These guys can be forgiven for their sentimentality.
When a big chunk of your town burns down, everyone evacuated, and all industry in the area threatened, it will cause you to ponder the big issues of life.
The Sentimental Gentlemen have to be on tour right now, because the Fort McMurray band can't go home. No one in their city can. With their hard-earned skills as musicians, they had the ability to take their livelihoods mobile, however, as well as tell the wrenching story of lives shattered and a municipality thrown into crisis, and they also had the ability to raise some funds to help their own.
The rock quartet is on track for about 30 shows in the next couple of months, from B.C. to Ontario.
The fire happened to coincide with the outreach for their current album The Devil's In The Details, so it was time to hit the road anyway. That's where Rob Eustis (drums), Mackenzie Walas (vocals and guitar), Joe Howes (guitar), Jeremy Connell (bass) can be found right now, closing in on a few appearances in the Prince George region.
"Since the day we found out our hometown of Fort McMurray was on fire and our friends and family evacuated, we have gotten an outpouring of support from people and venues all across the country wanting to help out," said Walas.
"It turns out that thankfully all of our friends and family are safe and our homes are still standing. That being said, we lost a bunch of musical equipment and instruments that we were keeping at our friend's house that burnt down. We never thought of quitting the tour or postponing any dates. We decided that we need to continue this tour to be a voice for Fort McMurray and try and raise as much money as we can before we head back to help with the cleanup. We feel like we have a new mission and purpose to help in a unique way to give back to the community that has given us so much. If anyone wants to help we encourage everyone to donate what they can to the Canadian Red Cross."
This is a band that isn't worth seeing by sole virtue of charity. They have become a legitimate contender in the rock 'n' roll ring in Western Canada. The Sentimental Gentlemen had the privilege of sharing the stage with The Sheepdogs, The Trews, and Trooper to name a few, and their new music video for the single Kicking Stones has been collecting views by the decimal place - more than 50,000 to date.
To see the Sentimental Gentlemen, they will be in the northern B.C. area on the following dates:
June 21 - Wells, Jack 'O' Clubs Pub.
June 22 - Quesnel, Cariboo Hotel.
June 23 - Prince George,
June 24 - Rolla, The Rolla Pub.