Do you like drinking? Do you like rock n’ roll? Do you like both drinking and rock n’ roll? Well then if you do, you’ll probably love Ontario’s own The Lucky Ones. The group has now released two studio records, the latest being Heartbreak, Hangovers and Punk Rock, just released in February. The band has really been gaining some steam lately, thanks to their new album as well as some opening slots for bands such as NOFX, The Forgotten Rebels and The Bouncing Souls. These guys aren’t just a band though, they also run their own indie rock label, promote other bands and even help manage a pub. The Lucky Ones will be one of the featured acts at this year’s Canadian Music Week in Toronto between March 21st and 25th. We recently spoke with the band’s lead singer Steve Stumble to learn a little more about this up and coming Canadian group.
The Lucky Ones is the latest craze in punk rock music in Southern Ontario. Are you guys actually so lucky? Or is this kind of a tongue-in-cheek kind of band name?
Steve: Hey PureGrainers! I guess it depends on how you look at it! Lucky to be having the success we are right now, YES! Lucky to be doing this again after taking 10 years off from music, YES! Lucky to be playing with an awesome group of guys and traveling around playing a bunch of shows, YES! But taking lots of time off of work and leaving our families at home and practicing a lot and putting a lot of work into this band isn’t luck!…I ‘d call it LOVE!… We love punk rock and what we do and that’s why we make those sacrifices! So I guess you’re the Lucky Ones because of it!
There’s definitely a drinking and alcohol related theme that goes along with this band. Do you guys actually drink a lot or are you all actually good boys who never touch the stuff?
Steve: We’ve been known to party a little too hard and pound them back! But we do take this band seriously! We try not to play wasted and make sure we put on a good show for our paying fans. We treat it as a business so we don’t go to work drunk! But hey after the show that’s a whole other story! In our free time it’s game on! We like to hang out and have a few with our friends and fans after shows!
What bands or artists did The Lucky Ones listen to a lot while growing up that had a direct influence on this band?
Steve: Man there are a lot of different influences! Everything from The Clash, Ramones, Stiff Little Fingers, Cock Sparrer, The Toy Dolls and The Adicts and all the old punk rock as well as a bunch of Canadian punk rock as well! Myself speaking, was greatly influenced by the local punk bands around Niagara and Hamilton! The Forgotten Rebels, Teenage Head, The Wetspots & The Problem Children were all huge influences for me musically and vocally!
Your sophomore record Heartbreak, Hangovers And Punk Rock came out a couple of weeks ago. How are you feeling about it now that it’s been released?
Steve: I have to say I’m really happy with the new record! I’ve recorded 5 full-length records over the last 20 years and this is the only one where I listen to it and don’t cringe and go that could be better or that could be better or that’s wrong or there is a screw up! We put a lot of time into this record and I think it shows! So we’re super stoked for everybody to hear it now that it’s out! I think it’s a classic!
Is the best way to cure heartbreak through a hangover? Or would you say it’s the reverse and it’s the worst thing you can do when it comes to a heartbreak?
Steve: Booze can help you forget a lot of things temporarily, but when you wake up with the hangover the next day that same old heartache is still there! I’m probably the worst person to ask this question! I have no correct answer for a cure ’cause my heart’s still broken!
A lot of punk rock bands like to go in and record a record very quickly without tinkering with the sound too much. When did you begin recording the new record? How long would you say the whole thing took?
Steve: We started recording the record last April and I think we finished recording it in May. Then there was all the mixing and mastering of it and it was finished in August I believe. I think it would have been about likely 2 weeks of full days if you pieced it all together in consecutive days.
Rate the following alcohols between one and five, one being your favorite to five being your least favorite: beer, whiskey, tequila, rum, vodka.
Steve: One beer, 1 whiskey, 1 tequila, 1 rum, 1 vodka. (1 Cider) you forgot that one hahaha!
Check out the album teaser
You worked with well-known local producer Steve Rizun on your record who’s also worked with the Flatliners. Why Steve? Have you guys known each other for a while now?
Steve: I haven’t really known Steve Rizun all that long, but I was really impressed with the sound of the first Broadcast Zero record and we checked out the recordings of The Flatliners and Creepshow as well. We really wanted to work with a producer this time who really understood recording punk rock without having to go to California or some place. Steve was local and fit the job! He did a great job working with us on making this record sound great!
Now of all things, the band also manages a pub. How did you get into doing this? Also, where’s it located for people to go visit?
Steve: Well it is not so much the band! It’s our bass player Robbie Knuckles! He manages The Merchant Ale House in Downtown St. Catharines. The rest of the band pretty much just pays his wage drinking endless amounts of microbrew at the bar! Hahaha. It’s a great place for food, drink and live entertainment. Located at St. Paul and Queen Street hence the song closing out the new album!
All seems well with The Lucky Ones right now. What’s next for you in the near future?
Steve: We’re doing a bunch of Ontario dates and then CMW at the current time then we’re taking a slight break and then doing a bunch of festival dates in the summer and hopefully off to UK, Netherlands and Germany in the fall! Which we’re really stoked about!