A former Smithereen who has been touring the country since 2018 performing with bands such as Old Rebel Soul is now going solo.
“Scotch,” scheduled for release on all major digital platforms Feb. 25, is the debut single from drummer Michael Wilford, who, after graduating from Smithers Secondary School in 2014 went on to obtain a four-year diploma in music performance from the Victoria Conservatory of Music.
“This will be my first single under my own name and it marks the first of a series of songs I will be releasing throughout the year, all featuring artists I have met throughout the last few years as a touring musician and admire greatly,” he said.
One of those artists is Chelsea D.E. Johnson, who did the vocals for “Scotch.” Johnson, also dubbed “the Queen Bee” is a powerful singer and activist who has become a staple of the Vancouver music scene.
The song itself is a hard-driving, bluesy reflection on life on the road for a touring musician.
According to a press release “Scotch” was the result of Wilford “questioning his purpose, music career, and the situations he’s found himself in, wishing he was back home drinking scotch with his dad.
“This isn’t a sad song, though,” the release states. “The listener is put in a vibe of a grungy old bar, feeling like a rockstar who’s missing home while in a new city.”
Wilford was raised on a sheep farm outside Smithers and is now based in Victoria.
Photography for the single was done by another former Smithereen, Hailey Krakana.