Bio

Instrumentation
Matthew Harder — Guitars, Bouzouki ,Piano, Vocals
Rebecca Harder — Flutes, Whistles, Accordion, Banjo, Vocals
Dan Wiebe — Guitars, Mandos, Vocals, harp, violin, etc.

Biography
The Group:

Dan Wiebe, sister Rebecca Harder, and husband Matthew Harder compose and perform as only a family does, with uncanny unity and cohesion. The entire Wiebe family has been singing together since early childhood where they first began to hone their craft as Sunday morning vocalists in a Mennonite congregation. House of Doc was born after Matthew Harder, already a professional musician, clearly saw the potential in this remarkable family of musicians. Though only 5′ 6″ Matthew has used his strength as a performer, composer and guitarist to help drive the group from the status of gifted amateurs to serious entertainment up and comers, and he hasn’t needed to stand on an apple box to do it.

Dan Wiebe, the baby of the group, is a serious up & coming songwriter, but is also a gifted composer and arranger of classical and choral music, a multi-instrumentalist, and a remarkable vocalist.

Big sister Rebecca Harder has extensive experience not only in flutes, whistles, accordion, and of course vocals but is also a highly regarded music educator.

Background

Named after their family home, presided over by Grandfather David ‘Doc’ Schroeder, Ph. D., House of Doc family history in Canada dates back to the late 1800s. Infusing musical inspirations such as Gordon Lightfoot, Simon & Garfunkel & Spirit of the West with intricate harmonies, sophisticated counterpoint and a rocking, down-home delivery, the band has captured its story with a rich and sensitive attention to detail.

“…We come from a pretty broad musical background.” says Matthew Harder. Daniel Wiebe explains, “We have a pretty large instrumental capability, flutes, whistles, harmonicas, bouzoukis, bassoons, piano, guitars, squeezeboxes, and we’re not afraid to use it. I’ve played bassoon with the Winnipeg Symphony; besides playing guitar Matthew’s also a concert pianist. As a group we’ve got a lifetime of singing Sacred music — a cappella and in choirs …It’s just a great big smorgasbord of sounds and influences…A huge palette for a composer / arranger.”


“East of West” — The New Album

Listeners quickly realize, as soon as they’ve heard ‘East of West’, that House of Doc wants to revamp Folk music.

They begin by putting their best foot forward in the form of superb 4-part vocals. But dazzling instrumental capabilities covering everything from drums to piccolo, with a few detours along the way to places such as bass recorder & bassoon makes it apparent that House of Doc is so much more than just a singing group.

Their 2005 effort was named ‘Prairiegrass’ – a tip of the hat to the band’s Bluegrass background, but with ‘East of West’, the group’s third CD, they have pulled out the stops and removed all firewalls. House of Doc’s musical imagination hits a new stride; and though the touchstones of Bluegrass & Gospel are still visited they are reinvented and energized. Stylistic limitations have gone the way of the Do-Do.

From stripped-down, a cappella ‘Simple Times’, recorded in one pristine take, to the unapologetically epic ‘Summerstone’, replete with full orchestra (performed entirely by House of Doc) ‘East of West’ a very rich & deep collection of songs about family, love, loss & life. Included also is a timely and vibrant cover of ‘Sweet City Woman’, originally recorded by the Stampeders in 1971 — ripe for a revisit and sounding new again.

Produced by Vince R. Ditrich (Spirit of the West) and recorded at the old and rambling ‘Bath House’ belonging to The Tragically Hip, the month-long residential session brought out the very best in House of Doc and steeped their recordings with a mood & atmosphere that makes itself felt from the very first notes.

7 Comments

7 thoughts on “Bio

  1. Barb Winters

    I was at you concert tonight in Calgary – and was totally blown away by your energy, musicality and raw talent. what a treat to have been there. Thanks!!

  2. Bria Gale

    Hi House of Doc,
    I remember meeting and being entertained by you in La Ronge on October 20th 2008. If you need help remembering, the show was played in the “Zoo”, the local bar.
    I am 17 years old, graduating in June, totally passionate about music and wondering where to go from here. I have a grade 9 in piano, grade 8 in classical voice through RCM music program and have about an equivalent of a grade 5 or 6 in violin. I’m looking at my options for studying post secondary and have an overwhelming sense of confusion. I’m very curious what is your post secondary training Rebecca? How did you guys get to where you are?

    • mmmmatthew

      So sorry for the late reply Bria – but thank you for the questions. I’m very impressed with all your musical training already (especially piano – I never got passed grade 4). I’m not sure if my advice is the best or only advice but I will share my experience with you at any rate. When I graduated I went to Canadian Mennonite Bible College where I was able to study flute as my major and voice and piano as my minors. I also was able to sing in three choirs and played in a small Baroque ensemble. The smaller student population allowed me to be involved in many different and awesome musical experiences (including opera workshop and a larger musical production). After I graduated with my church music degree I went to University of Manitoba and got my Bachelor and Music and Bachelor of Education. At that point I was a little sick of school so I kind of just went through the motions. I hope that these ramblings are of some use to you. And best of luck as you finish your high school career! Let me know what you decide to do – I’d be curious…
      All the best,
      Rebecca

  3. New Fan

    I was at your concert in Westlock on Feb.26. What passion, talent and spirit!! Your song called How Will I Send Thee (I think) brought me back to my childhood. My dad was a music teacher and used this song for a Christmas Concert one year. I have always remembered it but I have never seen it performed by a professional group. Your version was inspirational. I love your mix of folk music. Great performance! I will be looking for you in music stores and on the big stages. Best of Luck.

    • mmmmatthew

      Thank you so much for the encouragement and kind words. We are so glad you enjoyed the show!!
      Rebecca

  4. Samantha West

    Just saw you guys today again at the Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival. What can I say??? I just fell in love with you all when I saw you the first time in 2008 and you’re still my favourite today! So glad you are rocking folk and blues and gospel and everything else you turn your hand too – Simon and Garfunkel and cousin John included. Hope you guys continue to gain more and more of a following and keep doing your awesome music and amazing performances! Looking forward to many more wonderful albums! Samantha

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