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Richard Hawley • View topic - Leeroy Stagger + Dennis Ellsworth @ The Greystones, July 9th

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:14 am 
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On Tuesday July 9th, WagonWheel Presents… welcomes Canada’s Leeroy Stagger and his band to The Greystones. Leeroy comes to the UK in support of his 8th studio album “Truth Be Sold” produced by Grammy Award winner Steve Berlin of Los Lobos. Over the years, Leeroy Stagger has shared the stage with plenty of talented musicians, including The Pixies, Ron Sexsmith, Joel Plaskett and his songs have received placement on TV shows such as Greys Anatomy and Sons Of Anarchy. He has garnered an international fan base after relentless touring both home and abroad. It is simply a matter of time before Stagger joins the likes of Ryan Adams, John Hiatt and Steve Earle as an ambassador for North American Roots Rock n Roll.

Opening the show will be Leeroy’s fellow Canadian, Dennis Ellsworth. His most recent release, Dusk Dreams, was recorded in Athens, Georgia, with acclaimed musician and producer, David Barbe (Drive By Truckers, Cracker, Bob Mould/Sugar). The album consists of ten songs that blend folk, pop, country, lounge, blues, soul, and whatever else. Critics are calling Dusk Dreams, Dennis Ellsworth’s most beautifully crafted release to date. Advance tickets priced at £9 are available from or over the bar at the venue (12-6pm). Entry on the night will be £11. Doors open 7.30pm for an 8pm start.


***LEEROY STAGGER***



Born in Victoria, British Columbia and raised on a little island on the very west coast of Canada, Stagger spent most of his youth with his grandparents who exposed him to the world of country music. Developing his musical drive early on, Stagger formed his first punk rock band at age 18. Songwriting came shortly after with themes revolving around his childhood, traveling, relationships, substance abuse and the tribulations of life. Having collaborated with one of his icons, Danny Michel, Stagger found commercial success in the song, “Just in Case”, which was featured twice on the television hit, Grey’s Anatomy.

The life of being on the road and touring at a fast pace did not wear easily on Stagger, who at age 26, realized he had an alcohol problem that was affecting his ability to perform with the commitment and heart his songs demanded. Clean and sober since, Stagger has a strong desire to inspire young musicians that they do not have to succumb to the pitfalls of substance abuse, which can be prevalent in a musician’s touring lifestyle.

8th studio album “Truth Be Sold” was produced by Grammy Award winner Steve Berlin of Los Lobos. Recorded at Portland Oregon’s Mystery Machine Studios “PDX” it takes listeners on a journey to the edge of Stagger’s Heavy Roots Rock n Roll mind.

The 11 song album is a mix of brand new songs as well as Berlin’s picks from Stagger’s demo vault. The beautifully scathing “Cities On Fire” was written 8 years ago but was updated in the studio to document the Occupy Wall Street movement that was gaining momentum while the record was being made. In a departure from Staggers rootsy past, Stagger lets his punk rock past re emerge with a tip of the hat to “The Stooges” and “Queens of The Stones Age”.

Featuring fuzzed out guitars, midi sax solos under Stagger’s rollicking vocal deliveries, Grammy Award winner Steve Berlin took the band well away from their comfort zone. “Steve had a gigantic suitcase of percussion and a weird pedals. There wasn’t a song we recorded that didn’t have some foreign object taped to the drum kit or a pedal plugged into a guitar”, says Stagger,“ like the drum intro to “Celebrity” and the guitar on “Memo”. Berlin also played keyboards on the record and added his signature baritone sax sound to the Stones-ish rocker “Goodnight Berlin”.

“Leeroy Stagger is an extraordinarily talented singer, songwriter and player”, says Berlin, “and I’ve utterly enjoyed the process of collaborating with him on the new record. He has a unique combination of street smarts and a comprehensive world view that is rare among the current crop of today’s young artists.”

“Truth Be Sold” will be released 4th June on Clubhouse Records.




***DENNIS ELLSWORTH***



Dennis Ellsworth is a prolific songwriter. Lately, he’s been in the rhythm of writing, recording and releasing an album a year. He travels around the planet singing what he writes. He’s optimistically dark. Naturally, he writes shadowy lyrics and his melodies linger. His songs are haunting, in a good way. His voice is distingue. He was raised on Roy Orbison, Neil Diamond and Kris Kristofferson.

The guitar he writes on was rescued from the corner of a 1970’s rich summer home in the Catskills of New York. Many have offered him thousands for it, but he won’t sell. If he sold it, maybe he could buy some things he needs, but then he may not be able to write cool songs anymore. He is certain the gift comes through that guitar. It’s his forever.

His last six records, including the two with Haunted Hearts were all recorded live in a studio or a house. They vary in style and production, but they all share Dennis’ timeless songwriting. He brings people together and he lets them influence his songs. He is a collaborator. He is wise enough to know how important it is to leave a window open for the breeze to wisp in. His new, upcoming record is a perfect example of how positively special this can be.

Dennis met Josh Finlayson in Halifax, NS in June 2012. He had just released the David Barbe produced record, Dusk Dreams. He was opening for Skydiggers, three nights in a row, and he was thinking about making a record that was more acoustic and mellow. The two began to wonder about making a record and after several months, Dennis started sending Josh demos. The telephone lines between Charlottetown and Toronto were buzzing with their ideas. Without even a second glance, the original idea was long gone, and a new, far more elaborate plan had formed.

In February 2013, over five winter days and wine filled nights, at the Bathouse, on the shores of lake Ontario, Dennis, Josh, and the carefully selected pack of dynamite musicians congregated for a mammoth, twenty song recording session. Of the twenty songs, fifteen were mixed and mastered. Of the fifteen, a song sequence will present itself. The process again, was live and Dennis let everyone share in it. This record is a high step up and it is filled with hope.

Dennis has been nominated for different awards, he’s won a few, and he’s grateful. His passion for music is deep, and he knows no other way. He’s tried and failed to find solace in other places.

Dennis learned very early in life that music makes him happy. It has promised, it has saved, it has let him down, but it has always been his friend. Aside from his beautiful and loving wife and his cat Winsloe, music is the truest companion he could ever have.

If you need him for anything he’s probably out for a stroll with his friend…. or his wife. Either that, or maybe he’s in your town and if so, you should be at his show.




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Last.fm Event page:


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:13 am 
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This will be a week today. Leeroy's new album “Truth Be Sold” has been getting some amazing press, here's one of the reasons why:


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:11 pm 
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This is tomorrow and promises to be something special. Leeroy & his band headlined the Maverick festival on Saturday and are apparently on fire. Just £9 in advance from WGT/Greystones/if you ask me nicely and i'll save them at the cheaper price on the door.


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