December 2010 Archives

On the program for Saturday January 1, 2011

Posted by Glenn Meisner

We'll ring in the new year with a concert from a man who had a fantastic year in 2010 - Maybe his best yet - Matt Andersen
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On the program for Saturday December 18, 2010

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Because we will be pre-empted for network programming on Christmas Day, we'll be going flat out this week with seasonal music from Atlantic Canadian Artists.

Stephen Fearing

Posted by Glenn Meisner

It has been 20 years since songsmith Stephen Fearing released his self-titled debut. Over the following two decades, he has built up a very loyal and committed international audience.

Born in 1963 in Vancouver, he spent most of his boyhood and teenage years in Dublin. There, he picked up the guitar and traces of the Irish and English musical traditions that have informed his music ever since. After a short stint in the U.S. Midwest, he returned to Canada, and is now long-established as a regular and popular fixture on the folk club and festival circuit in North America and the U.K. Successful appearances at the prestigious WOMAD and Reading Festivals in the U.K. confirmed Fearing's ability to engage large audiences with his onstage charm. He has received a West Coast Music Award and five Juno Award nominations as a solo artist.


Like most contemporary songwriter/performers, Stephen is not bound by any particular musical genre or category and the release of his latest recording,Yellowjacket, continues this exploration of various musical forms, as does his continued participation in the highly successful Canadian roots rock super trio, Blackie & The Rodeo Kings. Over the past decade, B&RK have released three highly praised and award-winning albums including a Juno Award for their most recent release "BARK". "It's wonderful to be able to work as a solo artist and to be active in such a powerful ensemble as The Rodeo Kings. These guys are my friends and there is no doubt in my mind that my continuing work with them influences my solo playing very deeply". With two more Blackie records on the near-horizon plus an ongoing collaboration with Irish singer/songwriter Andy White, Stephen has never been more prolific. In his own words, "Yellowjacket feels like a new beginning."

Your all time favourite record

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The most memorable concert you've seen

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Your own most memorable musical experience

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The musician you most admire

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The turning point when you chose to be a musician

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NEW TAKE 5 VIDEOS - ( 5 questions - 5 answers)

Posted by Glenn Meisner

A video feature where we ask musicians the following 5 questions:
new this week - Meaghan Smith and Stephen Fearing

What's your favourite album?
Who is the musician you most admire?
What was the turning point when you decided to become a musician?
What was your most memorable musical experience?
What was your favourite concert?

Meaghan Smith

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Singer-songwriter Meaghan Smith was born and raised in London, Ontario, to musician parents, who would introduce her to with a wide array of new and old musical styles. Self-taught on the piano by age 9, despite having a piano-teaching mother, at 19 she picked up her first guitar while pursuing a career in animation in Halifax. Caught by stage fright, the young songstress finally decided to tackle her fears and began performing, catching the ear of a studio engineer who encouraged her to record her material. In 2008, she released a first 4-track EP, The Cricket's Quartet, which she promoted by touring as opening act for k.d. lang. In 2009, her debut album The Cricket's Orchestra, featuring Montréal-based turntablist Kid Koala, was released on Sire Records.

Your all time favourite record

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The most memorable concert you've seen

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Your own most memorable musical experience

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The musician you most admire

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The turning point when you chose to be a musician

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On the program for Saturday December 11, 2010

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Part two of 'Songs and Stories' - A songwriter's circle recorded at the 2010 Nova Scotia Music Week in Yarmouth, NS featuring Charlie A'Court, Christina Martin, Stephen Fearing, and hosted by Old Man Luedecke
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Charlie A'Court combines a rich, rhythm & blues upbringing with soulful, adult-contemporary songwriting, making him for one of Canada's brightest new stars. Music Nova Scotia's Entertainer of the Year in 2009, A'Court has toured extensively throughout Canada and abroad with headlining performances at the Stan Rogers' Folk Fest, Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival, Kerrville Folk Fest, and Ottawa Blues Fest. A'Court has shared the stage with high profile artists including John Reischman & the Jaybirds, Martin Sexton, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, George Thorogood, Harry Manx, Procol Harum, Colin James, and Blues Brother Dan Aykroyd.

Christina Martin can hold her own on stage, whether it's in a living room, a train car or in a stadium, she connects deeply with her audience. With a voice that elicits Sheryl Crow and Lucinda Williams comparisons, Martin is an acclaimed singer/songwriter who takes listeners into the caverns of their hearts, examining both the light and darkness. Whether she's softly serenading with an acoustic number; or perfecting her rock n' roll swagger with a band, Martin is at home in the spotlight.

Stephen Fearing brings a powerful mix of experience, skill, and creativity that comes from years of success working with musical greats such as Garth Hudson (the Band), Daniel Lanois, Pam Tillis, Malcolm Burn, Wayne Jackson and John Wynot. The consistent quality of work produced over Stephen Fearing's two decades plus career has earned him a JUNO Award for his work with Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, and a West Coast Music Award and five Juno Award nominations as a solo artist.

Old Man Luedecke is one of Canada's best loved and most intriguing roots singer-songwriters. His memorable melodies, poetic sense and easy charisma appeal to anyone searching for new growth from old roots, but it's Luedecke's contemporary lyrics coupled with the irresistible rhythm of the old time banjo that connect and make him so loved with his audiences. His latest album, Proof of Love, won the prestigious 2009 JUNO Award for Roots Solo album and won legions of new fans at home and abroad.

NOTE: Since this concert is too long for the radio program, here is the third round of performances beginning with Charlie A'Court

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Laura Merrimen

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Laura Merrimen is a young woman with an old soul who wears her Americana drenched heart on her sleeve. Keeping true to her roots she infuses a blend of rock and roll know how with an old-timey country and pairs it with catchy melodies and smoky sometimes haunting bluesy vocals. Some have compared Merrimen to a female Bob Dylan or Neil Young, others to Lucinda Williams and Neko Case, but you can't put your finger on it, the sound is uniquely her own. She is a prolific writer who delivers soulful thought provoking lyrics that are steeped in honesty and raw emotion.

Laura's debut album 'Love Letters For Lonely Hunters', engineered and produced by Brad Conrad, was nominated for two 2010 Nova Scotia Music Awards and won country recording of the year .

Currently she is preparing to head into the studio to record her sophomore album for the second time in Dartmouth N.S., this time around with Brian Murray. "Must be something in the water over there...Dartmouth just makes good records" says Merrimen with a wry smile. In the mean time, she has just released an independent music video online shot by Ronok Sarkar of her song 'Another Line' in support of the debut album.

Live performance highlights include opening for Elliot Brood, Deep Dark Woods, Cuff the Duke, Matthew Barber, and Michael Bolton at the Metro Center.

Your all time favourite record

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The most memorable concert you've seen

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Your most memorable musical experience

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The musician you most admire

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The turning point when you chose to be a musician

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Harvey Millar

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Halifax-based St. Lucian-born Harvey Millar plays a hip bopping, funky, jazzy guitar. He punctuates his urban/smooth jazz sound with scats and rhythmic licks guaranteed to take you on an electrifying tour of his unique style of musical expression.

Influenced by musicians from a wide spectrum of genres such as jazz/blues guitarist Eric Gale, Jazz guitarist George Benson, the genius Wes Montgomery, jazz vocalists Betty Carter and Al Jarreau, reggae legend Bob Marley, and various 1970's and 80's funk artists - Millar's musical style is highly percussive and rhythmic reflecting the combined influences of Bebop, Caribbean idioms and modern day hip hop......Millar calls his unique brand of urban/smooth jazz grooves..... hip bop.

Since moving to Canada, Millar has led his own groups, namely, Friends and Music - a popular reggae and R&B group; Umoja - a reggae and funk fusion band; and now the Freedom Jazz Band which focuses on his true love, Jazz, Funk, and Hip Hop.

Harvey Millar is also a brilliant composer. His recent collaboration with Halifax's Rap Diva Shy Luv on the urban tune Hip Bopping demonstrates his compositional versatility and his mastery of the jazz guitar. The song won the East Coast Music Award in 2002 for best Urban Recording. In November of 2002, Millar lead other performers by winning three African Nova Scotian Music Association (ANSMA) Awards for Best Jazz Artist, Best New Artist, and Artist of the Year. His solo debut, Milestones, a recording of largely original material has been well received in the jazz and smooth jazz community.

All time favourite record

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Most memorable concert you ever saw

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Your own most memorable music experience

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Musician you most admire

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Jerry Granelli

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Jazz Times magazine calls Jerry Granelli "one of those uncategorizable veteran percussionists who's done it all." A Canadian citizen since 1999, Granelli burns with an intensity fuelled by a passion for "the pursuit of the spirit of spontaneity which drives the player." A veteran of the San Francisco jazz scene, Granelli's recent flourish of recordings has documented remarkable collaborations between the generations.

Jerry Granelli's story is one that follows the evolution of the San Francisco Hard Bop jazz scene. Born in 1940 in San Francisco, the boy recognized his passion in 1948 when he spent a day with Gene Krupa. Hanging out during the 50s in San Francisco nightclubs like the Blackhawk, The Jazz Workshop and Jimbo's Bop City, gave him a direct connection to what was happening in New York City. Soaking in the sounds of Miles, Max Roach, Philly Joe Jones, Elvin Jones and Monk, his passion grew, eventually leading him to Dave Brubeck drummer Joe Morello. After two years as Morello's star pupil, Granelli became a highly sought-after session player, eventually playing, recording and touring with the Vince Guaraldi Band. He provides the unmistakable steady swing beats for the classic Charlie Brown "Peanuts" theme song.

In the volatile West Coast scene of the 60s, Granelli moved on to the Denny Zeitlin Trio, a group that included bassist Charlie Haden. A hugely successful recording and touring band, they tied with Miles Davis for Group of the Year in Downbeat magazine's Critics and Readers Poll in 1965. Throughout the 60s he performed with many major players on the scene, including Jimmy Witherspoon, Mose Allison, Lou Rawls, John Handy, Sonny Stitt, Sly Stone, Ornette Coleman and Dewey Redman. He was right there too as jazz
styles began to swing towards the beginnings of psychedelia. His free-form improvisational trio held down the opening slot for comedian Lenny Bruce for three months in 1963, and shared bills at The Matrix and The Fillmore with Jefferson Airplane, Big Brother and the Holding Company and the Grateful Dead. They also accompanied the Dead on their first European tour in 1971.

Granelli became a Buddhist in 1970, and from the mid-70s through the 90s he focused on teaching, bringing his insider knowledge to hundreds of students at the Naropa Institute in Boulder, then Seattle's Cornish Institute, the Conservatory in Halifax, and the Hochschule der Kunst in Berlin. In the early 90s Jerry moved to Halifax and immediately became a keystone in the jazz community. Along with Halifax's Jazz East organization he founded the Creative Music Workshop a two-week intensive music program that takes place every summer in conjunction with the Atlantic Jazz Festival.

Favourite record of all time

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Most memorable concert you've seen

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Your own most memorable musical experience

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Musician you most admire

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The turning point when you chose to be a musician

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Bill Stevenson

Posted by Glenn Meisner

In over forty years as a musician Bill has recorded for Elektra records while still in his teens, opened for the Doors, backed up John Lee Hooker, put performing and recording bands behind some of Canada's best loved musicians including Amos Garrett, Colleen Peterson and Linda Carvery. He has hosted his own National radio series for CBC. He has been a contributing side man to multi award winning albums by Garrett Mason, Thom Swift ,Hot Toddy ,and now includes his own win with a 2008 ECMA for best Jazz Album. His participation in the Jazz/Blues idiom has earned him a respected place in the national music spectrum.

All time favourite record

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Most memorable concert you ever saw

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Your own most memorable music experience

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Musician you most admire

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Moment when you knew you would be a musician

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On the program for Saturday December 4, 2010

Posted by Glenn Meisner

Part one of 'Songs and Stories' - A songwriter's circle recorded at the 2010 Nova Scotia Music Week in Yarmouth, NS featuring Kim Wempe, Thom Swift, Carmen Townsend and hosted by Old Man Luedecke.
songs and stories pt1.jpg
Old Man Luedecke is one of Canada's best loved and most intriguing roots singer-songwriters. His memorable melodies, poetic sense and easy charisma appeal to anyone searching for new growth from old roots, but it's Luedecke's contemporary lyrics coupled with the irresistible rhythm of the old time banjo that connect and make him so loved with his audiences. His latest album, Proof of Love, won the prestigious 2009 JUNO Award for Roots Solo album and won legions of new fans at home and abroad.

Kim Wempe, Atlantic Canada's ECMA winning Galaxie Rising Star, is a vocal powerhouse. A 2009 International Songwriting Contest semi-finalist and Music Nova Scotia Award winner, Wempe is set to make waves from the Atlantic coast clear across the country with the release of her third record titled Painting with Tides this fall on GroundSwell/Warner.

Known for his down-to-earth charm, soulful baritone voice and skillful musicianship, multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Thom Swift performs a distinctive blend of roots-blues. Chosen by CBC as one of Canada's top songwriters in 2010 and recent winner of Music Nova Scotia's Blues Artist of the Year, he released his latest album blue sky day (GroundSwell/Warner) in February. Thom's debut solo recording Into the Dirt (2007) won an ECMA, a Maple Blues Award, a Galaxie Rising Star prize and two Music Nova Scotia Awards, including Musician of the Year in 2008.

Carmen Townsend, known for her raw and primal sound, has spent the last fifteen years of her life delivering powerful, energetic, authentic rock and roll performances on stages across the globe. Working tirelessly on her anticipated debut record with no signs of slowing down, Townsend recently caught the eye of Grammy winning songwriter Jesse Harris (Norah Jones, Bright Eyes) and has put her own rock and roll spin on two of his songs. One of the East Coast's brightest gems, Carmen Townsend is one to watch for.

NOTE: Since this concert is too long for the radio program, here is the third round of performances beginning with Old Man Luedecke

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