Redpath Traffic releases new single “HEY MONA!” (Interview)

Redpath Traffic


With a mix of blues and rock with a dash of punk, Toronto’s Redpath Traffic tells unique, introspective stories of love, loss, redemption, and change. This electric trio blends sonic moods and sweeping movements into their distinctive original music, creating a sound that’s uniquely theirs. Redpath Traffic features Rick Todd on guitars and vocals; Mark Fernley on bass; and Kerem Balci on drums.

Hope is a common thread throughout Redpath Traffic’s music. In “Hey Mona!” the storyteller yearns for the company of love lost. Mona represents all that seems distant, indifferent, unattainable, and beyond our control to keep for ourselves. It speaks to one’s proclamation that – perhaps selfishly – “What you need out there isn’t possibly as important as what I need from you here.”

Played as a pop-punk stomp with infectious hooks throughout, “Hey Mona!” was written and produced to reignite hope, even in our most profound moments of despair. Musically, it crosses The Beatles with The Clash by way of Stray Cats – a sonic blend of happy sounds bridging a river that rages with tension.

The song was written by band member Rick Todd and produced by multiple award-winning music legend Chris Birkett. An alternate version with an extended opening will be available on the band’s upcoming album, Under the Crimson Sun.

Redpath Traffic’s new single “Hey Mona!” is available now, and their debut LP, Under the Crimson Sun, comes out in April of 2023.

Listen to “Hey Mona!” below and learn more about Redpath Traffic via our mini-interview.

Care to introduce yourself?

I’m Rick, a singer, songwriter, and guitarist for Redpath Traffic. I’m also Chief Interview Guy – today, anyway.

Tell us about the process of writing ” Hey Mona.”

It was in a truck stop in a small town with a musician friend. I had just come off an east coast tour, and she was in the middle of her band’s tour. We were talking about life on the road, and I realized how much I missed it. I wrote the song right after in one sitting. Those songs are the best – the ones that hit you like lightning. That’s when you know you’re really on to something. Kerem Balci and Mark Fernley, the other members of Redpath Traffic, helped with the arrangement. Our producer, Chris Birkett, brought a couple of great ideas to the table too. Actually, there was no table. It was in the studio.

What’s it like being a musician in Toronto?

It’s a double-edged sword. Lots of places to play and other musicians to meet. There’s a good amount of quality studios and most of the industry people you need to know are here. However, building a large audience or attracting media attention can be difficult, especially for indie artists. The digital world makes it easier to connect with fans, but getting your cheerleaders off their phones and into your gig can be challenging.

This city’s really expensive too. I feel for musicians who fully commit to their craft but have trouble making ends meet. I met a guy recently who asked the crowd if he could crash on someone’s couch. I’m sure he’s not the only one living day-to-day.

Who was the first Canadian artist to blow you away?

Rush, without question. Three guys who were so good at what they did – not to mention doing it so tightly together – that few other bands could stand up to them. I wonder how many other people answered Rush when you asked them that!

One of my favourite Rush tunes is “Where’s My Thing?”, an instrumental from their Roll the Bones album. It absolutely blew me away when I first heard it. I’m going to listen again when we’re done here.

I also have to give a shoutout to Stompin’ Tom Connors too. He blew me away with his authenticity in an image-driven business. Just a regular guy with a guitar and a pitcher of beer telling stories. I think that’s why people loved him so much.

You’ve been making music for a while now. What’s one piece of advice you can offer to those starting out?

Respect your talent. You have a gift – don’t minimize it or let anyone else convince you that you’re less than who you really are. Stay true to yourself, and the universe will reward you tenfold.

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