With a brand new release having just dropped, Tim Neufeld & the Glory Boys present The Hootenanny! Tour featuring Ryan McAllister on Sept. 24th at CrossRoads Church.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the concert slated for 7 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased by visiting www.TimmyTour.com.
Neufeld is a Canadian singer-songwriter who hails from Winnipeg. He is a lead vocalist and guitarist and in 2000 along with his brother Jon Neufeld, they co-founded the successful and widely-recognized contemporary Christian band Starfield.
After releasing three independent albums and four albums with EMI/Sparrow Records with accompanying tours, Starfield is currently on hiatus while each brother pursues solo projects.
“This really started out of a vacuum following my brother and I deciding that the Starfield chapter didn’t necessarily need to wind down and retire, but definitely go on hiatus for an undetermined amount of time,” explained Tim during a recent chat. “I always had a desire to write and perform, and at that point I wanted to do a ‘covers’ project.”
In June 2013, Tim released his first solo album Trees – a collection of worship songs written by Christian artists such as Matt Redman, Gungor, Paul Baloche and All Sons and Daughters among others. He describes the tunes as important and influential cuts from his childhood and youth.
“It ended up really connecting with people.” Indeed – the project garnered him the GMA Canada Covenant Award 2013 for Modern Worship Album of the Year and the Juno 2014 Award for Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year. “We toured it, and there was a really wide demographic that showed up – mostly because I think the genre sort of fit. I went from being in a rock/worship kind of band to one with more of a gospel/bluegrass kind of feel.
“It was enough of a response to make us thint that we were onto something.” For the ‘Trees Tour’, Tim, now based on the west coast, assembled a band including Colin Trask (drummer/percussionist for Starfield), Matthew Izaguirre (bassist), Jon Bryant (indie Canadian singer-songwriter on banjo, guitars and dulcimer) and Jon Mushaluk (stand up bass).
The band took on the moniker ‘Tim Neufeld & The Hallelujah Glory Boys’ which then morphed into their current name ‘Tim Neufeld & The Glory Boys’.
A batch of new songs led to their next CD – aptly entitled The Joy. Tim and the guys spent time in Nashville in early 2014 recording with Starfield producer Allen Salmon crafting songs for The Joy which was released that same year.
That project went on to earn a 2015 Juno Award nomination.
As mentioned, the solo project certainly have a bluegrass/roots kind of feel to them – and they offer listeners an inspiring upbeat musical experience from the get-go. For Tim, that love for the bluegrass genre comes quite naturally.
“It’s definitely what I grew up with – the only pictures we have of my great grandfather, he’s always holding a banjo,” he explained. “My grandpa was also constantly strumming on the mandolin. And so there were almost mini-Mennonite hoedowns happening anytime we would get together as a family. So that kind of music has always been in my blood.
“Certainly, growing up there was non-stop singing. Both of my parents were really active in church worship. And actually I’m playing my father’s guitar on this tour – his first guitar that he got back in the ‘66 or ‘67. I love that. And the older I get, the more those kinds of things mean something to me.
“Legacy and family both become more a part of the art as well.
“I enjoy the rock thing, but there’s permission in bluegrass and this kind of rootsy music that I think allows people to get outside of themselves a little bit – it implies footstomping and knee-slapping and hooting and hollering. It’s a genre that is really unlike any other, and that has a cool, rich history. It’s the soundtrack to the original migration from Europe – some of the beginnings of that.”
Tim’s third solo album Trees Chapter 2 – another project mostly consisting of covers – was released in the autumn of 2015.
“You get to choose from every song ever written,” he said. And what ended up on that project reflects something of what the guys’ show might be like. “There’s a good amount of old hymns and gospel tunes that are really familiar to everybody around the world, and then there is a bunch of originals.”
It’s all presented in what the band hopes is a joyful, enriching evening that is something of a blessing to folks as well.
For Tim, there really couldn’t be a more fitting ‘journey’ in life.
“I love hard work and I love the challenge of making an album and promoting it, booking a tour and all of the things that go along with it. It doesn’t feel like work – it feels like I’m fulfilling my destiny.
“I have a team of guys that feel exactly the same way. We’re a brotherhood, and that’s also a really important part of me loving what I do. They are my bros – not only do we get to do life together and be there for each other, love, support and encourage each other, we get to go up on stage and entertain, bless and be apart of so many individuals’ lives.”
Not that it’s all easy – life on the road means being away from his wife and three children for one thing. But there’s a blessing in it all, too.
“We get so much feedback that is so positive. One email would blow you away but when you get dozens of them, that’s amazing. There is nothing really in life that in some ways is a better ‘job’ than that.”