He was set to offer the city of Spruce Grove and surrounding area an evening that honoured rock legends of the past like Elvis before cancellation.
NOTE: This show has been cancelled and the Horizon Stage is working to reschedule for a later date.
Billy McGuigan is rested, relaxing and ready for the COVID-19 crisis to end so he can go back to performing.
This was the message the Nebraska-based musician had when asked about his life, career to date and when he would return to Horizon Stage to make up for his show scheduled for last month that was ultimately cancelled. He was set to offer the city of Spruce Grove and surrounding area an evening that honoured rock legends of the past like Elvis and Elton John and said that, while the sudden disruption to his livelihood has been hard, it has given him time to reflect and realize how much he had been overextending himself in the recent past.
“It is almost as if my career ended in one day and was like ‘hey stop and take a look back’,” he said. “That is where [me and my team] are. Once it gets going you have to keep spinning it to continue onward. That has been hard and it was not a great thing for a marriage.”
Now 45, his first experiences with music occurred when living with family as a toddler in Germany. McGuigan’s father was serving in the United States Air Force and, in the absence of traditional television and other forms of entertainment, the family repeated records from musicians like Bob Seger, the Electric Light Orchestra and John to pass the time. McGuigan added that the music changed the course of his life, even while so young, and that his desire to be on stage and entertain others came shortly after from a public impersonation contest.
“My parents entered me in a Fonzie from Happy Days lookalike contest,” McGuigan said. “People were dressing up like Henry Winkler and here I was a little blonde kid in a diaper and jean jacket. I went ‘eyyy’, the crowd went crazy, I won a transistor radio and that is when I knew.”
He has been professionally performing since he was 28 and began touring with his acts that honour legends of rock in 2008. McGuigan has drawn rave reviews — Paul Pierce of the Springer Opera House in Georgia has said he has “star power” — for his work and admitted that he is where he is today because of his unwillingness to quit even when repeatedly getting into situations that have suggested he should do so.
“We were first starting out and did a show in Mississippi where we opened for B.B. King and nobody showed up,” he said. “I think about that moment and it was probably one of the times I should have given up. But I did not and continuing on is still my attitude all these years later.”
More information about McGuigan can be found on his website where he can also be booked for performances also.