During the course of their decade-long career, beloved Halifax jam band The Jimmy Swift Band amassed a rabidly dedicated following not only here in the Maritimes but right across Canada. But in 2011, just after that year’s East Coast Music Awards, the Jimmy Swift Band fell silent as the group’s members made their one-time side projects their primary focus.
The group’s split wasn’t as much rooted in distaste for one another or the business as much as they feel the band had simply runs its course.
“We performed some shows during the East Coast Music Awards in 2001 and then decided to call it quits,” Jimmy Swift Band guitarist-vocalist Craig Mercer explains. “The band had just reached its expiration date. After spending 10 years playing more than 1000 shows with the same people in the same band, it was just time to step away for a while. But we always lamented the fact that we didn’t do a final run of shows or even give people any warning that a split was imminent.”
And so the Jimmy Swift Band is reuniting to perform a series final shows throughout the Maritimes, including one tomorrow evening at Moncton’s Tide & Boar Gastropub.
Craig says that the seeds for the band’s upcoming run of shows were planted late last year. The members of the group began speaking to one another and discovered that each of them were genuinely interested in undertaking a farewell tour, even if it was taking place a few years late.
Once word got out of the group’s return for a final hurrah, Craig says that show offers began rolling in from all corners of the country, proving the demand for the group was as fervent as ever. But with their respective careers and families, the group settled upon playing a series of shows in the Maritime provinces.
“It certainly is a nice pat on the back to be sought after even though we haven’t played for the last few years,” he says. “The music scene these days is really tough. For us to have been able to make a living off playing music as an independent band is nothing short of remarkable. We were definitely one of the luckiest bands going. Our fans are so incredibly loyal. We certainly owe our success to them especially in light of the fact that we never were a commercial band that had radio or video hits to fall back on.”
What: The Jimmy Swift Band
When: Saturday June 28, 9:00 p.m.
Where: The Tide & Boar Gastropub, 700 Main St., Moncton