddler and she, along with Leo — also a champion fiddler — join me with some three-part string backup for Naomi.

“Steve Piticco plays electric and acoustic guitar and is known world-wide as the Telecaster Master. His treatment of the Christmas repertoire is so musical and tasteful, he is a true genius. His guitar picking is featured throughout the show.”

Of course even a Christmas show changes year-to-year.

“We always have a new show every time we tour,” said Woods. “Yes, there are some favourites that everyone wants to hear.  

“And there are a couple non-Christmas tunes that I just have to play. They are about the only ones on the show that are not seasonal. Listen to the Mockingbird and the Orange Blossom Special are the two tunes I have to play on every show.  

“And of course, I do some trick fiddling on every show. I will play with a broom or coat hanger instead of a bow, play under my leg or behind my back and walk on a barrel.  

“And the reason I’m known as the flippin’ fiddler – I will do a running front somersault while playing Orange Blossom Special.”

New material for Christmas sneak in too.

“We have on this year’s show some less-known Christmas music,” said Woods. “They are not necessarily new but likely unfamiliar to many in the audience.

“Naomi will do a Stompin’ Tom number called Hockey Mom.

“She also does a meaningful number call the Christmas Letter.”

Woods too have something new.

“I have a story that is set to music – like a Red Souvine “talking song.”

It was written by a young lady from near my hometown and it talks about the commercialism of Christmas and how the true meaning is often lost amongst the Christmas trees, snowmen and Santa’s,” he explained. “It is called ‘In Search of Christmas Day’. It is one of my favourite moments on this show.”

The show is almost like unwrapping a present for the performers too, a gift of performance after the long COVID restrictions.

“COVID was a real punch in the gut for performers,” said Woods. “Some people lost their income but were still able to do their hobby — maybe it was gardening or model railroads or motorcycle riding?

“Others kept their job but lost their ability to do what makes them alive. Maybe that was a social group activity – dancing, bowling, group sports, etc.

“As an entertainer, we were not allowed to work – so therefore we lost all our income, but more importantly we also lost our passion. Playing the instrument in the living room is not what drives us. It is the adrenaline – connecting with your band mates on the stage and with the audience in a packed venue.”

That made the shutdown very hard as it drained the performer’s passion.

“COVID was a very depressing time and I got bored quickly,” said Woods. “And after a couple months sitting at home, I knocked off a bucket list item and went driving big truck – long haul. I drove all over the USA for a couple years and it was a great experience. I had wanted to drive a truck since I was a kid and although I do all the driving of our tour bus, I never thought I would actually drive a truck.  

“I guess that is one positive to COVID.”

Still it always came back to missing music.

“Driving the truck reminded me that my true calling was on stage and it made it very clear as soon as we could that I would be back with a fiddle under my chin,” said Woods.

It also meant time to record.

“I did record a new album during COVID, although I was not inspired to write new music,” said Woods.  “The new album – ‘Old Fashioned Hoedown’ features lots of traditional fiddle tunes.  

“My own compositions come from an unusual approach of creativity. I never try to create – it has to just happen. If the other things in my life seem to be in order, writing and creating is easy.

“So I guess it was expected to not be coming up with new tunes during the pandemic.

“I have since started creating new music again.”

Now Woods is just happy to be heading back out on the road.

“Our tour bus is washed and loaded ready to go and my dog, Sandy has her favourite bones and toys packed already,” he said.

For more information on the Yorkton show and tickets check out



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