This event is on September 7, 2014 1:00 pm
Singer-songwriter Walter Senko is a little left of pop. Think Supertramp meets Owl City, a kind of dramatic indie vibe. Produced in separate sessions by Cone McCaslin from multi-platinum rock band Sum 41 and guitarist Bill Bell (Jason Mraz, Justin Nozuka, Tara MacLean), his debut solo EP, From A Liar, is distributed by music journalist Karen Bliss’s label Daycare Records.
The first single, “From A Liar To A Gem,” had producers fighting to produce it and some key industry ears calling it a smash. While a new version was attempted, the original demo had a certain charm and so it is that version that is on the EP.
“’From A Liar To A Gem’ was inspired by conversation Walter had with a girl he broke up with because he knew it ultimately wouldn’t work. “She asked me if I still had feelings. I lied and said, ‘No,’” the pianist and guitarist recalls. “So I had the title From A Liar, but who was it to? I didn’t want to put her name so I thought about the ideal word to describe her — gem. Gems are precious and hard to find.”
Another song, the punchier anthem “We Are The Cure” is based off philanthropist Rob Dyer’s Skate4Cancer and “dream love cure” motto that Walter turned into a lyric about realizing your own problems and doing what it takes to fix them. “Oh we’ll do it for the Love, well do it for the Dream, we’ll do it all because we believe in bigger things,” he sings. The last words in the chorus are “We are the Cure.”
The monumental statement “The Greatest Invention” is about love, not necessarily between two people but as a whole. “No matter what decision you make in life, if you decide it with love you will be in good hands,” Walter explains.
“I tend to write about what I feel most, things that affect me so much that I just have to sit down at the piano or guitar. I like to think people hear that in my songs and it’s the best feeling when they come up to me after a show and let me know that they identify swith what I just sang.”
Karen first saw Walter perform in Toronto when she was judging a battle of the bands, Battala Rockstar, alongside Juno-winning producer Gavin Brown, Our Lady Peace drummer Jeremy Taggart and Skate4Cancer’s Dyer. Walter was fronting a band called Credible Witness and had driven in from their hometown of Windsor, Ontario. Shortly after, ex treble charger singer and noted producer Greig Nori (Sum 41, Hedley) was interested in working with the band and invited them on the MuchMusic TV show, disBAND.Karen started helping the band and sent some music to Cone, bassist for Sum 41. The guys started recording in Toronto over weeks and months, between Cone’s tour schedule. As varying levels of commitment started to show within Credible Witness, Walter found it best to break out on his own and release the 7-song EP under his own name. By then, Karen had started her own record label.
The EP, From A Liar, features four songs produced by Cone — “Greatest Invention,” “We Are The Cure” and “Sell Out Your Secrets,” also co-written by him, plus “Life Without You” — and Bill produced “Sucker For Those Blue Eyes” and tweaked “Carry You.” “From A Liar To A Gem” is self-produced and is the song people in the industry have labeled a potential hit, along the lines of Owl City’s “Fireflies.”
“When I first sat down to write songs with Walter, and then later produce songs for him, I realized right away he had a great sense of melody and for being so young at the time he also had very developed voice,” says Cone. “He had a thousand ideas, so we just had to pick the best ones and tie everything together. A whole new feel and vibe started happening that we were really into so we just kept going. We wanted everything to just come naturally and that’s what happened. I think we achieved something very honest and fun.”