The Stanfields are a five-piece rock/roots band based in Halifax NS, Canada. They play what they want, sing what they feel, and leave nothing on the table.
Jon Landry – Vox, Guitar, Harmonica,
Calen Kinney – Violin or Fiddle, Bouzouki, Vox
Jason MacIsaac – Guitar, Vox
Dillan Tate – Bass, Vox
Mark Murphy – Drums, Vox
Now that the requisite, third person elevator pitch is out of the way, allow me to tell you an abridged, frank version of the story rather than rhyming off a short laundry list of accomplishments, deeds and merits.
My name is Jon.
Around 2007, after having a couple false starts in my fledgling music career, I found myself in the company of four guys who shared the same moral background and burning desire to play. Each one of these guys experienced similar versions of my life, having busted their knuckles in various trades to finance the quest for the holy grail of artistic satisfaction.
An overwhelming desire to fuck shit up? Definitely.
The romantic in me is adamant that fate was doing her thing; the pessimist in me struggles to build an argument. Playing together was effortless. There was no “get to know you” period or mandatory team building exercises. Jovial blarney was tossed around at a staggering rate, but not many real words were actually said. They didn’t have to be said; we were running on spit and vinegar. One night, our still nameless group gathered at an apartment in Halifax to have our third or fourth rehearsal. It was a Wednesday. I think we only played for about 20 minutes. Some other friends came over. Rum was involved. There may have been a chair fight. There was glass everywhere.
The Stanfields were born.
Gene and Jay aren’t in the band anymore, as you may have noticed in the elevator pitch. It’s all good. We parted professionally in good faith and trust, and remain a family built upon love and understanding. It was a hell of a run. It’s impossible to sum up seven years of collective focus without getting into novella territory, but I think you get the idea.
We’ve suckered our good buddies Dillan and Calen into the fold. These guys are ridiculously good players and sort-of-ok guys, sometimes. Us old guys don’t like the jib these sawed-off punks are cutting, but god damn, they are bringing something new and exciting to the table. I already can’t wait to start working on the next record, but I digress.
The Stanfields are a funny little band, an entity often mired in contradiction. While most of our songs sit firmly within the parameters of folklore, social justice and temperance, one of our most recognizable tunes is called “The Dirtiest Drunk (in the History of Liquor)”. I honestly count my blessings that the song exists and loathe the very thought of ever having written it at the same time. It was conceived as a tongue-in-cheek warning against over-consumption, yet we all had our turns being the very caricature the song portrays. It’s hilariously odd in the way it was lauded by Joe Public (mostly), yet mildly tragic in how it defined us henceforth as a beer schlepping pub band by bored, pedantic tastemakers lacking the will to investigate the true undercurrent of anything outside the comfort of their wheelhouse.
Alas, we lay in the bed we make.
On a broader scale, this is a trend that has reared its head regularly throughout our relatively short career. We’ve been celebrated as working class heroes and dismissed as shallow provincials more times than I can count. Of course, none of that really matters. There’s little glory in laurels bestowed by faceless names, as there’s little anguish borne from whips lashed by nameless trolls.
We remain ever grateful for the generosity of hard working colleagues, patient families, and a remarkably devout fan base. To that end, it’s with great pride (and no great expectation) that we present our new record: Modem Operandi.
I’ll spare you the colorful wordplay that typifies the description of a new release; I for one have become sick and tired of being misled by the classic oversell.I suspect you are no different and invite you to draw your own conclusions.