July 15, 2004

Barenaked Ladies Goes “Au Naturale” With Alanis Co-Headlining Tour

By Randy J. Klodz

In what could be deemed a “Canadian Invasion” tour the “Au Naturale” tour, which pits Canadian-bred artists Barenaked Ladies and Alanis Morissette on a blockbuster co-headlining tour will be hitting the Chicago area for a July 21 show at Tweeter Center.

Barenaked Ladies—which includes Steven Page (vocals, guitar), Ed Robertson (vocals, guitar), Jim Creeggan (electric and acoustic bass), Kevin Hearn (keyboards) and Tyler Stewart (drums)—has been recording for well over a decade, and has been making splashes in the rock world since day one with hits quirky hits “One Week,” “If I Had a $1,000,000,” and many others, along the way.

Though the band often has a good sense of humor in its songs to complement each members crafty musicianship and stellar songwriting abilities, Barenaked Ladies is definitely not a joke act, of which some critics have labeled. “We certainly do have jokes, but I always find it weird that some people find it so easy to dismiss us based on that,” said Barenaked Ladies co-frontman Steven Page. “The other thing that I always find odd is that people like movies with jokes, but music with jokes is absolutely not allowed—it doesn’t make any sense to me. I think that we have developed a fan base based on humor and on the quality of the songs and the quality of the band, and I think we’re pretty happy with that.”

Though each of the Barenaked Ladies is popular in the United States, the Toronto natives are musical gods in Canada. But Canada is different when it comes to the famous. After all, it’s Canada. “In Canada, they don’t really care about celebrities at all,” Page said. “And that’s kind of one of the pluses about living here, you walk down the street and everybody recognizes you, but really everybody leaves you alone.”

“I know in Los Angeles some people are a little star-obsessed there,” Page said. “When you look at Michael Jackson, ‘Leave me alone, I want to get away,’ and then he goes away somewhere to relax, away from the media, and he goes to like Germany where they’re even more obsessed with him.”

Barenaked Ladies is concluding its tour behind “Everything to Everyone,” which hit stores last October. Page said that his band will flip-flop headlining duties each night with Alanis Morissette, but each artist plans to play full-length sets, he said, with each artist possibly playing for well over an hour each.

Tweeter Center is at 19100 S. Ridgeland Ave. in south-suburban Tinley Park. Tickets for this all-ages show range in price from $17 with a scheduled start time of 6:30 p.m. For more information on Barenaked Ladies log on to www.bnlmusic.com.

Barenaked Ladies Photo: Jay Blakesberg