Sled Island: Ambassadors to all
The next time Quentin Tarantino is putting one of his film soundtracks together, he should call up the Ramblin’ Ambassadors.
“I think Tarantino really shares some similar tastes with us — like “Pulp Fiction,” he tends to go for the Clint Eastwood, over-the-top clichés,” says Brent Cooper, the frontman guitarist of the group. “We’re in the instrumental rock genre, but we don’t want to be like anyone else in the genre. Our music will stand against classic instrumental rock — and it’s good for barbecues.”
But Cooper, the long time guitarist of Canadian indie-rock staples Huevos Rancheros, says he doesn’t care who they play for or why, and he has a more relaxed philosophy towards band life than he did during his 13 years with his bandmates in Huevos.
Sled Island Spotlight
The Ramblin’ Ambassadors
Show: Thursday, June 25 @ 12:30a.m. at Broken City
Band’s motto: “The White Line is the Lifeline.”
Website: click here.
“We can play for anyone, from drunk bikers to punk rockers,” he says. “The real philosophy is just about the joy of playing. Back in the day with Huevos, it got to the point where we couldn’t play a gig for $50 bucks, but it’s not like that anymore. It’s kind of a joke.
We don’t really believe there’s any kind of brass ring or gold record in the future. At first there were lots of ideas kicking around from the old band, but what it is now is four guys sitting around and jamming and working through the seeds of ideas that develop into our own sounds.”
Besides, Cooper says, having to split his time between the Ambassadors, being a dad and teaching elementary school doesn’t leave much room for naked ambition. The band, featuring Scott Nickless on upright bass, Tyler Pickering on drums and the guitar of Gentleman Doug Waite, is more about having fun and doing what all four members love to do — namely, rock hard and rattle the speakers. Their raw, southern-rock twangs have shades of Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers and the Black Crowes, a sound the local Calgary scene continues to eat up by the spoonful.
The Ambassadors are all over Calgary, playing small venues like Vern’s and Vicious Circle, Festivals such as the Calgary Folk Fest and Sled Island, and even outdoor promotional events — including the prestigious headlining slot at the first Tubby Day celebrations.
For more on Tubby Day click here.
“We got free beer and hotdogs,” Cooper says. “That’s the life. How do you complain?”