Rob Higgins is certainly no stranger to the Canadian music scene. Over the past two decades, he has logged miles as a part of celebrated indie band Change Of Heart, Rocket Science as well as his latest band Dearly Beloved.
The latter is celebrating the release of a new EP in Canada (their third release in this country) as well as their full-length American debut on the Zoe label, a division of the renowned Rounder Records label.
The band is running on a renewed sense of purpose these days after enduring some behind-the-scenes drama which had the group in a holding pattern for much longer than they would have cared for. To top it off, their unwanted downtime coincided with the release of their second album “Repo Repo Repo”.
Higgins pulls no punches in describing what went down in the “lost” time:
“It was a matter of having to take a step back to take a step forward. I woke up one day and realized that I didn’t want to work with the people I was working with any longer.”
“It definitely hurt the band in terms of momentum as it prevented us from giving Repo its due support and promotion. But then in the bigger picture, I realized that the inconvenience of having to take a step back would be worth forging new relationships. It was ultimately the price we had to pay to get on the path we are on.”
Judging by the press and accolades currently coming the band’s way, it was a well thought-out move. That move, combined with the push from Zoe is helping to raise the group’s profile every day.
The group’s affiliation with their US label came about in a rather unusual way with Higgins having met one of the Zoe principal owners at a funeral. After having the opportunity to reconnect with one another at a later time, a mutual interest in developing a working relationship soon evolved.
“I had the opportunity to look into their label and was blown away by what they did,” Higgins says. “Not only has the Rounder label been around for a long time but they stick with their artists and offer people quality music rather than focusing on what’s hip at that very moment.”
While the band has a cult following in their own country, they have a sensible and realistic approach to breaking into the gigantic but potentially lucrative American market: Rather than spreading themselves thin and trying to be everywhere in the US promoting their new record, they are targeting specific regions for touring and promotion.
“It doesn’t feel quite as daunting when you focus on one area rather than trying to chase radio and getting spins coast to coast. I think you can really spin your wheels and not accomplish anything if you try to be everywhere at once. Our approach is similar to the way that bands would have done things in the 70’s: get in a van and tour one part of the US and get something happening in those areas and then branch out to other markets.”
For more information on the world of Dearly Beloved, check out their website at www.dearlybelovedmusic.com for all the latest and greatest news.