The fun comes after

Sc Mira talks anxiety, touring Canada and peculiar comparisons

Travis Ross

When someone creates a piece of art, it almost inherently invites comparison from its audience. This song reminds you of this band or that singer, which can be a double-edged sword for an artist. Local folk-alt-rockers Sc Mira have heard it all over the past two years. Singer-guitarists Sadye Cage and Ty Vega often chuckle over the endless unusual examples.

"Every single person has come up with their own variation," Vega says. “I think it’s complimentary.”

"We've been told we sound like Metric, U2 and Muse...," Cage says.

"...The Cranberries, Procol Harum, The Smashing Pumpkins...," Vega says.

"...bands so vastly different that we're always like: 'Hmm, okay,'" Cage says.

The touring life has already been kind to Sc Mira, as their first cross-Canada trip involved supporting Indigo Joseph on a number of national dates. That opportunity spawned another, as they were immediately invited to join Buck 65's tour as well. In the end, Sc Mira spent over five weeks on the road. They look back with fondness, but note the exposure to new audience brought with it new, often uninvited comparisons.

"I actually developed a complex because I kept getting compared to men," Cage says, trying to suppress her laughter. " Just today someone commented on our Facebook, saying I look like Bob Dylan. I've been told Iggy Pop, or that I dress like Lenny Kravitz. Whatever I'm doing, maybe it seems a bit fucking awkward, but that's cool."

"Yeah, I think once you really stop caring, you're able to be as good of a musician as you can be," Vega says.

"Whatever it looks like, it looks like," Cage says.

Cage is also a cancer survivor who was diagnosed at a young age. While recovering from cancer treatments, she began playing guitar and writing music for the first time in years. Many of the tracks from Sc Mira's EP were written during this period.

"The songs may sound uplifting but they came from a bit of a darker place," Cage says, who has thankfully recovered and is cancer-free. "It's really about feeling stuck and feeling lost."

The road to recovery has been creatively transformative for both Cage and Sc Mira, who will play The Cavern in Osborne Village on Mar. 28. Guitarist Ty Vega, bassist Mario Lagasse and drummer Jed Desilets have all played previously in local bands, but Cage has not. Vega and Cage first met while she was involved with the Winnipeg Folk Fest's Young Performers program, where he played guitar on a few of her early tracks.

"Back in those days, Sadye was just doing her own stuff," Vega says.

"And by, my own stuff, he means nothing," Cage says, jokingly.

However, the Folk Fest program opened many doors for Cage, who quickly began performing her own solo shows around Winnipeg. When the band formed, Cage was able to overcome nagging performance anxiety, which was only cured by spending that time on-stage with her follow Sc Mira members.

"That was when I started to relax and really be able to perform," Cage says. "I'm never super excited when I'm going on-stage. It's more about knowing that we've put on this show together and shown people what we've been working on. For me, the fun comes after."

Published in Volume 69, Number 25 of The Uniter (March 18, 2015)

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