Nazareth opening gig “meant to be”

Tyler Clarke
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For Prince Albert-raised rock and roll group Blackwater, an opening act gig for Nazareth is a “huge honour,” lead singer and guitar player Anthony Theon said.


More than that, it’s a little weird given the circumstances, he explained on Monday -- a couple days before Wednesday’s gig at the Prince Albert Exhibition centre.

The band’s bass player Cameron Eddolls has always wanted to cover Nazareth’s version of the song “Love Hurts,” he explained.

Drummer Jan Kwiatkowski has been trying to convince the band against it, saying that they couldn’t pull it off -- an ongoing debate among band members.

“For the last month, every time Jan comes in we’re belting out ‘Love Hurts,’ so we’re just singing that all the time,” Theon summarized.

“Two weeks leading up to it, we were talking about Nazareth pretty much every day, and then all of a sudden we got the call.”

Will you open for Nazareth?

“What?” Theon remembers asking the organizer over the phone. “For sure!”

“It was almost creepy. It was like --‘What? How is this happening? It was meant to be.”

Blackwater was meant to play this gig, he said, noting that the group draws heavily from ’70s rock and roll influences such as Nazareth.

“The ’70s was the golden age of rock and roll,” Theon said. “The musical output from that decade will never be topped.

“It just feels like we’re living in the wrong decade. I just couldn’t imagine it would be like to be in your early 20s in the ’70s and to tune in and hear bands like Nazareth for the first time or Zeppelin for the first time. Now we just take it for granted.”

Two weeks leading up to it, we were talking about Nazareth pretty much every day, and then all of a sudden we got the call. Anthony Theon

Although they’re based in Saskatoon, all four of Blackwater’s members (Theon, Trent Stuckel on lead guitar, Eddolls and Kwiatkowski) were raised in Prince Albert.

Theon graduated from Carlton Comprehensive Public High School and the other three members graduated from St. Mary High School between 2007 and 2008.

Blackwater will give it their all for Wednesday’s show, Theon said – a group he said are driven to create “as much of an energetic and authentic rock and roll show” as they can do.

“We’ll play originals and maybe a couple covers … so hopefully our music will resonate with fans who like music from that era.

Wednesday’s Nazareth show will be held at the Prince Albert Exhibition centre at 7 p.m.

Saskatoon rock band Penny Reign (with Prince Albert member Gary Ostafichuk), will join Blackwater in opening for Nazareth.

Tickets are $34.50 and are available beforehand at the Prince Albert Exhibition Centre and at O’Brian’s Automotive at 3033 Sixth Ave. E.

Organizations: Prince Albert, Carlton Comprehensive Public High School, Mary High School

Geographic location: Nazareth, Blackwater, Saskatoon

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