Road Trip 1
Brace yourself for the landing of THE BUCCANEERS - the hardiest, most harmonious band of pirates ever to hoist their flag on Calgary's shores! All right, before you scramble for your atlas and history books, you're correct - Calgary has no sea access, and Alberta isn't exactly the breeding ground for the world's most notorious pirates. But THE BUCCANEERS aren't letting those trifling facts halt their pursuit of nautical and melodious distinction. Their "disarming chemistry", strong vocal harmonies, contemporary arrangements and passionate, high energy performances are captivating audiences from sea to shining sea, as THE BUCCANEERS win Canada over with their unique brand of Aggressive Canadian Folk Music. Now, let's face it: Calgary is not the first place that springs to mind when you mention sea shanties. That's likely why these gents had to travel to the streets of Winnipeg to discover their true nautical souls and form THE BUCCANEERS in 1997. Originally a six-man busking group, the band quickly became a local favourite and set off as a full-time touring band, stretching their fan base to all our country's shores. The band now consists of three of it's founding members: Rodger Leeder (vocals, mandolin, bass guitar, guitar), Seán Sabraw (vocals, guitar, bass guitar, bodhran, mandolin), and Jim Samuelson (vocals, saxophone, penny whistles, tambourine, bones). Now back in Calgary, they have established a strong hometown crowd, developed a school show that has reached students at over 150 schools across Canada, recorded and released their second album, and returned to a hectic cross-country touring schedule. "Aggressive Canadian Folk Music?" you may ask: try envisioning a blend of Celtic drive with contemporary attitude (plus the sporadic plundering of klezmer licks, latin rhythms and the occasional 80's pop song!), resulting in a diversely-influenced music as Canadian as... well... someone who gets the joke about moving to Winnipeg to learn sea shanties. Vocals dominate the sound, with tight three-part harmony arrangements in every tune and each band member trading the lead voice from song to song. These multi-talented multi-instrumentalists switch 'axes' as often as they swap vocals, and trade the songwriting and arranging duties for each piece - a pretty democratic bunch of outlaws, indeed! Presenting an eclectic, free-spirited bilingual live performance filled with humour and get-outta-your-seat-and-dance energy, THE BUCCANEERS remain true to their busking roots while demonstrating the hard work, dedication and professionalism you'd expect from a band that has survived nine years on the road and whose members are still planning for at least nine more! Having nurtured a fan base in six Canadian Provinces and two American States, THE BUCCANEERS have entertained Brian Tobin (then Premier of Newfoundland) and the Liberal Party of Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as actors such as Catherine O'Hara, James Spader, Lara Flynn Boyle and Chevy Chase at various wrap parties in 'Hollywood north'. Other recent performance highlights include the International Freedom Festival, the Islands Folk Festival, the Pan-Am Games, the Western Canadian Summer Games, the Southern Alberta Summer Games, the Maritime Reunion Association, the Canmore Highland Games, the Edmonton Celtic Festival, and Festival du Voyageur, as well as showcases at the Western Canadian Music Awards, Alberta Showcase, Rendezvous Folk and the International Folk Alliance. THE BUCCANEERS have also shared the stage with performers such as AMOS GARRETT, THE WAILIN' JENNYS, THE WALTONS, PAINTING DAISIES and THE FABLES. The band's first album, PRAIRIE SHANTY, was released in May 1999 and received radio airplay across North America and internationally. A mix of traditional and original songs, this recording met with overwhelming fan response from all ages and all walks of life. Released online in January 2000, it's songs remained in the MP3.com World/Folk, Celtic and Folk TOP TEN lists for half a year, and it's listeners numbered about a half million people from around the world. And of course we can't forget to mention that on March 14, 2001, the lads from The Buccaneers got to experience every young (and old) man's dream, THE MADONNA SANDWICH: with Madonna's songs Music and Don't Tell Me taking up MP3.com's overall top 11th and 13th spots, THE BUCCANEERS' Whiskey in the Jar was nestled ever-so-comfortably between Madonna's, er, songs at #12. (If that doesn't shiver your timbers...) THE BUCCANEERS released their second CD, BASEMENT MONKEY, this summer. Made up almost entirely of original selections (the only exception being traditional song Greenland Whale Fisheries), the music includes designated single (and ultimate party song) This is Where You Are, as well as fan favourites Glasses Run Empty and Into the Sea. Delighted to be out of the studio and returning to live performance, THE BUCCANEERS are now back on the road, performing their Aggressive Canadian Folk Music at venues, schools, festivals and showcases across Canada and the U.S., spreading their infectious energy, rhythm, melodies, "passion for performance" (and intermittent goofy jokes) in a quest to become Calgary's best-known band of rollicking seafarers.