Just 'a rock-and-roll band'

Justin Crann
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Flash Lightnin' to open for iconic ZZ Top

“If you play enough ZZ Top covers, eventually you’ll get to perform with them.”

Flash Lightnin' — Darren Glover and Darcy Yates (pictured), along with new drummer Dan Neill — will tour Western Canada as the openers for ZZ Top from March 12 to 22. The band got its start at the Dakota Tavern in Toronto and has been playing rock music, including a healthy selection of ZZ Top covers, since 2007.

So spoke Darren Glover, the frontman for Canadian rock outfit Flash Lightnin’, who are touring Western Canada with the iconic rock outfit from March 12 to 22.

The bands play Mosaic Place on March 14.

“It’s going to be really cool,” said Glover. “There’s a few tracks (on our latest album) that are going to be great to test drive in an arena and see how they go over and how they sound.

“I’m not going to lie: I’ve always wanted our band to play the bigger venues, and so I always tried to write songs that would fit,” he added.

But the band didn’t always have larger venues on the schedule. In fact, Flash Lightnin’ sprung up from humble beginnings with a residency in Toronto’s Dakota Tavern.

“When they opened up, they needed a house band. So we started to play once a week,” said Glover. “That’s how we started, and it just snowballed. It has taken us on this journey that we’ve been on for the last couple of years.”

High points on that journey include opening gigs for the Eagles of Death Metal and Metric and praise from ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons after Flash Lightnin’ ambushed them with an unsolicited performance and a copy of their EP, Destello.

Many years later, the band has recorded its second full-length album — titled For The Sinners — with producer Gavin Brown, whose resume reads like a who’s who of Canadian rock acts, from Billy Talent and the Tragically Hip to the Tea Party and Metric.

But the sound remains, for the most part, unchanged.

“The other day I was trying to figure out our setlist for this tour, and once I popped in the EP, the first album, and this one, I heard a thread — it was the same sound that runs through it all,” said Glover. “I thought (this latest album) was a drastic change, but it was actually just a slightly tweaked version of what we already were.”

And who are Flash Lightnin’?

“We’re a rock-and-roll band. We were born and raised on ‘70s music, and that’s what we do,” said Glover. “We don’t want (the music) to have 30,000 overdubs and need five more guys to join the band. We’re rock musicians. We want to play rock-and-roll. And that makes sense to us.”

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Organizations: Eagles of Death Metal, Tragically Hip

Geographic location: Western Canada, Toronto

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