All photos in this blog were taken by good pal and talented S.O.B. Sebastian Buzzalino of Unfolding Creative Photography.
Since the release of Driving In The Dark (stream here, shameless, I know) one of the most asked comments/questions I get after a show or out and about in my travels is: “Your band is amazing. Who are they and how did you guys meet?”
WARNING: gross, long, rambling post ahead about my love for these people and laying out their skills like you’re reading a baseball card. Enjoy, or go away.
Kurtis, AKA: Dirty Uncle Rick
If you’ve had the absolute pleasure or luck to see one of Alberta’s hottest outlaw country outfits, The Denim Daddies, chances are you’ve stared into Uncle Ricky’s baby blues already. He’s a tight fittin’ jeans wearin’, beer drinkin’ son of a gun who counts the beats while he diddles the bass better than most. What a groove, what a guy.
Having Kurtis around is the equivalent to a therapy dog. He’s never, ever in a bad mood and uses his positive energy to inflate the people around him. On long tours he will sleep, sit, drive and twist one up anytime, anyplace. He’s just a fucking treat to hang with. I once saw Ricky tear down Bolton’s hottest of the hot chicken in Tennessee and live to tell the tale.
Loves cruising the ‘dub (A&W), John Prine and gunnin’ brews.
Hates basically nothing.
Keane, AKA: Uncle Keane, Kleep, Keanie Baby
During the last 3 years of my career I’ve been lucky enough to share the stage with the hardest working man in show business, the biggest smile on stage and a heart to match: Uncle Keane - owner operator of Dingotone and Rebelcraft for all of your pedal and pedalboard needs.
I know what you’re thinking, and before you say it, yes, everyone makes the joke that “Keane is keen” - no shit. The guy literally organizes my cupholders while I’m driving. He’s a tone tacklin’, gear craftin’, telecaster wieldin’ machine of a man who can take you all the way to shred-town and back, and looking handsome as heck while doing it.
Keane is always in there like a dirty shirt, willing to help and wanting to make the show and our setup better, quicker, stronger. He never settles for less and has thought of every detail before you’ve even put on your guitar. He falls asleep in the passengers seat because the car rocks him to sleep like the sweet angel that he is. He never lets me stay in a bad mood and takes his coffee black. Simple, but so complex.
Loves efficiency, a Fender Champ if you have it, Neil Young and gunnin’ brews.
Hates slow talkers, not having all the answers and shitty guitar tone.
Nich, AKA: Dich Navies
Chances are, you’ve seen Nich and Kurtis playing with Edmonton songstress, Vissia, at some point in your past. If you haven’t, you’ve never truly lived. Watching Nich play the drums is the most entertaining, wonderful and delightful thing. His dynamic and tone are unmatched in my humble opinion, and holy fuck, guess what - he can sing.
Not only is Nich a hell of a musician, he’s a hell of a guy. He cares deeply for the folks around him and is always spreading that positive vibe with his carefree approach. He’s watching out for us on tour, making sure we get a walk in every day and always lending a hand whenever needed.
Loves a bag of trail mix, the vintage drum kit on our tech rider that has never once been provided, walking and pop music. Also gunnin’ brews.
Hates the music industry machine, shitty drum fills, indecision and networking.
Jess, AKA: Ms. Marsh, Marshica, Jesse, Mersh, Jorsica
Okay let’s clear something up real quick: Jess manages the band and she sings in the band. Big fuckin’ deal. This girl rips as hard on stage as she does in the biz and there’s no rule anywhere that says she shouldn’t do both. You can find her shaking your bones and the tambourine, rattling walls and breaking hearts with her aching, down-home harmonies, and wearing some Rose Coloured Frames while doing the job.
I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jess for the last year or so and we’d always hung around and sang songs together, but seeing her get busy with a band was a whole new deck of cards. She gives me energy and a smile while we’re up there doing our thing, and off stage nobody has me better set up than Ms. Marsh. She’s basically keeping me alive and even on days when she’s wiped right out, her number one priority is always my mental health and making sure I’m ready for the show. She’s a big deal, folks.
Loves a dirty gin martini, salad, Yahtzee, laughing, making a plan and being the boss.
Hates packing light, being rushed, not living that gourmet life and goat cheese.
Matt, AKA: Kratt Maus, Kraussy, The Tickler
Can also be heard tickling the ivories with Alt-Rock Superstars, Altameda.
Brayden, AKA: Trebsees, Trebskees, Braydle
Can also be seen pumping out licks with Roots-Soul Queen, Celeigh Cardinal.