AN EVENING WITH SLOAN
But this is no nostalgia “Because it’s 2018 and we’re still making records, the ’90s mean very little to me,” Pentland says. “I don’t look back at that era with any real fondness, whereas the 2000s have been more interesting to me—maybe because we’re more relaxed now.”
You will learn fascinating facts about arcane British property With its vivid images of chalets, mountains, and ancient Welsh castles, Ferguson’s “Right to Roam” lets you vicariously travel through the UK countryside on the back of a sprightly, locomotive, acoustic pop tune. “‘Right to roam’ was a term I’d only first heard of when at a wedding in England,” he says. “A relative of the groom was telling me about his hiking adventures in Scotland where they have a freedom-to-roam act giving people access to private land for wandering, walking, and hiking to prevent creating a country of overwhelming private property. I used the phrase as the basis for an England/Wales travelogue, and also a contemplation on pluses and minuses of personal freedom.”
Yes, there’s another Sloan song called “If It Feels Good Do ” Murphy’s boogie-woogied jam “Don’t Stop (If It Feels Good Do It)”—another older song salvaged for the new record—may share its parenthetical name with Sloan’s Pentland-penned 2001 hit single, but as he claims, “I had my ‘If It Feels Good Do It’ song before Patrick had his, and we just decided at the time that his was better!” (NOTE: Pentland disputes this account of events.)
This time, it’s personal. In recent years, Pentland has become more open about the anxiety and panic attacks that have plagued him as a performer. On Sloan12, he channels those experiences into two of the album’s most rousing songs, “The Day Will Be Mine” and “Have Faith,” both of which use amped-up riffs and huge hooks to burrow a path from darkness to light. “Depression and anxiety were definitely on my mind when I was writing those songs,” he “Both are basically about desperation— something has to change or this is not going to have a happy ending.” And while Scott is known for trading in surrealist imagery and cryptic wordplay, the psych-folk sway of “Gone for Good” chronicles the breakdown of a friend’s marriage in the wake of an illicit affair. “It’s written in the spirit of [Twice Removed’s] ‘People of the Sky,’” he says. “As in: non-fiction.”
Now, about that Gord Downie line. As 12 eases you into its comedown closer, Scott’s “44 Teenagers,” the song’s cosmic-rock spell is momentarily broken by one particularly eye-opening lyric about a certain late Canadian rock icon. “Just the other day I was reminded of the many ways Gord Downie died/ I see a kid in my head who will be seeing red, until his anger yields to pride,” Scott sings with laissez-faire élan. “That song was deliberately written as an ode to the teenager,” Scott explains. And part of that, he adds, involves examining how teenagers process trauma. “The line isn’t so much about Gord passing, but about feeling sad for his teenage son who just lost his dad. And not suddenly— but in a terrible, protracted kind of When I was 14—the same age my son is now—my dad dropped dead in front of me from a massive heart attack. He was just 48 so you can perhaps imagine what the years leading up to that number have been like for myself.” For Scott, this wasn’t purely an exercise in speculative songwriting from an emotional distance—not only did he and Downie know one another, Scott’s teenage daughter and Downie’s son are actually schoolmates. “There are many layers to the lyrics that hit home for me in a very real way,” Scott says. And besides, knowing Downie’s healthy appreciation of subversive humour and absurdity, “I think he would’ve loved the tribute.”
Sloan are still here to serve you. On the surface, Ferguson’s centerpiece track “Essential Services” seems like another joyous display of the band’s consummate craftsmanship, using a bouncy “Mr. Blue Sky” piano line as a trampoline for some sky-bound CSNY-worthy harmonies. But couched within its ecstatic sound is a poignant statement of purpose. Says Ferguson, “Chris thought the song was a fun way of referring to our band, being an essential service—we can’t go away! The song touches on that aspect of our The chorus—‘essential services are counting on you’—refers to ourselves, but also the ‘you,’ meaning our audience and how we count on them to support and continue with us. They’re part of the equation as well. Does that sound too corny to say?” Hey, if it feels good, do it.
Will I be able to sit down?
We usually have seating but it's limited and is first come first serve. Don't worry, though – you will want to be on your feet once the music starts!
Are shows wheelchair accessible?
All shows at Blueberry Hill in the Duck Room are wheelchair accessible via an elevator in the Piano Room hallway. A small percentage of shows are in the Elvis Room, which is not accessible.
Whom should I contact about band bookings?
Go to the Contact Us page and select Band Booking from the category options.
Or go to http://blueberryhill.com/band-bookings/
Do you do separate checks?
We regret we can't provide separate checks. We still use the old-fashioned paper ticket system we've used for the past 44 years.