SCMA nominee Joshua Stumpf prepares for busy summer

Prince Albert musician Josh Stumpf

The past year has been full of new, but unexpected, experiences for Prince Albert country music singer Joshua Stumpf.

In January, he released his first music video. In June, he released his first EP, and in one week, he has a chance to win his first major award after being nominated for Emerging Artist of the Year by the Saskatchewan Country Music Association (SCMA).

“It’s definitely a new experience to me,” Stumpf said during a phone interview on Friday. “This past year has been full of a lot of learning when it comes to doing music in this capacity. It’s all really, really exciting. It’s really cool to have people listening to stuff I wrote in my basement that I thought was going to go nowhere, and now people seem to like it.”

Stumpf released a roughly three-minute video for the song ‘The Way You Love Me’ on Jan 4. He followed that up with his self-titled EP which features four tracks (‘Drink me a Lullaby’, ‘That Song in this Truck’, ‘If I had my Way’, and ‘Everything I Need’) on June 6.

He’ll have to wait until June 22 to find out if he’ll win Emerging Artist of the Year. Glen Strong, Darryl Anderson, Dan Cugnet, and The Crosby Harle Band have also been nominated.

“(It’s) another thing that’s super cool that I never thought I’d be doing (and) is totally new to me,” Stumpf said when asked about the nomination. “It just reinforces that it is really, really a good feeling when you get recognized for your hard work and your creativity.”

Stumpf was born and raised in Prince Albert, but moved to Saskatoon after graduating high school. While there, he began performing during Open Mic nights at the Capital Music Club where he met hosts Joel Gaudet and Mark Poppen.

The duo was impressed by Stumpf’s work, especially ‘Drink me a Lullaby’, and encouraged him to start recording.

“I told him (Gaudet), ‘I don’t know how. I don’t have the money to do it. I don’t know the people to do it. I have no idea,’” Stumpf remembered. “He (said), ‘if you do this, we will help you with it’ so I agreed to do it and they have supported me through and through.”

That first recording session was so successful they convinced Stumpf to record a full EP. The tracks were a collaborative writing project. Stump teamed up with guitarist Andon Schumack to write ‘That Sone in this Truck’ and ‘If I had it my Way’, and co-wrote ‘Everything I need’ with Mercy Glover, Taya Lebel, and Adam Johnson.

Stumpf said the award nomination and new EP have created a host of new opportunities.

“This has opened up so many doors for me,” he said. “This has opened up so much possibility and so many things I’m excited to announce that I can’t say yet.

“Things are in the works because of all this stuff happening, and I’m really, really looking forward to the award show in June.”

Stumpf is already scheduled to perform at the Dog Patch Music Festival from July 26-28. He’ll also play the SCMA Awards Show Kickoff Party with his band on June 15.

Before that, Stumpf has two Prince Albert gigs on his calendar. He’ll take the stage at the Pine Needle Mountain Bike and Music Festival on Sunday, June 9, followed by another performance at the Prince Albert Downtown Street Fair on Saturday, June 15.

Stumpf said it’s unusual to play two shows so close together in the same area, but the chance to perform at both venues was too good to pass up.

“I love being back in PA now, being able to do hometown shows,” he said.

“Stuff like this is really nice because then you get on a lineup where you get to interact with some crowds who came for somebody else … and you get to introduce more people to your music.”

Stumpf takes that stage at 11:30 a.m. for the Pine Needle Mountain Bike and Music Festival at Little Red River Park on Sunday, June 9. Josh Stumpf and the Boys perform in Memorial Square at 3 p.m. during the Downtown Street Fair on June 15.