Fans wondering if Moncton jam-blues-rockers Chris Colepaugh and the Cosmic Crew have fallen off the face of the earth need not panic. The group, comprised of Colepaugh, bassist Lynn Daigle and drummer Shawn Sasyniuk is set to release not one but two records over the next year and a half, ending a more than four-year “drought” since their last studio record “In Your Backyard”.
The four years that have passed since “…Backyard” can’t exactly be considered downtime by any stretch of the imagination however. After doing their typical endless tour schedule in support of that record, Colepaugh was offered an opportunity he simply couldn’t pass up.
Through his connection with Sasyniuk, Colepaugh was offered the opportunity to join Roch Voisine (for whom Sasyniuk also plays) on a tour through Europe. One tour with Voisine turned into two and before he knew it, the Cosmic Crew had inadvertently taken a back seat to his newfound “job”.
Bassist Lynn Daigle admits the opportunity for Colepaugh to tour with Voisine was too good to pass up and it was agreed upon that holding off on Cosmic Crew activity was fine with all concerned parties.
“When Chris got the call to tour with Roch, it kind of skewed our band plans,” the diplomatic Daigle starts. “At first, we thought he would only be on the first part of the tour but then he was asked to go another out with him for another three months. We were in the process of building a studio at the time and wanted to look at getting something out but deep down, we knew that we couldn’t launch a record and not tour in support of it. So we decided 2010 was the right time to bring focus back to the Cosmic Crew.”
The group’s upcoming record (slated for a fall release) is entitled “Missed A Page” and is actually a compilation of material that, while strong in its own right, had never found a proper home on any of the group’s prior releases. Daigle insists that these are not throwaway tracks intended to tide fans over until a “proper” record can be completed. Given the importance of continuity and flow in the context of a record, these tracks had merely never fit in the bigger picture of their other works.
The group’s second release (due out sometime in 2011) is “written and ready to go”, according to Daigle. With material that has been penned over the past year and a half, Daigle insists that she and Colepaugh pursuing interests outside of the band have proven to be a boon to the song writing process.
“Chris has matured so much as a songwriter,” she says. “I believe that practically all experiences can help make artists and songwriters better. Whether he is backstage with Roch Voisine or on stage with Gordie from Grady, Chris has had to learn to adapt and evolve to various situations without being the leader. I think it ultimately helps to broaden your horizons so that when you do write a song, you end up with a pallet of experience that you might not have had otherwise.”
Next on the group’s schedule is a performance as a part of the City of Moncton’s Mosaiq Concert Series being held in conjunction with the IAAF. Colepaugh and his crew will be performing alongside David Myles, Dominique Dupuis and more on Saturday July 24 in front of City Hall on Main Street.
“The IAAF is an amazing international event and we are proud to be part of the New Brunswick cultural component that is representing the great music of our province. It is going to allow us to connect with our fellow New Brunswick artists and bring international attention to the diverse music styles that make up the music industry in our province. It’s a solid week of amazing artists from all over our province and we are excited to be a part of it.”