THUNDER BAY – Things have come together quickly for The Bros. Landreth.
The Winnipeg-based folk rock quartet has been on a tear since assembling in 2013, releasing their debut album and quickly gaining fans on both sides of the border.
The band’s two namesake members, Joey and David Landreth, each followed in their father’s footsteps pursuing a musical career, latching on as supporting musicians
Joey, the elder and now lead singer and primary songwriter, was formerly a sideman for country bands such as Doc Walker and Emerson Drive while David, two years younger, was previously best known as a bassist for Imaginary Cities.
It wasn’t until their mid-20s when they decided to try something new.
“It’s been a tremendous year and for a band so young, we’ve accomplished more in the past year-and-a-half than we all have in our collective sideman careers over the last decade plus,” Joey Landreth said.
“It’s a total ‘pinch me’ experience. We’ve been very fortunate and are riding off Lady Luck and being really thankful for all the good stuff we’ve been able to do.”
They are continuing their so-called run of good fortune this summer with a packed tour schedule that includes a spot at the Thunder Bay Blues Festival on Sunday.
Forming a band together was originally just a way for the two of them to spend some time together after being apart on the road for so many years.
It wasn’t expected they would delve into a full band, which now includes drummer Ryan Voth and guitar player Ariel Posen.
“We had been on the road so much in previous years we were looking for an excuse to hang out and maybe take a break from playing other folks’ tunes,” Landreth said.
“But when we started writing, working on the material and rehearsing for little gigs we picked up that was when we had an intangible feeling. The harder we worked and the more energy we poured into it the more we got back from it.”
The rewards have seemingly been non-stop for the band, which includes a U.S. contract with Slate Creek Records, which has brought Let It Lie to a whole new audience and brought recognition from major music industry titles such as Billboard and Rolling Stone.
Back in Canada, in March the band was caught off-guard when Let It Lie took home the Juno Award for Best Roots and Traditional Album of the Year. They hadn’t even prepared a thank-you list for fear of getting their hopes up.
Despite the success, there has been an adjustment period along the way.
Landreth admits he and his brother underestimated a lot of the off-stage aspects of being a band, such as scheduling tours and finding venues in cities and towns they’ve never been.
He also had to adapt to being the group’s frontman after just being another on-stage piece for so many years.
“Performance wise it’s totally different experience to be the one standing in the middle microphone position and having the responsibility of liaising with the crowd,” Landreth said.
“That’s a very steep learning curve certainly for me who’s used to hanging out on stage right as a guitar player.”
The band is in the middle of a summer festival swing, which included the Dauphin Country Fest in Manitoba last weekend and includes a stop at the Ottawa Blues Festival later this month.
Playing in a festival setting is special.
“The festival gigs are always awesome because as long as we’re able to play our best, the crowd is always nice. The crowd is always there to listen to music,” Landreth said.
“It’s hard to mess up. You really have to go out of your way to have a bad show at a festival.”
The Bros. Landreth are scheduled to rock Marina Park at 3:45 p.m. on Sunday.