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Friday, 10 March 2017 05:59

Shaunavon's Hunters on target for worthy recognition

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After a lot of hard work and dedication, Shaunavon’s The Hunter Brothers have enjoyed a smooth ride on the country music scene in 2016.

Touring, media stops and concerts have made the talented quintet a recognizable name across the country. They used an El Dorado to do it.
Their single El Dorado cracked the Top 10 iTunes country chart; Long Way to Love You reached the Top 40 radio wise; Getaway was released in mid February and their debut effort was released digitally March 3 with the CD available March 17.
Subsequently, Brock, Dusty,  J.J., Luke, and Ty Hunter have achieved commercial success as well as are lauded critically.
In February, the Hunter Brothers were nominated five times for the Saskatchewan Country Music Association’s awards which will be handed out in Saskatoon during a weekend of celebrations March 31-April 2. They were nominated for Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year; Group of the Year; Emerging Artist Award; Single of the Year: El Dorado; and brother Luke was nominated individually for All Star Band (Bass).
For Ty, the group’s smooth-sounding lead singer, it was welcome news and especially enjoyable considering this is the first time attending.
“It was humbling the other morning to wake up, and see that we were included in four categories for nominations at the SCMA awards,” he explains. “There is an incredible musical legacy in this province, and we feel honoured to be recognized amongst such great talent. This will be our first time ever at the awards, so we are excited to be there this year.
“With there being so many great artists, we are very appreciative of the fan’s choice nomination, as it encapsulates more than just a song — it’s your entertainment value, the songs, the experience you give fans, and everything attached with being a musician.”
Judging from their website, Facebook posts and Tweets, 2016 and early 2017 appears to have been a lot of fun. However, it hasn’t been party time; it’s been months of effort. Plus their parody of Corb Lund’s Truck Got Stuck has had 1.4 million views on Facebook. It’s been eye-popping, but they have tried hard to take it all in stride.
“The notoriety, and recognition has seemed to come rather progressively. The combine got stuck came as a bit of a surprise initially, as it was just a quick Facebook live parody that exemplified how we were feeling as farmers during harvest,” explains Ty.  “Between seasons of publicity, we have our families, and time to work out on the farm, which certainly has helped to ground, and bring us back to reality outside of the social realm.”
Besides the four group nominations, Luke earned an individual nomination as the Saskatchewan Country Music Association recognizes specific instruments. The bassist, a former star in the Western Hockey League, was thrilled.
“It was a dream come true playing in the WHL for the Swift Current Broncos. It’s an experience I’ll never take for granted,” explains Luke. “I never dreamt it would be possible to someday be nominated for an award such as this. I’m honoured to say the least, and grateful not only to enjoy playing bass guitar, but to be mentioned among the other musicians named in this category.”
Ty says they are looking forward to the ceremonies in Saskatoon, especially considering the quality of the nominees. He agrees Saskatchewan always has a good crop of musical talent and as a group they look forward to sharing in that celebration.
“We are proud of the artists not only in southwest Saskatchewan, but the rest of the province as well,” Ty explains. “All these musicians are pouring their hearts and souls into their dream of music, and as fellow artists, there is an underlying respect you have for all, because you know the amount of time and vulnerability that has been invested into putting yourself out there for others to hear. We want to applaud every single person who is up for nominations this year.”
Prior to the awards in Saskatoon, they will be in Moose Jaw at the Culture Centre March 25 at 7 p.m.

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Ryan Dahlman

Managing Editor