A look forward into what Ducky’s has got in store.
One of Sackville’s best-loved bars experienced a return to the land of the living approximately one month ago, after starting off the year with a move across the downtown core. Though the move was marred by unanticipated issues, Ducky’s is finally open. In addition to crafting a slightly different atmosphere, Ducky’s new location opened a window of opportunity for the bar to redefine itself as a live music venue. A more spacious interior means that shows can be held there, while still leaving room to make it to the bar for another drink.
On April 16, Ducky’s hosted its first show in celebration of local musician and Mount Allison student Lucas Hicks’s 19th birthday. The line-up consisted of former Haligonian and current Sackville music staple Jon McKiel, the Mouthbreathers, and, of course, Hicks himself. Every performance resonated well with the crowd, featuring music from the Mouthbreathers’ new Stone Soup and Hicks’s Slower EPs alongside McKiel’s customarily great lyricism and haunting melodies. The elevated stage adjacent to the bar proved itself a perfect addition to the show, considering that, despite Sackville’s vibrant music scene, elevation is a rarity outside Sappyfest and George’s.
Although the bar’s small stage, normally adorned with a foosball table, was not planned, having existed there before the bar itself, Ducky’s does plan to put it to use. Shows will be hosted in the bar approximately once a month, the next of which will be happening on May 17. On this day, Picaroons will be sponsoring a “taps takeover”, during which fourteen of their brews will be featured on tap, with Prince Edward Island trio Ten Strings and a Goat Skin providing live entertainment. The band, who play a mixture of traditional Irish and francophone music, will perfectly match the wood panels in Ducky’s booths and the beers on tap that evening. Most folk music can stir up an East Coast crowd with ease but Ten Strings and a Goat Skin’s particular brand of live music is uncommonly easy to enjoy; their songs are at times so infectious that they leave the audience with nothing to do but clap along with the sincere and meticulous composed pieces. Their debut album, Tri, won the Roots Traditional Recording of the Year Award at the 2012 Music PEI Awards, and the group is making a name for itself around the Maritimes as a premium folk band.
What will come next can only be speculated upon, but the future appears bright for Ducky’s. With Sappyfest quickly approaching, the bar is poised to take its rightful place in the heart of Sackville, as the microcosm of the Mt. A and Sackville communities at large.