10 Canadian musicians who put your Movember mustache to shame

by Mark Teo

November 12, 2013






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It’s November, which can only mean one thing: Your brothers, co-workers and bandmates are all growing terrible peach fuzz in the name of prostate cancer research.

Photo: Stephen McGill

It’s November, which can only mean one thing: Your brothers, co-workers and bandmates are all growing terrible peach fuzz in the name of prostate cancer research. Yeah, muh bruhs, it’s Movember, where common decency is subverted by the inner fratboy (and his desire to resemble Ron Burgundy). Of course, we’re just joking: Movember occurs for a good cause, and there are plenty of people who do facial hair right. Like these 10 Canadian musicians.


The Doughboys’ Jonathan Cummins

Photo: Exclaim.ca

Montreal’s Doughboys are best remembered for scoring The Wedge’s soundtrack and John Kastner’s iconic dreadlocks. Less heralded, however, was guitarist Jonathan Cummins’ mighty facial scrag. When the band split, Cummins became one of Canada’s most scathing real-talk music critics, formed Bionic, briefly joined Besnard Lakes, and kept on growing his red-bearded monstrosity.


Ian Blurton

Photo: Wikipedia.org

Is there a bigger bearded luminary in Canadian music than Ian Blurton? Yes, he’s produced a zillion massive-sounding albums, but his bands—from Change of Heart to C’Mon to Blurtonia—helped shape the Canadian scumbag archetype, and he’s left a trail of crushed Pilsner tall cans and dirty trucker hats in his wake. AUX contributor Josiah Hughes says that everything he touches sounds like a beard—and he’s right.


Fucked Up’s Damian Abraham

Photo: Amber Mahoney

When it comes to body hair, the affable Fucked Up frontman likely has everyone on this list beat. Besides rocking in inimitable black beard—made even starker by the fact that he shaves his head—he also gets plenty of love from bear sites, according to queer magazine Xtra. “I am so unbelievably flattered to be looked at in a way that I never was,” he told them. “It gives you a little more self-confidence to know that someone likes me.”


Cowpuncher’s Matt Olah

Photo: Sebastian Buzzalino, via Beatroute.ca

This Calgary act’s name might sound straight twangy, but their upcoming album, Ghost Notes, has the band dabbling in the post-country territories—think The Sadies or The Beauties. Their paint-peeling live set centres around dress-toting singer Matt Olah, who, along with a dress (duh), rocks a waxed-up mustache befitting of an era where tweed suits and Pennyfarthing bicycles reigned supreme.


Pink Wine’s Joel French

Pink Wine singer (and Ketamines / Sam Coffey and the Iron Lungs guitarist) Joel French hit me up on Facebook yesterday, asking me to vote for him in this Movember contest. And I did. Because along with playing in a zillion different Toronto bands, he even named his promotions company, Mustache Rides, after his giant walrus ‘stache. That’s dedication.


Odonis Odonis’s Dean Tzenos

Photo: Baebelmusic.org

Unlike many of the fellas on this list, affable Odonis Odonis leader Dean Tzenos isn’t best known for his barbe—he’s mostly celebrated for Odonis Odonis’s artful blend of surf, shoegaze, and industrial. (Ahem, “industrial surf-gaze.”) Yet among the bearded set, Tzenos has plenty of respect: He recently appeared in a Winnipeg-developed documentary called Men With Beards alongside some of the biggest wizard beards in Canada.


3 Inches of Blood

Photo: Facebook.com

Out West, the metal smells like cigarette dogends plunged into the stale ass of a Colt 45, lovingly delivered by shopping cart to a Burnaby bottle depot. For that, thank Vancouver’s 3 Inches of Blood, who are equally known for their pure heavy metal as they are for their gnarly facial fuzz. Also, they like kittens.


Fubar’s Paul Spence

Photo: imdb.com

Despite his deserved stature in Canadian independent music—thanks to central role in bands like CPC Gangbangs and Night Seeker—Paul Spence is best remembered as Deaner, from the Fubar films. And while he wore a scraggly lip caterpillar in the films, don’t underrate the significance of his ‘stache—he inspired legions of Western heshers, who carry on the lifestyle established in the Fubar series.


Ben Caplan

Photo: Courtney Lee Yip

While critics hail Ben Caplan for his ragged, baritone vocals and nuanced songwriting, we challenge you to find a review of his music that doesn’t mention this Haligonian’s beard. Heck, “Ben Caplan without beard” is actually a predictive Google search query. So… there’s that.


Gordon Lightfoot

Blurton and Spence might be the torchbearers for younger beardos, but Lightfoot possesses the Platonic ideal for the CanCon beard. He has the mustache you falsely remember your dad having. He’s the missing link between Ron Jeremy and the Group of Seven. And yes, you can find his work in every dollar-bin vinyl section ever, but he also wrote “If You Could Read My Mind.” So show a little respect, yeah?

Tags: Music, Lists, News, 3 Inches of Blood, Ben Caplan, Cowpuncher, Damian Abraham, Doughboys, Fubar, Fucked Up, Gordon Lightfoot, Ian Blurton, Odonis Odonis






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