Luke Doucet and Melissa McClellan were both successful solo singer-songwriters before they were married in 2006. In 2011, they decided to combine forces and form Whitehorse.
Sometimes playing nearly 100 concerts in a year, Whitehorse doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. They even travel with their infant child. With all that time spent on the road, it’s hard to imagine time for anything else, let alone practice — which is just one reason why duo doesn’t put too much thought into rehearsing.
“If you rehearse something 40 times, that’s potentially 40 opportunities to play beautifully that people aren’t going to see,” says Doucet. “Rehearsing to me is always B-game.”
After Whitehorse finishes an album, they make time to take it on the road and talk about it. Both Doucet and McClellan feel similarly about appreciating and learning from their old music.
“Listening to your albums to some degree is going back and experiencing some of the intensity of the studio,” says Doucet. “For us, it’s like, that was a lot of work and we’re so happy we did it, now let us move on.”
Both passionate live performers, Whitehorse find themselves at home on the road.
“I’ve always romanticized the big city and I’m a very solitary person. I’ve always loved the feeling of being alone in the city, but never lonely,” says McClelland. “It’s inspiring for songwriting when you’re just passing through a town and you can just imagine what’s going on in that place at that time.”
To pay homage to their home country of Canada, the band released an EP of some of their older songs between full-length albums in French. They felt it necessary to give back to Canada's French speaking citizens after the generous treatment of Canada’s traveling artists.
“Because Quebec has a vested interest in protecting its culture, there are so many opportunities to play music there,” says Doucet. “Every town has a beautiful state-of-the-art community center with PA systems and a proper theater.”
Whitehorse’s second album, Leave No Bridge Unburned, was released on Feb. 15, 2015.