You Write ’Em, We Wreck ’Em!

Well, it’s been awhile!

By now you know Derrick and I did an unplugged show in Toronto for the charity of my choice. The event is put on by Ed Sousa and his brainchild is called “Classic Bowl”. It is brilliant! The artists are asked to do their show and field questions from the audience and tell a few stories.

I have never done such a thing in my entire life and I really had to think about how to do it before I said yes. Having been a rock and roller for almost my entire life, doing an acoustic version of rock ‘n’ roll songs seemed a daunting task but once I started … with Derrick’s help, we managed what I thought might be impossible!

At first, I wondered what fans of our music may have to say about these new approaches and worried that they would likely not embrace hearing “the soundtrack of their youth” being drastically rearranged! It made me recall how the songs came to be.

Back in the day, when a song was presented to the band it was scrutinized, dissected and often pooh poohed by the other band members. They had a saying: “You write ’em, we wreck ’em!” Glen and I not only had to contend with band members’ opinions … the songs were also presented to management, record executives, A&R men, producers, co-producers, girlfriends, family, road crew and even bean counters! There were of course dizzying amounts of contrary opinions causing Glen and I to wonder why we even bothered to write songs!

I decided this was an opportunity to do “as I fucking well pleased,” and embraced it. Then a whole new world opened up! As it turns out … the new arrangements are closer to the original concepts than the actual recordings. It was almost intoxicating to revisit the songs and not care what anyone else might think.

Though it felt good to me, I was still dubious until Derrick spoke up and said that he really liked the way things were progressing. Then I really began letting go and the muse took me wherever the wind was blowing.

At the urging of people who were at the concert and of those who have heard the new versions I am taking their advice and am looking forward to recording these songs again with the whole band!

It being a charitable event it was not possible to involve the whole band for this concert. Derrick and I did however find some Toronto talent that did not require airfares and hotel rooms. Ergo, we used Sean Kelly, who is an extremely talented guitarist who has collaborated with Nelly Furtado, Dee Snider and played with Lee Aaron, Coney Hatch, Alan Frew and Helix among others. His enthusiasm and easy-going manner, as well as his musical prowess were greatly appreciated. Tim Timleck, who plays with Carole Pope and Toronto rockers Trapper, provided percussion and … required little sustenance! (That’s an inside joke!!) He is a great drummer and a wonderful person!

Now, I know that most of you have likely heard Paul McNair, our bass player of several years, will be leaving the band next year and joining Streetheart as Kenny Shields’ replacement. They are big shoes to fill but we are confident Paul is equal to the task and we wish him all the best! We will indeed miss him and will cherish a lot of wonderful moments … and unpublished pictures of our fun times together on that Rock N’ Roll road!!!

Gotta leave ’em wonderin’ HA HA!

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