Industry Veterans Universal Honey Use Creative Saskatchewan Grant to Reach New Heights
Alternative pop rock band Universal Honey are no stranger to the Canadian music scene—thirty years in the music business will have that effect on people.
However, when they were looking to re-introduce themselves to a broad audience both domestically and internationally they chose a Creative Saskatchewan Sound Recording Grant to help them along. The result? They started working on their eighth studio album. So far, they’ve released three singles with accompanying music videos: “Is this The Real Thing,” “Hush a Word,” and “Made Of The Storm. Combined, the three singles have almost 200,000 views on YouTube. The band are well aware of their sound, something they call “a modern/alt rock genre” that happens when you “sprinkle in some classic rock with an industrial edge.”
We’re not the only ones who have taken notice of their success. Canadian Beats, CTV News, FYI Music News, and regional television station CKSA/CITL in Lloydminster are some of the media outlets who have profiled the duo in recent months. Universal Honey also produced an ad to run on Spotify that garnered some serious attention.
The group, consisting of longtime collaborators Johnny Sinclair and Leslie Stanwyck, are finishing an album that is slated to include 12 new original tracks. The duo began to work together after meeting when they both played on two albums for another Canadian band, The Pursuit of Happiness.These days, the pair record their work in their home studio in Saskatoon and started their own production house and record label, Honeytunes, in 2020 to house their catalogue and work with other artists.
Having previously lived in Toronto, this new project is the first that will call Saskatchewan its home. It will also include contributions from longtime Saskatchewan musician Warren Medernach and mastering will be handled by Trevor Case of Saskatoon’s Case Mastering. Recent Saskatchewan-focused collaborations for Universal Honey have included a co-write with Lane Shields and Alex Runions as well as a homegrown audio-visual project for Saskatoon’s virtual Canada Day in the Park. In other words, just because they haven’t released an album recently doesn’t mean they haven’t been busy.
Universal Honey’s resurgence, in their eyes, is fueled by a digital age that wasn’t as available to them when they released their previous albums. This new record will include a wide release on digital platforms as well as a CD and vinyl runs to compliment their sound. It’s an exciting time for a duo that attributes much of their success to an older demographic that has stuck with them over the last three decades.
If you’re looking to find a new audience for your music—or burst back onto the scene with a new project— take a look at our grant guidelines to see if your work might be a good fit.. The project needs to include at least six songs, run at least 30 minutes, and be created with the intention of commercial release in order to meet the minimum requirements. Recent recipients include Étienne Fletcher and Marissa Burwell. If you’re recording a shorter work, we also have streams dedicated to single sound recordings (1-3 songs) and EPs (4 to 6 songs and shorter than 30 minutes).