By Robyn Welsh
CALGARY — The East Pointers formed casually, just a few boys getting together to bow out a few tunes, but two years later, what started as Celtic chemistry has become a full on tour de force. “We were just all on the same page as far as music went, and personality wise.” Fiddle player Tim Chaisson tells BeatRoute. “Koady and I kind of just fell in love with Jake when we got to know him.” The band allegedly started as a joke, but in their goofing around, they ended up producing an EP. Tim, having already been leading a successful pop country solo career under his own name, shared the EP with his management, and they were impressed enough to start representing The East Pointers as well.
Celtic traditional music can be traced back to the 1600s and has oscillated in popularity ever since, but it has a longevity and an visceral accessibility that brings people together in a way that is wholly unique. Especially along the East Coast, Trad is the music that keeps people excited and content with what they have. While walking to a beach in Prince Edward Island (PEI) and chatting on the phone with BeatRoute, Tim Chaisson opened up about how the traditional music style affected PEI while he grew up. “[The music] was a way to bring people together and forget about the hard times.”
The visceral nature of their music makes their shows so much more fun. According to Chaisson, they have seen a lot of dancing on the road. “The energy is really good because we’re playing almost like dance music in a way. […] People kind of just let go of whatever it is they’ve been doing.”
Two of the members of the East Pointers – Tim Chaisson and Koady Chaisson – have had traditional Celtic music passed on from generations of their European ancestors. The music has been ingrained in their lives for so long because growing up, Tim’s family did not have much money, but they always had each other to play music with. According to Tim, this was one of the most special aspects of his upbringing. It is only natural that their Celtic-folk trio was born.
Unlike much of his family, Tim Chaisson has always had a passion for songwriting and he brings it to The East Pointers. In contrast to his solo country-pop music, writing Celtic music has become a more experimental process. When talking about writing for the East Pointers, Tim said the three of them decided, “let’s write some songs and see where they go and not put any barriers on what can be done because there’s no formula to follow.” It is easy to play with Celtic music because the audience is not expecting a single song structure to be followed like they would with pop music. As well, The East Pointers are able to experimenting with their lyrics and content. The lyrics are often mysterious and undirected, leaving a little room for interpretation.
The boys in the East Pointers are heavily involved in the music scene in PEI. In July, Tim Chaisson, two of his brothers, and Koady Chaisson helped to take over the Rollo Bay Fiddle Festival. The festival used to be run by Tim’s grandfather and uncle before they passed away. Tim could not let the festival die because he knew how much it meant to so many people. Along with the festival, the Chaisson brothers ran a music camp, which acted as a way to give free music lessons to kids who couldn’t necessarily afford it.
The East Pointers have had a blast touring so far and would love to travel more in order to share their music and positively affect a larger audience.
The East Pointers’ debut LP Secret Victory is available now.AB, Alberta, The East Pointers