All those weekend bar gigs around Alberta have paid off big time for Red Deer-area band Soul Side In.
Not only has the indie rock group built a loyal fan-base playing every gin joint from Edmonton to Calgary over the last few years, Soul Side In was also able to use proceeds from those gigs to self-finance a first self-titled CD.
“It’s been quite a struggle with financing. We played a lot, locally, and instead of taking the money from our shows every weekend, we’ve been reinvesting it,” said lead guitarist Allen Schmidt of Lacombe.
“I’m very proud of this CD,” he added. “It’s been a hard road but the end result has, I think, been worth it.”
The recording was produced by Garth Richardson (Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nickelback, Hedley) and mixed by Mike Fraser, who’s worked with AC/DC, Aerosmith, Elvis Costello and Sam Roberts.
All of Soul Side In’s band members contributed towards the songwriting, which leans toward relationship songs.
Schmidt particularly likes Slip Away, about someone who’s suicidal. “Everyone goes through rough times. That’s the life experience,” he said.
But Schmidt hopes the song’s message of reaching out to friends and family resonates with people who are going through tough times.
So far, he believes the CD, available at most record stores, has been getting good feedback.
A couple of love songs, The Alley and Secret, are already being released as singles for radio play and group members are starting a media blitz to promote the 12-track album.
Besides appearing on TV and radio shows in Calgary and Edmonton, Soul Side In will be getting additional exposure by opening for Canadian punk-rocker Bif Naked in her cross-Alberta and into B.C. tour that stops at Wild Bill’s Sports Bar at Red Deer’s North Hill Inn on Saturday.
Schmidt and the rest of the band — his cousin and the group’s lead singer Daniel Schmidt, drummer Jayson Macho and bassist Dayne Finley — are really hyped about opening for Naked.
While Soul Side in previously played with notable bands, including Winnipeg’s The Watchmen, the local group has never performed in as big a venue as Edmonton’s Northlands Agricom, where the 12,000-seat Campus Chaos concert is slated for Friday.
Soul Side In will be part of a lineup that includes Naked, Vancouver’s State of Shock, and the U.S. bands Rev Theory, Hinder and rap artist Lil Jon.
The concert is going to be the closest to a Green Day-stadium experience that Soul Side In has yet had.
Schmidt admitted, “I’m a little bit nervous, but I think it’ll be good.”
Soul Side In opens for Bif Naked at 8 p.m. on Saturday at Wild Bill’s Sports Bar at the North Hill Inn in Red Deer. Tickets are $29 in advance and $35 at the door.