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Q & A with The Bible All-Stars
Interview by Ren Tomovcik
Ottawa's country bad-boys sound off about rocking in Ottawa, playing at Bluesfest, and their new album in progress.
(Photo by Nathan Hunter)
Ottawa musicians Morgan Friend (vocals, guitar), Greg Langille (guitar), Tim Connolly (drums) and Joel Carlson (bass) came together after meeting on the capital's punk and indie scene. In 2006, they began working together to craft their irreverent, fun-loving tunes and officially formed The Bible All-Stars.
Since then, they've independently recorded and released two albums: 2007's self-titled debut, and their more recent sophomore record, Pretty Down There, which the enviro-friendly quartet have made available only as a digital download.
The All-Stars' stompin' fusion of punk and country (a sound they quite aptly label 'punkabilly') has got feet moving and crowds rocking in the capital. This July, the band steps out at Bluesfest Byward and shows Ottawa just how badass these country boys can be.
What does it mean to you to play Bluesfest, one of Ottawa's most beloved festivals, given that you are from Ottawa yourselves?
It's always great to play a festival, as the band gets exposure to lots of people who might not otherwise have heard of us. Bluesfest is a natural for us and we're looking forward to the show tonight. Pretty much everyone in the band ends up going to see a bunch of shows at Bluesfest every year - it's fun to be on the bill this year.
What rocks about playing Ottawa as opposed to other cities?Our fans are a little bit crazier here - unusual for Ottawa! Of course, friends and family make every hometown show special, but the band/audience vibe is especially cool (and usually hilarious). There's nothing like having the crowd sing along with "Let's Get Drunk" to cheer you up.
Are you currently working on new material?Always! Our recordings so far have been completely DIY, and we are planning on going to another friend's studio to record in the fall. We have lots of unrecorded songs and look forward to recording.
What can fans and newcomers expect from your live show?Generally we try to do one new song per show, although we have been playing a fair amount recently so we won't have anything new for the Bluesfest set. The live show, as ever, is energetic, ribald, and a lot of fun. Newcomers can expect a rockabilly vibe with a lot of harmonies and some punkish elements thrown in for good measure.
OK, we've got to know - where did you get your band name?Morgan (the lead singer) thought it up. Originally the band was going to be more of a campy bluegrass-y sorta thing (at one time we had all picked out Bible-based crazy stage names), but once we started rehearsing it evolved into a more straight-ahead punkabilly band.
What other bands will you be checking out at Bluesfest?So many to choose from! You can't go wrong with Toots and the Maytals, Good2Go, Flecton Bigsky, K'NAAN, Drive-By Truckers, Buckwheat Zydeco or Great Lake Swimmers.
MORE FROM THE BIBLE ALLSTARS
- Check out The Bible All-Stars on their official website.
- Listen to some tracks on the band's Myspace
The Bible Allstars play Bluesfest Byward on Monday, July 13th. Check the Bluesfest Byward website for updated times and venues, as some have recently changed. If you miss them at Bluesfest, mark your calendar for August 22nd, when they'll be bringing the punk-rawk hoedown to The Rainbow.
Past Spotlight features
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- Fresh Fish