It wasn’t until the Tea Party’s fourth album Transmission that the band members felt grounded in their musical journey.
“At the time it was the first record where we felt ‘oh we are going to be musicians for life from now on,’” said Stuart Chatwood, bass and keyboard player for the band.
Prior to that, Chatwood said the band felt that “it could end at any time.”
Transmission was recorded in a Montreal loft being rented by Jeff Burrows, the band’s drummer. The building had suffered two fires and there were exposed stone walls. Chatwood said there wasn’t electricity and they had lit about 60 candles to illuminate the space.
“The mood was just incredible,” he said.
That atmosphere seeped into the album.
“It’s quite a moody, deep record that takes people on a journey. It’s a joy to play the record from start to finish,” he said.
Transmission reached No. 3 on the Canadian charts, earning double platinum status and garnering Tea Party a Juno Award nomination for Blockbuster Rock Album of the Year in 1998.
One of the reasons Transmission has stood the test of time is its timelessness, something the band set out to create.
“We wanted to make timeless music, as a result we didn’t get stuck in the grunge rut,” said Chatwood.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the album, Tea Party has embarked on a cross-Canada tour. Tea Party performs Transmission in its entirety.
“The band is playing better than ever too, so it’s a thrill for us to play,” said Chatwood.
Tea Party performs during its 20 Years of Transmission Tour, presented by Rock.It Boy Entertainment, at the Port Theatre Tuesday (March 28) at 7:30 p.m.
Over the years, Chatwood became a multi-instrumentalist for the band, learning sitar, mandolin, harpguitar and more.
“We just wanted to expand our sound palette,” said Chatwood.
He remembers getting the synthesizer to add to the bands sound. He practised on the instrument for four hours each night for six months.
Chatwood said one of the interesting things about doing the 20 Years of Transmission tour is seeing the children of the original fans come out to the shows as well.
“We are really excited to perform.
Tickets for the Nanaimo show are $48.50 available in advance by calling 250-754-8550 or visiting www.porttheatre.com.
Tea Party also performs in Victoria at the McPherson Playhouse on Wednesday (March 29) at 7 p.m.
For more information about the Tea Party, please visit www.teaparty.com.