– In March of 1985, at the age of 16, I picked up a guitar and attempted to learn how to play it.
– In December of 1985, at the Bonnyville Centralized High School “Christmas Concert”,
Ernie Basiliadis (15 years old) and I (17 years old) play our very first gig.
What we lacked in talent, we made up for in sheer volume.
Songs played or attempted were “Johnny B Goode” and “Hey Jude”.
We learned first hand what it’s like to have an audience “rolling the aisles.”
– In 1987, fresh out of high school, I hit the road with the first band that rolled though town.
For next 6 years, I roamed all over Western Canada, averaging 300 shows a year, in various cover bands and as a
folk singer / pub entertainer.
I slowly perfected my “craft” and learned how to read a crowd.
– In 1993, I released my first album, “Songs From A Northern Town”.
The first of many variations of the Mike Plume Band began to take shape.
I played just over 100 shows.
– From 1993 through 1995 the MPB averaged in and around 100-120 shows a year.
– In 1996, second album, “Jump Back, Kerouac”, is released and our fan base is slowly starting to build.
– In 1997, our third album, “Simplify”, and our fourth album “Song and Dance, Man” are released and the band starts to sell out shows all over Western Canada.
The “Song And Dance, Man” album was a critics top 10 pick of the year along with ‘OK Computer” by Radiohead.
“Simplify” sold almost 18,000 copies while, “Song and Dance, Man” went on to sell 25,000 units off the stage.
We made our first trip across the Atlantic for a tour of Holland, Belgium and Germany.
On New Years Eve we played at Niagara Falls for an estimated 30,000 revelers for the CTV New Years Eve Bash.
We played just north 170 shows.
– In 1998, to promote “Song And Dance, Man” we played 221 shows.
We made their first trip to Nashville.
– In 1999, we continued our breakneck pace by reeling out 249 one nighters.
To ring in the New Millennium, we played at the Sidetrack Cafe in Edmonton.
That night we knocked out a 62 song set, that lasted 4 hours and 15 minutes.
I woke up the next morning shocked, yet relieved, to see that the world didn’t end.
– In 2000, we hit the road in early January and didn’t get home until early July.
In May we released an EP called “Steel Belted Radio”.
We played another 225 one niters all over North America and Europe.
– In 2001, our sixth album, “Fools For The Radio” is released on September 11th.
We played just a shade over 200 shows.
— In 2002, we stopped our tour schedule almost entirely.
On October 25th, in Wakefield Quebec, we walked on stage together for, what we believed would be, the last time.
We played a 60 song set that lasts just shy of 4 hours.
I woke up the next morning to a whole new reality.
I went home to sleep and ponder my next move.
— In 2003, I released a “solo” album called “Table For One”.
I played less than 10 shows a year for the next 5 years.
– In 2004, I released an album called “Rock And Roll Recordings (Volume 1)”.
– In 2008 the MPB walked into a studio in Nashville Tennessee and recorded the album “8:30 Newfoundland”
– In 2009 the album, “8:30 Newfoundland” is released followed by an extensive tour of Canada.
The first single “This Is Our Home (8:30 Newfoundland)” cracked the Top 20 on CMT and to date has just shy of a quarter of a million Youtube hits.
– In 2010 the songs “8:30 Newfoundland” and “More Than A Game” are featured heavily during the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.
– In 2013, after the death of Stompin’ Tom Connors, I wrote a song called “So Long Stompin’ Tom”.
The song went viral and I was invited by the Connors family to play the song at his Memorial in Peterborough.
To date, it’s closing in on 200,000 unique Youtube hits.
– In June, MPB released a new album called “Red And White Blues”.
– In November in honour of our Nation’s War Hero’s, I released a song called “On Remembrance Day”.
– In December, we released a Holiday album called “Back Home For Christmas”.
– In May of 2016, I released a song in hopes of raising money for the city of Fort McMurray called “Song For Alberta”
– In early 2017, the idea of recording a new MPB album begins to take hold.
I’m old enough to know better, still young enough not to care.
Tuesday, April 19, 2017