Interview: The Grapes of Wrath

The Grapes of Wrath are celebrating a brand new album and a hometown show, this Wednesday in Kelowna (30 years since their first show here).  Kevin and Chris answer a few questions I had for them:


1. Congratulations on 30 years making music together. Does the reasons why you started to make music together still resonate for you today?

Kevin: Absolutely. We grew up together and learned to play as a unit, and that feeling never goes away. It’s like an old pair of leather shoes that have stretched to fit your feet just so: you may have nicer footwear but every time you put on those old favorites you go realize nothing else feels as comfortable.

Chris: It is the reason. It’s why we are playing together again. We’ve arrived back at the end of a full circle experience and are approaching things like we did when we started as kids.

2. You’ve played some special shows in the last 15 years since I’ve lived in Kelowna. The Field Trip tour in 2001, the Summerhill Winery pyramid in 2010, and the BreakOut West festival with We Are the City joining you on stage in 2010. Where does this Wednesdays show at Waterfront Park rank for you?

Kevin: Wednesday will be a milestone (30 miles in fact!) we could never have imagined reaching and it certainly puts things into a kind of perspective. Getting to mark this with a free outdoor show on a beach in our hometown couldn’t be more “Kelowna”.

Chris: I think it’s the show that we probably thought would never happen. We are excited.

3. Can we expect to see some archival material from the band? Any of those early Kelowna gigs caught on video?

Kevin: We have a lot of archival footage that hopefully one day will be released in some form.

4. What are you fondest memories of touring Canada in the mid-80’s?

Kevin: Hitting a town for the first time and winning an audience over who had never seen you, or, in some cases, walking into a club in a town you’ve never been to and it’s packed with people who’ve heard of you and feeling that sense of anticipation in the air.

Chris: Feeling the building of the band’s profile the more we toured. It was nice to see people excited and supporting us and actually ‘getting’ what we were doing musically.

5. For your new album, “High Road”, how has the dynamic in the studio between the three of you changed over the years?

Kevin: It felt closer to the sessions for our first EP than anything that came after: we were all present in the same place the whole time, supporting each other through the whole process with a feeling of something to prove and yet nothing to lose. My favorite album to make!

Chris: We were probably a lot less anxious making this record than some of the others. We didn’t have the feeling of pressure like a couple of the previous recordings. None of us wanted to waste time, so we worked at a steady pace and brought that energy to the process.

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