High Holy Days Biography
High Holy Days lead singer and chief song-writer Marc Arcand is bouncing off the walls, talking about how far he and his band-mates, Billy Macgregor (Guitar), Jeremy Galda (Bass) and Jason Guindon (Drums) have come from their humble beginnings jamming in his Grandma’s abandoned house in North Bay, Ontario to their newfound success at home and the prospect of international success on the horizon. A story of talent, drive and being in the right place at the right time, High Holy Days have quickly come a long way since the band’s inception nearly four years ago. Their first Canadian single, "All My Real Friends", off their Roadrunner Records debut of the same name, flew up the Canadian radio and video charts, lodging itself in the Top 20 for many weeks. This led to tours with bands like Three Days Grace, Default and labelmates, Theory of a Deadman and to sharing stages with Nickelback and Sam Roberts. Now, High Holy Days are in the throes of readying themselves for the September 28th U.S. release of All My Real Friends.
All My Real Friends showcases song craft that is organic and straightforward, with big riffs and unforgettable hooks. The explosive first U.S. single, “The Getaway”, is an infectiously catchy rock song that is both modern and classic, its driving beat and sweet chorus are tailor made for a Summer road trip – top down, music blasting, wind-in-the-hair fun. The song, just like the title says, is about getting away from it all, escaping from the daily grind. The video for “The Getaway” (which was put into HEAVY rotation at Much Music upon receipt) depicts just such fun, as the band packs it up and heads out for a weekend road trip with a bevy of beauties and buddies in tow.
Road trips are nothing new for Arcand. The affable lead singer has been on the move from the get-go. Arcand, 26, spent the first 13 years of his life home-schooled by his American mom, dividing his time between New Mexico, Florida and Ontario, Canada. He first fell in love with music when he and his brother would blast The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Alice in Chains from their parents' stereo. By age 13 he had planted firm roots in North Bay, Ontario and was attending public high school. "At that time my best friend bought a guitar I began singing along to his strumming and the creative floodgates opened up and all of these songs poured out of me…it was a start." After a few years as a core driller (yeah, just like Bruce Willis in Armageddon), Arcand moved back home and enrolled in the local college. In the fall of ‘98, while jamming in his Grandmother’s abandoned house on an acoustic guitar, his then girlfriend introduced him to drummer, Jason Guindon. "I had this itch to bring my little song sketches to life and Jason seemed like a great fit to help me do just that." They banded together and with Marc's old friend on guitar and a mutual friend on bass they set out to conquer North Bay.
This early lineup then recorded their 4-song demo, which wound up in the hands of the local rock radio station. The station began to play 3 of the 4 tracks and the band began their rise, packing clubs in and around North Bay. As their popularity grew so did the need to find players that were dedicated to seeing the band through and in 2001 Billy MacGregor and Jeremy Galda joined the band. Marc’s first cousin Billy MacGregor, whose father had actually played drums in Marc’s mother’s band nearly 25 years earlier was sort of a nomad at the time, says Marc, “he was crashing on my couch so often that I gave him an ultimatum, either join the band or look for a new couch.” Galda a trained guitar player knew Guindon from previous bands but quickly adapted to bass. “I never played bass in a band before,” says Galda with a smirk, but I took a cool attitude in the jam room and kept showing up for practice.”
With eyes on growing their fanbase throughout Canada, the band set out on a mission to raise money for the making of the record in order to record what was to become their debut album in famed Metalworks studios. Says Arcand, "It was balls to the wall, do or die for us. We were all committed 110% and there was no turning back." So they maxed out their credit cards, turned to their families, took out loans and collected 10 years worth of birthday presents in advance and emerged from the studio with a debut album they could be proud of - All My Real Friends - and then set out on an extensive tour of Canada.
Now, after hundreds of gigs High Holy Days have found their groove and now these go-getters have set their sights on conquering the US - and with All My Real Friends, they are bound to make fans and friends alike.