Wendell and Wheat
Gig Seeker Pro

Wendell and Wheat

Guelph, Ontario, Canada | INDIE | AFM

Guelph, Ontario, Canada | INDIE | AFM
Band Folk Country


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Katherine Wheatley Concert Reviews"

"I'm in love...with the music of Katherine Wheat...

"I'm in love...with the music of Katherine Wheatley. A verse into her first song "Mrs. McIvor", I was hooked. Being a KW virgin, I was totally unprepared for the absolute beauty of her voice and lyrics".

"This is a performer to keep you on the edge of your seat"!

"Wheatley, sporting a beautiful voice and heady guitar work, brought the house down with her stunningly intimate musical meanderings. Her voice and guitar work drew the crowd in from the moment she started to sing. Her witty repartee gave these songs a footing from whence to fly. And fly she did"!
THE EXAMINER, Peterborough, ON

"...an absolutely transcendent concert...she exudes sheer kindness and love...blessedly, refreshingly, a truly Canadian original".

"When she started her first song, the audience knew that it would be a most unusual concert. Alternately entertaining the sold-out crowd with insightful and humourous vignettes, or simply leading off with her marvelous guitar work, Wheatley took her listeners on an enthralling adventure".

"Wheatley's songs have intermingling themes of underdogs and unlikely heroes all set against a Canadian small town landscape. From LTD's, Pontiacs and hand gesturing out of a pick-up truck to the neighbours gossiping about an eccentric, yet tenacious old Mrs. McIvor and a very self-conscious game of spin the bottle in a snowmobile suit, her songs are vivid, familiar and engaging".
THE ECHO, Guelph, ON

"The house concert featuring Katherine Wheatley & Wendell Ferguson was better than a solid night's sleep. For the night to be so magical, so memorable, so perfect, it is important to talk more about Katherine's music. Lyrically, her songs are thoughtful and reflective, sometimes funny...often poignant...Melodically and harmonically, all of her songs were beautifully crafted and expertly performed. But it's her performance of the songs that remains so memorable for me".

"Man, can this serene red head ever play guitar".

"Attractive opposites Ferguson and Wheatley reward Registry audience"

February 14, 2010
By Robert Reid, Record staff

KITCHENER – We’re all familiar with the two masks of ancient Greek drama representing comedy and tragedy.

It might be a little over the top to suggest Wendell Ferguson and Katherine Wheatley wore the laughing face and the weeping face, respectively, for their concert Saturday at Folk Night at the Registry.

Still, it was definitely a case of opposites attracting and opposites being attractive to audience members.

While the extroverted Ferguson regaled the sellout crowd with musical satires and parodies, the introspective Wheatley mined the contours of a broken heart like a prospector panning for romantic gold.

The emotional ebb and flow made for a deeply rewarding concert, causing you to laugh out loud one minute before giving you pause to contemplate the mysteries of love the next.

Ferguson is a devilishly clever wordsmith, but his lyrical calisthenics are not ends in themselves. They provide the verbal framing for the musical houses he constructs with extraordinary guitar playing.

Many of his lyrical ditties referenced music, whether it was P-I-G, a parody of Tammy Wynette’s D-I-V-O-R-C-E, The Barnyard Two Step, Throw Another Fiddle on the Fire or Why Does Every Christmas Song Have So Many Chords?

Others lampooned such themes as bad driving (The Way I Drive) and the exaggerated claims of male anatomy set in cottage country (Great Big Johnson).

If Ferguson has a guitar hero it is Chet Atkins. He offered a couple of original instrumentals as tribute to the legendary Nashville musician and producer with Save Your Fork, There’s Pie and Fret No More, in addition to a cover of Mr. Sandman.

You would be wrong to think Ferguson only writes musical lampoons, even if he wouldn’t be caught dead singing one of them.

So it fell on Wheatley to deliver Wallflower Waltz, a country torch song the two musical companions co-wrote while touring Eastern Canada.

Most of Wheatley’s material was drawn from her hot-off-the-press third album Landed.

It has been a decade since she released Habits and Heroes. And she acknowledged it was “a personal album” that was “difficult to make.”

You don’t have to be a drugstore psychologist to garner from the songs that Landed was inspired by heartbreak.

But it’s a credit to Wheatley’s artistry as a songwriter that she has transformed personal sorrow into song poems with which we can all identify.

She painted her songs with a vocal palette spanning the emotional spectrum of colour, nuance, texture and depth.

She balanced the deep feeling of Signal Faded, Loved a Man, the 3:17 and the brilliant One True Kiss with the tongue-in-cheek revenge fantasy Run Away.

She also offered her joyous metaphorical tribute to gardening Hallelujah, as well as a couple of earlier songs Mrs. McIvor and Some Sweet Country.

Ferguson and Wheatley bantered and kibitzed throughout the concert. They kept the mood casual and informal and Wheatley welcomed audience members to join in on a few songs.

It was obvious both performers enjoyed themselves and that sense of pleasure was reciprocated by the audience who responded with a rousing standing ovation.

- The Record, Kitchener/Waterloo

"Wendell Ferguson CD reviews"

Wendell Ferguson
Review of 2006 release:
The $#!T Hits the Fans

Ferguson has long been a behind-the-scenes force in Canadian country music playing with or backing most every country star in the business...and finally getting some up-front exposure as the 'guitar-playing troubadour' on the 2005 Canadian Country Music Awards Show. Ferguson is also a recording artist...but with a slant. His albums (this is his third) feature the comic side of the man...and his sense of humour and ability to put that into a song is unparalleled in today's Canadian country music. What he does here is on a level of Nashville's Cledus T. Judd (but with a Canuck twist)
On The $#!T Hits The Fans, Wendell Ferguson is absolutely hilarious with songs like P-I-G, a parody of Tammy Wynette's D-I-V-O-R-C-E, and rib-jarring wacky tunes like Great Big Johnson, Don't Close The Door, Didn't Chew, The Barnyard Two-Step and every musician's theme song,k Capo. All the songs on the album deserve to be given some in-depth dissection here...but that would take most of the fun out of the listening.
The only thing missing here is one of those annoying 'hidden tracks'...but I'm still looking and listening. Knowing Wendell Ferguson there's just gotta be one around here somewhere.
Larry Delaney

Reviews of Wendell's CD:
"Happy Songs Sell Records, Sad Songs Sell Beer"


CD Review - WENDELL FERGUSON - Happy Songs Sell Records, Sad Songs Sell Beer

…into every country music fan’s life, a little fun must come !!
Leave it to Wendell Ferguson to look after that special need; and he provides a full-hour of jocular levity with this amazing collection of tongue-in-cheek. The Toronto-based Ferguson has long established himself as one of Canadian country music’s most versatile performers, much-awarded for his guitar and production skills, and while he’ll never challenge the “George’s” of country music with his vocal work, he is quite capable of delivering his own material with the special flare that it calls for.
There’s no end to the chuckles here, mostly because Wendell Ferguson is able to creatively twist a familiar country song or phrase, or situation into his own domain, inject his own play-on-words; and make it all sound fresh and funny. You get a taste of what this is all about in a brief intro skit where a rowdy shouts a request out to the singer “…hey, broken nose, play Wildwood Flower”. The singer says, “…my nose ain’t broken”. Then you here a fist planted on the singer’s beak…and then you hear some Wildwood Flower guitar pickin’ !!
Wendell Ferguson writes his songs with a warped pen…and there’s no end to the man’s wit. The liner notes in the album contain a brief description of each song, and they are as hilarious as the songs themselves. Example: for the song Firmly On The Fence, a song about procrastination; he says: “I couldn’t decide whether or not to put this one the record…”
The album’s title track tune, Happy Songs Sell Records, Sad Songs Sell Beer speaks of the dilemma facing country music recording artists today; She’s Got Herself A Redneck Now gives a whole new meaning to the term “redneck”; while Marriage Ain’t A Word, It’s A Sentence is best described by Wendell Ferguson himself when he says: “…we got married in the bathtub – it was a double ring ceremony”.
Every song is a hoot here, but there are some that really stand out. Talk Hockey is all about being Canadian; and this one deserves to get some radio airplay (not a priority in Wendell Ferguson’s world); while The Thirst and I’ll Get Over Bluegrass (When There’s Bluegrass Over Me) owe allegiance to the past hits by George Jones – The Thirst for the obvious Possum connection, and Bluegrass, for it’s likeness to the Jones classic, When The Grass Grows Over Me.
There’s plenty more in between here (just check the songlist), but the album closes with a jazz-flavored instrumental version of The Carter Family nugget Wildwood Flower; and it is probably included as an apology of sorts to the song I Liked Johnny Better (When He Left June At Home) which appeared on Wendell Ferguson’s 1998 debut collection of mayhem, I Pick Therefore I Jam.

Happy Songs Sell Records, Sad Songs Sell Beer was produced by Wendell Ferguson (who else), and recorded at various studios in S/W Ontario. His own guitar virtuosity is supported by ace-session players like John Dymond (bass), Doug Johnson (steel), Burke Carroll (dobro), Don Reed (fiddle), Steve O’Connor (keyboards) and b/g vocals by John and Michele Law, etc…and in true fashion, Wendell Ferguson pays tribute to them with his liner-note quip: “…there are many dips on the road to success; I’m so glad I got to play with them”.

of "I Pick Therefore I Jam"

Thunder Bay's "Chronicle Journal"

The current object of adoration is Katherine Wheatley, who gave a concert this past Friday evening on the Auditorium's "Stage Door" setting, ably accompanied by 6-time Canadian Country Music Association's Guit - Various articles

"Wendell and Wheat"

The current object of adoration is Katherine Wheatley, who gave a concert this past Friday evening on the Auditorium's "Stage Door" setting, ably accompanied by 6-time Canadian Country Music Association's Guitarist of the Year, Wendell Ferguson. Ferguson is the perfect foil for Wheatley. His comic number "Rocks and Trees", should be the national anthem for Northern Ontario if we ever rise up and separate. Plus anyone who can instantly turn the title of "Fly Me to the Moon" into the anguishing pun of "Fry Me up a Loon" will always hold a fond place in my memory. - Thunder Bay's "Chronicle Journal"

"Wendell and Wheat house concert review"

In March of 2007, I had the good fortune to have the duo of Katherine Wheatley and Wendell Ferguson perform at my home for a group of 40 of my friends.
I'm sure that there is no need for me to rattle on about the quality of the musical experience that we had. These two pros have reputations which dwarf anything that I might say about them, and they more than lived up to those reps. The concert had everything- virtuoso instrumental gymnastics, delicious vocals, piss-yourself humour, and gorgeous songs. My music-crazy friends left the house that night thrilled and satisfied, and many of them regard me as a lesser God now, for exposing them to Wendell and Katherine.
In forty years of concert-going, I've rarely had such a positive, fun, and fulfilling night of music, and I figure there are a number of reasons for this. First, of course, the quality of performance was stellar( I intend to see both of these artists again). But it was much more than that. At a house concert the level of intimacy with the performers is amazing. Everyone has a great seat, and everyone listens. Katherine and
Wendell brought people in close with their comfortable, conversational performance style, and made everyone feel a natural part of a terrific show.
A house concert is a wonderful way to enjoy live music, and in my experience it is not difficult to organize. Basically, you're asking your friends to chip in with you, usually about $15 each, to pay for a co-op music event. The infrastructure for the show is a small effort (chairs are the big deal, and making space), but only about the same level of work as a kid's birthday party, and well worth it. You can have a bit of fun with the creative end (lights, B.Y.O.B, maybe pot-luck snacks) but like family dinners, and other parties, these things always work out.
I would heartily recommend Katherine and Wendell for this type of concert. Besides their obvious amazing talent, they are incredibly easy to deal with and helpful in every way.
In my case, my first contact was with Wendell. I approached him about the concert, and he was very encouraging. We e-mailed a few times to find a date that worked, and then we were on!
Wendell and Katherine arrived in plenty of time, to set up and tune up,and they entertained and engaged my friends before, during and after their performance, and made me very proud to have invited them to my home ( and Wendell's personal hygiene was
better than one would expect).
I recently sat in a $160 seat, at the Air Canada Centre, and watched Billy Joel go through the motions for a stadium full of big spenders. My thoughts were,
"This guy doesn't even know I exist", and that frankly the sound in that place was just plain bad. I longed for the intimacy, the warmth, the clarity, and the comfort of my own home.
I've been spoiled. I wanted what Katherine and Wendell gave us at my house- a top notch, fulfilling music experience in the company of friends.
I treasure the memory of that March evening, and know that all the others who were present feel the same. - Tony Kilgannon - Hamilton House concert


Please see artist's own websites for their discography.
They both play on the Betty and the Bobs CD.
Wendell accompanies Katherine on both her releases ("Straight Line" and "Habits and Heroes") and Katherine accompanies Wendell on his live recording ("The $#!T Hits the Fans").



WENDELL FERGUSON IS THE SIX-TIME CANADIAN COUNTRY MUSICIAN'S ASSOCIATION GUITAR PLAYER OF THE YEAR. ACCORDING TO THE OTTAWA CITIZEN, KATHERINE WHEATLEY IS "A PERFORMER TO KEEP YOU ON THE EDGE OF YOUR SEAT". They are best of musical pals. Her heartfelt lyrics and stunning voice and his honest yet irreverent humor make their show both moving and hilarious. One presenter said "An absolutely transcendent concert". Another said "She didn't leave a dry eye in the house. He didn't leave a dry seat".

Six time CCMA Guitar Player of the Year, Wendell Ferguson has traveled the globe and accompanied a veritable who's who in both the country field - (George Fox, Duane Steele, Tommy Hunter, Shania Twain, The Dixie Chicks) and the folk arena - (Gordon Lightfoot, Quartette, Bob Snider, Cindy Church). He is one of the best loved and most respected guitar players in Canada. Wendell performs his own, very funny songs at Folk Festivals and concert series. "The man writes sharp, witty and head-spinningly brilliant tunes. He's a cross between Roger Miller and Ray Flack. He has more in common with Mark Twain than Shania". (Twangzine). "The Victor Borge of the guitar." According to Country Music News "Wendell Ferguson is recognized by his peers as one of the top pickers in the country and known best as having one of the quickest wits in the game. A talented and funny guy to say the least."

Arresting vocals, fine guitar playing and a 'down to earth' feel that some attribute to her years working as a geologist, mark Katherine's work. As well as touring extensively, she has written music for film and television documentaries and has been a musical guest on many shows, including CTV's Canada AM and CBC Radio's Vinyl Cafe. Hubert O'Hearn of the The Chronicle Journal in Thunder Bay wrote "Katherine Wheatley is able to take minor observations in life and find their soul. On stage...she exudes sheer kindness and love. Blessedly, refreshingly, Katherine Wheatley is a truly Canadian original". According to Warren Footz of SEE Magazine "...man, can this serene red head ever play guitar".

Please note that Katherine and Wendell also give songwriting and guitar workshops (at schools and music stores). Please e-mail katherine.wheatley@sympatico.ca for more information about workshops.


Katherine and Wendell have performed many places between them. Here are just a few to give you an idea of the sort of place they play:

Charles Stockey Centre, Parry Sound, ON
Mariposa Folk Festival, ON
Black Sheep Inn, Wakefield, PQ
Kingfest, King City, ON
Winnipeg Folk Festival, M
Folk Under the Clock, Peterborough, ON
The Nickelodeon, Calgary, AB
Prazdniny v Telci, Czech Republic
Hugh's Room, Toronto, ON
Rogue Folk Club, Vancouver, BC
Heartland Concerts, Rochester, NY
Orangeville Opera House, Orangeville, ON
AFM National Convention, Las Vegas, NV
Irish Mountain House Concert Series, Meaford, ON
Nantucket Arts Council Concerts, Nantucket, MA
Summerfolk, Owen Sound, ON
Hillside Music Festival, Guelph, ON