There hasn’t been a band that has had that ‘Canadian’ sound in a good while. But, when we all put on any album by The Guess Who – we know that is ‘Canadian’. When we listen to Gordon Lightfoot – we know that is ‘Canadian’. Well, in a world where Canada has had to endure the ridicule for birthing such atrocities as Avril Lavigne and Nickelback (then hiding our heads when Avril married Chad, ugh), it’s finally nice to see a good wholesome rock band bring some respectable press back to us Canucks. You might not dig the hippy-dippy melodies of Saskatchewan’s The Sheepdogs, but if you’ve ever seen them live – these dudes do rock and roll right. Their amazing live show comes to CityFolk this Saturday evening.
Nope, they’re not inventing the wheel. Everything you hear, as far as groove and feel, has been done before, but these shaggy rockers are doing it so well. So well, in fact, that Rolling Stone decided to give them the cover way back in August of 2011. The ever-popular comedian/musician, and friend of our podcast, Dean Delray immediately jumped to The Sheepdogs when asked what rock and roll is currently turning his crank. It all screams summertime. It all screams summer festival. This band is the perfect blend of mellow folk-sensible rock music with voices that sound entrenched in the 1970s. With all the ‘Deadheads looking for something to latch on to now that the ‘Trip’ has finally come to an end, perhaps these Northern songsters can help fill that void. It sure fits that sound. It all screams groove. It all screams for a Great Lawn and loudspeakers. They are easily one of the best live bands I’ve seen in years.
With a new record coming October 2, we come across that wonderful moment when you see a band playing material live when they’re still excited about it. Like an amateur athlete trying to make the big leagues or a young guitar
wizard laying waste for the first time, moments like this are special because the players all have something to prove. You get the songs done at their finest with full attention to energy and perfection. The Sheepdogs gave it all they had the last 3 times I’ve seen them, and if they play any better it just might be a special night for sure. Not that I’ve looked at any setlists floating around the internet, because I still like a bit of mystery in my life, but if they come out and give us a lot of the new album, it might be one of those special moments when you see a band play particular songs that they may never play live again. You know, like when Pink Floyd played Animals in its entirety when that record came out – I don’t know if they ever played ANY of those songs ever again.
If you have not yet had the chance to see this band, and you enjoy such acts as The Guess Who, Queen, or The Grateful Dead, you best make your way this Saturday, Sept 19 to CityFolk at TD Place (The Great Lawn). The Sheepdogs are playing on the Telus Stage at 6:45 PM. Other notable acts playing this day are Will Butler (Arcade Fire) and Of Monsters and Men. Get tickets HERE. For the rest of you, tour dates for The Sheepdogs are listed below.
TAKE A TRIP by THE SHEEPDOGS from their upcoming album Future Nostalgia
THE SHEEP DOGS ON TOUR
09/26 Pittsburgh, PA – Thrival Festival
09/29 Salt Lake City, UT – The State Room
09/30 Boise, ID – Visual Arts Collective
10/01 Seattle, WA – The Crocodile
10/02 Portland, OR – Doug Fir
10/07 Los Angeles, CA – The Roxy
10/08 San Diego, CA – Casbah
10/10 San Luis Obispo, CA – Brewski at Madonna Inn
10/13 Phoenix, AZ – Rebel Lounge
10/14 Tucson, AZ – Club Congress
10/15 Albuquerque, NM – The Historic El Rey Theater
10/16 Denver, CO – Larimer Lounge
10/17 Norman, OK – University of Oklahoma – Red Door Music Festival
10/18 Tulsa, OK – Vanguard
10/20 Ames, IA – Maintenance Shop (Iowa State Univ)
10/21 Milwaukee, WI – Shank Hall
10/22 Chicago, IL – Double Door
10/23 Minneapolis, MN – 7th St Entry
10/25 Nashville, TN – 3rd & Lindsley (WRLT Show)
11/27 Winnipeg, MB – RBC Convention Centre (Grey Cup Festival Concert Series)