The Harrison Memorial Hall was jam packed for Saturday night’s performance by ten-piece band ‘Steelin’ in the Years.’ The band pays tribute to seventies band Steely Dan, which played a skilled mashup of rock, pop and jazz style tunes.
‘Steelin’ in the Years’ lead singer Billy Mendoza claims that his love for the music of Steely Dan dates back to 1971, when he was in eleventh grade. He heard a Steely Dan song, “Reelin’ in the Years,” playing on the radio and had to listen to the band.
‘Steelin’ in the Years’ began after several musicians decided to become a tribute band, choosing Steely Dan, because that band reflected their similar musical tastes. Mendoza, repeatedly, stated how like-minded the band members were, mentioning that “everyone are big players” and that they were always “waiting for the next big gig.”
He also mentioned that a lot of band members are from Vancouver, or have lived there for several years. Mendoza originated from Hawaii, before coming to B.C.
When asked about coordinating a ten-piece band, Mendoza turned the question over to background vocalist Talia Butler-Grey, who expressed how the coordination involves a great effort in order to get ten people in the same room, and a lot of correspondence via email.
Beyond winning the lottery in the future (which seemed like a pretty significant goal on Mendoza’s bucket list), Billy Mendoza has definite plans to continue to play music. He states that, “when this band is in high flight, it is actually like you are playing with Steely Dan,” and therefore he wants to do more with ‘Steelin’ in the Years’ for a long time to come.
Mendoza hopes the next gig they do is as packed as Harrison’s concert was on Saturday. As usual, the audience was enthralled with the performance, adamantly calling for an encore and dancing excitedly as they belted out compliments to the band.