Interviews

1
Jeffrey Straker – Just Before Sunrise – Folk Roots Radio Live
2
Loretta Hagen – Not Now – Folk Roots Radio Interview
3
Sue Smith – Tonight We Sail – Folk Roots Radio Interview
4
Angie Nussey – I Have No Idea What I’m Doing – Folk Roots Radio Interview
5
Justin Rutledge – Islands – Folk Roots Radio Interview
6
Glen MacNeil – Self-Titled EP – Folk Roots Radio Interview
7
Leah Barley – Bring Out Your Dead – Folk Roots Radio Interview
8
Terra Spencer – Chasing Rabbits – Folk Roots Radio Interview
9
Folk Roots Radio Episode 566: The Rough & Tumble In Conversation – We’re Only Family If You Say So
10
Folk Roots Radio Episode 562: Scott Cook In Conversation – Tangle Of Souls
11
Rick Fines – Solar Powered Too – Folk Roots Radio Interview
12
Boreal – Songs For The Snowy Season: Virtual Edition – Folk Roots Radio Interview
13
Folk Roots Radio Episode 554: Piper & Carson In Conversation – Edgewalker’s Remedy
14
The Fugitives – Trench Songs – Folk Roots Radio Interview
15
Steve Poltz – Covid Times – Folk Roots Radio Interview
16
Shaye Zadravec – Now & Then – Folk Roots Radio Interview
17
Gathering Time – Old Friends – Folk Roots Radio Interview
18
Folk Roots Radio Episode 534: Jayme Stone… In Conversation – AWake
19
Grayson Capps on Cayamo – Folk Roots Radio Interview
20
Ol’ Billy Bob Boy – Sweltering Sun – Folk Roots Radio Interview
21
Adrian Glynn – Ghostlight Sessions – Folk Roots Radio interview
22
Stan Simon – Songs From Strange Places – Folk Roots Radio Interview
23
Ken Yates – Quiet Talkers – Folk Roots Radio Interview
24
Julian Taylor – The Ridge – Folk Roots Radio Interview
25
Steve Earle – Ghosts Of West Virginia – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Jeffrey Straker – Just Before Sunrise – Folk Roots Radio Live

Regina SK based singer-songwriter Jeffrey Straker joins us on Folk Roots Radio Live to chat about “Just Before Sunrise”, his latest full length recording which is scheduled for release on May 7. Written and recorded in the wake of the sudden loss of his mother, the songs on this album speak to a life long need to dream, to belong and to matter. A clever lyricist with an energetic piano style, Jeffrey Straker songs have been used in TV, film and theatre productions. Critical comparisons have been drawn to the likes of Harry Chapin, Kris Kristofferson and Carole King. We’re big fans of Jeffrey Straker’s piano-driven songwriting. In fact, I think we’ve played everything we’ve been sent since he landed on our radar last year. For more information about the music of Jeffrey Straker, visit jeffstraker.com.

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Loretta Hagen – Not Now – Folk Roots Radio Interview

New Jersey based singer-songwriter Loretta Hagen has built a great reputation for the quality of her songwriting, and the warm rich alto voice she brings to her delivery. Loretta released a fine fourth album in 2017, “Lucky Stars”, a recording that takes you on a personal journey through loss and healing while leaving you with the promise of hope for better times ahead. It might be the perfect album to be listening to during Covid times. Loretta has just followed up the album with a wonderful new single that reflects on the impact that the coronavirus pandemic has been having on individuals, families and communities – and like much of her songwriting, includes a strong message of hope. “Each day I would hear news stations report the heartbreaking stories of people alone in hospitals around the world fighting for their lives without a loved one at their side. I can only imagine the terror for them. So many stories of loss: loss of life, loss of jobs, homes, loneliness. Normal life simply gone. But in all of that overwhelming despair and loss, there were also stories of survival.” Loretta Hagen joined us on Folk Roots Radio chat about her music and the new single. For more information about her music, visit lorettahagen.com. Photo: Jake Jacobson. Music: Loretta Hagen “Lucky Stars” from “Lucky Stars” (2017, Bearfort), “Not Now” (single) (2021, Bearfort), “Hello Mountain (Ode to Bearfort Mountain)” from “Sundown Till Dawn” (2008, Bearfort) and “Welcome Spring” from “Lucky Stars” (2017, Bearfort).

Sue Smith – Tonight We Sail – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Guelph singer-songwriter Sue Smith has just released a wonderful new album with the Potion Kings, “Tonight We Sail”, a gorgeous blend of rock, jazz, blues and roots. The new recording features nine Sue Smith original songs plus a song each by Tom Petty (“Swingin'”) and Robbie Robertson (“Ophelia”). Recorded live off the floor at Scott Merritt’s studio, The Cottage in Guelph ON, it features Sue Smith (vocals, organ on several tracks) with the Potion Kings – Jeff Bird on bass, Kevin Breit on guitar, Randall Coryell on drums and Howie Southwood on percussion. Vocalists Nick Craine and Gwen Swick also guest on the recording, which was produced by Sue Smith with partner Jeff Bird. To say we love this album is a bit of an understatement… great songs, amazing musicians and a fantastic groove. It’s sure to figure in our favourite albums of 2021! Sue Smith & the Potion Kings will be playing a FREE live-streamed performance direct from the River Run Centre​ in Guelph ON on Friday March 26 at 8 p.m…. with special guest Gwen Swick. If you’d like to register for the livestream (all you need to do is sign up for the River Run Centre Spotlight newsletter) you can do that HERE. They’ll send you you the link on the day of the show. For more information about the music of Sue Smith, visit suesmith.ca. Photo credit: Dean Palmer. Music: Sue Smith and the Potion Kings “Night Skies”, “1 Step, 2 Step”, “If I am Sleeping” and “Met Him On A Train” from “Tonight We Sail” (2021, Self) CDN.

Best 2020

Angie Nussey – I Have No Idea What I’m Doing – Folk Roots Radio Interview

In 2007, Ontario singer-songwriter Angie Nussey experienced an emotional breakdown, which lead to a re-evaluation of her life in music, and a shift in approach to one that focused on maintaining a strong spiritual balance. Her beautiful new album “I Have No Idea What I’m Doing” grew out of that intense focus. Mostly piano driven, the new album took two and a half years to complete – recording at home with musical friends. In 2014, Angie gave a wonderful Tedx talk on music and spirituality in Sudbury which is an excellent introduction to both her music and spirituality. As well as her solo career, Angie is also a member of songwriting trio Boreal, with fellow singer-songwriters Tannis Slimmon and Katherine Wheatley. The trio tours ‘Songs For The Snowy Season’ annually each December. Angie is currently releasing a song and story from I Have No Idea What I’m Doing on a monthly basis. For more information about her music, visit angienussey.com. Music: Angie Nussey “All Your Courage”, “Forgotten Names”, “Former Me” and “Count Me Out” from “I Have No Idea What I’m Doing” (2020, Self) CDN.

Justin Rutledge – Islands – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Juno award winning singer-songwriter Justin Rutledge‘s ninth album “Islands” was not only a chance to look back at twenty years as a working musician, but an opportunity to revisit some of the songs in his catalogue, strip them back to their essence and deliver them in the way they were originally created – just voice and guitar, with lots of space and minimal accompaniment. For the listener that means that you get an aural experience that feels very much like it would if you were sitting in the room with the songwriter during a late night writing session. Very much a solo project, the album was recorded with regular collaborator Chris Stringer at Union Sound with the only additions being a little electric guitar from Tom Juhas and piano from Aaron Comeau. For more information about the music of Justin Rutledge, visit justinrutledge.com. Music: Justin Rutledge “Good Man”, “Out Of the Woods”, “Federal Mail” and “Jellybean” (2021, Outside Music).

Glen MacNeil – Self-Titled EP – Folk Roots Radio Interview

It’s been a while since Tecumseh ON Glen MacNeil has put out an album, which is why the arrival of his wonderful self-titled EP in 2020 was such a pleasant surprise. Glen is a fabulous songwriter. Indeed, his last album, 2015’s “Where The Heart Remains” was included in our favourite albums of that year. Work on the new EP started during the early days of 2020 when Glen hooked up with Belfast Northern Ireland based producer Peter McVeigh – and then continued into the coronavirus lockdown. Alongside Glen MacNeil on voice and guitar, the EP also features John McCullough on keys and Dale Rivard on pedal steel and dobro. Glen MacNeil joined us on Folk Roots Radio to chat about the new recording. Visit Glen MacNeil online at glenmacneil.bandcamp.com. Music: Glen MacNeil “Car Window”, “The Quiet” and “Just A Memory” from the “Glen MacNeil E.P.” (2020, Self).

Leah Barley – Bring Out Your Dead – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Vancouver based singer-songwriter Leah Barley‘s first full-length recording “Bring Out Your Dead” is an album of light and dark that feels right at home within the folk genre. The eight original songs on the album, which were written for both guitar and banjo, range from rousing boot stompers like “I Wish” and “Drinkin’” to the chill-inducing “Rise” and “The Doctor” (which recounts a recent period of severe illness, from which she has thankfully recovered). An accomplished self-taught banjo player, as well as guitarist, Leah Barley is joined on the album by a full band featuring her longtime collaborators violist John Kastelic and multi-instrumentalist Ross Christopher Fairbairn. Because of the on-going coronavirus pandemic, Leah has not been able to tour the new album, or even play a real release show. She hopes that she will be able to remedy that in 2021. Leah Barley joined us on Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth conversation about the project. For more information about the music of Leah Barley, visit leahbarleymusic.com. Music: Leah Barley, “Mountains”, “Bring Out Your Dead”, “The Doctor” and “Hush” from “Bring Out Your Dead” (2020, self).

Terra Spencer – Chasing Rabbits – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We included part of our excellent interview with Terra Spencer, discussing her fabulous new album “Chasing Rabbits”, in Episode 557 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now very pleased to make the full interview available. Enjoy!

Nova Scotian singer-songwriter Terra Spencer had built a career as a funeral director before she ever thought about a parallel life in music. That all changed after she met singer-songwriter and country crooner Ryan Cook at the Kempt Shore Music Festival and was invited to audition as a backing singer for an upcoming tour. After touring and recording with Ryan, Terra released her very well received debut album “Other People’s Lives”, a collection of songs about complicated relationships in 2019. “Chasing Rabbits”, the follow-up, has a lovely storytelling feel to it, and reflects on life, relationships, travel, going away to college and above all… the joy of getting to come home again. The album was recorded during the early part of the coronavirus pandemic at The Sonic Temple in Halifax under the watchful eye of co-producer studio engineer/owner Lil Thomas. Joining Terra Spencer (guitar, piano) on the new recording are The Bombadils Sarah Frank (harmony vocals & fiddle), Luke Fraser (harmony vocals & mandolin), Adam Fine (double bass, electric bass), Lil Thomas (electric guitar), David Campbell (pedal steel), Jordi Comstock (drums), Scott Ferguson (djembe), Kimm Kent (deer spirit drum) and The Kasprzaks (home choir). Terra Spencer joined Jan Hall on Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth conversation about the new album. For more information about the music of Terra Spencer visit terraspencer.ca. Music: Terra Spencer “In The City”, “Lunenburg Moon”, “Chasing Rabbits” and “Melt” from “Chasing Rabbits” (2020, Self).

Folk Roots Radio Episode 566: The Rough & Tumble In Conversation – We’re Only Family If You Say So

We have another great interview to share with you on Episode 566 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re big fans of multi-instrumentalists Mallory Graham and Scott Tyler, and their self-styled ‘teeny tiny travelling folk band’, The Rough & Tumble. Their fabulous live show features loads of instruments, great songs and more fun than anyone is supposed to have during a house concert. Mallory and Scott join us on this episode to chat about their powerful new album “We’re Only Family If You Say So” which reflects on what it takes to be family… and what it means to lose it. It’s a fabulous recording and an excellent interview, which is why we’ve decided to dedicate the whole of this hour to it. So, settle down and enjoy… The Rough & Tumble in Conversation… on Folk Roots Radio. Check out the full playlist below.

Best 2020

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Folk Roots Radio Episode 562: Scott Cook In Conversation – Tangle Of Souls

Edmonton Alberta’s globetrotting troubadour singer-songwriter Scott Cook joins us on Episode 562 of Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth discussion about his music and wonderful seventh album “Tangle Of Souls” – one of our favourite albums of 2020. A fabulous recording, it comes with a 240-page, cloth-bound, hardcover book of stories from the road written around the album’s songs while also reflecting on Scott’s own life-changing health crisis which he uses to draw parallels to some of the challenges we face as a society. So, settle down and enjoy… Scott Cook in Conversation – Tangle Of Souls… on Folk Roots Radio. Check out the full playlist below.

Best 2020

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Rick Fines – Solar Powered Too – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We included an excerpt from our excellent interview with Rick Fines, discussing his wonderful new album “Solar Powered Too”, in Episode 550 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now very pleased to make the full conversation available. Enjoy!

When Canadian roots and blues artist Rick Fines started work on his new project “Solar Powered Too”, his intent was simple – to make a new recording at his solar powered cottage in the Kawartha Highlands as a follow-up to his very well received “Solar Powered” album from 2006. Initially intended to be just a guitar and voice solo recording, this album has grown into something rather special with some nicely judged guest appearances from some of his friends and a beautifully sympathetic production from Rick with Alec Fraser. Truly a joy for the ears, this is one of those albums you put on, and listen right through to the end. An album that needs to be heard and one that we think will bring comfort to many during these strange, strange Covid times. Solar Powered Too deservedly found a place in Our Favourite Albums of 2020. To learn more about the music of Rick Fines, visit rickfines.ca. Music: Rick Fines “Below The Surface”, “Laundry On The Line”, “Worry Be The Death Of Me” and “Never Let Go” from “Solar Powered Too” (2020, Self).

Best 2020

Boreal – Songs For The Snowy Season: Virtual Edition – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Boreal are a fabulous folk trio featuring three great singer-songwriters: Guelph ON’s Katherine Wheatley and Tannis Slimmon and Orillia ON’s Angie Nussey . They get together in early December each year for a series of shows that celebrate ‘the snowy season’ with some wonderful original songs and holiday classics. This year however is going to be a bit different because we’re in the midst of the Covid pandemic – so instead of a whole series of shows, there will be just one performance. But guess what… this time around they’ll be live-streaming a FREE ‘virtual performance’ from the River Run Centre​ in Guelph on Friday December 11 at 8 p.m. Everyone, no matter where they are, can enjoy a show that has become a highlight of our holiday season. Alongside the upcoming live-streamed show, Boreal have also released a great new single, a Katherine Wheatley song, “Snow Falls Down”. Folk Roots Radio caught up with Katherine, Tannis, and Angie for a fun chat about the upcoming livestream and the new single. If you’d like to register for the livestream – remember it’s FREE, you can do so by signing up for the River Run Centre newsletter HERE. For more information about Boreal, visit borealsongs.ca. Music: Boreal “Snow Falls Down” (single), “Warm Hands” (single) and “Carol Of The Bells” & “Gotta Go” from “Winter’s Welcome” (2014, Self).

Folk Roots Radio Episode 554: Piper & Carson In Conversation – Edgewalker’s Remedy

We have another very special interview to bring you on Episode 554 of Folk Roots Radio. Hamilton ON based duo Piper Hayes & Carson Ritcey Thorpe who make music together as Piper & Carson, join us to chat about their wonderful new recording “Edgewalker’s Remedy” –  a concept album specifically designed to provoke reflection about our lives and what we all take for granted. Piper & Carson definitely walk the talk, and firmly believe that folk music can change the world. They describe their work as deeply rooted in intention and both have a strong desire to use their platform to promote social change and self-awareness. So, settle down and enjoy Piper & Carson in Conversation – Edgewalker’s Remedy on Folk Roots Radio. Check out the full playlist below.

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The Fugitives – Trench Songs – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Vancouver based folk collective The Fugitives have just released a fabulous new album “Trench Songs” which takes as its source material, lyrics from songs written by frontline soldiers during the First World War – set to new music from the band. The album is based on “Ridge”, a new stage show by The Fugitives’ Brendan McLeod which was due to be performed in front of a live audience at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts in Vancouver this past March. Unfortunately, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, those live shows had to be cancelled – however Ridge has now been re-imagined as a feature film, using a variety of locations throughout the Chan Centre to tell the story. Co-leaders of the Fugitives Brendan McLeod and Adrian Glynn joined us on Folk Roots Radio to chat about the new project. Watch the feature film version of Ridge HERE. For more information about The Fugitives, visit fugitives.ca. Music: The Fugitives “Thirteen Pence”, “Hymn 43”, “If I Could Turn The Clock Back”, “After Loos”, “The Next Man Who Dies”, “Where Do We Go, Boys” and “Take Me Back To Old Ontario” from “Trench Songs” (2020, Borealis Records).

Steve Poltz – Covid Times – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Singer-songwriter and humorist Steve Poltz is an absolutely fabulous live performer. There is just no two ways about it. See one show, you’ll become a fan for life – and like everyone else, you’ll be revelling in the power of being in the moment for a performance where anything can happen, and often does. Steve Poltz was born in Canada (Halifax NS) and raised in San Diego where he spent much of his life before he moved to Nashville in 2016. After a series of well-received albums, the release of “Shine On” in 2019 really started to move Steve’s career up to another level – and then COVID hit. As a touring artist, Steve works exceptionally hard and plays more than 150 dates a year across North America, Europe and Australia. To see all his 2020 plans evaporate almost overnight was disappointing to say the least. Steve Poltz joined us on Folk Roots Radio to chat about how he has been spending his time off the road, including the release of a wonderful new lockdown single, appropriately entitled “Quarantine Blues”. Watch the video version of this interview on our sister show the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions HERE. For more information about the music of Steve Poltz visit poltz.com. Music: Steve Poltz “Quarantine Blues” (single) (2020, 98 Pounder Records / Compass Records), “Ballin’ On A Wednesday” from “Shine On” (2019, 98 Pounder Records / Red House Records) and Hey God I’ll Trade You Donald Trump For Leonard Cohen (single) (2017, 98 Pounder Records)

Shaye Zadravec – Now & Then – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We included a portion of our interview with Shaye Zadravec in Episode 523 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now pleased to be able to bring you the full conversation. It’s definitely worth checking out. Enjoy!

Shaye Zadravec, a young vocalist from Calgary Alberta, has been creating quite a buzz for her ability to interpret other people’s songs. Shaye, who describes herself as a singer and only occasionally a songwriter, started out her career in dance before moving into musical theatre and then on to a full music career. Her first full-length album, “Now & Then”, features ten tracks, and includes fine versions of songs by Jay Farrar (Windfall), Jesse Winchester (Biloxi), Paul Westerberg (Skyway), Lawrence Russell Brown & Pat McLaughlin (The Whispering Wind), Lynn Miles (Night Drive), Roy Forbes (The Slider), Joan Besen (Did You Fall In Love With Me) and Ian Tyson (Summer’s Gone, Silver Bell) alongside a beautiful instrumental by (her producer) Goran Grini (East Longview Serenade) that uses samples from four songs on the album. Now & Then was recorded over five days at OCL Studios (just outside Calgary) and produced by Norwegian musician Goran Grini (who also plays some acoustic guitar / Wurlitzer piano) with support from Mike Lent (bass), Chris Nordquist (drums), Tim Leacock (guitars / mandolin), Russell Broom – guitars, Bruce Bouton (steel guitar), Denis Dufresne (fiddle) and Sydney Zadravec (background vocals).  Shaye Zadravec’s  first EP “Norway” (also produced by Goran Grini) is also worth checking out. It features an absolutely gorgeous cover of Chip Taylor’s “I’ll Carry For You” alongside spine-tingling versions of “Lilac Wine”, made famous by Nina Simone and Elkie Brooks and Cris Cuddy’s “Dear Elvis”, as well as an excellent version of Shelby Lynne’s “If I Were Smart”. Although Shaye Zadravec has not really been able to perform live since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, in the past she has opened shows for William Prince, Dan Mangan, David Francey, Chip Taylor, and pop opera sensations Il Divo. If you want to check out Shaye Zadravec’s live work, take a look at this fantastic performance of Mary Margaret O’Hara’s “To Cry About” (with support from Tim Leacock) at the Centennial Concert Hall, Winnipeg, Manitoba, in March 2019 while she was on the Il Divo tour. For more information about the music of Shaye Zadravec, visit shayezadravec.com. Music: Shaye Zadravec “Biloxi”, “Skyway”, “Summers Gone” and “Night Drive” from “Now & Then” (2020, Indelible Music) CDN.

Gathering Time – Old Friends – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Long Island based folk-rock harmony trio Gathering Time have just released a wonderful new album “Old Friends”, which features covers of classic songs from the 60s and early 70s by artists like The Byrds, Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, Gordon Lightfoot and more. Old Friends also includes some socially conscious songs that have gained renewed relevance as the United States, riven by street protests against police brutality and racial injustice – and contentious and divisive politics, moves towards what may be the most important presidential election of modern times. Gathering Time’s Stuart Markus, Hillary Foxsong and Gerry McKeveny joined us on Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth conversation about the new album. For more information about Gathering Time, visit gathering-time.com. Photo: Alison Hartwell. Music: Gathering Time “Turn Turn Turn” (written by Pete Seeger), “Abraham, Martin & John” (Richard Holler), “Get Together” (Chet Powers) and “Carry On” (Stephen Stills) from “Old Friends” (2020, Treble G Records).

Folk Roots Radio Episode 534: Jayme Stone… In Conversation – AWake

We’re pleased to bring you a very special interview on Episode 534 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re giving over the whole of the episode to an in-depth conversation with Jayme Stone about his wonderful new recording “AWake”, an album written in the aftermath of the sudden and tragic loss of his brother, Michael. It’s quite the departure for the double Juno award winning artist, who has built some fabulous roots and world music albums around his banjo playing. This time around, Jayme sets down the banjo and embraces ambient electropop and sonic landscapes on a collection of songs that reflect on the experience of losing such an important part of his life. So, settle down and enjoy Jayme Stone… In Conversation on Folk Roots Radio. Check out the full playlist below.

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Grayson Capps on Cayamo – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Grayson Capps is a storytelling singer-songwriter from L.A. (Lower Alabama), with a wonderfully warm laidback style, that can’t help but be expressed in his songwriting and humorous on-stage banter. He landed on our radar, one morning, in the middle of the Caribbean, on the Cayamo roots music cruise. We were having a late breakfast in the pub while Grayson was in ear shot, on the atrium stage, sharing his stories and songs. His performance was so engaging we had to rush breakfast to catch the rest of the set. After the show, we sat down with Grayson to learn more about his music. Grayson Capps is the son of New Orleans based writer Ronald Everett Capps who wrote the novel “Off Magazine Street”, which was developed into the 2004 Scarlet Johanssen / John Travolta movie, A Love Song For Bobby Long – which was written and directed by Shainee Gabel (Grayson Capps wrote the title track and has several musical cameos in the film). Grayson Capps has just released a new compilation of his songs, “South Front Street – A Retrospective 1997 – 2019” (2020, Royal Potato Family). For more information, visit graysoncapps.com. Music: Grayson Capps “New Again”, “Bag Of Weed” and “You Can’t Turn Around” from “Scarlett Roses” (2017, Royal Potato Family).

Ol’ Billy Bob Boy – Sweltering Sun – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We included a portion of an interview with Ol’ Billy Bob Boy, discussing his debut album, “Sweltering Sun”, in Episode 523 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now pleased to be able to bring you our full conversation. It’s definitely worth checking out. Enjoy!

Bill Simms has performed as a side musician on upright bass with a number of folk and roots musicians including Raine Hamilton, Abigail Lapell, Piper Hayes, Shawn Willian Clarke and Sarah Beatty. He’s now stepping into the limelight in his own right as his country music singing alter-ego Ol’ Billy Bob Boy and debut album “Sweltering Sun” which features 12 original songs and blends traditional country and bluegrass music together with some tongue in cheek humour and stories inspired by life in Newfoundland and beyond. An album release show for Sweltering Sun had originally been planned for late May at The Tranzac in Toronto with an opening performance by Sarah Beatty. However, due to COVID-19, that show was cancelled in favour of an online release, which also featured Sarah Beatty. A cross-Canada tour planned for this summer will be rescheduled for a later date. Ol’ Billy Bob Boy joined us from his home in Newfoundland to chat about the new album. For more information about the music of Ol’ Billy Bob Boy, visit olbillybobboy.com. Music: Ol’ Billy Bob Boy “Darlin’ You Look Great” (feat. Mallory Johnson), “Carrie Ann”, “Bathroom Floor” and “Canadian Currency Blues” from “Sweltering Sun” (2020, Self).

Adrian Glynn – Ghostlight Sessions – Folk Roots Radio interview

Vancouver singer-songwriter and actor Adrian Glynn has just released his third solo recording, “Ghostlight Sessions” and it’s an album with a difference – it was recorded on an empty theatre stage in Kamloops BC at the start of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. At the time, Adrian was about to reprise his role as the ‘The Writer’ in Chelsea Hotel: The Songs of Leonard Cohen, which was being put on by the Western Canada Theatre. After Covid prevention protocols forced rehearsals to stop in mid-March, the theatre company generously paid out the actors’ full contracts and allowed them to remain in their Kamloops accommodation. With time on his hands, and no place to be, Adrian elected to start work on what he describes as a homemade album – nine songs from the vault recorded in a stripped down way without much more than a single mic and guitar. An introspective, acoustic folk record, the songs on the album move from a talkin’ blues about suicidal depression, to a modern satirical take on “If I Had A Hammer”, to an ode to slide-guitar guru Kelly Joe Phelps. Ghostlight Sessions is only available as a digital download from Bandcamp. A portion of the proceeds (25%) will go to the NAACP and BIPOC-Covid related organizations. Adrian Glynn (as Adrian Glynn McMorran) also takes the lead role in a new sci-fi psychological thriller, Volition (2019), from writing/directing team, the Smith Brothers. After screening at festivals worldwide and picking up many awards, including Best Feature at several festivals and a Best Actor win for Glynn at Italy’s Ostia festival, the movie is now available for on-demand viewing on streamings services. Adrian Glynn is also co-leader of Vancouver folk collective The Fugitives with Brendan McLeod. The Fugitives have just recorded a new album, “Trench Songs”, a re-imagining of songs and poems from the First World War period. Another album of original songs is also in the works. The release dates for both new projects have yet to be determined. For more information about Adrian Glynn, visit adrianglynn.com. Music: Adrian Glynn “Acting My Age”, “Hammer”, “Kelly Joe, I Heard You Sold Your Last Guitar” and “Talkin’ Suicidal Depression Blues” from “Ghostlight Sessions” (2020, Self) CDN.

Stan Simon – Songs From Strange Places – Folk Roots Radio Interview

Toronto singer-songwriter Stan Simon is getting set to release his third album, “Songs From Strange Places”, a lovely new country folk recording that takes its lead from the great singer-songwriters and balladeers of our time, on a reflective collection of songs that explore themes of love, loss and spiritual exploration. The new 10 song recording, produced by Dennis Patterson at Big Smoke Audio, features Stan Simon on vocals, acoustic guitar and harmonica with support from Nathan Gray (pedal steel), Sebastian Shinwell (bass, tambourine, electric guitar, piano and harmony vocals), Max Trefler (drums) and Jackie Mohr (vocals on “Visceral”). Folk Roots Radio caught up with Stan Simon at home in Toronto for an in-depth conversation about the new album, that also touches on songwriting, live performance and coping with Covid times. For more information about the music of Stan Simon, visit stansimonmusic.com. Music: Stan Simon “Only The Moon”, “Everlasting Love”, “Eternal Maze” and “Rest Well In The Blue Night” from “Songs From Strange Places” (2020, Slammin Media).

Ken Yates – Quiet Talkers – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We recently included a portion of an interview with acclaimed singer-songwriter Ken Yates, discussing his latest album “Quiet Talkers”, in Episode 521 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now pleased to be able to share our full conversation. It’s definitely worth checking out. Enjoy!

Toronto based singer-songwriter Ken Yates has just released “Quiet Talkers”, the follow up to his critically acclaimed album “Huntsville” from 2016, which picked up Canadian Folk Music Awards for both Songwriter of the Year and New Artist of the Year. Ken Yates describes the new album, which was again produced by Jim Bryson at Fixed Hinge Recording, as his most personal to date – with a more introspective feel on songs that reflect on home life, and the impact of mental health issues on interpersonal relationships. “This is by far my most personal album to date. I’ve always been better at observing than being a part of the action, so I like to think of this collection of songs as “thoughts from the quietest person in the room”. If Huntsville was about my experiences on the road, ‘Quiet Talkers’ is about coming home, facing the monsters hiding under the bed – or in some cases, the monsters hiding in plain sight.” Ken Yates joined us on Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth conversation about the new album. Our interview also touches on life in lockdown, for an artist, who was touring extensively before the enforced break – as we all continue to weather the coronavirus pandemic. For more information about the music of Ken Yates visit kenyates.com. Photo: Kate Jaczko. Music: Ken Yates “Grey County Blues”, “Safe From Yourself”, “Evangeline” and “Surviving is Easy” from “Quiet Talkers” (2020, Self) CDN.

Julian Taylor – The Ridge – Folk Roots Radio Interview

We recently showcased Julian Taylor’s new singer-songwriter album “The Ridge” with an interview on Episode 517 of Folk Roots Radio. We’re now pleased to be able to share our full in-depth conversation which focused on the making of the new album, and some of the early life experiences that provided source material for the recording. Julian also shares his perspective as a Canadian of West Indian and indigenous heritage to the on-going protests against racial injustice and police brutality.

Originally intended for a fall release, the release of “The Ridge” was brought forward in the hope that it might bring joy to listeners in troubled times – as we all cope with the on-going coronavirus pandemic. Enjoy!

While clearly at the top of his game fronting the Julian Taylor band, Julian Taylor also loves the opportunity to showcase the singer-songwriter side of his music, as he does to great affect on his new eight song Americana album “The Ridge”. “I’d really like the heart of this record and the stories to connect with people. These are letters to members of my family. It’s something that everyone has – family (whether chosen or not) and memories.” The title track is based on the true story of summers that Taylor spent with his aunt and grandparents at their farm in British Columbia – telling the story of the young boy’s life, in snapshots, before they had to sell the farm and move on. Check out the great video mentioned during the interview HERE. For more information about the music of Julian Taylor, visit juliantaylormusic.ca. Music: Julian Taylor “The Ridge”, “Human Race”, “Ballad Of The Young Troubadour” and “Ola Let’s Dance” from “The Ridge” (2020, Howling Turtle inc.).

Steve Earle – Ghosts Of West Virginia – Folk Roots Radio Interview

According to Steve Earle, his critically-acclaimed new album with his long time band The Dukes, Ghosts of West Virginia, which focuses on the 2010 Upper Big Branch mining disaster, is the record he had to make at this time. Although he has made political records in the past, those preached to the converted. This time around Steve wanted to reach out across the political divide to those that don’t vote like he does, in advance of the November US election. The Upper Big Branch Mine disaster took place in West Virginia in 2010, and killed twenty-nine miners – making it one of the worst mining disasters in American history. Seven songs on the new album are taken from the off-Broadway play Coal Country written by Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen. Jessica and Erik approached Steve to write and perform some original songs in the show – drawn from interviews and testimonials with surviving miners and the families of those who died. The new album also includes three more songs about West Virginia: “Black Lung”, “Fastest Man Alive” (about Chuck Yeager) and “The Mine”. For more information about the music of Steve Earle, visit steveearle.com. Image: Jacob Blickenstaff. Music: Steve Earle & The Dukes “Heaven Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere”, “Union God And Country”, “Time Is Never On Your Side” and “It’s About Blood” from “Ghosts of West Virginia” (New West, 2020).

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