Toronto singer-songwriter and activist Duane Forrest joins us in the studio on Episode 393 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about his music. He also plays three songs live. Its a very inspiring interview, and definitely worth checking out. We also have new music from Lucy Ward, Sarah McQuaid, Laurie MacAllister, Andrew Collins Trio, Ali McCormick, Rory Block, Cris Cuddy, The Barra MacNeils and Laura Mulcahy. Check out the full playlist below.
Duane Forrest describes his passions as music, travel and language but, most importantly, love. Duane weaves bossa nova, jazz and soul together to produce a laid-back sound that calls to mind a mix of Jack Johnson, Bob Marley, João Gilberto and Nat King Cole. His latest album “The Climb” was released in 2017. Duane has recently founded a non-profit Genesis Community of the Arts that sends teachers and art equipment to marginalized people and places around the globe, and provides classes in drama, music, dance, and the visual arts that he hopes will inspire the students to discover their own creativity. Genesis currently has teachers working in Honduras and Guatemala. For more information about the music of Duane Forrest, visit duanesguitar.com.
Notes about some of the new music on our radar that made it into Episode 393 of Folk Roots Radio.
“Slow Decay”, a song by UK singer-songwriter Sarah McQuaid has been used for a video that tells the story of Bill Conner, a father who lost his daughter and cycled 1,400 miles to hear her heart beating again in the body of its recipient.
In May 2017, five months after Bill Conner’s daughter Abbey died at the age of 20, he decided to honour her short life by cycling from his hometown of Madison, Wisconsin, to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to visit Broward Health Medical Center, the hospital that had recovered Abbey’s organs for donation. 1,400 miles into Conner’s trip, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, he met with 21-year-old Loumonth Jack Jr., who’d been given 10 days to live before he was saved by Abbey’s heart.
After sharing a minute-long hug, Jack pulled out a stethoscope so that Conner could hear his daughter’s heartbeat for the first time since she died. The family made a recording of Jack’s heart for Conner to listen to as he continued his journey to spread awareness about the importance of organ donation, promoting the efforts of donatelife.net. The “Slow Decay” video seeks to further his efforts.
The video was created by Cornish filmmaker Brett Harvey who just knew that the song was the perfect choice for the project.
“I was struck by the simple humanity of the act, and the notion that we live on through others after we pass away. I had wanted to tell a version of this story for a while, and as soon as I heard Sarah’s beautiful song I knew it was the right fit.”
You can find “Slow Decay”, on Sarah Mcquaid’s fifth solo album, “If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous”. For more information, visit sarahmcquaid.com.
Cape Breton ON’s The Barra MacNeils have an a cappella version of Abba’s “The Way Old Friends Do” on their latest album “On The Bright Side” (2018, Barra Music), an album that’s definitely worth checking out.
Prolific singer-songwriter Cris Cuddy has a new album out, “Dream On”. On this episode we play the title track “Dream On Baby (Dream On)”. The song was inspired by the late great Tammy Wynette, and her determination to make it as a country singer, despite her first husband Euple Byrd’s discouragement and abuse. The title refers to what Euple Byrd said to Tammy Wynette as she left the family home for the last time, to make a career in music. Years later, Euple met her after a show as she was signing autographs, and asked for one. She signed it “Dream on, baby”. The perfect riposte.
Rory Block has a new album out “A Woman’s Soul” (2018, Stony Plain Records), a tribute to blues pioneer Bessie Smith (April 15, 1894 – September 26, 1937), and the first release of a new series of albums focusing on “Power Women of the Blues”. On this episode we play “Jazzbo Brown from Memphis Town” which was composed by George Brooks, and recorded and released by Bessie Smith on Columbia in 1926.
That’s all we have time for, this time around. Thanks to all the artists who share their music with us, and thank you for listening. We have a lot of great music and interviews to bring you on future shows. I hope you’ll join us!
You can listen to this episode again on Soundcloud by following the link below. You can also listen to episodes of Folk Roots Radio, on demand, via iTunes, Stitcher and Tune-in Radio. (Click on the highlighted link to reach your chosen platform.)
Nicolas & The Iceni (Theme)
Lucy She Rises (Demo)
Roll Right (Pre-release, self)
Pretty Warnings (2018, Self)
If We Dig Any Deeper It Could Get Dangerous (2018, Proper Records)
My Stupid Heart
The Lies The Poets Tell (2017, Self)
Andrew Collins Trio
Groove (2018, Self) CDN
Interview: Duane Forrest live in the Folk Roots Radio studio.
Midsummer Night’s Dream (Live)
Bear On A Bike
That Place You Know (2018, Self) CDN
Jazzbo Brown from Memphis Town
A Woman’s Soul: A Tribute to Bessie Smith (2018, Stony Plain Records)
Dream On Baby (Dream On)
Dream On (2018, Vanishing Castle Recordings) CDN
The Barra MacNeils
The Way Old Friends Do
On The Bright Side (2018, Barra Music) CDN
Funeral, Home, Lizard… (2017, Self)