It’s that time of year… we’re holding back the interviews on Episode 486 of Folk Roots Radio as we check out our ten favourite albums of 2019. One of the best things about doing a radio show is getting loads of great music to listen to each week. One of the hardest things to do is to take all that fabulous music and narrow it down to your ten favourite recordings of the year. You can check out The Top 10 on this episode. We’ll be playing more of our favourite albums on upcoming episodes of Folk Roots Radio. If you don’t see an album you really loved, maybe it didn’t make it up on to our radar, or perhaps we never received a copy. Please consider sharing your favourite albums in the comments – we might even spin them on a future episode of the show. Listen to The Top 10 and check out the full playlist below. Enjoy!
Well, it’s that time of year. Time for another very special seasonal edition of Folk Roots Radio. So here it is – another attempt at some thoughtful and insightful holiday music programming, that steps off the beaten track and features mostly new and original songs. This time around we hear from Good Lovelies, Silent Winters, Karen Morand, The Roys, Còig, Matt Andersen, Kristine St-Pierre & Justin Lacroix, Matt Andersen, Sofia Talvik, Howlin’ Bill and Skinner & T’witch. We also squeeze in a fun interview with South Western Ontario singer-songwriter Francine Honey who released her own holiday album “Take Me To The North Pole” earlier this year. Check out the full playlist below.
The holidays are here! Join us on Episode 484 of Folk Roots Radio as we celebrate the season with a selection of music that’s mostly new, independent and definitely not your typical holiday fare. We’re including some solstice music, and some wintery music, alongside some fine songs to celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas. So, throw another log on the fire, settle down in your favourite chair and enjoy… another special blend of Folk Roots Radio for the Holidays. This time around, we’re featuring music by Gathering Sparks, Katie Dahl, Eli Lev & Megan Leigh, Dale Boyle, Frank Birtwistle, David Roche & Oona Roche, Emily Kurn, Tom Prasada-Rao, B Knox, The O’Pears, Kristine St-Pierre & Justin Lacroix, Dear Reader, Silent Winters, Good Lovelies, Mare Wakefield & Nomad, Còig and Skinner & T’witch. Check out the full playlist below.
Ottawa based singer-songwriter Kae Shelby joins us on Episode 483 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about her music and debut album “Music & Motorcycles”. Kae Shelby is another one of those musicians who had to wait to record her own music; and after a very successful career in law enforcement – that day, and her debut album have finally arrived. Like all of the musicians we talk to who are following their dream, this is quite an inspirational interview. It’s a real pleasure to share it with you today. Kae Shelby’s story really fits with the ethos behind this radio show; We truly are all about the music and the people that make it! We hope you’ll stay with us to check it out. We also take a look at more of the new music we’ve received and, this time around, we include tracks from Windborne, Anna Ludlow, Si Kahn, Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen, Rod Abernethy, Red Moon Road and The Levins. Check out the full playlist below.
Welcome to another very special hour of Folk Roots Radio, as we give over the whole of Episode 482 to an in-depth conversation with our favourite songwriters, LaSalle ON’s Martha Renaud. Martha Renaud is a fine storytelling songwriter and hugely underrated. She’s also pretty prolific – she’s just released her fourth album since 2015, “Wonderland”. So, settle down and enjoy Martha Renaud In Conversation… on Folk Roots Radio. Check out the full playlist below.
Manitoba singer-songwriter Del Barber released a wonderful new album this year – the Americana flavoured “Easy Keeper”. Four years in the making, this album really packs a punch. 11 great songs, that are at times deeply personal, and yet at others, quite celebratory. A renowned storyteller in song, Del Barber has produced five critically acclaimed albums and been nominated for JUNO Awards, Western Canadian Music Awards, and Canadian Folk Music Awards. Easy Keeper was predominantly recorded in Manitoba, and produced by Del Barber with Grant Siemens (Corb Lund, Tom Russell), with Bill Western on pedal steel, Bernie Thiessen on bass and Ivan Burke on drums with Geoff Hilhorst (Leeroy Stagger, The Deep Dark Woods) on keys, and Jeremy Rusu (Rosie & The Riveters, Red Moon Road) on accordion. For more information about the music of Del Barber, visit delbarber.com. Music: Del Barber, “Dancing In The Living Room”, “Louise” and “Easy Keeper” from “Easy Keeper” (2019, Acronym Records).
On Episode 481 of Folk Roots Radio, we head up to Inuvik NWT, and over 100 miles into the Arctic circle, to talk to Bancroft ON raised singer-songwriter, educator and activist Abe Drennan about his latest album “Iglu Sessions” which was recorded in the iconic Igloo Church in Inuvik. It’s a great interview, and very inspirational. As usual, we also check out more of the latest new releases, and this time around we from hear from The Whispering Tree, Burnstick, Laura Cortese & The Dance Cards, Frank Birtwistle, Jennis and Tim Grimm. Check out the full playlist below.
Yellowknife based indigenous singer-songwriter Leela Gilday joins us on Episode 480 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about her great fifth album “North Star Calling” which was inspired by a need for self-empowerment, facing your fears, and living with courage, boldness and joy. North Star Calling is a fabulous recording, and Leela Gilday is always a great interview. We also include new music from Doug McArthur, Stephen Fearing, Miranda Mulholland, Sam Weber, The Red River Ramblers, Bobtown, Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen and Jessica Rhaye and the Ramshackle Parade. Check out the full playlist below.
Dayna Manning has just released a fabulous chamber folk album “Morning Light”, recorded with Stratford Festival alumnus Ben Bolt-Martin – who arranged all of the songs for a chamber quartet featuring violin, cello, flute and French horn. Morning Light is a fabulous album, with a sumptuous feel – Dayna’s beautiful voice gliding over a lovely instrumental accompaniment, on a great selection of original and traditional songs. Dayna has also released a fine memoir about songwriting entitled “Many Moons: A Songwriter’s Memoir” which tells the story of her three decade career in music using twelve of her own songs to guide the way. As well as being a founding member of Trent Severn (who are currently on hiatus), Dayna Manning also runs Folk Army, a private music instruction academy in Stratford Ontario focused on nurturing human potential through the love of music. For more information about the music of Dayna Manning, visit daynamanningmusic.com. Photo: Dave Brosha. Music: Dayna Manning “Charlie Lake”, “You You You”, “Peter Amberley” and “I Get Closer” from “Morning Light” (2019, Self) CDN.
Big Little Lions, the wonderfully prolific folk pop duo featuring Helen Austin from Vancouver Island, and Paul Otten from Cincinnati, have just released their sixth album “Inside Voice” – fourteen new songs that take their theme from issues in relation to our mental health, that while thoughtful and reflective, still leave the listener feeling optimistic and hopeful for the future. Helen and Paul consistently crank out amazingly addictive folk pop songs – jam-packed with emotion and tight harmonies, that really sound like they are produced by two people working closely side-by-side, rather than thousands of miles apart. Big Little Lions picked up a JUNO for their music in 2014, and the Canadian Folk Music Award for Ensemble of the Year in 2015. They also have a fabulous live show, that always sounds much bigger than the two multi-instrumentalists on stage – Paul on drums, bass, keyboard and vocals; Helen on guitar, foot percussion and vocals. For more information about the Big Little Lions and upcoming tour dates, visit biglittlelions.com. Music: Big Little Lions “Here We Go Again”, “Lonely Blue” and “I Can Have It All” from “Inside Voice” (2019, AntiFragile).
Every artist needs a holiday album – South West Ontario singer-songwriter Francine Honey has just released hers. Eight songs, including some well chosen Christmas classics, and two originals, the title track “Take Me To The North Pole” and “Christmas Round My Tree”. As a child, the idea of being taken to the North Pole to visit Santa, seemed to young Francine, like the best thing ever; which makes the playful title track the perfect way to share that sentiment. “Christmas Round My Tree”, was written for those who will be alone at Christmas. “When I was in my teens, I would go to nursing homes and sing Christmas carols for the elderly. My heart always sank when I would see some of them had no family. As I got older and saw my own family members deal with a first Christmas after a loved one passed away. I witnessed their determination to still find a sense of Christmas tradition and the knowledge of what truly matters is being together and not the gifts you buy”. The album wraps with Francine’s version of Verlon Thompson’s “My Heart Is There With You”, a song she wanted to record from the first time she heard Verlon sing it at a workshop. “When he played it, I immediately felt tears running down my cheeks, because of its honesty, and how I feel about my family and friends who I don’t get to see over the holidays and at other times.” The new album was recorded in Nashville with Neilson Hubbard who also produced Francine’s 2018 album “To Be Continued”. Joining them in the studio were a great group of support players, including guitarist Will Kimbrough, pianist Dan Mitchell, and bassist Dean Marold – and Verlon Thompson himself. Francine Honey and her band The Stingers will be releasing the new album at a special release party at The Bank Theatre in Leamington ON on Saturday, December 7 (Doors 6:30 pm, Show 7:30 pm). Tickets are $25 per person and are available online HERE. For more information about the music of Francine Honey, visit francinehoney.com. Music: Francine Honey “Christmas Round My Tree”, “Take Me To The North Pole” and “My Heart Is There With You” from “Take Me To The North Pole” (2019, Self).