Driveway

Driveway

BandCountryAlternative

We are a rootsy classic sounding alt-country band. Our songs have been compared to everything from REM to the Jayhawks, and Rolling Stones and even Nick Cave! Although we generally play all our own material we can pull out the cover songs when needed.

Biography

Driveway is a band from Toronto made up of ex-MAdE frontman Jason Taylor, ex-MAdE bass player Chris Sytnyk, drummer Robin Mason (Superhalo, Statistics), and Corey Matheson (Haggis) on pedal steel and guitar. These seasoned musicians have combined their influences that include Whiskeytown, The Jayhawks, Lucinda Williams, Coldplay, The Rolling Stones, Pixies, and Gram Parsons to form this rootsy alt-country rock band.

“Calling us alt-country is a bit lazy. People hear a pedal steel or a Hammond organ and automatically assume ‘country’, but really that has more to do with the instrumentation than the songs themselves. To us we’re just a rootsy rock band that can swing between the Pixies to Neil young” says singer/songwriter, Jason Taylor of Driveway’s sound.

Driveway’s self-titled debut is released in Europe on Blue Rose Records out of Germany (Drive-by-Truckers, June Carter Cash) and soon to be released (early 2005) in Canada on Curve Music based in Toronto. “We are looking at smaller labels because we want to start out organically,” says Taylor, “We’d like the band to find and define itself. To this point we haven’t contacted a single major label.” On their debut CD Taylor is the main songwriter; however the band is free to add whatever they feel. “I’ll write a song and hash it out a little bit at home, just to get the overall structure of the song, then I bring it in and everyone puts their own thing on it,” says Taylor, “let the song after it has been ‘sort-of-written’ end up Drivewayified. The guys add all the magic.”

Driveway was lucky enough to get U.S. producer Keith Cleversley (The Flaming Lips, Urge Overkill and Spiritualized) to agree to produce some of the songs on the album. Taylor and Sytnyk established their relationship with Cleversley on the last MAdE album. Cleversley produced MAdE’s Television Heart album. “Keith has almost no ‘amazing’ gear, but he can pull off amazing recordings in spite of this,” explains Taylor, “kind of like the guy who can whittle Michelangelo’s ‘David’ out of a tree stump using only a jack-knife.” The rest of the album was produced and mixed by Toronto’s Lurch. Mason said “the whole recording experience of the making of our record will stay with me for a long time, it was amazing.”

The guys in Driveway all have many years of recording and touring experience. Universal Music Canada and MCA in the U.S. released MAdE’s first album, Bedazzler and Universal Canada distributed their second, Television Heart. The group broke up after the Universal/Polygram merger took place in 1999 and they were dropped from the label. Taylor said, “After that I just wanted to get back to basics, back to my roots and just make music.

Driveway was formed in 2002. “I was writing for a couple of years, I remembered Robin from the old days and Chris was the bass player for MAdE, we put this project together and it was just the three of us for a while.” The group put an ad in the back of NOW magazine looking for a guitar player. “We only got one call and that was Corey Matheson,” laughs Taylor. “I remember talking to him on the phone and he said ‘I’m from Nova Scotia, I play pedal steel, lap steel, piano, guitar…’ and I said ‘holy shit dude, I’ll be over there in like five minutes.”

“We have all been in many bands before, some of us have even had a modest amount of success, but no matter what, we are in it for life, and I think to some degree this can be heard in the music,” Taylor said, “There’s something real about the music, there’s something magical when we are on stage together. I think the magic comes from the fact that music is a real part of who and what we are as people”.

Lyrics

Angels

Written By: Jason Taylor

I know that angels have no wings
‘cause I watched you fall babe head over heels
and I know the devil’s got no charm
‘cause he couldn’t talk you out of my arms

sometimes when I sleep
all I see is darkness behind eyes that never dream

I know the demons in my heart
they cannot stay there it’s much too dark
and I know that god cannot exist
or he would take you and make you his

sometimes when I sleep
all I see is darkness behind eyes that never dream
set me free

push me down and make me dead
terrified of what’s in my head
never really understood anything about you
and I’m a ship that’s listing now
roll me over and take my eyes
make me sing this song in hell
nothing more to say, nothing more to tell
I don’t know where I’ll be
baby, baby, baby, set me free
set me free.

Discography

Driveway - self titled. 2004
Blue Rose Records (Germany). Curve Music (Canada)

Set List

Our basic set is one hour but we can do up to 3 x 1-hour sets when we add covers. Generally we will play the 10 songs from our CD as well as a few new songs we have written (our 2nd cd is scheduled for spring 2006). If needed we will do covers by acts such as Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Drive-by Truckers, Rolling Stones, Neil Young, The Waterboys, etc. etc.