Folk Roots Radio Episode 567: feat. Brad Ouellette – Live At The Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions & More New Releases

Folk Roots Radio Episode 567: feat. Brad Ouellette - Live At The Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions & More New Releases

We’re pleased to bring you another performance from our sister video show – The Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions on Episode 567 of Folk Roots Radio. Cottam ON singer-songwriter Brad Ouellette joined us in the studio for a session late last year. We have four songs and a short interview to share with you. We also check out more of the latest new releases and this time around we hear from Lizzy Plotkin & Natalie Spears, Maria Dunn, Wes Weddell & Ailisa Newhall, Bet Smith, François Couture & Quatuor 4-30 sous, Richard Garvey, Born On A Wednesday, Norrie MacIver & The Glasgow Barons and Ontarians. Check out the full playlist below.

Best 2020


Brad Ouellette is a folk, rock, and country singer-songwriter from Cottam ON. Brad has been making music for most of his adult life and recorded in places such as Nashville and Muscle Shoals, Montreal, and Toronto. He is currently working on a new album at Sound Foundry Studios in Kingsville ON.

Brad joined us in the Quantum Sound Productions studio in Kingsville in late 2020 to record a safely socially distanced episode of the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions under the watchful eye of video director Gary Glass.

More than 50 different artists have joined us in the studio to record a session. You can visit the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions online at

Show Notes

Lizzy Plotkin & Natalie Spears from Western Slope, Colorado have released a wonderful six-track E.P. of original Appalachian fiddle and banjo songs, “Just Over The Ridge”. On this episode, we play the wonderful, dream-like “Carry Me With You”. Lizzie Plotkin was a member of Free the Honey whose album “Fine Bloom” was one of our favourite albums of 2016.

Wes Weddell & Ailisa Newhall are both experienced session musicians from Seattle – with quite different backgrounds. One is a distinguished choral conductor, the other, a classically trained soprano. On this episode, we play the title track from their debut duo project album “Pushing Forward”.

This song was actually a request from a listener. If there is a new release song you’d like us to play, please get in touch through the website, email, or via social media. We can’t guarantee a spin – because each episode is curated, but we’ll certainly take a listen.

We also included another track from singer-songwriter and activist Maria Dunn’s great new album “Joyful Banner Blazing”. “Heart in Hand” is based around a first-hand account by Renee Peevey of her first day on the picket line at the 1986 Gainers meatpacking strike in Edmonton – over better wages and working conditions.

Gravenhurst Ontario singer-songwriter and environmental activist Bet Smith has released a great new album “Downer” which was produced with her partner Rob Currie. Most of the album was created in lockdown with musical support from Rob and his brother Andrew. On this episode, we play “Some Greater Power”.

“Downer is a cumulation of anxieties, imaginings, and big feelings. I find myself making major life decisions based on the bleak future I see for humans and the more innocent animals living on this planet. And I’m procrastinating those decisions until I know for sure… will governments act? Will societal values change? Will the demonstrations and social action make any difference at all? Is this futile? Are we doomed? I don’t see meaningful change happening fast enough, and I am frozen in time. And I’m kind of pissed off.”

The instrumental on this episode “Reel des cascades” comes from the incredibly productive Quebecois composer François Couture who released “La Suite Fléchée” with the string quartet Quatuor 4-30 sous last year.

Kitchener ON folk singer and activist Richard Garvey has released a full band lockdown version of his song “Bluebird” with the help from some of his friends. The addition of some brass, clarinet, sax, and piano giving the song a wonderful old-time jazz-folk flavour.

Born On A Wednesday is a 5-piece band from Nelson, BC with an indie-folk feel to their music. On this episode, we play the title track from their debut album “Western Wind”.

“We are a unique band as we have four lead singers and no drummer. We lead our own creations to produce four unique song styles within our cohesive sound. Our nuances complement each other and collectively make up our feel. You will hear influences from blues, folk, funk, country, and soul. A common thread, found and interlaced throughout, are catchy pop melodies and fun riffs and solos. We are described as indie folk or mountain folk. We are also long-time friends and have been playing together for 14 years.”

Scottish songwriter Norrie MacIver teaming up with The Glasgow Barons – Govan, Glasgow’s string orchestra to celebrate the rich heritage of the Glasgow neighbourhood.

The album is a tapestry of stories from the vibrant, close-knit community of Govan’s days gone by and pairs Scots and Gaelic folk music, rooted in the tradition of social commentary, with the stunning sounds of a string orchestra.

On this episode we play “Lizzie”, a song honouring Lizzie Robinson – who in 1917 was the first woman to receive an OBE. She received the honour for her tireless work in the munitions factory during the first world war.

Ontarians are a new three-piece country rock band featuring Frank Deresti, Craig Smith, and Jay Stiles. They actually hail from the northern half of the province rather than the Toronto area. On this episode, we play “Time”, the first single from their debut album “The Greatest Story Never Told”.

“Between glasses of Pernod, car troubles, and lots of laughter we wrote songs about various stages of life we found ourselves in—past, present, and a hypothetical future. Once we had a clear goal in mind, it was like a reservoir of creativity was released that had been building up for a long time.”

That’s all we have time for. Thanks to all the artists who share their music with us, and thank you for listening. We have lots of great music and interviews to bring you on future episodes.

If you enjoy the music we play on this show and want to support the artists – many of whom aren’t able to play live at the moment because of the Covid-19 pandemic, don’t just stream their music – that earns them much less than a penny per play. Instead, buy their music – and really make a difference to their income. They’ll love you for it!


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 Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Tune-in Radio. (Click on the highlighted link to reach your chosen platform.)


Nicolas & The Iceni (Theme)
Lucy She Rises
Roll Right (2019, self)

Lizzy Plotkin & Natalie Spears
Carry Me With You
Just Over The Ridge (2021, Self)

Maria Dunn
Heart in Hand
Joyful Banner Blazing (2021, Self) CDN

Wes Weddell & Ailisa Newhall
Pushing Forward
Pushing Forward (2020, Dusty Shadows Music)

Bet Smith
Some Greater Power
Downer (2021, Pine Lake Records) CDN

François Couture & Quatuor 4-30 sous
Reel des cascades
La Suite Fléchée (2020, Disques Boghei) CDN

Brad Ouellette
Who Cares
Live at the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions (2020, Self) CDN

Brad Ouellette
Live at the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions (2020, Self) CDN

Brad Ouellette
One Day
Live at the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions (2020, Self) CDN

Interview: Brad Ouellette discussing his music.

Brad Ouellette
Live at the Sun Parlour Coffee House Sessions (2020, Self) CDN

Richard Garvey & Friends
(single) (2021, Self) CDN

Born On A Wednesday
Western Wind
Western Wind (2020, Self) CDN

Norrie MacIver & The Glasgow Barons
Songs Of Govan Old (2020, Self)

The Greatest Story Never Told (2021, 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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