Tuesday 13 October 2015

Calgary Songs Project: Steve Elaschuk

Now, we at the CCPS are, as you know by now, the type of people that like to hone in on one joke and tell it over and over again until it's really not funny anymore (in fact, it likely wasn't funny in the first place). SO, without further ado, for today's post in preparation for the High Performance Rodeo Calgary Songs Project, we're turning to one of our favourite people AND one of our favourite people to make fun of, Steve Elaschuk.

See, Steve is a central figure in the Calgary scene, having played the bass guitar on a whole pile of our favourite recordings, and filled in with pretty much every Calgary rock band in the 90's and 00's. He's had a ringside seat for almost the entire 30 years we're covering with this project, and thanks to that he's got endless advice for bands (usually, when to stop playing and hurry off stage), bandmates (just ask Kenna Burima!) and bloggers (usually, when we're wrong about stuff).

So, we had to ask Steve for his top five Calgary songs.

Of course, being who he is, he couldn't stick to the rules, and gave us ten:

Beyond Possession - Skater's Life
Forbidden Dimension - 13 Bloody Graves
Ninth Configuration - Happy

Skin Barn - Another Day
Arm & Hammer - Children's Day

Ded Souls - Green Sweep
Fire Engine Red - Theresa Says
Fire Engine Red - Shank Pony
Primrods - Six Flags
National Dust - Before you Wear The Grindstone Down

A few things about this list strike us: first, several of these bands (Arm & Hammer, Ded Souls, Fire Engine Red) are guys that he went on to play with. Second, he's picked two Fire Engine Red songs (we can count!). Third, he gave us ten songs instead of five. 

So, in return, we're going to give YOU five songs featuring Steve Elaschuk that we think are worthy of the Calgary Songs Project. Or at least a mix tape for your girl/boyfriend.

Wagbeard - Worth: Say what you want, this is hands-down our favourite Wagbeard song. It has helped to ensure that our Wagbeard/Primrods split has received almost equal play on both sides.

Falconhawk - Try a Little Longer: Kara Keith helped remind us that keyboards deserved to be front and centre in rock bands, and while her first CD was bouncy and fun, Steve didn't play on it. As soon as Steve joined the band, she started writing more serious, sober songs. Coincidence?

The Neckers - Share Secrets: Ignoring that painfully awkward music video, this is a great, great slice of exuberant power pop.

Thousandsticks - Begin Again: Thousandsticks was, on paper, a weird band. Fronted by the drummer from Joker and Fire Engine Red, with guitars by a guy from Brass, keyboards by the guitarist from Red Autumn Fall and drums by the guy from Skin Barn, and little Steve Elaschuck thrown into the mix for good measure. BUT - a seriously underrated band. 

The Brenda Vaqueros - Zen Bud: Here's great one. The Brenda Vaqueros were a tremendous force of psych/garage rock. Oh, and that's our Calgary Songs Project co-conspirator, Kenna Burima, on the killer lead vocals.

Oh, plus the Daggers, Earthquake Pills, the Roaming Storms, Elaschuka... the list goes on and on. And if you get a couple of drinks into Steve, he goes on and on as well.

But we really do love him and all he's done for our scene.

So, what's your favourite band that included Steve Elaschuk?


Anonymous said...

Brenda Vaqueros!!!!
Brenda Vaqueros!!!!

toposheet said...

wagbeard and Earthquake Pills.
Though those dagger records were

Anonymous said...

Lyle Crilly from Lemonjade played guitar in Thousandsticks, Lorrie Matheson played keys. ��