Big hearted country boy

Dallas Smith adds homegrown spice to SunFest

Country singer Dallas Smith performs at SunFest at Laketown Ranch on July 29.

Country singer Dallas Smith performs at SunFest at Laketown Ranch on July 29.

Singer Dallas Smith is on the golf course as we chat by phone.

“I just hit a terrible shot,” he says from the 15th hole of the Jason Blaine Charity Golf Tournament in Pembroke, Ontario.

Bad shot aside, Smith enjoys supporting Blaine’s fundraising effort. “I have my own tournament in Langley,” he says. “In total we’ve raised close to $200,000.” The Boys of Fall Charity Golf Tournament, which he supports with country music artist and friend Chad Brownlee, helps fund JRFM’s Basics For Babies providing formula, diapers and other infant needs to Lower Mainland food banks.

That tournament is held in Smith’s hometown of Langley, BC where he continues to live with his family.

“I’ve been asked to move down to Nashville. Obviously there’s better places to be (where) there’s more access to the industry. But my family’s there, and at the end of the day, I don’t want to be leaving my wife and kids in a city that I’d still have to leave. Instead of them being at home they’d be stuck in Nashville not knowing where they are or anybody down there, so we made a decision as a family to stay.”

Smith is well-known for his years with Vancouver-based grunge rock band Default, which topped the charts in the early 2000s with hits Wasting My Time, Deny and Taking My Life Away. Default has been on hiatus since 2010, and Smith has been crooning country tunes since releasing Jumped Right In in 2012.

He claims the switch from rock to country wasn’t a difficult one for him and fans agree: Jumped Right In spawned five singles on the Canadian Hot 100 and was nominated for Country Album of the Year at the 2013 Junos. His follow up EP Tipping Point was certified Platinum and his most recent release, Lifted, won a Juno Award for Country Album of the Year and CCMA Album of the Year, as well as launching the single Wastin’ Gas into the #1 spot on Canada’s Country airplay chart.

“As I got older, I just really started gravitating more towards country music and revisiting the stuff I remembered as a kid and loving what was going on on radio now,” he says. “It just felt like a natural transition for me. It wasn’t a forced thing and it was easy to be honest.”

His music leans toward youth and rites of passage.

“Everybody’s got those memories of being in a car and growing up and all those milestones that you had. … I think the one song especially, that’s Wastin’ Gas, that’s what that song is about, just picking up your friends, doesn’t matter where you’re going. There’s really no particular destination – just that freedom.

“I think it’s a great topic to sing about. You try to connect with an audience via some nostalgia and them looking back on their lives – there’s some great times.”

Smith is performing at SunFest in its new location at Laketown Ranch July 29, this fall he joins Keith Urban on a tour of Western Canada.

“The story goes, his bandmates saw us play and told him to check us out and he invited us along on the tour,” Smith says. “I’ve been to a couple of his shows, it’s a good time, he’s a great entertainer.”

Soon Smith will head back to the recording studio to finish off his next album, which he hopes to release this fall, but for now, the golf course beckons and he heads back out to help Blaine raise funds for Ottawa Valley charities.

SunFest Laketown Ranch – July 28 to 31

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Orca 1
Orcas: Our Shared Future

Royal BC Museum dives into the world of orcas with upcoming feature exhibition

Joan Miller with the Vancouver Island North Regional Film Commission says there’s much room for optimism in the region rebounding from COVID-19 and is excited about what the future holds for the region. Black Press File Photo
North Island film industry optimistic about post-COVID rebound

Interest in filming here is still high, according to film commission, once things open back up

The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, has been filming in Langford and Colwood over the past two weeks. On April 7, filming will take place on the east side of the Esquimalt Lagoon. (Black Press Media file)
Netflix series ‘Maid’ filming in Colwood

10-episode Warner Bros. production filmed exclusively in Greater Victoria

Victoria mural artists Joshua Lundrigan (from left) and Paul Archer join Rob Chyzowski, co-owner of Belleville’s Watering Hole and Diner in front of an Archer-designed mural that went up on Thursday at the Inner Harbour restaurant. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)
Positivity rules with new outdoor mural from Victoria artist

Paul Archer teams with Belleville’s Watering Hole and Diner for patio project

Donna Jones, who was born and raised in the Cowichan Valley, is the executive director of the documentary ‘Bobbi Jo: Under the Influence’. (Submitted)
Islander produces documentary offering hope to those with addictions

Donna Jones and husband Brent just released Bobbi Jo: Under the Influence

‘Frank Ney’ by Patrick Flavin, ‘Millstone River Upper Falls’ by John Collison Baker, ‘Labyrinth of Dreams’ by MA Molcan, ‘On the Other Side’ by Liana Ravensbergen, ‘December Snow’ by Laurel Karjala and ‘Jacks Point’ by Dana Smiley (cropped, clockwise from top-left) are among the works in the Nanaimo Arts Council’s latest exhibition. (Photos courtesy Nanaimo Arts Council)
Nanaimo Arts Council presents its first online gallery show

Submissions now open for upcoming ‘Ekphrastic Celebration’ show

Dorothy Sevcov’s exhibition ‘Having Fun With Acrylics’ is on display at Art 10 Gallery until the end of the month. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)
Experimental paintings now on exhibit at Nanaimo’s Art 10 Gallery

Dorothy Sevcov’s ‘Having Fun With Acrylics’ on display through April

Courtenay artist Christine Boyer presents Alongside My Path: Native Wildflowers of Canada at Gallery Merrick from April 9 to 23. (Photo courtesy Christine Boyer)
Island painter shows off the wildflowers of Western Canada in first solo show

Courtenay’s Christine Boyer presents floral exhibit at Nanaimo’s Gallery Merrick

Nanaimo Harbourfront Library librarian April Ripley led the effort to create a Vancouver Island poetry booklet in recognition of National Poetry Month. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)
Nanaimo Harbourfront Library publishes booklet for National Poetry Month

Collection features winners of ‘Poem in your Pocket’ contest

SENCOTEN language revitalizationist and filmmaker Renee Sampson’s short film, Bringing Our Language Back to LIfe, shows online during the Reel 2 Real International Youth Film Festival, April 14-23. (Photo courtesy Wapikoni)
SENCOTEN language featured in short film created on Saanich Peninsula

Renee Sampson film highlights importance of passing on traditional languages to youth

The area surrounding the Chemainus Rotary Club’s bunker door is one of the new surfaces that will feature a mural. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Up to three new murals coming to Chemainus

Project will be coordinated between the Rotary Club and Festival of Murals Society

Jules Sherred, photographer and owner of Polaris Creative, is putting together an exhibit that combines two of his greatest passions: food and advocacy for those with disabilities. (Polaris Creative photo)
Kickstarter launches for fully accessible exhibit focused on food

Raising awareness has been Sherred’s life’s work.

Sooke artist Jessica Ruth Freedman is one of nine virtual in-residence artists who share the creative process, conduct webinars, write and offer sage advice with artsUNITE, a free online wayfinding platform for artists. (Contributed - Jessica Ruth Freedman)
Sooke artist joins artsUNITE, getting creative through pandemic

National program brings much-needed support to arts community

Most Read