Les Hay Babies Make A Splash At The ECMA'S

You can be good, awfully good, and word will get out about your band. But when you go to an event such as the East Coast Music Awards, there are a lot of good acts. All the bookers, managers, reps, radio folks, they only have so much time to see performances, and there are way too many to see everything. So the trick is to create great buzz, and be the act that everyone is talking about, and has to check out.

There are several ways to do this, usually involving inventive e-mails or colourful marketing campaigns. One of the best I have seen at the ECMA's was years ago in Halifax. An unknown trio from Albert County, NB, became the talk of the conference, thanks to a great poster campaign, designed by Steve Dupuis from Moncton. It showed the three gents in the band completely covered in mud. Everyone was all of a sudden talking about Isaac, Blewett and Cooper, and lots attending their shows. They made their name that weekend, and it's still paying off for all three.

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This year, the group that pulled it off were from Moncton, and although they didn't invent this trick, I can't remember seeing it before here. People getting on the elevator at the host hotel, the Delta Beausejour, were treated to the music of the acoustic trio Les Hay Babies, three young Acadian women, singing great harmonies and playing guitar, uke and banjo. Jian Ghomeshi mentioned it, Roch Voisine tweeted about it. And the show I went to was packed.

I've been hearing about the band for several months now from Moncton friends, and I've been told just how great they are. Now I can confirm it, too. Great singers with excellent harmonies, their acoustic music is a breath of fresh air. There have been a few of these female acoustic trios around, such as the Wailin' Jennies, but none of them are bilingual, with an Acadian influence in their sound, and in their lyrics.

So far, they have recorded a couple of EP's, just for concert releases and promotion. These are unadorned live tracks, but sound fresh and inspired, and promise great things when they get them into the studio. Honestly, they won't need much production to get a high-quality release, such is the natural charm and talent they offer.

Here's a taste of Les Hay Babies, doing their elevator trick at the ECMA's.

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About Bob Mersereau

Rockin' BobBob Mersereau has been covering music, and the East Coast Music Scene since 1985 for CBC. He's a veteran scene-maker at the ECMA's, knows where the best shows and right parties are happening, and more importantly, has survived to tell the tales. His weekly East Coast music column is heard on Shift on Radio 1 in New Brunswick each Wednesday at 4'45. He's also the author of two national best-selling books, The Top 100 Canadian Albums (2007) and The Top 100 Canadian Singles (2010).

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