Episode 258: James Gordon

Singer-songwriter and former member of Tamarack, James Gordon joins us on this episode to chat about “Sunny Jim”, his forty-something album over all, and seventh on Borealis Records. As always, we find time to include tracks from some of the fine new releases we’ve received.

Sunny Jim features James Gordon, accompanied by his musical sons Geordie and Evan, on 12 songs that, as expected, ooze social commentary on everything from politics and protest, to war and conflict and the environment, but, more personally, also reflect on love and loss. The title (and title track) alluding to the fact that we all have our down days, even someone as relentlessly upbeat and optimistic as James Gordon who along side his musical career and community activism, is now city councillor in Guelph, Ontario. The album also features a very special a cappella version of what maybe his best known song “Frobisher Bay” – originally written for Tamarack, it has been covered more than 100 times.

Album release shows take place in Hamilton at The Pearl Company (June 11), Toronto, at Hugh’s Room (June 16), Guelph at Heritage Hall (June 17) and Collingwood (June 18) at Simcoe Street Theatre. We caught up with James at home in Guelph to chat about the new album. For more information and to BUY Tickets visit jamesgordon.ca.

Among the new music we played on this episode was a song about climate change, “Warming” from Santa Fe based singer-songwriter Jaime Michaels from his new album “Once Upon A Different Time” (2016, Frumdahart). Aussie-Canadian Gina Horswood, the singer-songwriter with the smokey hot rootsy vocal delivery has just released her latest “Porcelain” (2016, Self). Gina’s on tour in western Canada in June. Check out ginahorswood.com for all the details.

We wrapped the hour with Justin Latam, a young singer-songwriter from Leamington ON with the title track from his latest release “Barefoot”. According to Justin, setting your feet free can be liberating – he even has a video to spread the word, though I’m not sure it would work for sensitive footed folk like myself.

Check out the full playlist with artist links below and share your love for all the great folk and roots music out there. Thanks to all the artists who share their music with us, and thank you for listening. We have a lot of great music to bring you on future shows. I hope you’ll join us! You can listen to this show again on Mixcloud by following the link below.

Nicolas & The Iceni (Theme)
Lucy She Rises (Demo)
Roll Right (expected 2016)

Jaime Michaels
Once Upon A Different Time (2016, Frumdahart)

Bryan McPherson
Hearts in Boxcars
Wedgewood (2015, OFD Records)

Kev Corbett
Rome Didn’t Fall In A Day
On The River Off The Lake (2015, Self) CDN

Thom Swift
I Don’t Know
The Legend of Roy Black (2016, Self) CDN

Arnie Naiman
My Lucky Stars (2016, Merriweather Records) CDN

James Gordon
Sunny Jim
Sunny Jim (2016, Borealis Records) CDN

Interview: James Gordon discussing new album “Sunny Jim”

James Gordon
I Picture You
Sunny Jim (2016, Borealis Records) CDN

James Gordon
Change Train
Sunny Jim (2016, Borealis Records) CDN

James Gordon
Took The Long Way Home
Sunny Jim (2016, Borealis Records) CDN

Gina Horswood
Come Hell Or High Water
Porcelain (2016, Self) CDN

Justin Latam
Barefoot (2015, Self) CDN

About the author


Host of Folk Roots Radio, Jan Hall started in Radio in 1993 at WEFT 90.1fm in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois. Folk Roots Radio (formerly Royal City Rag) debuted on CFRU 93.3fm in August 2005 before developing into a syndicated radio show. As the host of Folk Roots Radio, Jan focuses on bringing new folk, roots and blues music and the voices of upcoming and independent artists to the airwaves. Jan is also a much sought after stage host and festival emcee. In 2019, Jan Hall received Folk Music Ontario's prestigious Estelle Klein Award for her contribution to Ontario's folk music community.

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