Thursday, February 21, 2013

Emerson Drive's Brad Mates on the CMT Hitlist Tour and the She's My Kind of Crazy muse

Emerson Drive (L to R) Dale Wallace, Danick Dupelle, Brad Mates, David Pritchett and Mike Melancon
Emerson Drive is about to take off on the CMT Hitlist Tour that they will be co-headlining with Doc Walker.  From March 6-25 the two Canadian country bands will playing 17 dates across the country from Vancouver to Ottawa. This is the first time that the two bands have toured together and it is looking like it will be a great show for the fans.

Hot off the heels of a Best Country Album JUNO Award nomination and getting excited about going back on the road, Emerson Drive front man Brad Mates spoke with me about touring and the band's first single off their new album Roll.

I am always curious about a musicians routine while on the road. Is it a complete blackout? Do they have a health smoothie at exactly 9 AM every morning? Do they wake up before noon? Do they have a secret ritual that they must complete everyday to ensure that their tour bus doesn't get bucked off the road by rabid elk? So many questions.

I asked Mates if he and his band mates had any special rituals while on the road. I used the example of waking up every morning and listening to a Justin Bieber song before doing anything could happen right? I mean, the may want some of the Bieber magic to rub off on them.

"Ha ha, I should say we play Justin Bieber every morning, but that probably wouldn't go over well with everyone," said Mates. "The road is our home, it’s something that we’re really used to. We’ve kind of grown accustom to what the road is and what it takes to be on the road. We feed off one another, that’s kind of our secret I guess."

So basically, he is not telling me their secret. Everyone has a secret Brad...everyone. Moving on.

If he wasn't going to tell me his secret to 'on the road success', he could at least tell me what his favorite part about being on the road is. You know what it was? No, not lunatic girls throwing their panties on the stage (take note girls: that is gross). It was people still buying tickets to their shows.

Huh? I would assume that would be a given. You go on the road, people know who you are, they buy tickets, you buy a new truck - repeat. But no, I guess you can't expect that you are always going to be relevant and in people's disposable income budget - even after almost 20 years. No need to fret Brad, I'm sure your shows will sell just fine (a couple are already sold out).

He is counting on those fans to come out to this upcoming tour, and he is hoping that they enjoy the joint show with Doc Walker as much as he will enjoy playing it.

"We’ve known the Doc boys for quiet a few years so I think the collaboration you are probably gonna see between both bands are going to be a unique feature," said Mates, "Celebrating two Canadian bands that have been able to keep things together over the years and have built so many fans right across the country."

Will those fans have real hoedown throw-downs at the concert? Probably not, but it was super fun to picture it in my head for a brief few moments. I don't think their fans are insane.

Speaking of insane. I had to get to the bottom of an important quandary I've had since listening to She's My Kind of Crazy, the first single off of their album Roll. The catchy tune about a crazy country girl. She sounds like a pretty entertaining broad, I think we could be friends. So obviously I wanted to know who exactly was the muse was.

"I don’t know if there is one particular person that makes up that whole song, but we had been discussing our significant others, our wives throughout the writing session – the different things that maybe make them unique in a way," said Mates, "No, there’s not one person. And if I told you a lie then someone might be coming after me."

DISMAY! My new best friend was not even a real person. OK fine, but then I was curious, and I know you probably are too, as to what parts of the song were an ode to Mates' wife. His response, "The crazy part." Literally, that is his wife in the song. Don't worry, he said she was fully aware of her role. Awesome.

I didn't ask if she was going to be going on the tour with the band, so I am not sure if you are going to meet my crazy imaginary best friend if you go to one of the shows, but you never know.

The tour stops are as follows:

March 6 - Vogue Theatre, Vancouver, BC
March 7 - Shaw Centre, Salmon Arm, BC
March 8 - Encana Events Centre, Dawson Creek, BC
March 9 - Medicine Hat Arena, Medicine Hat, AB
March 12 - Casino Regina Show Lounge, Regina, SK
March 13 - Casino Regina Show Lounge, Regina, SK
March 14 - Flames Central, Calgary, AB
March 15 - MacDonald Island Park, Fort McMurray, AB
March 16 - River Cree Resort and Casino, Edmonton, AB (Sold out)
March 17 - Odeon Events Centre, Saskatoon, SK
March 18 - MTS Centre, Winnipeg, MB
March 20 - Algonquin Commons Theatre, Ottawa, ON
March 21 - General Motors Centre, Oshawa, ON
March 22 - Sudbury Theatre, Sudbury, ON (Sold out)
March 23 - Casino Rama, Orillia, ON
March 24 - Centennial Hall, London, ON
March 25 - The Empire Theatre, Belleville, ON

For more information and to purchase tickets click here.


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