New EP, Podcast, Among Thunder Bay Musician’s Pandemic Projects
Story by Kris Ketonen
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a roller coaster for Thunder Bay musician Nick Sherman.
“It’s been a challenge,” he says. “I released an album a year ago […] and we had toured a bunch last fall, and we toured a bunch throughout the winter, and we were gearing up for a pretty busy summer. And the pandemic hit, and every week it was watching shows drop off the map. One show after another. We were like ‘maybe this month will be better.’ By the time, I think, the end of April hit, our entire summer was gone. So that was so stressful.”
The challenge, then, became one of adaptation, Sherman says. “The summer kind of rolled into this whole idea of streaming shows,” he says. “I’ve still been trying to process and wrap my head around that, because it’s such a weird way to have to connect with people, you know? You use it to stay connected, but you really rely on those intimate, one-on-one, or in-the-same-room moments, and we don’t get that.”
Sherman did do some shows online over the summer, which helped keep him motivated musically. The pandemic also gave him a chance to bring some long-gestating projects forward. One of those is the video for Sherman’s song “The Fire,” which was directed by local, award-winning filmmaker Michelle Derosier and recently released as part of APTN’s Amplify series. Another milestone will be the upcoming release of a new, four-song EP by Sherman’s band Carver (which also includes Jimmy Breslin, Derek Shaffer, and Chad Kirvan), which will be out by January.
But there’s more on the horizon for Sherman: he’s also scoring the music for Tanya Talaga’s new podcast, Seven Truths, scheduled to launch November 26 on Audible. “The podcast really focuses on communities in the Northwestern Ontario region, and looking at these very specific issues in terms of racism, or inequality,” Sherman says. “It’s important to talk about these things, and bring them out, and show people that this is a reality for people, and not everyone’s experiences are the same.”
Sherman says it was important to listen to the people telling their stories when developing the music. “For me, that was huge, to do my best to get into the moment of when the interview was happening,” he says. “They were all challenging stories. There was anger, and there was sadness, and there was joy, and there was resilience. Part of the process was really diving in, and really making sure I’m capturing those themes, and those elements.”
For more on Nick Sherman, you can visit his website at nicksherman.ca or follow him on Facebook at @nickshermanmusic.