Steven Page

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Steven Page
Page in 2008
Page in 2008
Background information
Birth nameSteven Jay Page
Born (1970-06-22) June 22, 1970 (age 52)[1]
Scarborough, Ontario, Canada
Occupation(s)Musician, record producer
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • flute
  • piano
  • saxmonica
Years active1988–present
LabelsZoë/Rounder, Cooking Vinyl
Formerly ofBarenaked Ladies, The Vanity Project

Steven Jay Page (born June 22, 1970) is a Canadian musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer. He was a founding member, lead singer, guitarist, and primary songwriter of the music group Barenaked Ladies. Page left the band in February 2009 to pursue a solo career.

Early life[edit]

Page was born in the Toronto suburb of Scarborough, in Ontario. After skipping grade one, he was enrolled in Scarborough's gifted program at Churchill Heights Public School.[2] Page's father, Victor, was a drummer,[3] as is his brother, Matthew. As a child, Page would attempt to play songs on the piano, while his dad would keep the beat on the drums.[3] Page took ten years of piano lessons (though claimed he did not learn to play).[4] He also was a member of the Toronto Mendelssohn Youth Choir.[4]

During childhood, Page had his best friend "stolen" by a schoolmate, Ed Robertson, and resented Robertson for some time. The two went to high school at Woburn Collegiate Institute but steered clear of each other until Page spotted Robertson at a Harvey's restaurant after a Peter Gabriel concert and was surprised to find that Robertson was also a fan. This led to Page and Robertson talking, becoming friends, and ultimately, forming BNL.[5] They were both counsellors at the Scarborough Schools Music Camp in the summer of 1988, where some of their early collaborations in music were born. Page wrote songs with his friend Geoff Pounsett and made tapes of those songs. Robertson had obtained a tape the two had made, and knew some of Page's songs.[2]


Barenaked Ladies[edit]

Page at Massey Hall in 2005

Ed Robertson invited Page to perform with him at a charity show under the name Barenaked Ladies in 1988, and ultimately, the show led the pair to full-time careers in the band. Page attended York University in the English program, with a minor in theory and choral studies,[4] but dropped out to focus on the band's rising success.

Page was a main songwriter from the band's inception. A majority of the group's material came either from him alone or was co-written with Robertson. Page also played acoustic and electric guitar (and occasionally other instruments) for BNL, both in the studio and live.

In 2002, Page won an International Achievement Award at the SOCAN Awards in Toronto for the song "Pinch Me", which he co-wrote with Robertson.[6]

By 2004, Page was having reservations about his contributions to BNL. He has indicated that he participated in the recordings of Barenaked for the Holidays and Snacktime! despite being opposed to them.[7] Concerning Snacktime!, Page stated, "[i]t was a lot of fun to do, but it wasn't my idea. I was along for the ride."[7]

Page performing with Barenaked Ladies in 2008 on their Ships & Dip III cruise.

On February 24, 2009, it was announced that Page would be leaving the group to pursue other opportunities, including solo projects and theatre work, and that the remainder of the band would continue in his absence.[8][9] The decision had been made about a week and a half before the public announcement, with one reason being the rest of the band's desire to record a new album and Page's reluctance to do so.[10] Page believes that his much-publicized drug arrest in Syracuse, New York hastened his already-imminent split with the band.[7]

The singer commented in August 2011 that around the time of his arrest, "the band was no longer the joyous place that it once was, but it hadn't been joyous for a long time before that. It wasn't that we didn't put on good shows, we still had a great time onstage every night," he added. "But it became a place where work was just about the stress and not the end product. And (the arrest and band tension) made me gather the strength to go out and do what I always wanted to do."[11]

In September 2015, TMZ discovered court documents filed by Page over "The Big Bang Theory Theme". He alleged that he was promised 20% of the proceeds from the song, which included revenue generated from the BNL greatest hits album, and claimed that former bandmate Robertson has kept that money entirely for himself.[12]

On March 25, 2018, Page performed with Barenaked Ladies for the first time in nine years at the Juno Awards in Vancouver, in celebration of the band's induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. Though there were reportedly no plans to make the reunion permanent, neither side had necessarily ruled it out.[13]

Collaboration with Stephen Duffy[edit]

As a young man, Page was a fan of British singer-songwriter Stephen Duffy, a founding member of Duran Duran and the frontman for the group The Lilac Time. Page began corresponding with Duffy after the latter replied to his fan letter.[14] Page was ultimately invited to co-write with Duffy in the early 1990s, and several co-written songs subsequently appeared on BNL albums, starting with Maybe You Should Drive.[citation needed]

In June 2005, Page and Duffy released a self-titled album under the name The Vanity Project.


Page during his Page One tour

Following his departure from Barenaked Ladies, Page's first major project was to complete writing music for the first production of Bartholomew Fair: A Comedy at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival in 2009. During that summer, he embarked on a tour of music festivals, accompanied by Kevin Fox on cello.[citation needed]

He recorded the song "He's a Really Useful Engine" for the soundtrack of the 2000 children's film Thomas and the Magic Railroad.[15][16]

Page's next release was A Singer Must Die, a studio recording of songs he performed in a pair of concerts, Songbook II, with the contemporary music group Art of Time Ensemble. Following the album's publication on February 16, 2010, the artists embarked on a twelve-date concert tour.[17] Page participated in other concerts with Art of Time Ensemble, including Take This Waltz (a collection of waltzes) and a performance of the Beatles' Abbey Road album, using semi-classical arrangements by Art of Time Ensemble.[citation needed] In November 2011, Page performed a songbook concert, Songbook 6, featuring new compositions.[citation needed]

The singer's first album of original material under his own name, Page One, was released on October 19, 2010. Page toured the record across Canada and the US, including a string of shows supporting the Goo Goo Dolls.[citation needed]

On January 1, 2011, he performed at the NHL Winter Classic and led the singing of Canada's national anthem before the game.[citation needed] He also performed Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" at the state funeral of Jack Layton on August 27, 2011.[18]

On January 17, 2012, Page released a new single containing two new songs, "A Different Sort of Solitude" and "Manchild".[19] The song was included on the soundtrack of the film French Immersion. "Manchild" was co-written with Craig Northey of The Odds.

On the same day as the release, Page was nominated at the 32nd Annual Genie Awards for the composition of "A Different Sort of Solitude".[20]

Page has hosted a television show, The Illegal Eater, in which he is featured travelling to various cities in search of underground restaurants and/or pop-up supper clubs.[citation needed]

In July 2014, it was announced that the singer had been working on a new studio album. The record, Heal Thyself Pt. 1: Instinct, was released on March 11, 2016.[21]

On September 14, 2018, Page issued his follow-up record, Discipline: Heal Thyself, Pt. II.

Here's What It Takes, a musical written by Page and Daniel MacIvor, was slated to premiere at the 2020 Stratford Festival.[22] With the production shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Page has performed a weekly series of home concerts through Dan Mangan's Side Door platform.[22] He and the show's cast recorded a version of the musical's closing song, "No Song Left to Save Me", for an appearance on CBC Radio's Q.[22]

On December 3, 2021, Page released the single "Canada Loves You Back (feat. Odds)", which he performed at the Governor General's Awards in honour of Ryan Reynolds.[23][24][25][26]

On September 30, 2022, Page released the studio album Excelsior. The record touches on "grief, loss, and loneliness", according to Page.[27][28][29]

Trans-Canada Highwaymen[edit]

On July 16, 2016, Page performed a show as a member of a band called the Trans-Canada Highwaymen, a supergroup of fellow Canadian musicians, including Moe Berg of The Pursuit of Happiness, Chris Murphy of Sloan, and Craig Northey (who also performs as Page's lead guitarist at his solo shows).[30] The band subsequently announced a tour, which began in April 2017. The ensemble has not written any original material, instead performing covers of songs from the members' respective bands.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Page was born to an Ashkenazi Jewish mother and a father of Anglo Protestant background.[citation needed] Although Page's father, Victor, converted to Judaism to appease Page's mother's religious grandparents, her grandparents disowned him nonetheless. His mother's Jewish background was the subject of an episode of a CBC genealogy program called Who Do You Think You Are?[31][better source needed]

Page has been married twice. His first wife was Toronto musician and teacher Carolyn Ricketts, whom he wed on December 28, 1993. The two separated in February 2007[32] and divorced in 2009.[33] They have three sons.[34][35]

Page was arrested for cocaine possession on July 18, 2008.[36] He was found guilty of possession and ordered to drug treatment and to stay clean for six months.[37]

Page purchased a house in Fayetteville, New York with then-girlfriend Christine Benedicto in 2009, and split his time between there and Toronto, where his children reside.[38] The couple married on July 23, 2011,[39] and spent their honeymoon in Paris.[11]

Page stated publicly in 2011 that he suffers from bipolar disorder. He said that he has gone through periods of self-medicating to relieve the symptoms. Since leaving Barenaked Ladies, he has been able to focus more on managing and treating his illness and has cited his sons as being his source of strength for keeping healthy and continuing treatment.[33]

Other activities and interests[edit]

As of August 31, 2008, Page was a member of the marketing and events committee for World Wildlife Fund Canada.[40]

As of July 2007, Page was a member of the WindShare co-op that built/owns the wind turbine at Exhibition Place in downtown Toronto.[41]

In 2013, Page made a cameo appearance on the How I Met Your Mother episode "P.S. I Love You".[42]

Page has also been a contestant on the Canadian game show Bumper Stumpers.[43]



  1. ^ steve simmons (June 2, 2018). "steve simmons on Twitter: "Happy birthday @stevenpage"". Retrieved March 21, 2020.
  2. ^ a b Moll, George (executive producer) (2000). Behind the Music (TV-series). New York City: VH1.
  3. ^ a b Jim Creeggan, Kevin Hearn, Steven Page, Ed Robertson, Tyler Stewart (2004). The Barenaked Truth (Television documentary/DVD). Take 3 Productions/Casablanca Media Television.
  4. ^ a b c Jones, Craig (August 1994). "The Barenaked Ladies: Maybe You Should Drive". Canadian Musician. pp. 36–41. Archived from the original on June 11, 2004. Retrieved March 1, 2010.
  5. ^ Robertson, Ed & Frohman, Lorne (Interviewer/Host) (2005). Distinguished Artists (TV-series). Toronto, Canada: Humber College School of Media Studies.
  6. ^ "2002 SOCAN AWARDS | SOCAN". Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  7. ^ a b c McCoy, Heath (July 21, 2009). "Steven Page stripped bare". Ottawa Citizen. Archived from the original on July 25, 2009. Retrieved July 21, 2009.
  8. ^ Archived July 18, 2005, at the Wayback Machine Accessed February 24, 2009. "By mutual agreement, Steven Page will be parting company with the remaining members of Barenaked Ladies. Jim Creeggan, Kevin Hearn, Ed Robertson, and Tyler Stewart will continue recording and touring together as Barenaked Ladies. Steven Page will pursue solo projects including theatrical opportunities while the band enters the studio in April 2009, and hits the road in the fall.
  9. ^ The Steven Pages@Blogspot: Gone Solo Accessed February 24, 2009.
  10. ^ Medley, Mark (February 26, 2009). "Steven Page interview: 'Wow, I'm not a Barenaked Lady anymore'". Vancouver Sun. Archived from the original on January 28, 2020. Retrieved September 2, 2021.
  11. ^ a b Gottlieb, Jed (August 26, 2011). "Ex-Barenaked singer Steven Page is his own man: No longer one of the ladies". The Boston Herald. Retrieved September 1, 2011.
  12. ^ "Barenaked Ladies—My Ex-Bandmate Is Screwing Me Out of 'Big Bang' Money". TMZ. September 1, 2015. Retrieved September 13, 2015.
  13. ^ "Barenaked Ladies, Steven Page aim to 'remember the past without getting mired in it' at Junos". CBC. March 2, 2018. Retrieved March 26, 2018.
  14. ^ "STEVEN PAGE SHARES SONGWRITING STORIES & BNL MEMORIES". Pancakes And Whiskey. August 24, 2018. Retrieved July 7, 2019.
  15. ^ "Thomas and the Magic Railroad (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)".
  16. ^ "Thomas and the Magic Railroad (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)".
  17. ^ "Barenaked Ladies, Steven Page to drop new albums". January 6, 2010.
  18. ^ "An Anthem to Remember". CBC News Network. August 27, 2011.
  19. ^ "A Different Sort of Solitude".
  20. ^ "Café de Flore leads Genie32 race with A Dangerous Method in hot pursuit" (PDF). Toronto/Montreal: Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television. January 17, 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 18, 2012. Retrieved March 20, 2017.
  21. ^ "Steven Page: Heal Thyself Pt. I: Instinct". Retrieved March 20, 2017.
  22. ^ a b c "Steven Page's promising new Stratford show got shut down. So what did he do?". Q, May 20, 2020.
  23. ^ "Canada Loves You Back – Single".
  24. ^ "Steven Page Song to Ryan Reynolds Now Raising Funds for Reconciliation Canada".
  25. ^ "Ryan Reynolds Gets Emotional Watching Musical Tribute 'Canada Loves You Back': 'Made Me Cry'".
  26. ^ "Canada Loves You Back (feat. Odds) – Single".
  27. ^ "Steven Page on his new album Excelsior and dealing with grief and loss".
  28. ^ "Steven Page on Excelsior, His Friendship with Ryan Reynolds, and the "One Week" Video".
  29. ^ "Excelsior – Steven Page".
  30. ^ "Chris Murphy Introduces His New Supergroup the Trans-Canada Highwaymen". Exclaim!. Retrieved April 21, 2017.
  31. ^ Stated on Who Do You Think You Are?
  32. ^ Köhler, Nicholas; Gulli, Cathy (July 2, 2008). "Barenaked Mess". Maclean's. Archived from the original on February 27, 2009. Retrieved August 16, 2008.
  33. ^ a b "Mental Health Special – Steven Page". The Current. CBC News. January 7, 2007.
  34. ^ "Proud Dad alert! If you can't see behind the paywall, the gist is: Go see my son Ben's musical, #LeavingEden @NYMF Jul 16-21 in NYC!".
  35. ^ "Steven Page and son Ben channel their love of musical theatre with projects for Stratford and off-Broadway".
  36. ^ "Cocaine bust nabs Barenaked Ladies' Page". Toronto Star. February 1, 2008.
  37. ^ "Barenaked Ladies singer won't go to prison over drug charges: U.S. judge". CBC. October 2, 2008.
  38. ^ Goldberg, Delen (July 1, 2009). "Fayetteville village home bought by ex-Barenaked Ladies singer Steven Page". The Post-Standard. Retrieved July 20, 2009.
  39. ^ "@stevenpage: I married @I_never_rhyme about 9 hours ago! Call me mr. Rhyme if you please". Self post on Twitter. July 24, 2011.
  40. ^ "WWF Annual Report".[permanent dead link]
  41. ^ Pioro, Matthew. "My Toronto: Steven Page"[permanent dead link], Toronto Magazine,, July 8, 2007.
  42. ^ "Manlius resident Steven Page appears on 'How I Met Your Mother'". Syracuse. February 5, 2013.
  43. ^ "Canada's Game Shows". January 2, 2020. Retrieved March 21, 2020.
  44. ^ "EXCLUSIVE: New Steven Page album out March 11th! | Get Barenaked!". Retrieved September 24, 2017.
  45. ^ McKean, Mathew (September 14, 2018). "Steven Page; Discipline: Heal Thyself Pt. II". Exclaim!. Ian Danzig.
  46. ^ "Excelsior".

External links[edit]