Sell out or step up?

I am sitting here at the peak performance Project bootcamp at the Rockridge Canyon Retreat in Pentiction BC and I must admit Im a wee bit stunned.
The Peak performance project is a an Alberta/BC competition between 12 bands in each province for a first place award of $100,000! Its put on by the Peak radio station in Calgary and Vancouver.
I hate the idea of competition in art but I will fully admit this project is Amazing, Im sitting in one of the most beautiful places on the planet surrounded by over 100 really great musicians and industry professionals spending a week talking art and how to make it better and get it out to the world in a better way. I feel like I have been plugged into a light socket. I Love being around artists, It reminds me of why I do this. This is not a n easy path in life this musician thing but these development programs help big time.
I wish music could speak for itself these days but it doesn’t sadly, so here I am staring at a beautiful lake watching the Rainbow trout jumping. My pal Glenn is giving a seminar on social media and how to do it better (I need mega help on this!) and I just have to have a chuckle. who would’ve though that this is the new music business? Anyway, happy and grateful to be here.

Braden has Fun at Summer Camp

I am tucked in a corner outside the building where everyone eats food. There is a wasp hanging around and I am nervous. I don’t like wasps.

I do like music though, and there has been a lot of it here at the PEAK PERFORMANCE PROJECT TWENTY FIFTEEN. Twenty four bands from British Columbia and Alberta have gathered to learn from a gaggle of professionals in the ever changing music industry. I am grateful to be a part of this.

I have learned about fashion. I have learned about how to maintain a great online presence. I have learned about booking tours and what kind of deals there are between promotors and artists. I have learned about trying to sell yourself, and I have learned about how to behave appropriately in a radio interview. It is great to take part in workshops and keynotes that establish important details that need to be taken care of.

I think my mother is happy that I am here.


Second Day of Camp

Here we are. Day 2 at the Peak Performance Bootcamp. Whenever I hear “Bootcamp” I’m reminded of wasted weekdays watching Maury or Montel Williams sending teenagers off to Bootcamp where they go through awful things like Sit-Ups and squats and being yelled at… Although I don’t have a military stereotype screaming in my ear reminding me that “I’m at bootcamp now!” This is still a pretty intense experience and quite exhausting.

Yesterday we had a jam pack day consisting of…

  • Class : The Other 12 Step Program w. Bob Deith
  • Breakout : Social Media w. Glen Erickson
  • FOOD
  • Breakout : Performance Coaching w. Earl Pereira & Kahlil Ashanti
  • Breakout : Tour Booking w. Rob Thornton
  • Breakout : Styling w. Kate Matthews
  • FOOD
  • 3 Hours of Concerts
  • etc…

and then somewhere in that time you are expected to socialize, social media (which basically means being anti-social) and write a blog.

That being said. Yesterday. Great. Fun. Tasty. Exhilarating. Exhausting. Sleep. Snore. Wake Up. Sleep. Snore. Wake Up. BLOG!

– Jared


First Day of Camp

Hello Friends! Here we are. Again. At the Peak Performance Project 2015 Bootcamp. Bethany & I (Jared) are thrilled to take in another glorious year of an absolutely jam-packed-mentally-exhausting week at RockRidge Canyon in Princeton, BC.
It feels weird being back here again. Every moment, feeling, smell brings back memories from last year. It can be awkward for us being introverted Phlegmatic and Melancholic to meet knew people and step out into the unknown. (or sort of known) But this year we brought our latest addition to the family. Robbie. Robbie is outgoing as well as Hungarian. Which basically means he’s assertive ( to put it nicely 🙂 Robbie plays the cellos/drums/drum machine and is a great addition to our sound and our band personality.
So. Moving forward. and/or backwards.
The Journey.
We got up bright and early on Wednesday morning (insert a frankly insulting musician joke here from an annoying uncle…) and drove down to Kamloops to stay the night with Bethany’s parents Dave & Cathy Schumacher. They greeted us with hugs, cocktails and a beautiful turkey dinner. Cathy never disappoints. The following morning we were stuffed with Swedish Pancakes and sausages that I’m pretty sure came from The Shire. After stuffing our faces we wrapped up our discussions of theology and what’s wrong with the world and hit the smoky trail. After a 2 hour drive winding down through a gorgeous valley we had arrived at the always stunning RockRidge Canyon!
We were greeted by the lovely staff at Alberta Music, dropped off our gear and proceeded onwards to lunch. Meal at RockRidge are definitely a cut above the rest when it comes to “Camp Food.” Outstanding. We then proceeded on to orientation. Yada Yada Yada. Ice breakers. Yada Yada Yada. And on to songwriting…
Each year an Alberta band is paired with a BC band to cowrite a song together that will be Produced, Recorded, Mixed and Mastered all by the end of the week! We have been paired with the incredible “Find The Others” A solo musician (sorta) from Bowden Island. It has been an absolute delight. Andy (Find The Others) is not only an incredible gifted Songwriter/Lyricist but he’s also an incredible guy. Not too many “Rock Stars” have humility, but Andy breaks the mould, which is so refreshing. I mean we just met him so I guess it’s possible that he’s a little too kind and actually a serial killer…but we’re 99.9999999999% sure he’s just awesome! Our producer is Josh Rob Gwilliam. An incredibly talented and insightful producer from Calgary, AB. We are very excited to work with him and see him do his magic on the song. We are also 99.9999999999999% sure he’s just awesome.
After our songwriting session we moved on to more pressing issues. Our sound check for our performance! Every band is expected to perform on one of the nights at Boot Camp.
The first band was Jesse Roper. A killer blues/rock guitarist! His stage presence and playing not to mention his band were incredible tight. It was a pleasure to see them! We were lucky enough to go second and rip it off like a band-aid. It was a scary endeavour for us as we had only performed these songs once before one month prior to boot camp but we pushed through despite some technical difficulties (and personal ones 😉 which are bound to happen on the first night as the amazing sound team have to assemble an entire pro stage with lighting and the works in just one day! And WE have to assemble all our gear on stage in 10 minutes. We were then judged on our performance by industry pros. Results were so-so but we didn’t mind. It was great to learn and to get the bugs out HERE where nothing counts for marks and it’s all about the development of the artist. After our performance two more bands performed. Little India who created beautiful textures and killer tone and the gutsy rock and roll of Cowpuncher.
After all the concerts finished at around 10:30 we skipped out on the annual staff vs. students hockey game because we don’t do sports. We instead decided to tackle some lyrics with Andy in the dorm room. He set up his impressive rig and we hurt our brains trying to think of imperfect rhymes and make sense of the song lyrically. At 12 we hit that wall where every idea is a good idea… so we decided to call it a night. Robbie and I went to our dorm room and Bethany went to hers and for the first time several months I slept alone. I’m not gonna lie. It was lonely and for all of my frustrations to Bethany stealing the sheets and scratching my back with her razor sharp toe nails I missed her. A lot… This week is gonna be tough. But rewarding. But tough.
5am. The breakfast bell goes off. Wait. It’s just someone snoring. So out of bed I go to finish this blog and get some work that actually makes me money done. (insert another stupidly insensitive musician joke from over-opinionated uncle here.)
– Jared

A Ssssssensual First Day

Hello Internet.

Welcome to the inside VIP backstage access of the most notorious Bootcamp for musicians on the planet. I am your host, Spencer Morphy of The Velveteins.

Today, as you may understand from the title, is the first and foremost day of the PEAK PERFORMANCE BOOTCAMP. Heavy stuff I know. However i am most pleased to welcome you to the party.

The night prior consisted of showcases from four very tasty bands (Jesse Roper, The Royal Foundry, Little India, and Cowpuncher), and a heated match of ball hockey in which the faculty won in poor sport. Afterwards the bands collected and hovered around till the wee hours of the night, getting to know each other and amusing ourselves with charming games.

This made for a very groggy and unconventional initiation morning for us musicians, you know being primarily night owls, and the early call of 7:30 was greeted with an almost humorous sigh.

However any thoughts of lack of sleep soon were dissolved when breakfast was served, and if I can take this chance to make a quick remark, I just want to say. The food is goddamn good.

Personally I’m just not used that. The only place I feel rivals this sort of splendour is a home cooked meal at my family’s home. So after a quite refreshing fill of eggs, hash browns and sausage, we were on our way.

Up first was a keynote by C.E.O and Excutive Director of Music BC, Bob D’Eith. All the bands piled into the Club Room downstairs of the resort, which I must say is the maddest resort I’ve ever seen, and listen to what good ole Bob had to say. Very extensive stuff.

Next we had a session with Rob Thornton, of the Agency Group. The seminar was on booking shows, and how booking agencies generally work. Rob had a good inside look into how the gears really turn.

Anyways. The sessions are rad. Everything is rad. And what is more rad is Laytem Kramer and I caught a snake. Stay tuned!

Layten Kramer w/ friends



First Day of Camp!

First day of Camp was Awesome! We had Eggs for breakfast. Mom wrote my name in all my clothes so I wouldn’t lose anything. She is Awesome. Her Eggs aren’t as good as camp but I won’t tell her. There were some people that saw a bear driving to camp. that would be scary. We played hockey against the camp staff. they won but they cheated with too many men when they scored. I have to go.

Alumni Roundup | August 15


August 15 | SAVK @ Wine-Ohs, Calgary, AB, CAN
August 20 | Port Juvee @ Broken City, Calgary, AB, CAN
August 21 | 36?Nite Owl, Calgary, AB, CAN
August 21 – 23 | Scenic Route to AlaskaSynchronicity 2015, Gibsons, BC, CAN
August 28 | Nuela Charles @ The Mercury Room, Edmonton, AB, CAN
September 4 | Port Juvee @ Starlite Room, Edmonton, AB, CAN
September 9 | 36? @ Brixx Bar & Grill, Edmonton, AB, CAN
September 10 – 13 | Scenic Route to Alaska @ Bermuda Fest 2015, Edmonton, AB, CAN
September 11 | The Royal Foundry @ Banff, AB, CAN
September 12 | 36? @ Downtown, Lethbridge, AB, CAN
September 12 | The Royal Foundry @ Kelowna, BC, CAN
September 12| Scenic Route to Alaska @ Love & Records 2015, Lethbridge, AB, CAN
September 13 | The Royal Foundry @ Salmon Arm, BC, CAN
September 14 | The Royal Foundry @ Vancouver, BC, CAN
September 17 | 36? @ BreakOut West Festival WCMA, Victoria, BC

Alumni Roundup | July 15


July 18 | 36?East Village Riverwalk, Calgary, AB, CAN
July 18 | The Wet SecretsFolk on the Rocks, Yellowknife, NT, CAN
July 19 | The Royal Foundry @ Churchill Square, Edmonton, CAN
July 22 | PORT JUVEE @ Ship & Anchor, Calgary, CAN
July 22 | Scenic Route to AlaskaVan Gogh’s EarGuelph, ON, CAN
July 23-26 | SAVKCalgary Folk Festival, Calgary, CAN
July 24 | Scenic Route to Alaska @ Detour Music HallSaint Catharines, ON, CAN
July 24 | The Wet Secrets @ Interstellar Rodeo Edmonton 2015, Edmonton, AB, CAN
July 25 | 36? @ Taste of Edmonton, Edmonton, AB, CAN
July 26 | Scenic Route to Alaska @ The CasbahHamilton, ON, CAN
Aug 3 | Scenic Route to Alaska @ Heritage Amphitheatre, William Hawrelak Park, Edmonton, CAN
Aug 21-23 | Scenic Route to Alaska @ Synchronicity 2015, Gibsons, CAN

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