Bob Chelmick— Fred Astaire, “Cheek to Cheek”
Since the early 1930’s (!), this Irving Berlin love song has been one of the highest forms of romantic expression. A smooth dance number that has Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers floating effortlessly above their intricate footwork, hardly touching down. The music can do the same for the listener. Listen and let go. ‘Heaven. I’m in heaven.’
Cam Hayden— Williams, Wayne & Isaak, “Messed Up Daddy”
Nominated for a Juno this week, a great blues disc featuring 3 of Western Canada’s best — Tim Williams (lead vocal on this track), with Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne and Brandon Isaak.
*This song is not available on Spotify. Listen to it here:
Meg Wilcox— The LYNNeS, “Cold Front”
Lynn Miles and Lynne Hanson are wonderful singer-songwriters on their own, and get even better when their lovelorn harmonies come together! This song off their latest release, Heartbreak Song for the Radio, is equally perfect for late-night highway drives as it to enjoy with a glass of wine at the end of the day.
Mark Antonelli— Michael Slattery (tenor) / La Nef, “An Evening Hymn by Henry Purcell”
One top-notch tenor + one of Canada’s most far-ranging Early Music groups + a done-producing instrument from the world of Indian classical music + a song by Henry Purcell = an amazing and rewarding listening experience not to be missed!
*This song is not available on Spotify.
Baba— Bahamas, “No Wrong”
Bahamas’ new album ‘Earthtones’ has a fully devolved theme and sound – great sound too. In ‘No Wrong’ there are glimpses of Zen like brilliance, still in his person, and break through to a bit of beyond. I sense that there’s more to come….Good on him!
Amy van Keeken— Louis Cole, “Below the Valleys”
Based in Los Angeles, Louis Cole released Album 2 (yes, that’s the title) in 2011 and Below the Valleys is the second track. The blasted out / distorted drums are incredible especially juxtaposed with the angelic harmonies floating in the back of the mix. Oh, and the melody is as catchy as anything. Pure gold.
Tony King— Ezra Furman , “Love You So Bad”
“Transangelic Exodus” is the name of Ezra Furman’s latest recording and it is arguably the most cinematic and provocative of a career that has already been defined by a restless spirit. He describes the album as “a combination of fiction and half-true memoir…a paranoid road trip…a queer outlaw saga.”
In what is part Priscilla Queen of the Desert and meets David Lynch, Furman’s protagonist is in love with an angel and the government is in hot pursuit. Furman eludes to “Transangelic” referring to the notion that humans can sprout wings and become angels after a surgical procedure. Some believe this is contagious, while others are offended and want it outlawed. Love You So Bad is the sweetest homage to a dark age you’ll ever hear.
Grant Stovel— Boots & the Hoots, “Turnpike”
Red Deer’s Boots Graham & his marvellous Hoots are very quietly carving out a very special space for themselves in Alberta’s roots music world.
Between their effortless charm & wit, vintage country vibes, and the monthly guest-laden hootenanny known as the Pine Cone Opry — they’re just an irresistible bunch, whether or not you’re a fan of old Johnny Cash & Roger Miller records.
Watch for the new album sometime in mid-2018. Meantime, the first advance single “Turnpike” is some classic hurtin’-but-super-fun Boots & the Hoots.
*This song is not available on Spotify. Hear it here:
David Ward— Laila Biali, “We Go”
Laila’s new music exudes confidence and daring as it demonstrates an artist fully in control of her vision of how jazz and popular music can combine. We Go jumps from the opening downbeat with a crisp rhythm section in a latin groove, sharp keyboard punctuations, a swaggering trumpet and the self-assured message “I’m feelin’ like we could go anywhere … so let’s go!”