The Canadian Brass bring the Disney of the future to Canada

Written by By By Katie Popper, CNN The Canadian Brass arrived in New York last year for the American International Toy Fair and had one thing on their minds: Everyone had asked them about…

The Canadian Brass bring the Disney of the future to Canada

Written by By By Katie Popper, CNN

The Canadian Brass arrived in New York last year for the American International Toy Fair and had one thing on their minds: Everyone had asked them about the return of Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

True to form, they loved the movie. But, they said, the buzz surrounding it seemed a little too British.

“In fact, they had a truly ridiculous British sense of humor about it,” said Chris Isaacson, the group’s lead percussionist. “Everyone who worked on it was working toward an awe-inspiring visual, and they were also working toward a very accurate depiction of what it would be like to be a human in space. And that’s what we think has made ‘2001’ such a wildly popular film for kids.”

The 25-member band performs alongside Hollywood celebs at the White House for its “Canadiana” album. Credit: Canadiana

Yes, it’s true: British parody, over-the-top dialogue and intense language are nowhere to be found on “Canadiana,” the group’s latest album, and its second full-length collaboration with CBC Radio National. It’s also not a collection of 80s covers.

“It was exciting to come back with this opportunity to continue the relationship with our dedicated and longstanding friend, Ian Schmidt, the executive producer of CBC Radio National’s Grammy Award-winning and Oscar nominated “In Your Dreams” series,” said bassist Neil Rupli (Cane).

“Myself and Chris Isaacson are avid show watchers, so to produce a new album that will echo in our hearts and minds the massive success of ‘In Your Dreams’ was something we both took very seriously.”

The album features guests such as Keira Knightley, Matt Damon, Elton John, Paul Ryan, Peter Dinklage, William Shatner, Kate Beckinsale, Pedro Almodovar, Erin Wasson, Sam Shepard, Florence Welch, Stephen King, Jason Segel, Ben Stiller, Amy Poehler, Billy Joel, Sara Bareilles, Andy Cohen, John Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Alicia Vikander, Bailee Madison, Kristen Stewart, Carrie Brownstein, Melissa Joan Hart, Isla Fisher, Olivia Wilde, Bob Dylan, Julianne Moore, Mary J. Blige, Saoirse Ronan, Mila Kunis, Robert Plant, Tina Fey, Will Forte, Olivia Wilde, Bill Burr, Barbra Streisand, Denzel Washington, Selena Gomez, Javier Bardem, Emmy Rossum, Miley Cyrus, Mary J. Blige, Idris Elba, Elle Fanning,

The brass are releasing the album, in September 2018, just ahead of Canada’s 150th birthday. The album is anchored by a special 60-minute documentary about the Canadian Brass.

The film details its history, from beginning to end, and “takes you through all the highs and lows over the last century,” says bassist Neil Rupli. “We hope it will be an inspirational piece of rock ‘n’ roll film.”

Once the project was announced, the musicians immediately realized the album would be a celebration of Canadian pride.

“We’ve been very fortunate to be in a place where we’ve been invited to live and work abroad for decades, and we have the distinct privilege of having home-grown cultural assets to celebrate.

“This is the centennial year of Canada’s Confederation, and we are privileged to continue to celebrate the very best of Canadian music and Canadian music production and festival production.”

The band’s first Christmas album, “Rumi’s Silver Bells,” released in 2014, has been nominated for a Grammy and won a Genie Award, Canada’s version of the Oscar.

The band has also recorded a Greatest Hits album, “Canadiana,” released in September 2017 and featuring fan favorites.

“We have a loyal and growing base in North America, England, India, Japan, France, Germany, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Africa, so it’s an exciting time to celebrate ‘Canadiana’ with Canadian music,” said keyboards player Mike Fitzpatrick.

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