Saskatoon-based rockers The Steadies are gearing up for a show in Red Deer Jan. 22nd at Fratters and March 6th at Bo’s with The Wailers. A new CD is also in the works, set for release in early April. So local fans will be able to hear tunes from that project during the coming shows as well.
“All of my energy is going into this project,” said frontman/singer/bassist Earl Pereira, who is also a co-founder of the multi-platinum Canadian rock band Wide Mouth Mason. He and fellow band members guitarist Justin ‘Juice’ Lee and drummer Lexie Miller have been writing tunes for the CD for the past year, and it’s been a joy to see it all take shape.
“It’s been the most collaborative thing that I’ve done since my early Wide Mouth Mason days,” he said. “It’s a pretty great feeling – it’s fun. It’s always been what I’ve imagined being in a band is all about – touring together, having a good time and enjoying each other.”
They’ve taken on much of the producer duties as well, as Pereira has years of experience in crafting tunes plus Lee is a certified engineer as well.
That said, they are bringing in some top folks in the biz to lend a hand. “Sometimes you need that extra set of ears. I’m good at working on other people’s stuff because I bring a fresh perspective, but when you’ve lived with your own stuff for so long it gets harder,” he said.
In describing their sound, The Steadies take the popular Top 40 sound and mix it with rocksteady and reggae influences, creating what they’ve dubbed ‘island rock’. “The styles we fuse together create something different and new.”
The new disc carries on the signature sound of The Steadies but they are open to the authentic sense of evolution that is an intrinsic part of the creative process.
“I don’t say no to any ideas but you don’t want to go too overboard – especially when you performing it as a trio. You don’t want people to say, ‘That doesn’t sound right’.” Ultimately it’s a bit of a balancing act between trying new things and sticking to what sets The Steadies apart.
He noted a common theme amongst the material for the new disc touches on finding the light in the darkness. “It’s pretty deep – it digs a little deeper lyrically and emotionally but it’s still got that fun Steadies danceable, singable sound. There’s just a lot more depth to the lyrics.”
Their most recent release, 2013’s Starcity Shakedown, marked an ode to the band’s rocksteady roots and continued to build on the band’s style. Starcity Shakedown also marked their first release since the 2012 self-titled EP which garnered a top 50 hit in Canada and was nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award.
The Steadies play upwards of 100 shows each year, making them one of the busiest bands in Saskatchewan. They have headlined numerous festivals, showcased at industry events and have shared the stage with Ziggy Marley, The Roots, Blue Rodeo, The Wailers and more.
Pereira got his rock pedigree as a founding member of the aforementioned band Wide Mouth Mason, who had two gold records and landed three Juno nominations and a host of other accolades and awards.
His love for music came along early, as his formative years were deeply influenced by various musicians and musical genres. “If you know people from the Philippines, you know that they love to sing,” he added with a laugh. “Everyone in my family can sing, and sing well and play an instrument.
“Music was always playing – it was always around,” he said. “So growing up we were almost like a family band.”
As the years passed, Pereira and his brother were the ones that really chose to pursue music. Wide Mouth Mason brought incredible success and opportunity to Pereira, who was only 20 when the guys were soaring in popularity.
Meanwhile, at just 40 years of age, he has accomplished so much in the industry.
Wide Mouth Mason marked a tremendously successful period, plus he had the opportunity to tour the world, playing over 3,000 shows and opening for iconic artists like the Rolling Stones, AC/DC and Nelly Furtado. Pereira was also named one of Canada’s top bass players by Canadian Music Magazine and has been featured on MTV, Muchmusic and the Ryan Seacrest Show as well as in publications like Rolling Stone and the National Post.
Between 1996 and 2010, Pereira co-produced and co-wrote much of Wide Mouth Mason’s award-winning catalogue.
He has also worked with a roster of legendary producers including David Leonard (Paul McCartney, Prince), Joel Van Dyke (Aerosmith, Bryan Adams) and Todd Burke (Red Hot Chili Peppers, No Doubt, Johnny Cash).
In 2010, with demand for his side project on the rise, Pereira left Wide Mouth Mason behind to pursue The Steadies full-time.
He couldn’t be more excited about the road ahead, adding that the joys of exploring new creative opportunities is always compelling. “That’s the process – you play shows because you love it and little by little you get better and better. And the stages get bigger.
“There’s also no expiration date on it – we can do this as long as we are having fun and enjoying it. It feels like we are just getting started.”