Canadian icons, the Crash Test Dummies, are preparing for their long-awaited return to the Okanagan where they are set to headline the Penticton Peach Festival on Aug. 7.
The band’s performance in Peach City marks stop one on their 25th anniversary tour for their critically-acclaimed album God Shuffled His Feet. Ellen Reid, vocalist and musician with the CTD, said the band plans to make the most of their quick stop in the area and is excited for the lakeside festival venue.
“This tour is kind of a drive and grind, lots of shows and not a lot of time to get to those shows,” said Reid with a laugh. “We’ll be playing the show, going back to our hotel and getting up very early to drive to the next one. We’re in vans, so not on the tour bus anymore. So unfortunately, we don’t have a lot of time to look around – although, we are going to have some peaches. That’s just a fact.”
Reid has been performing with the CTD since its early beginnings in the late 1980s, providing back-up vocals as well as piano, keyboards and accordion. It was on the band’s fourth album, Give Yourself a Hand, where she stepped further into the spotlight and sang lead vocals on Just Chillin, Get You in the Morning and A Little Something.
“It wasn’t a big switch, I have no problem going on stage or being the center of attention,” joked Reid. “Originally, we just wanted to add a few songs with me singing in the live show, just to change things up a little bit and add a little texture to the show. But eventually, after the Dumb and Dumber people asked us to record The Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead for them, and then we recorded our first record with a few tracks with me singing lead. I think it was just a matter of changing things up and not having a guaranteed sound. I really enjoyed singing lead but I love singing harmony, so I am really lucky that I get to do both.”
Although Peachfest is a free, family-friendly outdoor festival, Reid said CTD fans can still expect the same high-quality show they’ll be delivering throughout their tour, which has performance dates across Canada and the U.S. until Jan. 23, 2020.
“We do what we do, we won’t really change much. I mean like if we were playing a bar in a small town where everyone was completely hammered, we might cut some of the slower songs out of our set,” laughed Reid. “But for a festival or in a theatre or anything like that, we’re going to play the same show – you’re going to get our primo show.”
As a band that has been heavily-involved in the music industry for nearly the past three decades, Reid said its cool to see their fans grow and change with the band. The fact that original fans of the CTD have now passed their music interests along to the next generation is telling of how influential their music truly is.
“We really like to hear when kids say, ‘My mom or dad loves your band, and they introduced me to you.’ so our music has become woven into their memories, and that’s an amazing thing to have people tell you,” said Reid. “It’s sort of a cross-generational thing. And we can’t help it because everyone in the band is cross-generational, i.e. old, now. You can’t help but hope that your music is going to have some sort of longevity.”
The Crash Test Dummies presented by Peter Bros. Construction will take the stage at Penticton Peach Festival in Okanagan Lake Park on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 9:30 p.m. More information about the festival can be found at www.peachfest.com.
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