Expect Prince Albert’s rock band population to jump, because local entrepreneur Lucy James has dedicated herself to ensuring local musicians perform together.
James recently opened Jam Street Music Sessions, a downtown-based business devoted to providing rehearsal space and rock band training.
“What the main point is, is to get bands going and to work with them until they’re ready to perform independent of a coach,” James said.
James works with groups of musicians who are interested in forming a rock band, walking them through every step of the way until they’re able to be independent of a coach.
“You can start as an absolute beginner on your instrument, with me,” she said of the basic rock group formation of a drummer, singer, bass player, guitar player and pianist.
“A group of kids or adults — whoever wants to be in a band together — signs up together, picks their instruments … and then pick a song,” she said.
James arranges the song to the band’s ability level, and once they hit 10 songs they’re invited to play a show in the downtown business.
This means of doing things throws the formation of most bands on their head.
“I think that a lot of people get a band together after they learn their instrument, so they think that they really have to learn your instrument, know your instrument before you can be in a band,” James said. “With Jam Street, you actually form a band from the beginning.”
What the main point is, is to get bands going and to work with them until they’re ready to perform independent of a coach. - Lucy James
Forming a band first seems to be catching on, James said, as it motivates people young and old to practise their instrument — something that can be difficult for
beginners unable to make things sound as they should.
“The kids don’t stop practising — they’re practising all the time,” James said.
“I think, when you know you’re going to play in a rock band, and it sounds good with the band and it’s all your friends, it’s highly motivating.”
People can either sign up as an individual, stipulating which instrument they’re interested in playing, or as a band. With a few adults currently waiting for additional
members to fill out a band, James said that people of all ages are encouraged to sign up.
James has a long history in music, having spent 10 years in Switzerland, earning an Education degree and teaching music for six years in that timespan.
She also joined well-known Swiss reggae-ska band Open Season, as well as her Lucy James Band.
She then returned to her hometown of Prince Albert, where she helped form local musical group All Might Voice while pursuing her own solo musical efforts.
Her opening Jam Street Music Sessions came as a result of more than a decade of thinking about and planning on opening a business.
Jam Street Music Sessions is located at 1026 First Ave. W., and James can be contacted at 763-0504.