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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tip Tuesday: Off Kilter

Welcome to another Tip Tuesday!

In my continuing series on hidden treasures at Walt Disney World, I want to head over to the Canada pavilion at Epcot to highlight another wonderful hidden treasure that all-too-many people walk right past and don't take the time to enjoy.

I'm talking about Off Kilter. No, not me (though some say I've been a little off-kilter for a while...), rather the excellent band called Off Kilter.

Off Kilter was created in 1997 by Jamie Holton and Mark Weldon. Holton is a singer and bagpipe player from Ormond Beach, FL. When he was 11, he took an interest in the bagpipe and by the time he was 16, Holton was playing at major Highland games and bagpipe competitions around the world.

Mark Weldon hails from Cork County, Ireland where he toured with many bands before coming to the U.S. Weldon plays the drums and bass guitar.

When he was 20, Holton began to work at Downtown Disney when he and Weldon got the idea to form Off Kilter as a Celtic rock band. Disney approved the idea and the band has been playing at Epcot ever since.

Also in the band are drummer Scott Zymowski, keyboard player Tony Escapa and lead guitarist Randy Holbrook.

Off Kilter's music is a fun toe-tapping mashup of traditional Celtic bagpipe music and good old-fashioned rock-and-roll. The end result are songs you can't help but bob your head, tap your toes, smile and laugh to. There is quite a bit of audience interaction and it's all live. These guys really do know how to have fun and their songs are just another example of what World Showcase really is all about - live performances.

Off Kilter usually plays in the afternoons and early evenings most days at a stage just south of the main Canada pavilion, near the entrance to the old Millennium Village. Be sure to check the daily times guide for performance times. Most shows run around 30 minutes.

If you want to get a sneak peek at Off Kilter, be sure to check out their website at http://www1.offkilter.net/ and click on the "music" links. You can hear a few samples of different songs from different albums. Speaking of albums, this is another opportunity to take home some of the great music you hear at Walt Disney World. Off Kilter has produced (as of this writing) five albums you can purchase. My personal favorite is the live album - it's the most fun and is the best example of what Off Kilter really is like.

Here's a bit of video from the folks at Orlando Attractions Magazine.


The next time you're in Epcot's World Showcase, be sure to take the time to enjoy the Celtic rock of Off Kilter.

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