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A Dirty Dozen with LEEROY STAGGER – September 2019

| 6 September 2019 | Reply


According to a recent press release: “To say that Alberta musician Leeroy Stagger’s life journey has followed a strange path would be a bit of an understatement. A celebrated artist for nearly two decades and 10 years sober, he gained national attention with Hot Hot Heat and Carolyn Mark and has built a world class recording studio. A lush reflection of his life’s evolution, Strange Path is the title of his newest album and book, due out September 13 via True North Records. Leeroy Stagger will tour to support Strange Path throughout North American and Internationally.” We get Leeroy to discuss new music, influences, and much more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release. What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through? Are there any hidden nuggets the band put in the material or that only die-hard fans might find?

It’s called Strange Path definitely my most adventurous album to date. Listen for the humanity in there, it’s the story of our path, we are on it together albeit at different paces.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

I’ve always loved listening to music but when my dad took me to see the Stones’ Bridges To Babylon tour that was it for me, that’s what I wanted to do.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

There are so many, Steve Earle, Bruce Springsteen, Lou Reed, Joe Strummer, etc. but as soon as I started following my own path that’s when I started to see some success in my own music.

4. Who would be your main five musical influences?

I’m more influenced by the people more than the music these days but: Joe Strummer and the Mescalaros, Lou Reed, Bruce Cockburn, Bob Dylan, and Joni Mitchell.

5. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

Pete Thomas, I’ve worked with him on two records. He’s a genius and a lovely human. I love working with him. Maybe Charlie Watts too.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

It’s somewhere between Folk music and Rock ‘n roll, Lots of Humanity and its got soul. I don’t know, people are free to say or think whatever they want about my music. I don’t really like being put in a genre box but I guess people need to have parameters to get along in life.

7. When the band are all hanging out together, who cooks; who gets the drinks in; and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

We tend to eat out, only two of us drink alcohol, so that’s that, and there are no singalongs. Ha.

8. When was the last time you were star struck and who was it?

Hmmmm, I tend to stay away from “Stars” unless we have something major in common. I can hang with most musicians without feeling too weird.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

The Best and worst part is the travel. Right now I’m In New York City. It’s blowing my mind, but I’m away from my family and that takes it’s toll. I don’t know what else I would do. Maybe run a design company with my wife, we both love design and working together.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

I dislike the describe your music question! Especially on TV, its like, do your job and describe it yourself! I like when an interviewer has dug into a record or song and finds something personally relatable in there. I like it when people find a real connection, that’s what music is all about.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over”, even if it didn’t change your current situation?

Oh yes, I’ve burnt a lot of bridges in my past, I was just ungrateful, unwell. That’s no longer the case and hasn’t been for the last decade. A lot of it has to do with substance abuse, that will take a person to a dark and generally useless place.That being said, there is no point dwelling on it, we can’t do it over so no point wishing for it, live in the moment and live righteously now.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

Joe Strummer and The Mescalaros Streetcore album. I love how free Joe is in the lyrics and music. I would love to soak up some of that carefree fun for an afternoon. Its a beautiful album with lots of world music and punk influence and attitude.





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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