Bands On The Run - It’s Gonna Get Loud

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Submitted by Don Graham

The Road Hammers, Doc Walker and Blackjack Billy on the same stage, on the same night? In 16 different cities?  In Canada?  Man, it is gonna get loud!  You don’t see this sort of lineup (three major bands touring together) very often. It’s not unusual to see solo acts sharing the bill but the band concept is a throwback to days of yore! Dick Clark and His Caravan of Stars in the 50’s and 60’s pioneered the concept. In the  70’s you could see combinations like Country Joe and the Fish, Ten Years After and Procol Harum together at The Fillmore East.  So being able to see two future Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame acts like the Road  Hammers and Doc Walker along with fast rising U.S stars Blackjack Billy is going to be one for the scrapbooks. Or today I guess it would be one for the memory sticks.

I had the opportunity to  sit down with some of the major players in this package show;  Jason McCoy of the Hammers, Chris Thornsteinson, Dave Wasyliw of Doc Walker and Noll Billings of Blackjack Billy over coffee in downtown Toronto to discuss the upcoming invasion of The Bands on the Run. Just having coffee with these guys is worth the price of admission. They were all pretty pumped about the possibilities to be had on this tour.

Jason McCoy “This was our manager Ron Kitchener’s idea.  We’ve toured a lot with Chris and Dave so it was a desirable fit for us and throwing Blackjack Billy into the pot just sweetened the deal. Folks will get their money’s worth for sure and we’ll have a blast, We have some cool plans to make the nights memorable.”  Chris from Doc Walker said “We love playing with Jason and the Hammers and can’t wait to see what the shows bring. I’ve watched Jason for years and by the interviews I’ve given, it’s no secret I’m a big fan’ At this point McCoy interjects with “The highlight of the shows will be watching the incredible Doc Walker doing ‘Rocket Girl’ which was a huge hit for them. Being the songwriter I can’t tell you how good it makes feel when they sing that song. They nailed it.”  Dave from Doc Walker, “This is a great way for the fans of all three of us to see the other acts and become fans of their music. This is going to be a blast.” Noll from Blackjack Billy, “ We love both these  acts and we’ve trying to put something together with them  and  Ron finally came to us with package and we were thrilled. This will be epic.”

Besides playing the shows everyone  sees this an excellent opportunity to write some tunes. Jason gets serious for a minute and says “Each one of these guys are first rate, killer songwriters. Besides the obvious fun of playing,  I’m looking at knocking off some amazing tunes with these guys.”  Chris, “To get to hang out with all these  guys and write music is something  I would love to do anyway but to get to play all these great gigs is amazing. Dave says “I’m a big fan of all these guys and am really looking forward to the writing time.” And Noll from Blackjack Billy “I have a feeling there’s gonna be some gold written here.”

So get ready Canada from November 20th through December 15th, Bands on the Run Tour will be rolling into a town near you! Don’t miss it. Here they come! (Sing along children, to the tune of I’ve Been Everywhere)  “They’re coming to Fredericton, Halifax, Moncton, Guelph, London, Sudbury, Kingston, Belleville, Brandon, Winnipeg, Enoch, Saskatoon, Regina,  Vernon, Vancouver, Calgary.”

Giddy up!