Entertainment Features

Dead Flowers: Canadian Stars Salute Rolling Stones Best Country

Dead Flowers: Canadian Stars Salute Rolling Stones Best Country


By David DeRocco

It speaks volumes about a rock band’s longevity when a tribute act forms to pay homage to just three albums in the originator’s musical catalogue. When that band is The Rolling Stones – creators of 30 studio albums, 21 live albums, 29 compilations, 109 singles and countless bootlegs over an illustrious half-century-long musical career – then the existence of the musical collective known as DEAD FLOWERS makes perfect sense.

To die-hard fans of the “World’s Greatest Rock and Roll Band,” what also makes perfect sense is the fact DEAD FLOWERS is focusing their tribute on three seminal albums from Stones’ catelogue – Let It Bleed, Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street. This four-year stretch from ’69-’72 is considered by many to be the band’s most prolific and influential period for a number of reasons: the influence Keith had on the music, the influence Gram Parsons had on Keith, the influence drugs had on them both and, most important of all, the influence Mick Taylor had on the exquisite country-blues infused rock and roll flowing out of the recording sessions.

Knowing the reverence fans hold for those classic recordings is the reason DEAD FLOWERS came into existence according to founding member Shawn Creamer.

“From a musician’s standpoint, (The Stones) were just so tight but so loose, such an incredible band in that respect,” said Creamer, owner of Toronto’s famed Dakota Tavern. “Their songs were obviously coming from a blues influence, they were often doing blues covers, but they did them in such a sweet and sexy way. I don’t think anyone else managed to do that, maybe Led Zeppelin on a couple songs. But those guys are in their 70s and they still sound sexy. I don’t know how they pull it off.”

From “Country Honk” and “You Got the Silver” to “Wild Horses,” “Sway,” “Sweet Virginia” and “Torn and Frayed,” the Stones were putting a cheeky British twist on the classic sound of American country music and creating some of the most memorable songs of the era. Recreating that music with a credible live tribute has never been easy, but DEAD FLOWERS is no ordinary cover band. For starters, Creamer and guitarist Jud Ruhl are both members of The Beauties, recognized as one of Toronto’s top alt-country bands; members Darcy Yates (Flash Lightnin’, Bahamas), Adam Warner (Sinners Choir), Nichol Robertson (Mercenaries) and Blue Rodeo keyboardist Michael Boguski have all bought into the vision of performing this loving ode to the Stones, which began with a house residency at the Dakota this past summer.

When DEAD FLOWERS takes the stage December 17th at The Studio at Hamilton Place, they’ll also be joined by Juno-Award winning Hamiltonian Tomi Swick, along with Maple Blues Award nominee Samantha Sugar. Thanks to those additions, the performance at the Studio – much like the legendary Exile recording sessions that took place in the basement of Keith Richards’ Paris home – is going to be a giant jam session worthy of the incomparable set list of Stones classics.

“They’re joining us on stage, singing songs and playing tunes along with us,” said Creamer of the addition of Swick and Sugar. “It’s really going to be so much fun. I can’t wait to play these songs in front of a new audience we haven’t played to before. It’s a fun nostalgic trip of a show!”

Venue: The Studio at Hamilton Place (formally Molson Canadian Studio)

Venue Address:  1 Summers Lane, Hamilton Ontario

Date:  Saturday December 17

Time:  8:00 pm

More Info + Tickets:  CoreEntertainment.ca and Ticketmaster.ca

Direct Ticket Link: http://bit.ly/2fS8CYG