When: Sunday, March 23
It’s not hard to find music in Whistler — whether you’re into rock, hip hop, reggae or rap, you’re bound to find some form of live act to entertain on any given night.
But Whistler isn’t exactly the best place to be if you’re trying to keep a band together — with a largely transient population people tend to drift in and out of town, and finding a suitable venue isn’t always easy.
But at least one local group seems to have discovered how to make it work.
Slush has been in Whistler for almost 10 years now, bringing their special blend of melodic punk to the music scene.
Jamie Weatherbie, the drummer, and Adam Leggett, the singer and songwriter, are two of the founding members of the band, which was born in 1992.
“We started off with me and a drumset, and him screaming behind me and then he kind of… learned to sing, and then he kind of somewhat learned how to play guitar, and then everyone just got better,” Weatherbie recalls.
He hesitates to label their music as pop or hardcore punk, saying they are more of a “happy medium” between the two.
They’ve been playing in Whistler since 1998, during which time they’ve recorded 10 albums.
“We’re definitely one of the longest running bands in this town,” said Weatherbie.
The secret to their success seems quite simple: they’re passionate about music.
“We play for fun, so when you actually play for fun instead of as a career, then it’s a lot easier to stay as a band for 15 years,” Weatherbie explained, adding that most bands tend to break up while they’re on tour.
“The moment that it’s not fun, we’ll stop doing it,” Weatherbie added.
They also don’t play often in Whistler — only once every three or four months — because it’s easy to play yourself out in this town.
“As transient as Whistler is, we’ve been playing here so long now and people come out to our show and know the songs — it’s good,” said Weatherbie.
All four members of the band — Weatherbie, Leggett, Bryce MacDiarmid, and Gavin McDermott — are from the same small town in Northern Ontario, wedged between North Bay and Timmons, with a population of about 5,000. Over the years, they’ve had to replace a few members, but have always managed to keep their roots in Northern Ontario.