A&E » Music

Shred Kelly takes on the world

Fernie band has had a great 2015 and aims to strike higher in 2016



Stoke-folk band Shred Kelly hasn't quite outgrown its ski town home of Fernie, in the B.C. interior, but you can almost feel it in the air.

They currently play in the resort just two or three times a year.

"It's now more like a stop on our tour," says vocalist Sage McBride.

She is reached with the band in Toronto, and when asked how the skiing is there says it's "not good. It's very bare, but warm!"

Shred Kelly came together over an open mic music night in the Kootenay resort five years ago. Along with McBride there is Tim Newton, Jordan Vlasschaert, Ian Page-Shiner and Ty West.

In Toronto they open for Juno-winning indie band The Strumbellas, before heading west for two weeks of dates before the Christmas shutdown sets in.

This includes a night at the Garibaldi Lift Company on Sunday, Dec. 13. Doors at 9:30 p.m.

Entry is free, but donations are being taken for the victims of the Alpine fire in November. Advanced tickets can be collected from the GLC for guaranteed entry before 10 p.m.

After Christmas comes a series of gigs in Germany, their first trip to Europe as a band.

"We haven't released our album there yet, so we're going to release it there and the States in the New Year," McBride says.

The album, Sing to the Night, came out in Canada earlier this year. The video for the song of the same name won a Western Canadian Music Award for Video of the Year for McBride and her co-writer Dylan Siggers.

"Now we're trying to bring our music to new places," McBride says.

One fun experience recently was making recycled instruments for a CBC competition, Green Tracks. Shred Kelly competed against Yukon Blonde and Hey Ocean.

"We made a ukulele, a drum kit, a tambourine and an ugly stick out of returnable bottles and people got to vote for their favourite. The winning band could donate $3,000 to the charity of their choice and we came first. We donated the money to Music Camp."

It has been a year of interesting rewards.

"It's been a really great year. We want to see what next year brings because this year will be hard to top," agrees McBride.

They've started writing new songs with the aim of setting down some demos in early 2016. McBride provides interesting insight into Shred Kelly's working process.

"Right now it's about getting the ideas on the table, reworking them and making them hopefully into something good," she says.

The band tries to rehearse several times a week and spends the last hour at each writing a song.

"They don't have to be great songs, we just try to get ideas out. Everyone gets a turn to bring an idea to the table," McBride laughs.

"We get the song built and then record the ideas. Then we can talk about which songs we like and which we want to develop more."