OLP Frontman Raine Maida – gives a cheers to his hometown champions, the Toronto Raptors

If you have been following Our Lady Peace the past few weeks you would have noticed two particular themes – rocking the ALT-IMATE tour alongside Bush and LIVE, and on-going support for their hometown champs, the Toronto Raptors. This past Friday, the night after the Raptors claimed their first title, frontman Raine Maida sported a “We The North” shirt at the Canandaigua, NY CMAC show loud and proud.

Whether it’s recording their albums at Arnyard Studios or the countless shows at the legendary Massey Hall, there is an abundance of Our Lady Peace history in the great city of Toronto. On the heels of a short ALT-IMATE break and the day after the Raptors’ record-breaking championship parade, I had the chance to connect with Maida to discuss the thrill of witnessing his team defy Gravity and bring glory back to Jurassic Park.

photo by: Megan Briggs

What is your history with being a Toronto Raptors fan? 

A friend of mine’s family had Leafs season tickets. When the Raptors first started, Leafs season ticket holders also received Raptors tickets so we would go to the Raptors games.

Have the Raptors influenced your music or writing at all?

The metaphorical journey has some similarities, but nothing directly. If I was a hip hop artist I would defitely be dropping Raptors nuggets in verses!

How often do you attend games?

Being L.A. based now, I only get to a couple a year these days.

Do you have any favorite Raptors memories or stories aside from this year’s championships?

Vince Carter’s time with the team was a turning point for the OG fans. Him winning the dunk contest and playing the way he did put the NBA eyes on Toronto in a real way.

What was your experience like this year watching the playoffs and championship?

Stressful. I think we’ve all been shell shocked by those playoff sweeps the last couple of years. We all held our emotions and expectations tight until we evened up that Milwaukee series. Then it finally felt like we had a chance. There were so many great moments though overall. It’s a trip. Two months of excitement and nail-biting.

What do you feel this season meant to the cit of Toronto and greater community?

It’s bigger than basketball. Straight up. It’s a testament to Toronto as a truly diverse compassionate community which was paralleled by the team and Masai (Ujiri).

They were underdogs which Toronto is great at being because there’s so much internal belief in this city. The world gets that now and it was on full display all year long. We had 16 nationally televised games in the USA this year. I think we had four the year before. Raps have arrived!

photo by: Megan Briggs

Catch Our Lady Peace on tour this summer resuming June 30th in Alix, Alberta and on the Alt-Imate tour resuming July 26th in Appleton, WI. For a full list of dates and tickets visit OurLadyPeace.com.

Just announced – Our Lady Peace Summersault in Canada on September 1, 10, 12, 13, 15 also featuring Bush and LIVE on select dates.

*All photos by Megan Briggs
on Instagram @MegannBriggs
on Facebook @MeganBriggsPhotography
on Twitter @MBriggs

ICYMI: Artist Waves was on hand for the ALT-IMATE tour stop in Boston. Check it out HERE: