The members of Debra are one big happy family

By Jordyn Marcellus

Debra has a real rocking pad. It’s the kind of place where you can sit back, chill out and enjoy a Bud.

These proud punk-rockers, originally from Toronto, moved out west to make their fortunes– specifically, they came to Calgary looking for work. After living apart for a few years, the band moved in together to form one big happy family. One that, at any time, can bust down the doors with their of sheer bad ass rock ‘n’ roll.

Of course, living together presents the band a unique opportunity: at any time they can hold an impromptu band meeting, practice or even get together to lay down a track in the studio at their home.

“We’ve got a cozy little seven-person artist commune going on,” says singer and guitarist James McIntosh. “There’s been lots of creativity in the last while. We can write songs whenever we want and work on stuff whenever we want. We even have a little studio where we record stuff for our demos.”

Their abode is not only home to numerous musicians, but also a producer. McIntosh says their producer isn’t scared to delve into a genre that he’s not accustomed to.

“One of the guys who lives with us is actually a producer for hip-hop music,” he laughs. “He’s been pretty good for helping.”

One of the nerve-racking things about having roommates is ensuring that you get along with them. It’s even worse in a band: all the squabbles and drama of the band family with very little of the cooling-off period. Thankfully, the Debra household is not dysfunctional in the slightest.

“We call each other idiots all the time,” laughs McIntosh. “We have good ways of making fun of each other and yelling at one another in a way that only brothers can do. We still bitch and fight, but that’s all good. We’re a loving family.”

When asked about the chore situation that comes with living with six other people, McIntosh was quick to answer.

“We’re lucky,” he says. “We have a dishwasher. We try to maintain a good house. We got to have a nice place to bring the ladies home to, so we try to maintain a basic standard for women.”

McIntosh further explained how Debra keeps the house in tip-top conditions for their respectful dalliances with the fairer sex.

“Women are a little bit comforted by our place,” says McIntosh. “We have tea candles and we burn incense all the time. It’s totally necessary because our house smells like weed and we want to maintain our good smell. You come over to our place, you’ll smell Nag champa [a brand of incense] fo’ sho’.”

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