By Chris Brown on August 8, 2019.
From a fashion perspective, an Eagles tribute band is about as easy as it gets. After all, the Eagles were basically four guys who performed in T-shirts and jeans.
But the music is where it gets difficult. The Eagles were renowned for their vocals, harmonizing and skills on the instruments.
So that’s where Eagle Eyes, which plays Aug. 17 at the fourth annual Cars and Guitars Festival at the Canalta Centre, is focused.
“We’re not a tribute band, we’re paying tribute to the music,” Kenneth Ermter said last week, saying the shows emulate the recordings more than any performances.
The four members – Ermter, Jack Gunderson, Jason Dunajski and Ray Harvey – each take turns singing lead and sing throughout the entire show, Ermter said. On the band’s website, Gunderson is said to fill the vocal roles of Glenn Frey and Timothy B. Schmidt; Danajski takes care of Don Henley and Randy Meisner and Don Felder’s guitar; Harvey the Joe Walsh role; and drummer Ermter covers off Henley’s parts and the vocals of Meisner as well.
With the tribute band genre picking up steam about a decade ago, Gunderson and Dunajski revived the project they had years ago. Mutual friend Harvey was a natural addition, his being a fan of Joe Walsh and his pre-Eagles project James Gang. Ermter joined about a year and a half ago after the previous drummer was unable to commit due to a full-time job.
Ermter said there was a learning curve, as he hadn’t played drums regularly in about 20 years.
He went to work and now Eagle Eyes is considered one of the top Eagles tributes around.
Even though the Eagles had an array of hits that remain popular to this day, Ermter is quick when asked his favourite song to play.
“New Kid in Town,” he said. “It’s the iconic Glenn Frey song and we always dedicate it to Glenn. Plus for me as a drummer I just really like the song. It’s one of the hardest ones we’ve had to learn and play.”
CCR Tribute Bad Moon Riders are also on the Saturday night schedule for Cars and Guitars. The Hip Show, a tribute to The Tragically Hip, gets the weekend started on Aug. 16.
Tickets are available at ticketmaster.ca, by phone at 1-855-985-5000 or in person at the Canalta Centre box office.
A full festival schedule is available at carsandguitarsfestival.com.
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