We’re getting close to the end of 2020, which means it’s time to announce our favourite albums of the year. After the challenging year we’ve all had, it’s tempting to just want to put 2020 behind us and move on to 2021 to what will, hopefully, be a much better year for everyone. And yet, despite everything, 2020 has actually been a great year for recorded music – especially for those us who tend to focus on music that artists release independently, or via small and boutique record labels. Many artists have actually been making excellent use of the lockdown time forced on them by the coronavirus pandemic to record some wonderful ‘Covid Tune’ singles, EPs and in some case, even full albums. We’ve had great fun sharing them with you this year. We’ve also been doing our best to keep up with regularly scheduled releases. It gives us great pleasure each year, once we have put holiday radio episodes to bed, to consider our favourite albums of the year. 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 Episode 560 of Folk Roots Radio. 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, that’s likely because it didn’t make it up on our radar because we didn’t receive 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 on this episode, and check out the full playlist and the rest of our long list below. Enjoy!
Helen Austin and Paul Otten are two fabulous songwriters who make music together as Big Little Lions, even though they are actually based over two thousand miles apart. They were on tour as the coronavirus pandemic hit, and despite having to head home and into lockdown, they have continued to make great music – including the release of a pandemic inspired album “Are We there Yet?”. Big Little Lions join us on Episode 543 of Folk Roots Radio for a fun in-depth conversation about how their lives and their music have been changed by the on-going emergency. The pandemic has hit the artistic community hard, which is why we all need to do what we can to ensure it is supported during these strange Covid Times – and why we encourage our listeners to… buy the music, don’t just stream it! As always, we wrap up the episode with more new releases, and this time around we hear from Emily Barker, Lizzy Hardingham, Gillian Welch, Mo Kenney, Hauler and Mike Plume. Check out the full playlist below.
Singer-songwriter, member of fabulous Vancouver based folk collective The Fugitives and actor, Adrian Glynn joins us on Episode 530 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about his wonderful new lockdown recording “Ghostlight Sessions”, which was recorded on the stage of an empty theatre in Kamloops BC after the play he was about to star in was put on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic. It’s a great album, and an excellent, and wide-ranging interview that moves beyond the music to discuss the impact of the pandemic on people in the arts. We also take a look at more of the latest new releases, and this time around we hear from Emily Barker, Lizzy Hardingham, Kristen Grainger & True North, Monica Lee, Marie Fielding, Michael Barry and Red Wanting Blue. Check out the full playlist below.
Episode 203 of Folk Roots Radio featured an interview and impromptu session with Edmonton Alberta’s Rebecca Lappa recorded at the Folk Music Ontario Conference this past October. Though still just a teenager, Rebecca is already a prolific songwriter, having written over 200 songs in her career so far. All four of the albums she has released to date have been nominated for a Canadian Folk Music Award for “Young Performer of the Year”. Her most recent album, 2014’s “Ode to Tennyson” uses as its source material, the collected works of English poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson. Rebecca shows amazing drive for someone so young. It’s a great interview and definitely worth checking out. As usual, we also included a good selection of new music alongside our mystery theme and guilty pleasure.