Wesley MacInnes (known to us as Wes Mack) is no stranger to the country music scene. Fans were first introduced to this Calgary artist in June of 2013 with his debut release “Duet” featuring Carly McKillip. The song peaked at #9 on the Country Billboard Chart and led to him winning the International Unsigned Only Music Competition.
Since then, Wes has continued to deliver – from his soulful ballads to his boot-stomping upbeat tracks and his charismatic presence on the screen (where he is known to write, direct, and star in his own videos).
His last album “Soul” delivered hit songs like “Never Have I Ever” featuring Sons of Daughters and “Best Hangover” with Maddie Storvold and his upcoming album promises the same quality of music fans have come to expect.
We had a chance to catch up with Wes and discuss his new single, his upcoming album, and his 50 feathered fans.
For anyone who may not know who you are, tell us a bit about Wes Mack … what made you decide to get into this industry, and who were your musical inspirations growing up?
I’m a musician, writer, actor, director, and producer. It’s one of those things where one of my careers just ended up spawning other ones over time. But music has been there for the longest. I started a band with two guys on my hockey team when we were 13 and that was it for me…. Never really looked back.
I had a lot of influences growing up. From the stuff my parents introduced me to like The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Hank Williams Sr. And then the bands I got into as a kid and teenager… Our Lady Peace, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, Led Zeppelin, The Doors. I grew up in Calgary, so country music was everywhere. But it was when I left and moved to Vancouver that I actually came to know the genre and love it. Artists like Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, and The Eli Young Band really made me fall in love with this kind of music and made me want to write it myself.
In our last interview with you, you had just released “Best Hangover” featuring Maddie Storvold. Have you collaborated with anyone for this album?
I’ve written with a number of people, including a few artists, but so far I don’t have any true collaborations planned yet for album 3. That may change… it’s still early for me in planning the final form of this album.
What can fans expect to hear with your forthcoming 3rd album? How does it differ from Soul?
To be honest I’m not sure. I’ve never had so little of a plan going into an album. It feels both liberating and a bit scary. There’s a David Bowie interview I like where he says that you need to create at that spot in the water where your feet are just barely touching the ground…. Then go a little further…. And that’s where the magic happens.
I suspect this album will sound very different from SOUL by the time it’s done, and I’m excited about that.
Your song “Don’t Change” is already creating a buzz. What is the inspiration behind it?
Love. The kind that stays the same and is an anchor in life when everything else changes. That is the core of “Don’t Change”
With live music being heavily impacted by COVID regulations, how do you plan to draw awareness to your music and what can fans do to help?
That’s a good question. I think inherently there is no way to really fill the void left by live music. I’ve done my best to make an interesting album in quarantine and to shoot a video and just continue being myself. Fans can share the music around and bring the songs into their lives as the soundtrack of this strange time. I can’t ask for much more than that, and I’m grateful to have already had so many people engaging with the song.
When live music is finally back in full swing effect, where is the first place you’ll play?
Ain’t that the million-dollar question. Hahaha… man, I would be happy to play just about anywhere at this point…. You’ll be able to find me at the first stage I come to, just happy to be there.
Aside from working on your music what else have you been up to?
Strangely this has become one of the busiest years of my life. Beyond the new album I also have been writing for some other artists and I’m lucky right now to have a song out with Tyler Joe Miller called Fighting, which I believe has just entered the top 30. It’s fun because I don’t have to lift a finger…. I just got to write it with him and then watch it fly hahaha.
Beyond that I’ve recently been acting on a couple of new TV shows, and I have actually written and developed another two TV shows that I am in the process of selling. That has been very exciting.
Aaaaaaand beyond that…. I’ve been spending a good chunk of each afternoon sitting at the duck pond by my house hanging out with about 50 ducks… I love it.
Looking back to where you started from vs where you are today, what have been some of your favorite career moments?
Great question. In no particular order… Singing Party For Two each night on tour with Shania Twain, being thrown against a metal wall by Liam Neeson in the film Cold Pursuit, getting to be in the Power Rangers movie, standing with my band overlooking the Boots and Hearts Mainstage the night we won a slot opening for Dierks Bentley, walking out onstage for the first time opening for Florida Georgia Line at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver, and filming the movie The Phantoms in New Brunswick for a couple of months….
I’ve been a very lucky guy in this life to have some of the memories that I do. I hope to keep on making more. My dad gave me a good piece of advice the night before I started on the Shania tour. He said to make sure to stop at least once each night onstage and look out at the crowd and take a mental snapshot because I’d have that memory with me for the rest of my life.
I did that every night and I try to always do that during any of these moments…. Just take a second and let that memory burn into my mind. I’m grateful for them all.
Wes Mack’s single “Don’t Change” is available on all major music platforms. Visit his website http://wesmackmusic.com/ for his up-to-date information.
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