Leader of the world rhythms folk combo Sultans of String, Chris McKhool joins us on Episode 476 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about the band’s forthcoming album “Refuge”, a project that is all about highlighting the extraordinary contributions that indigenous people, immigrants and refugees make to our culture and life, and showcases some of the amazing people who are sharing their musical gifts with us in Canada and the United States. It’s a very inspiring interview, and well worth checking out. We also include new music from Bobtown, Kristen Martell, Durham County Poets, Dayna Manning, Jason Wilson and Kyp Harness. Check out the full playlist below.
We’re giving over the whole of Episode 475 of Folk Roots Radio to a very inspiring audio documentary created with the participants in the 2019 Folk Music Ontario (FMO) Developing Artist Program. Each year at the conference, young performers are paired with mentors from the Ontario folk community to work on a showcase performance and participate in professional development activities in a nurturing and supportive environment. This episode features commentary and musical contributions from program coordinator Treasa Levasseur; peer mentors: Braden Phelan & Liv Cazzola (Tragedy Ann); mentors: Leela Gilday, Janice Jo Lee, Irish Mythen, Alexis Normand and Nick Sherman; developing artists: Emily Gilbart, Amy Brady & Liam Roesch (Hill & Landing), Mia Kelly, Yasmine Shelton & Sam Clark (Basset) and Voimaa. Photo credit: Mike Bourgeault. Check out the full playlist below.
We don’t often dip into pop/rock on Folk Roots Radio but when it comes to a new album from Sarah Smith we know that is something we just have to do. Sarah Smith is a fabulous live performer, and, quite the road warrior – she performs well over 200 shows a year. Her latest album, the deep and personal “Unveiling” is the perfect complement to a live show that feels like Sarah Smith in communion with her adoring fans, with an amazingly tight band along for the ride. Pretty much recorded live off the floor in London ON, the new album features 15 songs that focus on love, and loss and the courage to trust your own instincts. To learn more about the new album, we’re pleased to welcome Sarah Smith back to Folk Roots Radio. Sarah Smith has release shows planned for Leamington (Nov 20, The Bank Theatre), Collingwood (Nov 21, Harbour Street Fish Bar), London (Nov 22, Eastside Bar & Grill) and Kitchener (Nov 23, Rhapsody Barrel Bar). For more information about the music of Sarah Smith, and all upcoming tour dates visit sarahsmithmusic.com. Photo: Frank Oppitz. Music: Sarah Smith “You Don’t Get My Love”, “Sink” and “The Great Reveal” from “Unveiling” (2019, Self) CDN
Dayna Manning joins us on Episode 474 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about her latest album, “Morning Light”. Morning Light is a fabulous chamber folk recording with a wonderful and sumptuous feel – and a great selection of original and traditional songs. Dayna Manning has also released a fine book 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. It’s a great interview – we hope you’ll stay with us to check it out. We also include new music from Casati, Matt Zaddy, Unfaithful Servants, The Sweet Lowdown and Matt Patershuk. Check out the full playlist below.
Canadian songwriter, composer and producer Jojo Worthington joins us on Episode 473 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about her latest project “TCYK (The Company You Keep)” which finds Jojo moving further into the world of electronic sounds and looping on a beautiful recording that really tests the boundaries of what we think of as folk. It’s a great album – we hope you’ll stick around to check out our interview. We also take a look at more of the new releases we’ve received, and this time around we hear from Miriam Backhouse-Erasmus, Dirty Dishes, The Whispering Tree, Kolonien, Poor Man’s Gambit, Samson Wrote, The Dustbowl Daddies and The Luckies. Check out the full playlist below.
Multi-instrumentalists Mallory Graham & Scott Tyler make music together as The Rough & Tumble. They released “Howling Back At The Wounded Dog” this past September – the follow up to the very well-received “We Made Ourselves A Home When We Didn’t Know” from 2018. The new recording is already picking up some critical buzz, and feels like a bit of a game changer as far as their career is concerned. It has a wonderful, immediate, and almost live, feel to it, and was recorded in just five days in East Nashville with Dave Coalman, who also produced We Made Ourselves A Home When We Didn’t Know. Ten new songs that see them proudly moving forward after what they describe as a year of honesty; time to reflect on some of the challenges they have faced in their lives. If you’re a regular listener to this show you’ll know that we’re big fans of this folky rootsy Americana duo who gave up their permanent home in 2015 for a life on the road with their dogs; traveling from gig to gig in their small RV. We caught up with Mallory & Scott in Grand Rapids MI to talk about the new album. For more information about The Rough & Tumble, visit theroughandtumble.com. Music: The Rough & Tumble “Howl At The Moon”, “The Hardest Part”, “Call Mercy” and “High Fly (Didn’t I Wait?)” from “Howling Back At The Wounded Dog” (2019, Rock Candy Records).
Multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter Linda McRae joins us on Episode 472 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about her latest solo album “Going To The Well”, a stripped down affair that features new versions of some Linda McRae songs alongside some really great covers. As usual, we also check out more of the latest new releases, and this time around we hear from Tim Grimm, Dirty Dishes, Nigel Wearne, Kolonien, Anna Ludlow and Matt Patershuk. Check out the full playlist below.
Steve and Marni Van Kessel, who make music together as VK, join us on Episode 471 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about their new album – album number three, “Charm”, a wonderful bluesy Americana folk-rock recorded with their new band Legends of THE DEEP. We also check out more of the latest new releases, and this time around we hear from Catherine MacLellan, Connie Kaldor, Jake Morley, Unfaithful Servants, Kevin K Gagnon, Adrian Sutherland, Kete Bowers, Lizanne Knott and Stephen Fearing. Check out the full playlist below.
Abe Drennan is a Canadian folk singer, educator and social / environmental activist based in the beautiful town of Inuvik, in the Northwest Territories, and over 100 miles into the Arctic circle. Abe released the single “Spirits Soared” earlier this summer – a song written to commemorate the lives of Daniel, 9, Harrison, 5 and Milly, 2, as well as their grandfather, Gary Neville, who were all killed in a car crash, caused by a drunk driver, on September 27 2015, in Vaughan ON. Proceeds from the release of the single go to support the work of the not-for-profit Many Hands, Doing Good, a charity born out of the tragedy, which supports arts programmes for children who have experienced trauma and also provides a radio broadcasting scholarship in honour of grandfather Gary. Spirits Soared is included on Abe Drennan’s second album “Iglu Sessions”, which was recorded and produced with Jason Manns in the iconic Igloo Church in Inuvik. Folk Roots Radio caught up with Abe Drennan in Inuvik to learn more about his music. For more information about the music of Abe Drennan, visit abedrennan.com. Music: Abe Drennan “Spirits Soared”, “Way Up North”, “There For You” and “Moments In Time” from “Iglu Sessions” (2019, Self) CDN.
Tomorrow Bird are an acoustic folk duo from the UK featuring Jen Bird and Simon Driscoll, who specialize in heartfelt songs that reflect on the human experience. They sing of hope, love, loss, courage and empowerment – creating stories and melodies that are complimented by the duo’s rich vocals and seamless harmonies. Jen and Simon met while Jen was pursuing a solo career, and Simon leading the folk-rock band Burnt Tomorrow. Tomorrow Bird released their self-titled debut album in 2018. Jen and Simon have also co-written and produced four full-length musicals together; “The Island of Lost Children”, “The Best Murder Mystery Party Ever”, “The Box” and “Imagine That”. Tomorrow Bird recently released a new single “Love Is Love”, which was written to coincide with Pride celebrations in the UK. Proceeds from the sale of the single will go to support the Stonewall UK charity. Folk Roots Radio caught up with Jen and Simon at home in Reading to chat about their music. For more information about the music of Tomorrow Bird visit tomorrowbird.com. Music: Tomorrow Bird “Love Is Love” (single) (2019, Self) and “Beyond The Storm”, “Heaven Forbid” and “Get Gone” from “Tomorrow Bird” (2018, Self).
We have a very special interview on Episode 470 of Folk Roots Radio. Coco Love Alcorn joins us to chat about her new album “Rebirth”, the follow-up to the very well-received 2016 album “Wonderland”. Like Wonderland, the new album is spiritual, but with a distinctly non-denominational message, it’s not at all preachy. Twelve new tracks that blend together Coco’s pop, jazz and gospel influences, while some of the tracks also have a lovely R&B feel to them. It’s a great album – and we know we’re biased, but it’s a fabulous interview. As usual, we wrap the episode with more of the new music we’ve received and this time around we hear from Katie Dahl, Tim Grimm, Dayna Manning, Bruce Cockburn and Robbie Smith, from Naming the Twins – who sadly passed away earlier this year. Check out the full playlist below.
Helen Austin and Paul Otten make music together as Big Little Lions. They join us on Episode 469 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about their sixth album “Inside Voice” – fourteen songs that take as their theme the issue of mental health with songs about dementia, depression and anxiety. It’s a great album, and Helen and Paul are always a great interview. We also check out new music from Hannah Connolly, Lizanne Knott, Lori Lynne Johnson, Anna Ludlow, The Fitzgeralds and Don Brownrigg. Check out the full playlist below.
Coco Love Alcorn is getting ready to release “Rebirth”, the follow-up to her very well-received 2016 album “Wonderland”. With a spiritual, but distinctly non-denominational message, Rebirth – like Wonderland, makes great use of Coco’s pop, jazz and gospel stylings, but with more of an R&B feel this time around. It’s a collection of songs that exhibit bravery and vulnerability with, in some cases, almost a spine-tingling fragility, as they document Coco’s own journey to spiritual growth. It’s a great recording, and one that really speaks to the importance of discovering and nurturing your own true self; and it’s an album that is sure to appeal to a growing fanbase. Coco Love Alcorn joined us on Folk Roots Radio for an in-depth conversation about the new project. Coco Love Alcorn will be on tour this fall with Ontario stops in Toronto, London, Perth, Kingston, Newmarket, and Owen Sound; Chelsea (Quebec), three concerts in Nova Scotia (Mahone Bay, Wolfville, Halifax), and then on to Vancouver, Edmonton, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg. To learn more about the music of Coco Love Alcorn and to check out all upcoming tour dates, visit cocolovealcorn.com. Music: Coco Love Alcorn “Rebirth”, “What I Need”, “The Keeper” and “A Song To Sing” from “Rebirth” (2019, Self).
Manitoba singer-songwriter Del Barber joins us on Episode 468 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about his fabulous new Americana flavoured album “Easy Keeper”. Easy Keeper may be the best thing Del Barber has ever done, although we are talking about an artist who has already been nominated for two Junos. A fine album, from a performer at the top of his game, and a great interview – we do hope you’ll stay with us to check it out. As usual, we wrap up the episode with some more of the latest new releases and this time we include great songs from Zachary Lucky, Ian & Sylvia, Don Brownrigg, Madison Galloway, Graham Lindsey, Caroline Spence, Susan Gibson and Lynne Hanson. Check out the full playlist below.
We’re pleased to bring you another episode of all female artists on Episode 467 of Folk Roots Radio. New York City based singer-songwriter Emily Mure joins us to chat about “Sad Songs and Waltzes”, her wonderful E.P. of reimagined cover songs. We’re big fans of Emily’s music, and it was a real pleasure to welcome her to Folk Roots Radio. We also check out more of the latest new releases and this time around we hear from Coco Love Alcorn, Jordana Talsky, Annie & Rod Capps, The Sweet Lowdown, Anna Ludlow, Katherine Fischer, West My Friend, Dayna Manning and Sharon Goldman. Check out the full playlist below.
Toronto roots rockers Skydiggers have just released “Let’s Get Friendship Right” – the follow up to the very well-received “Warmth Of The Sun” from 2017. Josh Finlayson and Andy Maize have been making music together as Skydiggers, with a variety of musical compadres, for nearly 30 years. The new project came out of a desire to use music as therapy to cope with the passing of several friends and family members – the majority of the songs on the new recording, which was originally intended to reflect on the five stages of grief, coming out of a songwriting retreat at the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity. Let’s Get Friendship Right, which features nine new songs, was recorded at The Tragically Hip’s The Bathouse Studio with engineer/producer Nyles Spencer, with support from Peter von Althen (percussion) and Aaron Comeau (guitar/bass/keyboards). Josh Finlayson joined us on Folk Roots Radio to chat about the new album. For more information about Skydiggers and their upcoming tour dates, visit skydiggers.com. Photo: Heather Pollock. Music: “If I’m Spared”, “Ineligible” and “Questions of Love” from “Let’s Get Friendship Right” (2019, Latent Recordings) CDN.
Australian acoustic blues legend Lloyd Spiegel has been performing his hard-hitting, cutting edge brand of blues for more than 30 years. While on tour in Canada, Lloyd Spiegel sat down with Folk Roots Radio at the Folk Music Ontario conference for a chat about his music and three live songs. Believe it or not, Lloyd Spiegel first picking up a guitar at the age of four, played his first professional show at age ten and was touring the east coast of Australia at 12! Lloyd Spiegel’s tenth album “Cut and Run”, is the final part of a trilogy about personal redemption that he didn’t even realize he was writing until it was finished. Whereas his previous albums “Backroads” and “This Time Tomorrow” had Lloyd reflecting on the sins of the past and begging for forgiveness, Cut And Run finds him facing the next chapter of his life with optimism and determination. Check out the video of Lloyd Spiegel playing three songs at Folk Music Ontario HERE. You can SUBSCRIBE to Folk Roots Radio’s new Youtube channel HERE. For more information about the music of Lloyd Spiegel and upcoming tour dates, visit lloydspiegel.com. Music: Lloyd Spiegel “Life Is A Gamble” (Live), “Old Wounds” (Live) and “Mississippi Sun” (Live).
Russell deCarle joins us on Episode 466 of Folk Roots Radio for a wonderful conversation about his career, third solo album “Alone in this Crowd” and his live show. Russell deCarle is a fabulous artist who always surrounds himself with a supporting cast of great musicians, to put on a concert experience that just seems to be getting better and better. We also check out new releases from Linda McRae, William Kuklis, Lizanne Knott, Twas Now, Paul Pigat & Boxcar Campfire, West My Friend and Ruby Muse. Check out the full playlist below.
Josh Finlayson and Andy Maize have been making music together as Skydiggers, with a variety of musical compadres, for nearly 30 years. Josh Finlayson joins us on Episode 465 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about Skydiggers new album “Let’s Get Friendship Right”, the follow-up to the critically acclaimed “Warmth of the Sun” from 2017. The development of Let’s Get Friendship Right came out of a desire to use music as therapy to cope with the passing of several friends and family members. Music can be great medicine for what ails you, especially when faced with life’s challenges. Let’s Get Friendship Right is a great album, and it’s an excellent interview – we hope you’ll stay with us to check it out. We also take a look at more of the latest new releases, and this time around we hear from The New Customs, Bryan McPherson, Noah Derksen, Sultans of String, Natalie MacMaster, Jennis and Gathering Sparks. Check out the full playlist below.
Singer-songwriter Jean-Paul De Roover is renowned for his innovative and original approach to music, using live looping with guitars and voice as part of his performance. Although Jean-Paul was born in Thunder Bay, ON, he was raised overseas in Africa, Asia and South America before returning to Canada in 2001 – an upbringing that led him to create a post-pop style that is decidedly his own, blending ideas from rock, pop, a cappella and electronica together in his music. Jean-Paul De Roover released a great new acoustic album “Love” earlier this year. It’s actually part of a two album set, Love & Loss, with “Loss” to be released in 2020. As well as being a singer-songwriter, Jean-Paul De Roover is also a composer for film and TV, and currently artistic director at the Live from the Rock Folk Festival. Jean-Paul De Roover sat down with Folk Roots Radio at the 2019 Folk Music Ontario conference to chat about his music. For more information about the music of Jean-Paul De Roover, and upcoming tour dates, visit jeanpaulderoover.com. Music: Jean-Paul De Roover “My Heart and My Head”, “I’ll Do Anything”, “I Can’t Sleep” and “Ragged Angel” from “Love” (2019, Self) CDN.
Australian acoustic blues great Lloyd Spiegel joins us on Episode 464 of Folk Roots Radio for a chat about his music and three live songs. A fantastic live performer, Lloyd Spiegel has been performing his hard-hitting, cutting edge brand of blues for more than 30 years. Lloyd Spiegel released his tenth album, “Cut & Run”, earlier this year. It’s a great interview – we hope you’ll check it out. And as always we wrap up the hour with more new releases, and this time we hear from I’m With Her, Annie & Rod Capps, Zachary Lucky, Dale Boyle, The Lifers, Jennis, Durham County Poets and Kae Shelby. Check out the full playlist below.
Toronto singer-songwriter and carpenter Tim Moxam joins us on Episode 463 of Folk Roots Radio to chat about his music, latest album “Marlborough Hall” and the StopGap on Tour initiative – building and delivering StopGap wooden accessibility ramps to inaccessible music venues he visits while on tour. It’s a very inspirational interview, and definitely worth checking out. We also take a look at more of the new music we’ve received, and this time around we hear from Big Little Lions, Daniel Norgren, Jeremy Voltz, Linda McRae, Darling Cora, Rising Appalachia, Kevin Mitchell, Ian Reid, Peter Light and Gathering Sparks. Check out the full playlist below.
Linda McRae is getting ready to release a great new solo recording “Going to the Well” (October 1 release). The new album actually came out of house concert put on by fellow singer-songwriter Deni Gauthier in St Thomas ON, who suggested that Linda might like to record a few tracks in his studio. What followed is a new stripped down recording that’s really just Linda McRae singing with her guitar or banjo, alongside some great cameos from Gurf Morlix and Bill Kirchen on guitar and backing vocals, Deni Gauthier on guitar and duet vocal, and Shara Gustafson on backing vocals. The new album features solo versions of three Linda McRae songs from her 2015 “Shadow Trails” album, a new lovely Linda McRae and Kelly Kessler co-write, with a poignant political message, “Empty”, and some wonderful covers including solo banjo versions of David Bowie’s “Heroes” and “Ashes to Ashes”, Richard Thompson’s “Dimming of the Day”, Bill Kirchen’s “Man in the Bottom of the Well” and Willie P Bennett’s “Caney Fork River”. We caught up with Linda McRae at home in Nashville to chat about the new album. For more information about the music of Linda McRae and upcoming tour dates, visit lindamcrae.com. Music: Linda McRae “Ashes to Ashes”, “Empty”, “Man in the Bottom of the Well” and “Dimming of the Day” from “Going to the Well” (2019, 42 RPM).
Ottawa based singer-songwriter Kae Shelby‘s inspirational debut album “Music and Motorcycles” is the recording that she always wanted to make, and a life long dream. Kae describes the music on the album as a blend of Southern Rock Infused Canadiana Country that will reach inside and touch your soul. Produced by Anders Drerup and Steve Foley, the new album features eight tracks – six original songs and a couple of great covers; Brad Paisley’s “When I get Where I’m Goin'” recorded in memorium for her brother and a long time favourite, Melissa Etheridge’s “Late September Dogs”. Getting the album out there represents a sense of passage for Kae Shelby, who waited until she mostly wound down a career in policing before allowing her music to take flight. Folk Roots Radio caught up with Kae Shelby at home in Ottawa to learn more about the new album. For more information visit kaeshelby.ca. Music: Kae Shelby “Here I Am”, “Through the Reckless”, “Waiting For When” and “My High My Way” from “Music and Motorcycles” (2019, Willow Sounds Records) CDN.
Fresh Breath are a wonderful Cottam ON based duo, featuring Josh and Katie Pascoe, with a very positive attitude and a sound that they describe as folk-rock, blues, pop and country with a lot of heart and soul. Fresh Breath released their well-received full-length album “Us Against The World” in June 2017, and they’ve just released the follow-up, “The Big Picture”. Fresh Breath joined us in the Folk Roots Radio studio to chat about their music and the new album. For more information about the music of Fresh Breath, visit freshbreathband.com. Music: Fresh Breath “Jump In”, “One Liners”, “I Still Cry” and “I’m On A Roll” from “The Big Picture” (2019, Self) CDN.