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On The Road Again

Posted by on Sep 16, 2013 in Blog | 271 comments

I’m so excited to be on the road again over the next couple of weeks. I love touring and playing shows for new people every night, especially in the prairies. I find that I have a real soft spot for the people and all of the open space. Living in downtown Toronto can make you appreciate open space in a whole new way.

I have some new things planned for this tour that I am really excited about. I’ve been writing a ton of new material and will be bringing a handful of new songs on the road with me to test them out on whoever is willing to listen…ok, I’ve tested them in Toronto a little bit, so don’t be too nervous.

Over the last year, I have been able to spend some time in Nashville and learn from some incredible writers. I have also spend a lot of my time during the last number of months writing with and for other Canadian artists. There is a beauty and creativity that comes from creating together that just doesn’t quite happen when you’re by yourself. I have also had a chance to play a number of songwriter circles with some incredible Canadian artists over the last six months. If you have never had a chance to attend a songwriter’s circle, make sure that you do. In fact, if you have never had a chance to go to Nashville, you definitely need to make that happen.

I hope to see you at one of the seven shows that I have over the next couple of weeks. If you need to check dates or times, just head to the upcoming section on the website.

Below I have left a track for you to check out!

Rachael Kennedy is an incredibly talented Toronto artist that I have gotten to know over the last six months. She just released her first single and I think it’s brilliant.

 

 

The Wonderful Prairies

Posted by on Jun 28, 2012 in Blog | 2,386 comments

We have safely arrived in Calgary, Alberta. Calgary has always been a bit of a second home for us. The city is filled with incredible friends and family that we don’t get to see nearly as often as we would like to. I love that when you are driving across from Ontario to BC, Calgary is the first city that you really get to see the mountains and of course, being from BC, the mountains always make me feel like I’m at home.

Last weekend, I had two shows in Saskatchewan. Honestly, they were both absolute highlights of my touring life. The people in the prairies are unbelievable. Their friendliness and hospitality are incredible. On Friday, I played at a new arts centre in Regina called, The Artful Dodger. The building itself was still under construction but the vibe is awesome and the sound was really great. It was a bit of a sparse crowd but they made me feel so loved and it was great to really get a chance to make some new friends. Carol, the owner is a passionate advocate for the arts in Regina and she is going to do so much to build the arts community in her city. Please check them out at www.crazygreatspace.com
In Lloydminster, we had an equally great time. The Root was our host for the evening and it was wonderful. Amanda (The Root owner) is an equally passionate arts advocate and she is bringing something fresh to the city of Lloydminster. She hosts a ton of live music as well as sells local art to customers. She brings all of her food in from local farmers/producers and you can tell in the flavour. The fish tacos that I had were out of this world. Please take a look at what she is doing at www.therootce.ca.
Tomorrow I am in Blackfalds, Alberta followed by Creston on Friday and Kelowna on Saturday. If you are in one of those cities, I would love to see you there!
Thank you again to everyone who is following along with this tour, it has been amazing and I can’t wait for it to continue throughout the summer.
TODAY’S SOUNDTRACK:
Whitewater by Zaac Pick
FEATURED TRACK:
Modern Times.
Zaac has always been the master of folk story telling. Modern Times is a beautiful look into the reality of our time and us living in it. His melodies are captivating and his voice captures the moment so well. Please do yourself a favour and pick up Whitewater as soon as you can.
Here is a little photo I took in beautiful Saskatchewan.

Cross Canada Tour Days 2&3 – Friendly Manitoba

Posted by on Jun 22, 2012 in Blog | 203 comments

Late yesterday afternoon, we pulled into Friendly Manitoba. I have only been to Manitoba once before and I didn’t really give the province a fair shake. I had been on the road for six or seven days already and I wasn’t feeling very well. In fact, I was feeling awful. All of this to say, my impressions of Manitoba were poor at best.

 

As I do, I tried to come into Manitoba this time with a fresh mindset and wanted to give it a chance to redeem itself (or more appropriately a chance to redeem myself). Let me tell you, Manitoba is beautiful. We have been fortunate enough to stay with friends of a friend and they are the most lovely people I have ever met. They could single handedly give Manitoba the moniker “Friendly Manitoba”. We have our own little camper to stay in and as I speak there are chocolate chip oatmeal cookies being baked…life is good.

 

Last night, I played at Sam’s Place in Winnipeg with a band that are becoming close friends, A Yellow Field. We originally met in Toronto and happened to be on tour at the same time and in the same place so we decided to do an event together. I can honestly say it was a magical night. A Yellow Field opened the night up with their own unique brand of  bluegrass and I followed it up with whatever it is that I do. The crowd was fantastic and so attentive. It really is a treat when I get to play to a crowd that is so appreciative of what I am doing.

 

So to all of you who showed up in Winnipeg last night, thank you. You truly make my job so enjoyable and so rewarding. I always count myself fortunate that I get to travel this country and meet new and old friends and entertain them.

 

Below I have left you a group photo of Trisha (my wife) and I with A Yellow Field after the show.

 

Until next time, thanks for reading!

 

Today’s Soundtrack:

Tallest Man on Earth

 

Featured Track:

Love is All

 

This is such a profoundly beautiful song. Up to this point I haven’t heard much Tallest Man on Earth (I know that I’m behind the times) but I am so in love with this track. I find myself getting swept up in the images and in the emotion with which he conveys his lyrics and images. It is most certainly worth the listen, especially if you are like me and are so far behind the times.

 

Cross Canada Tour Day 1 – Close Calls

Posted by on Jun 19, 2012 in Blog | 81 comments

Well, today was quite the way to start a trip across the country.
As per tradition, we (my wife and I) stopped for our usual Tim Hortons breakfast sandwich and coffee to mark the start of a trip -  it is a cross Canada tour, after all. Everything seemed to be as it always is. The drive was going well, the conversation was good, and the coffee was…the same as it always is from Tim Hortons.
As we drove up the 400 out of Toronto and through Muskoka, we were caught behind a landscaping truck. I had seen this truck on the side of the road earlier, fixing the load he had tied down on the back of his trailer. I should have taken this as a sign. All of a sudden, we saw a scoop for one of his Bobcats slide off the back of his trailer and into our lane. There was a brief moment of panic, but at the same time, it felt like we were in slow motion. The giant metal piece of equipment slid across my lane of traffic and into the ditch and I was able to swerve around it. Needless to say, our hearts were pounding.
Naturally, we thought that was our crazy moment of the day. That thought only lasted for a few minutes. Within kilometres of the first incident, on the same highway, we saw a baby black bear run out into the middle of traffic.
 BEWARE, THIS NEXT SECTION IS NOT FAMILY FRIENDLY.
The poor black bear ran into the side of a moving vehicle. Thankfully the driver was uninjured and was able to pull over to the side of the road but the bear wasn’t so lucky.
After all of our close calls, we made the rest of the drive relatively incident free (minus driving right through the eye of a storm with lightning flashing all around us – it felt minor at this point). We are now staying in a classy place in Sault Ste. Marie. I have left you a photo below.
The next show will be in Winnipeg at Sam’s Place Used Books with A Yellow Field on Wednesday June 20th. Come on out and say hello!
Today’s Soundtrack:
Drifter by JJ Shiplett
Featured Track:
Bluejay Highway
This is a beautiful song that showcases JJ’s songwriting ability as well as his unbelievable voice. The track makes me feel the same heartbreak that I imagine him feeling when he wrote the song. It is most certainly worth  a listen (and purchase)!

Here We Go Again!

Posted by on Mar 18, 2012 in Blog | 216 comments

Well, I’m back at it. This summer, I will be packing up the car like some kind of giant game of Tetris and heading back across the country on tour. Please make sure to check back because I will be announcing tour dates soon. Easier yet, add your email address to our mailing list and we will plop them right in your inbox.