Hey there everyone, its DJ Dizzy & here's my interview with a band hailing from Canada who call themselves Bent Roads Tavern
How'd you get started in music?
I got my first guitar just before my 11th birthday while on a family trip to Los Angeles (Guitar Centre in Santa Monica). I fell in love with playing guitar almost immediately and started learning and writing riffs. I started my first band at age 12 with some friends on my street called, "Lithium" (after the Nirvana song). I played music in school with concert band (Tuba and Trumpet) from Grade 7 through Grade 10, and played in jazz bands at school. My highschool band, "Xstereo" won a Canadian national songwriting competition on the CBC in 1999, a few years before helping to form Bent Roads Tavern. I've always had at least one music project on the go, Bent Roads Tavern being where all my original songwriting has developed since my high school years.
Who are your inspirations or influences?
Early on I was a big fan of Green Day, Rancid, Radiohead, The Tragically Hip, Sloan, Garth Brooks, Jimi Hendrix, Crash Test Dummies, Our Lady Peace, I Mother Earth, Thrush Hermit, The Flashing Lights, Bob Dylan, Huey Lewis and the News, Bruce Springsteen, Elton John, just to name a few. By college I was into Dave Matthews Band, Phish, Do Make Say Think, Broken Social Scene, String Cheese Incident, and since I've been really into bands like MuteMath, Mumford & Sons, Hey Rosetta!, Metric, Dan Mangan, Florence and the Machine, and Half Moon Run. Our music is largely inspired by the Canadian lived experience, and we weave it through our original music.
What advice would offer aspiring performers?
My dad used to always say, "Don't Quit Your Day Job" - it's kind of a joke, but also a realization that of all the great music that gets written, recorded, performed, etc. etc., really only a small number get to do it for a sustainable living. Have a back-up plan, have your 'day job' and 'real life' be the inspiration for your passion. It will start as a dream, then it will become a hobby, then it will become an expensive hobby, and eventually (or quickly, depending on your connections and who hears you when) you can make some money at it. Never stop working on your craft - whether it is songwriting, performance, recording, marketing...it is all part of it.
How do you set yourselves apart from other bands or singers?
We are an Indie Folk collective, featuring the songwriting of three members, myself (Collen), Graham, and Jim. Our instrumentation resembles the Dave Matthews Band in that we have regular appearances of violin and saxophone. We try to speak to the Canadian lived experience in our songwriting, and the expansive atmospheres we try to create in our music are a reflection on Canada as a vast and open country.
Any new gigs or albums in the future
We are right now curating content for a vinyl release which would be a compilation of 'requisite' tracks from The Legend of Bent Roads Tavern we released this year (we have a kickstarter page set up to try to fund it), which we hope to release before the end of winter. We are also recording for our next album, which will be coming out in mid 2021. We can't play shows or tour at the moment, and we logistically can't pull off virtual performances due to where each of the members currently live, but we do hope to play some festivals once they kick back up again.
Special thanks to them for doing this interview, so until then I'll catch you on The Flipside, stay awesome & rock n roll!