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The East Pointers

While their name might suggest they are a local outfit – don’t be fooled! The East Pointers are travelling a long way to bring their music to Darwin this month.

Hailing from Prince Edward Island in Canada, the folk trio are touring new music from their highly anticipated second album What We Leave Behind, singing songs about the same joys and sorrows of life that we can all relate to – no matter where we are from. Banjo player Koady Chaisson spoke to Off The Leash.

Congratulations on the new album. What’s it been like playing these new songs on tour? 

Thank you! We’ve only just started playing these tunes and songs live because we had to wait for months between wrapping the recording  and our album launch, and we’re loving it. ‘Party Wave’ (which we wrote about our first surfing experience in NZ) is probably my favourite instrumental track to play live because it’s so upbeat, and the dancers have been letting loose on that one which is always fun to watch. In terms of songs, ‘John Wallace’ has been going over great – there are a few easy singalong parts and it’s been great to see people belting it out. They’re singing about death and cholera but it seems to make them really happy. We’ve tricked them with a happy melody. Classic folk song... 

You toured for 10 months last year – what’s it like being away from home for so long? How does that test the band’s relationships? 

I’ve always dreamed about having a job that let me see the world, so although it can be difficult at times, it’s hard to complain. We’ve also masterminded our touring schedule so we miss long stretches of Canadian winter – also hard to complain about that! We were best friends long before the band started so there’s not much in terms of drama either. I know. Boring, eh? We miss our partners and our families of course; I especially miss my little nieces and nephews. They seem to grow up so much each stretch I’m away. 

Tell us about home – Prince Edward Island (home to Anne of Green Gables) – what’s the music scene like there, and how does this influence your music? 

PEI is awesome! It’s small and lovely and the people are friendly and welcoming. It was such a great place to grow up. I think one of the things I love most about PEI is the music scene. It’s very inclusive and pretty much devoid of ego. Bands help other bands, everyone looks out for everyone, it’s a beautiful thing!  

You’re playing at the Railway Club in December – have you been to Darwin before? 

It’s our first time to Darwin – first time to the Northern Territory in fact. We’ve heard it’s beautiful and wild, so it’s probably good that we’re coming up for the first time on our fifth visit – we’re a little more used to what passes as ‘wild’ in Australia.  

Do you know we have a really lovely spot in Darwin called East Point Reserve? You should swing by! 

No I didn’t and I just looked it up! 200 hectares of green space – we’re in! You Darwinites (Darwinians?) should swing by East Point in PEI. That’s what the band is named after. I fished off there for 11 years (I was a lobster fisherman before I got to play music fulltime) and it’s got some crazy tides.

Fri 15 Dec | 7pm | Railway Club | $16.50 | darwinrailwayclub.org

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