Echo Nebraska perform at on Saturday (Sept. 5).

Band gears up for Island debut

NANAIMO – Echo Nebraska performs with The Odd Neighbourhood at the Cambie next month.

After two failed attempts to perform on Vancouver Island, Echo Nebraska is hoping the third attempt will be the charm.

The first time the Vancouver-based band tried to perform on the Island, the festival they were scheduled to play at got cancelled.

Their second attempt was foiled when the venue they were suppose to perform at suddenly shut down.

Barring any major weather disasters or unforeseen events, Echo Nebraska will finally get to perform on Vancouver Island next month.

On Sept. 5 they perform at the Cambie as part of a mini Island tour, which will also see them perform at in Victoria the night before.

“We’ve had some rough experiences so far. Hopefully nothing happens to the Cambie,” said guitarist and audio engineer Andy Schichter. “We are not giving up.”

Echo Nebraska formed in November after Schichter met up with singer-songwriter Devan Christodoulou and bassist Gunn Park, who were looking to record an album.

Eventually the project grew up Echo Nebraska, which now includes Karen Hefford, Kathy Kwon and Mike Lauder.

Despite being less than a year old, Echo Nebraska have already put out an EP titled Send The Ships. The album was released in January, but was recorded before the band was officially formed.

“We put it together even before we thought about putting a band together,” Schichter said.

Having an album ready to be released before the band was officially announced allowed them to “hit the ground running” and gave them something to promote right away.

“We weren’t really a solid live band when we recorded the songs,” Schichter said.

“That was our intention. When we launched the band in November we wanted to make sure the CDs were pressed already.”

Echo Nebraska has since written 10 new songs as a complete group and have been trying them out during performances.

“The big thing now is we have more members involved,” he said. “It isn’t just Devan, Gunn and I writing the parts. I think it will be nice having everyone’s contributions.”

In March, Echo Nebraska performed at a benefit concert in Vancouver for My Artist’s Corner, a program within the Canadian Mental Health Association that aims to reduce isolation and improving social skills through art.

Schichter says the concert was important to the band, as some of them know people who have dealt with mental health issues.

“We have … had family members that have struggled with mental illness,” he said. “We have done some charity work for an organization called My Artist Corner.”

Echo Nebraska performs at 9 p.m. Tickets are $8 at the door. For more information, please visit

arts@nanaimobulletin.comTwitter: @npescod


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