Entertainment

The Band Perry ready to break new ground in Penticton with Pioneer

Despite having multiple chart topping hits and taking the world by storm on their We Are Pioneers tour, the sibling trio that make up The Band Perry still need an intervener every once and awhile.

Fronted by Kimberly Perry and rounded out by her younger brothers Neil Perry and Reid Perry, at the end of the day siblings will be siblings and sometimes that calls for some parental guidance.

“They will be a tie-breaker because the way it works here in The Band Perry is it is always a democracy, everyone gets a single vote, but if there is a tie, sometimes you have to bring in the tie breaker to make the final decision,” said Reid, who added their parents sometimes join them on the road help make sure things are running smoothly from their home in Tennessee.

It is from their parents where the love for music developed for the trio, whether that was dad singing them to sleep with a Rolling Stones tune or mom playing Motown and country songs by Johnny Cash, Loretta Lynn or Patsy Cline on the stereo. That appreciation for music developed into the Perry kids learning how to play and perform themselves and the parents still being supportive.

“I remember years ago our dad didn’t know anything about music gear, production, or stages. He would get all the books he could and read and learn about it. He would actually set up our stages for us and our mom was our first bus driver too,” said Neil. “When we were all too young to drive she would get in the bus and drive us miles and miles, so we all started out as family and we are still working hard as a family.”

They are known as the hardest working band in the business for good reason. Coming off 20 dates in Paris, Germany, Sweden and other European countries The Band Perry are kicking off their North American leg in Penticton at the South Okanagan Events Centre on Thursday.

That is followed by dates in Kamloops, Prince George, Dawson Creek before they move across the country and into the U.S. in February.

“I will say coming back over here to Canada and the United States it is really exciting because we get to use our full production. We get a whole bunch of stairs, these fog jets that shoot up in the air so it is really cool to come back here and have the full-blown show. It is really exciting,” said Neil.

Even a short break in December didn’t keep them off the radar for long. The Band Perry held a question and answer session with fans on Twitter revealing one of their rituals before taking the stage.

Their guitar player always gives them a word of the night that has to go into the show.

“That is a lot of pressure for Andy coming up with the word of the night because we always say however good or bad the word of the night is so goes the show. We put a lot of pressure on Andy but he usually steps up to the plate,” said Reid. “He is already working on word of the night material and he is getting his list together. We should start writing some of these down but it normally has something to do with the town we are in.”

The Band Perry jumped right back into rehearsing and have been in Penticton since Monday getting a taste of the cold weather ahead of them.

“Shockingly, this is the first snow we have seen all year so we are excited about it,” said Reid.

The Band Perry have enjoyed sold out tours and numerous honours from the Academy of Country Music, Country Music Awards, CMT Awards as well as Grammy, Teen Choice, American Music Awards, American Country Awards and Billboard Music award nominations.

All of this has cemented the trio as one of the hottest acts in recent history. Still there was the dreaded sophomore album that has made or broken many artists. The trio said they felt as if they were walking into the unknown when it came to writing and recording Pioneer.

“People hear the word pioneer and they think of covered wagons or astronauts on the moon, but to us the idea of a pioneer is very modern,” Reid said. “It reflects the idea of putting one foot in front of the other when you’re unsure how to get where you’re going. It’s about marching forward and making noise.”

Kimberly agrees and said previously that you can hear it in the lyrics of the title track, Pioneer.

The lines ‘Where are we going? What will become of us?’ became their guiding light throughout the process of recording the album.

A light that has shone them down the right path with fiery, rock and roll influenced country sound that captures an intensity seen and felt at their live shows.

Pioneer tapped into what The Band Perry does best, getting back to what they know.

They have produced hits like country-rock stompers Done, Night Gone Wasted, emotional southern root songs including a tribute to their parents on Mother Like Mine and current hit Don’t Let Me Be Lonely.

Then there is playful platinum selling single Better Dig Two and meaningful song Back To Me Without You, which Kimberly wrote while dealing with the aftermath of a friendship that had imploded. The siblings said their sister had to take breaks from writing it to just be alone and cry.

“We wrote every song on this album probably four times,” said Neil. “Each time we’d finish, we’d ask ourselves. ‘Is this song completely honest about where we are in life? Does it say everything we want it to say?’”

By all accounts, they seemed to have accomplished that judging by the enthusiasm they display when talking about getting back on stage and performing.

The Perry brothers said those in attendance on Thursday will be listening to a new set list and have been bouncing around playing songs that are still “works in progress” mixed in with hits off Pioneer.

“Playing the new songs has given our live show a new burst of energy and the crowd feels it, too,” Neil said. “They’re as excited to have new music as we are.”

The Band Perry are performing at the SOEC on Thursday, kicking off the North American leg of the We Are Pioneers tour. Special guests include Easton Corbin and Lindsey Ell.

Tickets range are $29.50, $54.50 and $64.50 (plus applicable fees).

They are available in person at the Valley First Box Office at the SOEC , the Wine Country Visitor Centre, by phone at 1-877-SOEC-TIX or online at www.valleyfirsttix.com.

Doors to the South Okanagan Events Centre open at 6:30 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.

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