I Love This Band, and You Should Too : Steven McKay

(Musical Gushings By Lauren Schreiber, SummerWorks Music Series Programmer)

Part 1: Steven McKay; It-Guy.

Tafelmusik behind the scenes-er. Bruce Peninsula drummer. Taaaall drink of water.

Steven McKay wears a lot of hats, but in my humble opinion, he is first and foremost Toronto’s most secretest gem of a front man. But there are a lot of singer-songwriters out there, so what separates Steven from the pack?

His band’s name isn’t catchy… it’s not even Steven and The McKays… just his name, straight up – What you see is what you get. Steven doesn’t need to be trendy – he’s a great songwriter, a great singer, a great player, and a great performer. Clever lyrics, lush arrangements, timeless songs, dexterous playing and a rich and gentle voice, full of 70s AM radio warmth and depth and humor.

When Steven steps out from behind his drum kit, it isn’t that he shines… rather, that he glows. But then, I’ve always been one to choose the warmth of the sun on my face over a strobe light in my eye.

Steven is like a bowl of tomato soup and a straight up grilled cheese, a walk in the fall and a flannel shirt… he’s musical comfort food.  He’s a Sunday morning and he’s every day. He’s Cat Stevens, He’s Abbey Road, he sings about his wife all the time, and his cheeks are not unlike apples. He’s a nice guy.

I LOVE Steven McKay and your Mom would too.

Steve makes me wish album inserts still came with lyrics, because his are just great. Don’t believe me? Well, here are some of my favorite Steven Lyrics.

“It would be nice to have my Emma home. I shouldn’t have to eat my breakfast all alone”. (He’s singing about his wife here… so cute.)

“ My greatest of wishes is doing the dishes with you at home, where I belong”. (wife again… oh Steve)

“You remember ‘98, the coffees purchased were always late but I could set my watch to your approval. You’d go and start the car, and think you’re snowed in where you are, but I can dig you out with this shovel ” (Steven pulls off rhyming ‘Approval’ with ‘This Shovel’ – nice)

“ELP and PS2 till 3 in the morning with Andy.” (in case you don’t know, ELP refers to Emerson Lake and Palmer which was a band in the 1970s and a PS2 is a Playstation 2, a video game console from the 2000s.. Steve both appreciates nostalgia and today’s current youth trends)

And basically all the lyrics for “It’s Gonna Be A Long Time” are the best. I couldn’t find them online, so I’m going to transcribe them myself. Here are all of them now… you’re welcome.

‘It’s Gonna to be a Long Time’ By Steven McKay

You’ve got your spandex, your neon, your owl magazine.
Can’t wait to show your Theo Fleury rookie card to the hockey team.
You scratch and sniff
You say ‘‘same diff, so sue me’’
I can’t wait till lunch
When we pulverize those French emersion jerks at kickball.
And the girls don’t know how cool it is to be tall

It’s gonna be a long time,
gonna be a long time,
until they notice me at all

You’ve got your track pants
Your headband
Your Brian Adams tape
You lack the balls to take the fall and ask out Sarah on a date
Can’t wait for cubs
Chew hubba bubba through Shel Silverstein’s gate
to a place when the sideway ends and monsters are for real
Last night I drank a sixpack
Of root beer

It’s gonna be a long time
gonna be a long time
until monsters are the least of my fears

Tonight it’s ping pong
and I’ll chase that with a game of ‘Blades of Steel’
I go to bed by 8pm
That Guy Smiley haunts me still
And in the morning it’s church for a spiritual search
When I crouch down and kneel
I pray
God give me the strength
to beat those French immersion jerks at kickball
And the girls don’t know how cool it is to be tall

It’s gonna be a long time
Gonna be a long time
Until they notice me at all.

For those who need some visual proof of Stevens’s awesomeness, here’s a video Steven made of himself flying

Here’s the same song recorded live. See how consistent he is? Just as good as the ‘official’’ video. Steven doesn’t need studio magic; it’s all Steven, baby.

Here’s  Steven  by a pool. Let’s pretend its fall now, and not 48 degrees (with the humidex).

Here’s Steven against a wall.

See Steven McKay play SummerWorks Friday August 5th at the Lower Ossington Theater.

Also, tell your friends you’re going on the social networking site ‘FaceBook’. http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=156966177707880


1 thought on “I Love This Band, and You Should Too : Steven McKay

  1. Pingback: I Love This Band, and You Should Too : Bruce Peninsula | SummerWorks Theatre Festival

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