ICONIC - The Barenaked Ladies have hit the road and are set to play the ENMAX Centrium in Red Deer next week.

The Barenaked Ladies get set to hit Red Deer stage

After 27 years together and with more than 14 million albums sold, the Barenaked Ladies have hit the road, and have included a Red Deer stop along the way.

The group plays the ENMAX Centrium Nov. 2nd.

The Barenaked Ladies, which is comprised of Ed Robertson, Tyler Stewart, Kevin Hearn and Jim Creeggan, have seen much success with their recently released album, Silverball.

Creeggan, bassist for the band, said inspiration for the album came from many facets.

“On this latest record, I think the inspiration came from my community. In a way to keep in contact with my kids when I’m on tour, I became the co-chair of my kid’s school council which means kind of running things, organizing events and all that,” he said. “One thing that happened was – this wasn’t initially an inspiration but it was something that was on my mind that really brought me to write a song about it – we were having a facebook debate. It really wasn’t a debate, it was sort of really nasty and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. My community was something I loved and here people were getting hurt online and everybody could see it.

“So I started writing about that and what came out was, you know, I kind of hit the wall with the negativity and basically moaning about how much that hurt. So I just started to write about things that I loved about my community and the things that were worth fighting for and savouring and appreciating. And so I wrote Narrow Streets. I basically started looking out the window and saying ‘That’s what I love about my neighbourhood, and that’s what I love about my neighbourhood.’ So I think by getting involved it really gave me a direction emotionally and an investment that really triggered off a song that had meaning for me, just as participating in my neighbourhood gives me more meaning in my life.”

Being together for nearly three decades, the Barenaked Ladies have overcome many challenges and have continued to see much success.

“I think something that is always relevant is playing live and we’ve always seen ourselves as a live band. I mean we love recording as well but I think we’ve weathered the changes (over the years) mainly because we’ve been going out playing for people in person,” said Creeggan. “As far as recording goes, I think some things always stay the same there as well. When we make our records, that’s our art. It’s our chance to say where we are. Coming up with new material every record is, I think what keeps us moving forward and we can’t help ourselves but to react to the music that’s going on right now. I think that we as a four-piece really find a way to write, but allow ourselves to be influenced by contemporary sounds.”

Being early on in their current tour, Creeggan said it is enjoyable, but the being on the road for long periods of time does have its challenges.

“What I like about being on the road is – I mean, it is a challenge – the travel is a big hardship. We’re often squished together on a bus which is better than the van, so it can be difficult but once you get out on stage and you see the fans who’ve come to see you, it makes it all worthwhile,” he said. “Other things I like about touring is going to special places in the town, you know a restaurant, or a park. I’ve been looking for a lot of parks these days to go running and it just gives me a real sense of the place and a snapshot (of the city). Also, visiting family – I have some family in Red Deer so I’m going to go visit Katherine – Katherine, I’ll be looking for you,” he laughed. “So yes, it’s a chance to really check in with the country.”

Meanwhile, for Creeggan, music has been in his life since he was a young age and his love for it stuck early on.

“My mom was a piano teacher and so I’d come home from school every day and there would be a kid banging out Bach or Beethoven in their way. I think I just accepted that – that sound and that music was a part of my house. I think it also gave me a real sense of hearing music from people firsthand, not through a recording necessarily and that’s why I’ve always been really interested in recording and live performance because I really love to hear how people interpret things and hear their sound,” he said.

“In a way, when people are playing music, it’s like hearing them think. And so my mom gave me a lot there, and my dad played piano by ear. He had his handful of songs he’d like to touch on every day. And so again, that really gave me a sense of music. I was lucky to have a great music program in my public school. We had real musicians coming in and teaching the kids which really changed my life forever and I’ll be forever grateful. That’s why I play the bass. That’s how I met Ed and that’s why we’re the band really. We met each other at a music camp that was put on by the school board,” he added. “And then getting into it for a living, I was training to be a symphonic bass player. I got really into studying to be a bass player in the symphony and when I started playing with Steve and Ed I think they had an ambition to actually do it for real and I didn’t consider that you can do that but I got into it because they had that foresight and we just never stopped.”

For tickets to the show, visit Ticketmaster.

efawcett@reddeerexpress.com