Mark Perry performing in Smithers. (Tom Best photo)

Mark Perry premieres hockey song nationally

Smithers, B.C. musician deals with heartbreak of Humboldt Broncos bus crash with new song Cold Road

When Smithers-based singer-songwriter Mark Perry heard about the fatal Humboldt Broncos bus crash in Saskatchewan last April, he felt numb.

The former up-and-coming hockey player and rural hockey coach went to his shed to deal. He wrote a song called Cold Road.

“Like so many Canadians, I was heartbroken. Years ago I played hockey with guys from the Moosejaw Warriors, Saskatoon Blades and Humboldt Broncos, among others,” said Perry. “I played as a kid along with my four brothers. My son played hockey. I coached a lot of teens … Everything felt really close to home.”

The Northwest is similar to much of Canada’s sparsely-populated landscape where sports teams need to travel far and wide, back and forth along icy highways, to get to their games.

Cold Road will be released Monday, March 18 when it gets premiered on national online magazine Roots Music Canada at rootsmusic.ca. Online viewers will be able to listen in and feel a little bit of what hockey means to Canadians.

“I have played Cold Road live in Calgary, Toronto and Montreal this year and the response has been a little emotional.

“Hockey is so much a part of our fabric here in Canada. People relate to really going for it … following that dream of making it to the NHL.”

Perry was encouraged to record the song, called up producer Jordy Walker from the Yukon and musical comrades Tobin Frank of Spirit of the West, Mark Thibeault, Ian Olmstead, and Mip to record the track this winter.

Perry is not new to the recording and performing world; he has 12 albums out, performs frequently in his northwest Canadian region, and has begun to broaden his reach.

His songs are getting a new rush of international airtime and favourable review in places like New Zealand, the UK, and across North America since he made his debut this winter at an International Music Conference in Montreal.

Perry’s manager Sandra Smith is a new addition to Perry’s “mostly solo” team, and is pleased to see his music finally leak out.

“It’s very cool to watch the rest of the world begin to discover him,” she said.

In the past two months he’s been played on radio stations from Alabama to Alaska, New York to New Zealand, and England to El Paso, Texas.

“When it comes to Canadian singer-songwriters, he’s one of our best but, until now, he’s been a well-kept secret, quietly doing his thing fairly close to home.”

Perry is known for his storytelling style and often makes legends out of local characters and events in his rural northwest region.

Smith refers to music reviewer Frank Peebles who she says “nailed it” recently when he wrote, “New Jersey has Springsteen. New York has Billy Joel. Northern B.C. has Mark Perry. These are the storytellers of their time and place.”

– Submitted Story

Just Posted

Northwest mobile unit to help those at heart of mental health, addiction crisis

Province, Northern Health unveils new unit in Terrace to bridge gaps in services

Photos: Vanderhoof jives to tunes played by the NVSS jazz band

Funds raised will help the school jazz band to attend a festival in Whistler

Saik’uz resident urges other indigenous students to apply for award

Irving K Barber scholarship deadline is March 31st

B.C. minister says rural internet is ‘railroad of the 21st century’

Jinny Sims talks details about the $50-million provincial and possible $750-million federal funds

Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 trying to flee RCMP

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

Trudeau calls May 6 byelection for B.C. riding of Nanaimo-Ladysmith

The riding opened up when Sheila Malcolmson resigned in January

B.C. VIEWS: The hijacking of our education system gathers speed

Children taught to strike and shout fringe far-left demands

Judges on Twitter? Ethical guidance for those on the bench under review

Canadian judges involvement in community life are among issues under review

Calgary captain has 3 points as Flames torch Canucks 3-1

Giordano leads way as Alberta side cracks 100-point plateau

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Most Read