BeatRoute Magazine is a monthly arts and entertainment paper with a predominant focus on music – local, independent or otherwise. The paper started in June 2004 and continues to provide a healthy dose of perversity while exercising rock ‘n’ roll ethics.
DIRTY CATFISH BRASS BAND to New Orleans and back with a few twists and turns Although they’re based out of Winnipeg, the Dirty Catfish Brass Band are devoutees to New Orleans jazz. Kyle Wedlake, one of the band’s saxophone players, explains their formation and different musical directions. “The band came together through networking in the Winnipeg music scene, just playing together in other bands and shows. But the main catalyst was our keyboard player, Aaron Chodiker, who went down to New Orleans for a festival in 2011. He’d always been a big fan of that music, but was blown away when he experienced it first hand and felt that kind of vibe and energy were missing in Winnipeg.” Since that epiphany, they’ve become the premier jazz brass from the Peg headlining festivals across the prairies along with a regular stint as the Blue Bomber’s house band for their home games. In addition to playing pumped-up traditional street swing with horns a blaring, DDCB are very much part of the contemporary brass movement that bands like Too Many Zoos from New York and incorporate hip-hop, progressive jazz, Latino rhythms and pop into their sound. In 2016 they released a sixtrack EP of covers tunes, Big Shiny Brass, with a rousing version of Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off”. Cutting their teeth in one of best small clubs in Canada, Winnipeg’s TImes Change(d), where shaking it off, kicking out the jams is mandatory, Wedlake promises the band sweats up a storm and gets down and dirty on any stage, big or small. by B. Simm DCBB romps through Alberta playing Wild Bill’s in Banff Nov. 5 & 6, The Slice in Lethbridge Nov. 8, The Vat in Red Deer Nov. 9, The Rec Room in Edmonton Nov. 9 and the Palomino in Calgary Nov. 10. 44 | NOVEMBER 2017 • BEATROUTE ROOTS
CURRENT SWELL riding high on the next wave Current Swell is a band with a style that is easily recognizable with its upbeat, pulsing pop-folk melodies, but also notably diverse and distinct. Lead singer Scott Stanton’s searing vocals and his heartfelt stories easily set the band apart from their contemporaries. Closing in on 13 years they just released their sixth studio album last spring, When to Talk and When to Listen, produced by Grammy award-winning Jacquire King (Kings of Leon, Buddy Guy, Tom Waits.) Willing to take risks, the record has critics polarized: some are adamant it’s the band’s best work to date, and others saying the complete opposite. Addressing the record’s split reception, Stanton explains the band’s aspiration to try and always reach new audiences. “Every record is different. Dave (Lang, vocals/guitar) and I wrote this record together, where in the past we have mostly written separately. We want to reach as many people as we can and travel the world doing it.” One thing that is never in dispute is the band’s live show. Whether playing to a crowd of 45,000 on Canada Day in Victoria, BC or in a small rural pub, Current Swell has an energy and dedication to the music that gets people moving and singing along. Touring with new material, looking to build their fan base also comes the need for balance, especially when a loyal audience has the overwhelming desire to hear the band dig deep into their catalog. Stanton knows that response all too well: “Shut up and play the hits! The funniest thing about performing is when the crowd is having a blast. That’s what we love to do and that’s our job. We will definitely be playing a collection of our work.” With recent changes in the band breathing new life into the project, Current Swell is in a good space right now. Reflecting on the upswing Stanton effused, “That’s all we talk about, how great things are moving, going forward and how fortunate we are to get to play music. We just came off the best European and Eastern Canadian tour we have done. People singing along to all the songs, new and old. We are just really happy.” Current Swell performs Saturday, Nov. 18 at Marquee (Calgary), Sunday, Nov. 19 at Wild Bill’s (Banff), Tuesday, Nov. 21 at Bo’s Bar & Grill (Red Deer), Wednesday, Nov. 22 at The Exchange (Regina), Thursday, Nov. 23 at The Park Theatre (Winnipeg), Friday, Nov. 24 at the Broadway Theatre (Saskatoon), and Saturday, Nov. 25 at the Needle Vinyl Tavern (Edmonton). by Andrew R. Mott photo: Shane Deringer BOOGIE PATROL rott’n in the free world ‘Rott’n’ Dan Shinnan likens himself to a monkey among silverback gorillas. There is so much energy and excitement bottled up in Alberta blues band Boogie Patrol that within the first few seconds on the phone with BeatRoute, lead singer ‘Rott’n’ Dan Shinnan had already excitedly recounted his recent purchase of a new harmonica (check out Rott’n Dan’s intensity getting down on the harp ROOTS with “Mainstay Woman”). Boogie Patrol is a funk/rock & soul quintet that, along with Rott’n Dan on vocals, features Yuji Ihara and Chad Holtzman on guitar, Nigel Gale on bass, and Emmet VanEtten on drums and backing vocals. Their brand of the blues features lots of lead guitars, heavy on the rhythm that by Dan Tyler kick into restless leg syndrome with their relentless live performances. Their most recent recording, Man on Fire, was released in April and contains a mix of energetic rock & soul with more downtempo, blues-adjacent outings. Tracks like “Shaker Down Below” and “Just Wanna” are strong divergent moments that do well to illustrate the band’s tonal range. While still a young band, especially in the prestige-oriented blues scene, they have already accumulated tremendous accolades. The group has traveled to Memphis for the International Blues Challenge three times already, finishing in the semi-finals the last two trips down. The live energy of Boogie Patrol is “definitely not a façade,” says Shinnan. ” We really do enjoy playing together. Playing live on stage is something that adds to that, and the style of music we play is all about getting down… For me as a front guy, I’m totally inspired by what other front guys do. What does a front guy do but study other front guys? He adds it was “just a natural thing to get up on stage and go hard. You can’t help but get into it.” In their ten years playing and travelling all across North America, Boogie Patrol deliberately embrace the spirit of blues and soul legends. “I am hugely influenced by Joe Cocker, Mick Jagger, Otis Redding, powerhouses like that,” reveals Shinnan. “Those guys are the silverback gorillas, those are the kings. Joe Cocker inspired me vocally, but I’m not saying I emulate him. You definitely don’t see me doing the splits like James Brown either.” In addition to his artistic style, Shinnan is a well-rounded professional who understands giving people what they paid for. “I actually used to have a business card that used to say ‘Head Monkey Man.’ It’s a monkey see, money do kind of world.” Boogie Patrol performs Saturday, Nov. 4 at the Edmonton Blues Society Memphis Payback, Friday, Nov. 10 at the Blues Can (Calgary), and Tuesday, Nov. 14 at Blues on Whyte (Edmonton). BEATROUTE • NOVEMBER 2017 | 45