Sheepdogs set for major label self-titled CD
August, 28, 2012
By Lynn Hoppes | ESPN.com
The Sheepdogs hail from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, so it's obvious the video for their new song, "The Way It Is," would be baseball themed.
OK, maybe not.
Lead singer Ewan Currie was born in Australia and raised in Canada, but he is all about American sports.
"Even when I was a kid, my friends and I would collect NBA cards and watch the NBA Game of the Week. It was skinny Shaq and Jordan domination," Currie said. "Even in Canada, my dad loved playing Strat-O-Matic baseball. It's the American sports I love."
Next week, the Sheepdogs will release their new CD, produced by the Black Keys' Pat Carney.
The Sheepdogs - The Sheepdogs by Atlantic Records
The CD is part of their new deal with Atlantic Records, after winning a contest in 2011 securing them the cover of Rolling Stone magazine -- the first time an unsigned band appeared on the front.
"For the longest time, we felt like nothing could go right," Currie said. "We've been very fortunate. We are super mindful of how fleeting success can be. We don't want to get fat and lazy."
Playbook had a few minutes with Currie to talk about the new CD and touring.
What has the help of the Black Keys meant to you guys?
"Others helping is a pretty integral part of the story of life. You can't be successful doing anything on your own. It's never true that it's only one person's effort. We've gotten a lot of help and are thankful for so many allies."
How did the video with Funny or Die come about?
"When you make video treatments, they all look the same, over and over again. We just wanted to do something funny and different. We asked comedian Randy Sklar to help us. We knew he was already a sports fan. The next day, the Sklars called with this idea: Playing Little Leaguers and beating the crap out of them. That's gold, we thought! Let's do it!"
How athletic are you guys?
"Well, fortunately, we didn't need any stuntmen. I'm the Kevin Costner of this group. Just joking. Most of us play some sports. Soccer. Wrestling. Hockey. I think the band is more on the coordinated side than the non-coordinated side."
Do you prefer being on the road or in the studio?
"I can go either way actually. I love being a studio geek, creating all these new sounds. But there is something about going on the road. You can't hide anymore. People pay good money to see you and see what you have. It's time for you to bring it to the table. That's where we win most of our fans over. We love feeding off the crowd. Performing live shows the band's worth."
Your dad is a classic pianist. What did he think about you going into rock?
He likes all kinds of music. He was just happy I'm making it. He knows how hard it is. He's tickled about it. He knows it hasn't been an easy ride."
With the launch of the CD next week and a tour in a few weeks, do you feel you've made it?
"This more like a continuation. This is our fourth studio album. People still think of us as a new band, like it's our first or second album. It's an ogoing process. Hopefully, we can continue to wake up and make music and keep rolling. Hopefully, we can make a living doing this as long as we can."