Blue Rodeo is a Canadian band that I know of because I live near the Canadian border. You see, in Buffalo, New York, we pick up Toronto radio and TV signals, so I know more about Canadian music than the average American. And I LOVE Canadian music.
One of the bands I’m most impressed with is Blue Rodeo, especially for their 2002 hit song, “Bulletproof,” which is sung with such passionate conviction, in the style of Ron Sexsmith (another Canadian artist you need to hear)…
Make a note, readers: Blue Rodeo’s “Bulletproof” and Ron Sexsmith’s “Whatever It Takes” are two of my favorite songs of all time. I could literally listen to them on repeat for days.
Blue Rodeo, which got its start in the mid-1980s, is still going strong in 2013 with their latest album, “In Our Nature,” recorded at band member Greg Keelor’s farmhouse in rural Ontario. The seven-piece band is made up of seasoned musicians who really care about their craft and, equally, their audience. Whether they’re performing for a couple hundred people in a small town in Newfoundland, or in front of thousands in Toronto, one thing’s for sure: Blue Rodeo is a tried and true band. Instead of having one hit and then disappearing, Blue Rodeo is one of those bands that experiences mild “chart” success now and then, but, like a warm blanket, they’re much more than just a commercial enterprise, and you go back to them time and time again for consistently comfortable music. I’ve never met the band, but it seems like they truly care about making good, meaningful music, which is something all too rare in this day and age.
I like the vocal harmonies of the group; harmony is something sorely lacking in most of today’s music. Lead singer Jim Cuddy’s voice is seasoned, resonant, and honest– and when it blends in harmony with his bandmates, the result is sublime. It’s like James Taylor mixed with Fleetwood Mac personally singing to you in your room.
On “In Our Nature,” you’ll find a cover of Robbie Robertson’s “Out of the Blue.” People also seem to gravitate toward “Tara’s Blues” and my favorite– “You Should Know.”