fiddler adds movie credits to list of successes
has played fiddle in his country and western
band for more than 30 years, performing in venues
from barn dances to the Havelock Jamboree. Recently
Seaboyer has also landed two Hollywood movie
roles, including a part in an upcoming film
starring Kelsey Grammer, photographed on set
with Seaboyer below.
by Lorraine Dmitrovic
Special to The Independent
At 68 years of age, Gerry Seaboyer's star is shining
bright. The 40-year Havelock resident, who makes his living
selling furnaces and stoves, also helms the Gerry Seaboyer
Band on fiddle, and he's garnered roles in two major Hollywood
pictures in two years.
His first love is his country and western band, which
has played for over three decades. Current members include
Bob Caverly from Marmora, lead singer; bass player Barry
Hebor from Hastings; Monty Mills, formerly of Trenton
and now of Peterborough, on drums. Gerry's son, Ken, handles
lead guitar, and also runs the family truck repair and
towing garage. Newest member Sam Schlick, also of Peterborough,
plays steel guitar.
Hailing originally from Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia, Seaboyer
is self-taught on violin. "Music has been a part of my
life since I was 13. My main influence was Don Messer,"
Handling bookings and publicity himself, Seaboyer's main
venues include oldtime and barn dances. He feels the band
keeps alive a superb music style for a younger generation
to enjoy. "We play down-to-earth music that doesn't need
special effects to keep it on centre stage," he says.
Seaboyer personally financed the production of two cassettes.
'Traditional Fiddling' is down-home country music any
Hants County belle could clog to. 'Alone Tonight' features
vocals. Studio 29 in Warkworth did the mastering, and
Seaboyer was impressed with the sound quality the technicians
and equipment delivered.
Upcoming engagements are booked in Marmora, Harcourt,
and Maynooth, with a 1999 Nova Scotia date also confirmed.
The same bus the band travels on brought Hollywood knocking
on Gerry Seaboyer's door. The 70's vintage Greyhound-style
bus has freight space and airplane seating.
Photographers investigated the filmworthiness of Seaboyer's
bus for the upcoming film Rebound. Hollywood liked the
bus and needed a driver in a non-speaking role to go with
it, so two contracts were signed. Two stars were born.
This year brought Seaboyer another non-speaking part
as driver, with his bus under the moniker of 'Gus Coachlines'.
The production, with a shooting title of 'New Jersey Turnpikes',
afforded Gerry the occasion to work with sitcom superstar
Kelsey Grammer, and Hollywood living legend Robert Conrad.
The six-day Canadian location shooting schedule wrapped
on August 1st.
Seaboyer was thrilled to meet both stars. He recalls,
"The first day on the set after we were introduced, Kelsey
thanked me for the good safe driving during our scenes.
Over 6 days shooting, I had supper with him several times.
He's a bit older-looking than his TV character. In real
life he wears glasses, and is quite bald. During our scenes
he wore a toupee. But he was a real card, always joking."
Grammer was curious about the size and purpose of Seaboyer's
bus, and was intrigued when Gerry told him about the C
and W band. Seaboyer ended up handing out quite a few
cassettes. "Many cast and crew regarded them as souvenirs,
but for the life of me I can't remember if I gave a tape
to Kelsey," he says.
"That first night I met him in Hamilton, we had police
escorts on duty on the set, and one officer wanted one
of my tapes. I felt pretty important, and it was kind
of funny because he asked for my autograph, not Kelsey's!"
Seaboyer also had a few scenes on the bus with 71-year-old
Robert Conrad. Being almost the same age was a natural
icebreaker. "I was about the only person on the set he
socialized with," he says.
"It was interesting to see how Conrad studied the script
and rehearsed his lines, going over and over them again.
I think I learned a lot about acting just by watching
Seaboyer has been told by film industry insiders to never
get rid of his bus; a vehicle of that age in such good
condition is a rarity and would serve as his ticket to
future film work.
Seaboyer takes everything in stride, saying, "It's good
old common sense and honesty that brought me to where
I am today. I never thought I'd be in the movies. I've
heard an eye is being kept open for a film where my band
could be featured."
"I can't imagine anything more wonderful than that at