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Idlers are an eleven-piece, self proclaimed ‘reggae circus’ from St. John's, Newfoundland. Their unique sound comes from a love of reggae, ska and afro-beat, peppered with their Atlantic influences. Ringmaster Mark Wilson fronts a solid rhythm section with heavy horns and tight harmonies, and has been bringing audiences to a dancing frenzy since the band came together in 2006. The band includes: Mark Wilson (Vocals and Trumpet), Paul Schiralli-Earle (Guitar), Craig Millett (Guitar), Aneirin Thomas (Bass), Chris Power (Drums), Luke Power (Keys), Chris Harnett (Tenor Sax), Susan Evoy (Alto Sax, Flute), John Duff (Trombone), Curtis Andrews (Percussion) and Erin Best (Vocals).
“We call ourselves the ‘reggae circus’ because when we play there is so much going on. We have such a large group of musicians on stage with so many different instruments, there’s a feeling of infectious excitement and an undeniable energy.” – Mark Wilson.
Idlers have cultivated a loyal following and are expanding their fan base on a national level. The band has also achieved its fair share of accolades. They were the winner of the Galaxie Rising Star of the CBC Award and were named Alternative Artist/Group of the Year at the 2008 Music Newfoundland (MusicNL) Conference and Awards Show in Gander, Newfoundland. In addition, the Idlers were named Best Loud Band (2008), Best Band to Dance To (2008) and Best Live Band (2007) in The Scopes Best of St. John’s Readers Survey.
Idlers reggae/ska sound comes from years of listening to the likes of Burning Spear, The Congos, The Wailers, Desmond Dekker, The Gladiators, UB40, Steel Pulse, The Clash and Bob Marley. They take much of their musical inspiration from mid-70’s roots reggae. Staying true to the conscious voice of roots reggae, their music speaks of the human condition, discussing issues of war, capitalism, and social and personal struggle.
Idlers have toured throughout Central and Atlantic Canada and are emerging on the national scene. Last year, they entertained audiences at the Montreal International Reggae Festival, the St. John’s Folk Festival and the Wreckhouse International Jazz and Blues Festival (St. John’s, Newfoundland). Earlier this year they played at Winnipeg Ska & Reggae Festival and the Calgary Reggae Festival in addition to a showcase at the Atlantic Film Festival.
Idlers released their debut full length CD, Corner in December 2007. Since the release, which was nominated for an ECMA for World Album of the Year in 2008, Corner has received tremendous national reviews. They are currently heading across Eastern and Central Canada in support of their upcoming sophomore album, Keep Out, set for release November 10, 2009.
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