“You know when you’re a kid and you always try to get the front seat when you’re riding in a car? I guess I was the best one at calling ‘shotgun’ first and the name just stuck. I excelled at getting the shotgun seat.” Shotgun Jimmie is the stage name of Canada’s own alternative rocker and celebrated nice guy, Jim Kilpatrick. Having travelled around the world to many different countries, Shotgun Jimmie seems to find his inspirations in his surroundings and in every step he takes. Lately, Shotgun Jimmie says he has been finding a lot of inspirations in visual art, fascinated by the way that artists display unfinished work and leave it open to criticisms.
Canada’s call for an original alternative rocker was answered by Shotgun Jimmie’s first LP, Still Jimmie, and the transition to his latest LP, Everything, Everything, has continued to show that an artist that loves their work will grow and come into their own voice more with every release. It becomes obvious when listening through the Shotgun Jimmie’s releases the transformation he undertook: the technical ability and better understanding of his own message comes through in Everything, Everything. With his trademark modesty, Kilpatrick speaks to his first LP release. “I haven’t listened to Still Jimmie in a while but I’m sure there are a few stinkers in there.”
Accustomed to the hard life of touring and working on new material, Shotgun Jimmie still manages to shine his positive light onto a grinding situation. He speaks to his experiences in touring and how travelling allowed him to become a better artist: “Travelling in general has been the best experience. Having music has been a great window to see into other cultures and different parts of the world.” Having been on tour to 16 different countries, this Canadian rocker finds himself grateful and lucky to have been able to meet all of the people he has and to have fostered those relationships, also mentioning (a few times) the different kinds of food he’s gotten to try. Based on his own experience of touring, Shotgun offers some advice to artists new to the touring lifestyle: “You can never have too many socks. Socks and underwear.”
Shotgun Jimmie is packing up to go on tour again with Ladyhawk for their 10th anniversary, playing a number of shows across Western Canada this April. “These upcoming shows are all about the guys. I’m looking forward to spending time with the Ladyhawk guys,” he says, excited to get on the road and play a few shows with some friends. The blown-out sounds of Ladyhawk, complimented by Shotgun Jimmie’s lighthearted rock ‘n’ roll style, guarantees that this upcoming tour is going to be a success.
Shotgun Jimmie’s passion and lust for music and culture is obvious in his latest LP. “I think that being a musician is the best way for me to contribute to our culture,” he says, explaining why the artist creates music. If you are a person that enjoys a hook-heavy, down stroke type of rock n’ roll, Shotgun Jimmie is an artist worth listening to. The blend of folk and pop-rock on Everything, Everything, doubled with Kilpatrick’s master of technical ability, makes this album a must have for any fan of Canadian alternatives.
Catch Shotgun Jimmie on tour at the Windsor Hotel (Winnipeg) on April 24, at the Pawn Shop (Edmonton) on April 26 and at Commonwealth (Calgary) on April 27.
By Brittany Lahure