'Musicians are a strange breed': Windsor folk artist home from tour

After ten weeks on the road, local folk musician Max Marshall has come home.

The 50 stop and 13,000 kilometre road trip is what Marshall calls normal

(Travis Latam)

After ten weeks on the road, local folk musician Max Marshall has come home.

The 50 stop and 13,000 kilometre road trip is what Marshall calls normal.

"Musicians are a strange breed," said Marshall. "We just end up in strange situations such as this."

Max Marshall during a show on his recent tour through Quebec. (Raymond Maillette)

Windsor-born Marshall exploded into the folk music scene in 2017, performing more than 200 shows across Canada and the U.K. He has five songs celebrating Windsor-Essex, including 'Workin' in the Salt Mine' and 'The Windsor Hum.'

He's also a proud father of two young children who live in Harrow — but Marshall said he wasn't abandoning his family while on tour.

"I'm in a unique situation where I have a super-mom partner and we live really close to our in-laws," said Marshall. "I couldn't deny the opportunities I had to travel."

Listen to Fugue Generation Blues here:

Marshall said musicians are "forced" to live the life of road trips. 

"Musicians nowadays, we're in a situation where our main income is based off live performance," said Marshall, adding that the constant travel takes a toll on a musician's body and mind.

"You miss people. Your health is compromised."

Marshall's tours involve shows almost anywhere, from general stores to sold-out venues. 

He says his recent trip defined what folk music is for him. 

"It's the folk musician's job to take other people's stories and bring them to life," said Marshall. "I want to know people — their lives, their stories."

Max Marshall joined Afternoon Drive in 2016 to talk about playing for free:

Would you play for free just to get some exposure? A Windsor musician is upset that the town of Essex is asking musicians to play for free. We spoke to Max Marshall about the value of musicianship. 8:28

While Marshall might feel some guilt at leaving his family behind, he said touring alone is when you "face your demons."

"You really have to justify doing it," said Marshall. "I think we're all going to question what we do."

Marshall plays a number of shows in Windsor and Kingsville over the next few weeks.