There’s no better party in Canada than Junoweek, so we’re sharpening our partying skills in preparation for all the fantastic times ahead in Ottawa this year. We’ve even built a replica Gatineau River in the alley behind our office. We are super stoked about our three Juno Award nominations this year. Jenn Grant’s Honeymoon Punch is up for Best Adult Alternative Album of the Year, competing against Cancon stalwarts Feist, Jim Cuddy, and Ron Sexsmith. Squaring off against each other for Best Roots & Traditional Album of the Year (Group) is the Deep Dark Woods and the Good Lovelies. We think that they should both win, can we make that happen? Those two bands are going to be sitting together at the Gala Awards night (food fight?). I personally think they should call the gala dinner “The Juno Noms”.
For the good people of Ottawa we also have a killer show in store for you. We’re teaming up with our pals at Starfish Entertainment to present the Outlaws & Gunslingers show at Junofest. It’s goin’ doooown at Mavericks on Friday, March 30. The Good Lovelies kick things off at 9 pm. Then the Beauties take the stage, first offering up some of their own tunes, and then backing a crazy line up of awesome musicians, including Jim Cuddy, Jenn Grant, Luke Doucet, Wayne Petti, Devin Cuddy, Dustin Bental and Kendel Carson, Daniel Romano, and more.
In other CMW news, the Deep Dark Woods would love your votes in support of their nomination of Best Roots Album. Check out http://www.theindies.ca to vote. It’s your democratic privilege!
Trampled By Turtles has already performed on NPR’s Prairie Home Companion in anticipation of the release of Stars and Satellites, coming out April 10, 2012 on yours truly, Six Shooter Records here in Canada. They also have a jam-packed SXSW schedule, so check them out if you’re in Austin:
Thursday March 15th:
11am – ACL Bloody Mary Brunch – ACL Live – 310 Willie Nelson Blvd (Guadalupe & West 2nd) – Invite only*
2pm – Sony Music Showcase – Six Lounge, 117 West 4th Street (@ Colorado) – Invite only*
12am – Thirty Tigers’ Showcase – Cedar Street Courtyard – 208 West 4th Street (@ Colorado)
*Let me know if you’d like to get on the list
Friday March 16th:
9am – KUT SXSW Live Broadcast – Four Seasons Hotel Main Ballroom – 98 San Jacinto Boulevard
1:15pm – Noise Pop Party @ Red Eyed Fly – 715 Red River Street (@ 8th)
4:30pm – First Ave Party @ Swan Dive – 651 Red River Street (@ 7th)
She’s here, there and everywhere. And, to be specific, playing in these fine cities:
VANCOUVER, BC: The Media Club, Mar 11 w/ Caracol, tix: http://www.themediaclub.ca
MONTREAL, PQ: L’Astral, Mar 20 w/ Caracol, tix: http://www.sallelastral.com
ST. HYACINTHE, PQ: Le Zaricot, Mar 22 w/ Caracol
SHERBROOKE, PQ: Boquebiere, Mar 23 w/ Caracol
ST. EUSTACHE, PQ: Centre d’Art La Petite Eglise, Mar 30 w/ Caracol
JONQUIERE, PQ: Cafe Theatre Cote-Cour, Mar 31 w/ Caracol
QUEBEC CITY, PQ: Theatre Petit Champlain, Apr 26 w/ Caracol
VICTORIAVILLE, PQ: Au Vieux Saint Pierre, Apr 28 w/ Caracol
GANDER, NLFD: A&C Centre, May 3 w/ Don Brownrigg
GRAND FALLS, NFLD: A&C Centre, May 4 w/ Don Brownrigg
CORNERBROOK, NFLD: A&C Centre, May 5 w/ Don Brownrigg
STEPHENVILLE, NFLD: A&C Centre, May 6 w/ Don Brownrigg
LABRADOR CITY, NFLD: A&C Centre, May 8 w/ Don Brownrigg
I know it’s not really fair, but every time I hear about a new band made up of young whippersnappers, the first thing that comes to mind is Old Skull, the punk band of yore whose members were 9 years old. Considering that such “hits” as Old Skull’s ‘Homeless’ (http://www.youtube.com/watch) were recorded before Hamilton’s Harlan Pepper were even born, I really need to re-evaluate my curmudgeon-y “kids today” attitude. Clearly, youngsters have evolved at a rapid rate since the dark era of 1989. I am listening to Harlan Pepper’s debut Young and Old right now, and lemme tell ya, it’s a burner! These dudes have crafted a beautifully mature record, effortlessly blending a variety of folk and roots styles. It’s almost like they are the musical equivalent of Brad Pitt at the end of that movie where he is an old dude trapped in a baby’s body or whatever (although, probably closer to the character at the end of the short story that the movie was based on, since I heard a kid on the bus say it was waaaay better, and these guys are damn good).
Anyway, the boys in Harlan Pepper grew up together sharing classrooms and hockey teams. With prize money won from a local jam contest the band recorded Young and Old , Produced by Aaron Goldstein (Huron, Espanola) at Hamilton’s Vibewrangler studio, and began touring throughout Ontario and Quebec. The independent release went on to hit the Top 10 on the CBC Radio 3 national chart, and landed them on stages with a number of renowned Canadian acts. Not bad for a group simultaneously focused on graduating high school. We are proud to be re-releasing this most excellent debut album on Six Shooter Records on October 18th! Yay!
Check out Harlan Pepper performing This Aint The Country and Little Miss Sunshine on Southern Souls:
Album re-release tour parties are listed below.
So, you know about this whole Sleepwalk Guitar Festival thingy right? The only festival where Six Shooter (that’s us) enlists supreme face melter Luke Doucet to hand pick other face melters to melt your face on the official dates of shred (Nov. 4-6)? Ohhh yeah, it’s goin’ down!!! I’ve gone undercover as super sleuth T. Elecaster (aka Kark Mnopfler) to get you the exclusive details on this most excellent widdly fest.
In addition to the Friday night concert featuring Dinosaur Jr’s J Mascis and Luke Doucet and the White Falcon, and the Saturday night concert featuring The Sadies, and the Richard Lloyd Trio (from Television), here are a few of the events that we’ve got planned for the festival:
SIDE AND CENTRE – SONGWRITERS + GUITARISTS. We’ve confirmed the line up for the Side and Centre Workshop (Sat Nov 5 @ 5 pm), which will feature songwriters Andy Maize, Danny Michel, Justin Rutledge and Melissa McClelland. Guitarists are Afie Jurvanen, Christine Bougie, James Robertson and Kurt Swinghammer. Each songwriter will provide acoustic demos to two of the guitarists, who will write guitar parts to be performed live for the first time at Sleepwalk. The purpose of this event is to convey what a guitarist brings to a piece of music, and how different the results can be. Stay tuned for info on other great workshops happening the same Saturday.
SUNDAY COUNTRY + BLUES JAMS CONFIRMED. Sleepwalk Guitar Festival announces two impressive lineups of guitar-slinging talent for the Sunday afternoon Jam Sessions. The Sleepwalk Country Jam features Telecaster masters Brent Mason (Nashville, TN) and Redd Volkaert (Austin, TX) alongside Hurtin’ Albertan Grant Siemens. The Blues Jam welcomes Les Paul player Duke Robillard, Stony Plain stalwart Amos Garrett, Winnipeg Perpetrator Jay Nowicki and Multi-Platinum Juno Award winning Colin James. Both jams will be backed by the Sleepwalk rhythm section, John Dymond on bass and Derek Downham of The Beauties on drums.
Sleepwalk’s Sunday programming also includes a clinic (guitars welcome) by Amos Garett on how to play the iconic Billboard-topping “Sleep Walk” instrumental guitar composition. The tune is instantly familiar, and one of my personal all time faves – see the original Santo and Johnny performance here: http://youtube.com
SLEEPWALK GUITAR FESTIVAL OFFERS EMERGING ARTIST SCHOLARSHIP. The inaugural Sleepwalk Guitar Festival extends an open invitation to the next generation of six-string slingers to apply for the Emerging Artist Scholarship. The winning artist will take home a $1000 cash prize (donated by Six Shooter Records) and a Traynor QuarterHorse amp (donated by Traynor). The Scholarship is open to anyone 19 and under. Entrants should post a link to their performance of an original composition or an interpretation of an existing work on the Sleepwalk Guitar Festival facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/sleepwalkguitar. Entries will be judged on innovation, artistry and technique.
SLEEPWALK SPECIAL PARKING LOT SHOWCASE. Sleepwalk’s unofficial parking lot programing will feature ME trying to hack my way through the chords to Tom Petty’s ‘Free Falling’ on one of those cool guitars with a handle cut out of the body (Ibanez JEM, for those of you that speak-a da language). I may also try to make up some new jams based around the same chords as Tom Petty’s ‘Free Falling’, possibly capped off with an epic tapping solo, if I can figure out how to do that. It’ll be a heartbreaker fo’ sho.
The Deep Dark Woods’ excellent new record, The Place I Left Behind is about to hit the streets of America on October 18 via Nashville-based Sugar Hill Records. They celebrate the release first with a show at the Americana Music conference on Oct 15 at the Basement, and then with a Sugar Hill-hosted bash at the Third & Lindsley on Oct 17, both in Nashville. I’m gonna need a toothpaste hill to brush away shows that sweet! Hardy har! A slew of dates have been announced in the USA (see below), including a bunch with Americana master Robert Earl Keen. In the middle of all this exciting hooha, the boys fit in their long-awaited hometown Album Release show in Saskatoon (the place they left behind) at the Broadway Theatre on October 29.
We’ll be in Nashville, too, toasting the new Deep Dark Woods‘ release with tequila shots all over town (I’m actually going to be drinking corn syrup from a tequila bottle, ‘cause I’m a lightweight but I still want to paaaartaaay). Not only will we be soaking up Deep Dark Woods-related goodness, we’ll also be cheersing with our Ozzy buddy Henry Wagons, who will be performing a couple of times during Americana Music week, representing his excellent band, Wagons (hence the name).
Check tour dates for his Nashville appearance. Plus, if any of you are going to be in Nashville this week, then please stop by our booth at Exhibit Hall TODAY between 2 and 5 pm, where we will serve you a smuggled in cocktail and prime you with new music and awesome new posters.
( <-- click the poster to check the art )
Melissa McClelland and Luke Doucet continue to blow away audiences on both sides of the border with their new band, Whitehorse, and their self-titled debut, Whitehorse. Our American friends can check out their local indie record store for a copy of the new album starting Oct 18 (which, in case you haven’t been keeping score, is the same release date as Harlan Pepper, and the American release date for The Deep Dark Woods! Big day!). Many thanks to all the USA radio stations who have added Whitehorse to their playlists. New Yorkers can, and should, catch a Whitehorse set at the Rockwood Music Hall on November 9. If you need some official vouch-age, Toronto’s Now Magazine was one of the many publications who recently gave Whitehorse a slam dunk NNNN review, awarding Luke and Melissa the apt title of “space cowboy lovebirds”. Don’t miss it NY! More USA dates to be announced soon!
Meanwhile, Ontario fans of heartwarming tales can catch Whitehorse on any of the multitude of Vinyl Café dates throughout the province this month. Check below for deets.
Whitehorse, the album by the group Whitehorse, comes out digitally in Europe, and everywhere else in the world where not currently available, on Oct 26. Physical street date is set for Nov in the Netherlands (or, as I like to call them, the Nether Regions) and January 30 in the UK (or as I like to call them… uh, the UK?).
From acclaimed musician and author Dave Bidini comes a brilliantly original look at a folk-rock legend and the momentous week in 1972 that culminated in the Mariposa Folk Festival: Writing Gordon Lightfoot, The Man, the Music, and the World in 1972.
The story takes place in July, 1972. As musicians across Canada prepare for the nation’s biggest folk festival, held on Toronto Island, a series of events unfold that will transform the country politically, psychologically–and musically. As Bidini explores the remarkable week leading up to Mariposa, he also explores the life and times of one of the most enigmatic figures in Canadian music: Gordon Lightfoot, the reigning king of folk at the height of his career. Through a series of letters, Bidini addresses Lightfoot directly, questioning him, imagining his life, and weaving together a fascinating, highly original look at a musician at the top of his game. By the end of the week, the country is on the verge of massive change and the ’72 Mariposa folk fest–complete with surprise appearances by Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, and yes, Lightfoot–is on its way to becoming legendary.
Torontonians can celebrate at the official book launch event, info here: http://www.facebook.com/event
In other book-related news, Justin Rutledge heads to Banff this weekend for Wordfest. On Saturday @ 7 pm at the Banff Centre, Justin will appear on a panel with two-time Governal General’s Literary Award winner Guy Vandergaeghe, who will present his latest novel about the end of the Wild West. Stony Plain wonder Holger Peterson is the host.