Written by Mark Perry (SOCAN) © Mark Perry 2019 • Producer: Jordy Walker Music • Executive Producers: Mark Perry, Sandra Smith • Mastering: Graemme Brown at Zen Mastering, Gabriola Island, BC • Musicians: Mark Perry (guitar, vocals), Tobin Frank (accordion), Mark Thibeault (pedal steel), Ian Olmstead (bass), Mip (backup vocals), Jordy Walker (percussion).
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RELEASE March 12, 2019
When Smithers, BC-based singer-songwriter Mark Perry heard about the fatal Humboldt Broncos bus crash in Saskatchewan last April, he felt numb. The former up-and-coming hockey player and rural hockey coach went to his shed to deal. He wrote a song called “Cold Road”.
“Like so many Canadians, I was heartbroken. Years ago I played hockey with guys from the Moosejaw Warriors, Saskatoon Blades and Humboldt Broncos, among others,” says Perry. “I played as a kid along with my four brothers. My son played hockey. I coached a lot of teens… Everything felt really close to home. We’re all grieving for those families.”
Perry’s rural northwest BC region is similar to much of Canada’s sparsely-populated landscape where sports teams need to travel far and wide, back and forth along often-icy highways, to get to their games. “Cold Road” premiered Monday, March 18 on Roots Music Canada .
“I have played “Cold Road” LIVE in Calgary, Toronto and Montreal this year and the response has been a little emotional. Hockey is so much a part of our fabric here in Canada. People relate to following that dream… of making it to the NHL.”
Perry was encouraged to record the song, called up producer Jordy Walker from the Yukon and musical BC comrades Tobin Frank of Spirit of the West, Mark Thibeault, Ian Olmstead, and Mip to record it this winter.
Perry is not new to the recording and performing world; he has 12 albums out, performs frequently in his northwest Canadian region, and has begun to broaden his reach. His songs are getting a new rush of international airtime and favourable review in places like New Zealand, the UK, and across North America since he made his debut this winter at an International Music Conference in Montreal.
Perry’s manager Sandra Smith (a new addition to his “mostly solo” business team) is pleased to see his music finally leak out. “It’s very cool to watch the rest of the world begin to discover him,” she says. “When it comes to Canadian singer-songwriters, he’s one of our best but, until now, has been a well-kept secret, quietly doing his thing fairly close to home.”
Perry is known for his storytelling style and often makes legends out of local characters and events in his rural northwest region. Smith says BC music reviewer Frank Peebles “totally nailed it” when he wrote: “New Jersey has Springsteen. New York has Billy Joel. Northern BC has Mark Perry. These are the storytellers of their time and place.” (Prince George Citizen, 09/18/2018)