Mountains have played an integral role in Madison Olds' upbringing in Kamloops and she hopes to share the rolling hills of the River City with athletes, coaches, fans and volunteers when she performs a song she wrote for the BC Winter Games.
"I thought the one memory I wanted these kids to take home was a moment in the mountains," Olds said.
Moments in the Mountains will be played during the opening ceremony of the Games on Thursday night at Sandman Centre and throughout the four-day sporting event.
BC Winter Games president Niki Remesz asked the 20-year-old singer-songwriter to write and perform the song. Olds, who performs in the band Bees and the Bare Bones, won the Emerging Artist Award last year at the Mayor's Gala for the Arts and is preparing to depart for a 20-day songwriting residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, which starts on March 5.
"I knew Madison and her family," Remesz said. "Her whole family is volunteering. They're all volunteering in different ways."
Olds' brother Brandon is doing video production, dad Dave is communications chair and mom Ronda will be hostessing and marshalling. Remesz approached Olds to create a song that would be meaningful to Kamloops and appeal to a youthful age demographic.
"I was like, 'Oh my gosh. Absolutely. I'm so excited,'" Olds said. "I stopped in my tracks. I'm like, 'Oh my gosh, I have to write a song right now.' I was so nervous because it was such a big honour to even be asked."
Olds penned a song in just a couple of hours one night before recording it in Vancouver over two days with Juno Award-winning producer Ryan Stewart.
"I approached him out of the blue," Olds said. "He made my song come to life."
The result is an upbeat tune. The chorus goes like this:
But I'll always have those moments in the mountains oh, all the wonders that I saw, all the stories that were told. When I travel so damn far and I find myself lost, these moments in the mountains, they will call me home.
Olds said the song is more danceable than her previous music, a result of Stewart's influence.
"I never thought I would want to dance to any of my songs before," she said. "That was really awesome."
She hopes her song will be one in which everyone can relate -- from athletes to fans and volunteers. Though she was nervous to play it for the first time to the board of directors, it struck a chord, according to Remesz.
"They all got goosebumps," she said. "We're just so proud of her."
A music video for the song was filmed by Lone Wolf Productions at Paramount Theatre in downtown Kamloops. Olds is on stage singing the song in front of images of previous games projected on the screen behind her.
The song has also been entered into CBC's Searchlight competition, which helps to develop and promote emerging Canadian talent. The first round of voting and judging wraps up on Feb. 28. Vote for Olds' song online at http://www.cbcmusic.ca/searchlight/4659.