1971: with no artistic and musical restrictions, a true punk band from Canada

1971 are a Canadian band looking for venues & bookers for their summer tour in Ontario and Quebec, after their last tour in western Canada last year

Hi. Tell us something about the 1971 project.
Garrett Iverson, Cam Cranston and I started 1971 early 2011. We’d all been jamming with each other separately and finally thought “Why the hell haven’t we started a band all together yet?” We wanted to start a punk band and have no artistic and musical restrictions; what we think punk truly means.

Tell us something about your last album.
The album is called 1971. We were in a rush to release it to have something new for a tour we did last September with ALBATROS (Quebec City), just a cassette with new material so we just called it 1971, even though it’s our third release.

How is being a band from Kenora – Canada? What’s the best live act in your area? Tell us something about it.
Being from Kenora is pretty miserable for any band. It’s a very small and isolated city in the middle of nowhere. The closest city is Winnipeg, Manitoba and that’s still a two-and-a-half hour drive west for us. We’ve been living between Kenora and Winnipeg the past few years. Neither have been great for us, but we do well touring, especially in eastern Canada.
I don’t want to sound pretentious, but I honestly think we’re the best live act in our area. Maybe not the best band, but I’ve never seen people dance and get up for any other original acts. We have pretty wild shows for such small shows around here.

Tell us something about the Canadian musical movement? Are you connected with other bands or musical movements in Canada?
Yes! We have some really great friends in bands around the country. It’s basically the only way we’ve been able to tour and be successful accomplishing them. Southern Ontario and Quebec have really wild, great scenes. Lots of punk bands coming out of Toronto have recently blew up. Other than that, tons of shows, festivals and DIY networking and attitude. A lot of house shows in southern Ontario, especially in Ottawa. Every time we’ve been to Vancouver they’ve been really good to us too. There’s some really awesome bands out of there as well, just touring western Canada is hard since cities are so far apart (I’m talking 15hr drives sometimes JUST to get to the next city) and scenes are very secluded. It’s hardly worth it until you get to Vancouver.

Which artists have influenced your style & sound, if any?
We are influenced by a LOT of bands and artists. Neil Young, Attack In Black, Constantines have been our biggest influences sonically and artistically, but we’ve got some different tastes that we share amongst each-other and incorporate styles and sounds. We like to experiment with our sound without pedals and effects, but with styles and our instruments.

What’s the last live music show you’ve seen?
Hellvar at Gaukurkin in Reykjavik Iceland. Amazing band, amazing bar, best city, best country. Stumbled upon that show while my girlfriend and I were wandering around the downtown centre. Asked a guy at the restaurant we were at if he knew of any shows going on that night and as soon as he said Icelandic Punk show we had to go! It was free entrance too. I want to play a gig there someday, so badly! Iceland is my favourite country. I’ve been dead broke and in isolated Kenora since I got back from Europe so no shows for me for a while.

Tell us something about your best and your worst memory on the road.
Best memory is that we we’re drunk… Worst memory is not remembering anything.

Did you plan to have a tour in the next future, maybe in Europe? Tell us something about it.
We don’t have any immediate plans to tour Europe, however really would like to in the near future. We just started booking a summer tour of Ontario and Quebec in Canada. We’re moving to either southern Ontario or maybe Montreal in autumn, so perhaps we could start looking into Europe once we’re established in a new city.

Jory, we met this January in a nice club called El Diablo in Lille – it was my birthday and it was a nice night… I was on tour with my band Seditius and Antares. That night we had a show with Rewinder from Paris. It was a totally random meeting… What do you think about the European scene? Did you find differences in the way you book shows in Europe and in North America? Is there a difference in professionalism, organization etc.?
First of all, we got hammered. That was an awesome night! You guys put on a killer show! I think it was more like fate. I really didn’t get to experience as much of the European scene as much as I would have liked to, but the shows I stumbled upon were all pretty killer. I know that there’s a great DIY scene in Europe and a lot of great opportunities for touring DIY bands: lots of squats and DIY spaces throughout Europe, and stuff like what you do with Live Trigger.
It seems to me the attitude with bars and venues in Europe is that they’re not reluctant to pay bands and they treat the profession with respect, unlike some bars and venues in North America. I understand if a band is really unprofessional and there’s no turnout the bar is getting fucked over (they’re in it to make money) and music isn’t and shouldn’t be a game of handouts, but sometimes it does happen for various reasons that aren’t really anyone’s fault, but there’s a lot of places, especially in oblivious small cities, that don’t understand how the musician-venue exchange operates and that we are actually doing them a service, bringing in crowds, especially crowds who are there to see the music and actually party, have fun and move around, and make them money to them at the bar. Also it gives the place a good reputation for being cool. Some of that is obvious conservatism that we could easily beat if we had money and could open up our own space. It’s a small city, but not every kid wants to play hockey, and some, like us, liked both.
I also think some spaces in Europe are more open-minded and scenes are less ‘clicky’, which I really hope is true because I hate that about most out of the Canadian scene. I could be very wrong though. What I was very surprised about was when you guys told me you’re DIY and that most of you don’t have jobs and live off music for the most part. That’s every bands dream! …And I want to know how you do it haha.

What do you think of Livetrigger.com? Do you think it could be a good tool to facilitate the process of booking and organizing shows? Do you have any suggestions?
I think it’s a great idea! Having an alternative to Facebook especially is really important; to have the same convenience however a more professional social-networking tool to book shows. It’s hard to judge sometimes if a promoter is going to be pissed off if you message their Facebook, even though that’s the contact info you were given, and would rather have an email with press-kit and bio shit etc. Or if they’re like myself and would actually be turned off by a long, cock-stroking bio with glossy photos and their “big debut album” plastered over an email/message.
I think LiveTrigger is really easy to use, love the little tutorial that pops up and that you have this LiveTrigger Mag/blog to accompany the website! My only critical input would be that it’s hard to browse bands/promoters/venues etc. Unless you’re searching specific places. I think it would be really cool to have a feed similar to other social networks just to see check out the bands and people that are so far using it. I am however going to do my best to spread this resource in North America. I think it’s really great.