Squamish Valley Music Festival Band of the Day: Yukon Blonde

Like Christmas when it gets to be the end of November, and Easter when the trees start to sprout leaves after a long winter, it’s starting to feel like it’s almost here. Just so there’s no confusion, we’re not talking the night when the fat bearded guy stuffs himself down the chimney or when a white rabbit breaks into the house to strew chocolate offspring and rainbow coloured eggs everywhere.

No, we’re talking about the Squamish Valley Music Festival, taking place August 8-10 at the Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields. In anticipation of the big day, we’re spending the next few weeks rounding up local artists who’ll be playing this year’s event, and getting them to answer some important questions.

Like who they’ll be cueing up on the iPod for the Sea to Sky drive to the site, what they’ll be making sure to pack to make it through their set, the all-time dream festival lineup, and who they plan to stalk backstage. And that’s just the start of our probing. Read on, but not before you pick up your Squamish Valley Music Festival ticket. The last thing you want to miss is today’s featured local artist....

Jeffrey Innes (guitar-vocals) and Graham Jones (drums) make up half of Yukon Blonde, whose latest, Tiger Talk, suggests the group would be as comfortable playing CBGBs with the Buzzcocks as a Pacific Northwest forest clearing with Fleet Foxes.

Sea To Sky Playlist


Harry Nilsson "Coconut" 

Annie Lennox "Walking on Broken Glass"

Ariel Pink "Only in my Dreams"

Ultraista "Bad Insect"

Tom Waits "Step Right Up"

The Sea and Cake "All the Photos"

Scott Walker "Black Sheep Boy"

Roxy Music "More Than This"

Daft Punk "Da Funk"

Phosphorescent "Song for Zula"

Outdoor essentials:


  • Waterproof SPF 30 for our noses (pina-colada scent)
  • Bubbles
  • Large sunglasses
  • Mini-donuts (for Jeff)
  • A Super Soaker 7000 

We'd Love to Hang With:


If I had the chance, I’d love to catch up with an abominable snowman up in the mountains. I’d love to sit by a fire, crush a few cans, get a few tips on hair care and some insight on its outdoor survival methods. Also get a straight answer once and for all: “Why the heck are you so sheepish, fella?”

First Festival Experience:


Although I’m sure there were a few before this, I can’t seem to remember. The the Stanley Park Singing Exhibition sometime around 2006 was a memorable one. There were an amazing bunch of Vancouver bands (New Pornographers, Black Mountain) accompanied by some friends (Deerhoof, Neko Case, among others) Also on the bill, and the most bone-chilling set of the day I’d have to say was Andrew Birds’. During the song “Sparrow”, flocks of birds starting going wild above the crowd as he whistled his tune. It was almost as if he was calling them…

As stellar As This Year’s Squamish Bill is, What’s Your Fantasy Fest Line-up?


All of our friends' bands. We should curate it next year

What's Your Official Rider Request?


We have a different rider for different days of the week, for instance on Sundays, we request that the venue provide 20 plasma TV screens, no smaller that 50” so that we, and our audience can watch reruns of Game Of Thrones. We also request that the venue provide wardrobe for every audience member that’s true to a character in the show. We do not tolerate doubles. I must be the only Jon Snow.

Furthermore, mead and hard cheese are the only drink and food served to the audience; however, we reserve the right to eat whatever we want.

And then of course, servants, squires, hand maids, stewards, and maesters must also be provided.

That’s a typical Sunday. Pretty mellow. I wish I were bold enough to tell you what’s on our Friday rider. 

Trivia time: What’s Squamish’s official slogan?


Obviously it’s “Squamish: Best place to fish and grow squash.” 

The Festival takes place at Hendrickson Fields & Logger Sports Ground. Quick—what’s your favourite logger sport?


Hands down I’d have to say log rolling. Remember that cartoon/song segment that would occasionally play in between programs back in the day called “The Log Driver’s Waltz” ? What a tune!

Yukon Blonde plays the Squamish Valley Music Festival’s Stawamus Stage at 3 p.m. on Saturday (August 10).