The Sheepdogs bring rock ‘n’ roll party in Buffalo return


Thomas Tedesco / The Record

The Sheepdogs performing at Town Ballroom on December 16, 2022

Thomas Tedesco, Culture Editor

A blast from the past felt like a breath of fresh air coming from across the Canadian border.

The Sheepdogs’ performance on the Town Ballroom stage felt like watching a concert straight from the 1970s between the harmonizing vocals, guitars and a shining logo behind them, but without copying the style of any particular band from that period.

“We try to take the sensibilities of older music, but we still want to be modern in its own sense,” bassist Ryan Gullen said in an exclusive interview with The Record.

Man playing bass guitar on stage.
The Sheepdogs bassist, Ryan Gullen performing on the Town Ballroom stage.

For most of 2022, The Sheepdogs have been grinding it out on the road to promote their newest album, “Outta Sight.” Buffalo marked the last stop of what the band described as their most successful tour in the United States to date.

“Live shows are a big part of how we market ourselves,” Gullen said.

The band mixed in their vintage, yet modern rock stylings over their 22 song set pulling songs from all over their catalogue, including five songs from “Outta Sight” and the live debut of their original Christmas song, “I’m Ready for Christmas.”

New guitarist, Ricky Paquette made his presence known early and often starting with his blistering guitar solo in the show’s opener “Rock and Roll (Ain’t No Simple Thing)” and would continue this with subsequent guitar leads throughout the show.

Paquette and Ewan Currie demonstrated great guitar chemistry throughout the night, especially during the songs “Scarborough Street Fight” and “I’m Gonna Be Myself,” which even included a well-placed snippet of the Allman Brothers Band classic “Jessica.”

Man playing guitar on stage.
The Sheepdogs guitarist and lead vocalist, Ewan Currie performing on the Town Ballroom stage (Thomas Tedesco)

Even when Ewan’s guitar malfunctioned in the middle of the song, the band continued playing and didn’t miss a beat while the issue was being resolved. This demonstrated the synergy that was present amongst the members of the band.

Gullen and drummer Sam Corbett were undoubtedly locked in and provided a solid groove that served as the foundation for the songs.

Man playing drum set.
The Sheepdogs drummer, Sam Corbett. (Thomas Tedesco)

Multi-instrumentalist Shamus Currie was the equivalent to icing on the cake as a jack of all trades by playing various keyboards, guitar, and tambourine to fill out the necessary sounds on any given song.

He got his own spotlight when he took a lead vocal on the song, “Are You a Good Man?” which prompted the crowd to chant “Shamus” in unison when he was introduced by his brother Ewan.

Musicians performing on stage.
Shamus Currie playing keyboards and Ricky Paquette playing guitar on the Town Ballroom stage. (Thomas Tedesco)

Chants of “Let’s go Buffalo” could also be heard quite frequently between songs. Ewan made note of it during their encore before playing “Roughrider ’89,” a song inspired by the band’s hometown Canadian football team, the Saskatchewan Roughriders.

The Sheepdogs’ energy on stage was reciprocated by the crowd often as they sang along to several songs, most notably on the band’s hit song, “I Don’t Know.” Throughout their set, the band made sure this energy never waivered.

“It’s just like a good time rock and roll party,” Gullen said.