Vancouver is a difficult place for artists. Exorbitant rents and skyrocketing cost of living make mere survival in this city a daily source of enormous stress. Having time to create something of value and substance takes time and energy and those are two things most Vancouver residents have very little of.
What it does have, however, is a growing sense of artistic community that supports each other above all else and TrailerHawk is an integral piece in fostering that community. I was first made aware of TrailerHawk singer Carmen Bruno when my Sunday Morning songwriting partner Stephen Hamm showed me a video on Facebook of her singing live in a local bar. Even on the terrible shaky IPhone video the power of her voice was undeniable. Stephen simply stated, “We need to get her to sing on our album,” and I immediately went on a social media research mission to track her down. That was two years ago and in that time Carmen’s career has been moving at exponential speed. We were lucky enough to have her sing on our Sunday Morning album and now her band TrailerHawk is debuting the first single, “Don’t You”, off their new album “Half Up Front”.
Trailerhawk contains an extraordinary lineage of Vancouver musicians including Carmen’s husband and immensely talented guitarist Rod Bruno. Okay, so granted I’m inherently biased but I urge you listen to this tough and beautiful song. “Don’t You” shines above the stagnant sea of mediocrity that is modern country music. Think Decoration Day era Drive-By-Truckers with undercurrents of Chrissie Hynde’s punk as fuck attitude.
The cautionary chorus “Don’t you get in my way when I’m moving on” is sung with conviction. It’s an implicit warning from someone whose upward trajectory is undeniable. TrailerHawk paired up with Vancouver filmmaker R.d. Cane to make the visually striking video for this song. R.d. , another fundamental element in Vancouver’s creative community, captures Carmen’s confident swagger perfectly. With “Don’t You” TrailerHawk have cemented their place in the musical canon of exceptional new bands coming out of this city.
Bruce Wilson was born in the American south and after innumerable global relocations he now resides in Vancouver, British Columbia. Bruce grew up listening to his parents’ copy of The Velvet Underground’s White Light/White Heat and quickly moved on to The Stooges, David Bowie, and The Dead Boys. These days he is a writer and sings for the Vancouver based band “Sunday Morning” who released their epymonious debut album in early 2017. He’d like to have a dog but his apartment is too small.