August 2, 2015
Wander Songs from Halifax based musician Don Brownrigg was released in 2007. Finally 6 years later Don has returned to the East Coast music scene with a new album, It Takes All Kinds (to make this world, I find) and a new record deal from Tiny Records Canada.
With the help of well known East Coast Music Award producer Daniel Ledwell, the album took two years to record and not only did Don write all the songs but he sang, played guitar, keyboard and accordion on the record as well. The recently released album consists of songs that are vibrant and honest and it forces the listener to think about the good and the bad of our deepest feelings and emotions. I expect that Don Brownrigg must have experienced some of life’s greatest ups and downs during the 6 years in between albums as you cannot help but overhear the hurt and hope in It Takes All Kinds.
August 16, 2015
Norma MacDonald is a singer-songwriter born and raised in Cape Breton, now living in Halifax, NS. She likes Gram Parsons records, talking to strangers, potato chips, David Lynch movies and swimming in the ocean. Her fourth album, Burn the Tapes, is a sonic conglomeration of these affections. Recorded over 13 months in rural Upper Musquodoboit, NS, it marks MacDonald’s first time taking the reigns as sole producer. Burn the Tapes is at turns scrappy and slick, naive and confident, playful and heavy. Her second album The Forest for the Trees was nominated by the ECMA as Female Solo Recording of the Year in 2009 and was heralded by Exclaim! as “nothing short of delicious.”
August 23, 2015
Combining the fiery edge of the Scottish Border pipes with the rich sounds of the Cape Breton fiddle, Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald join together, merging traditional influences from Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island, as well as the Highlands and Islands of Scotland. This fresh and talented duo pairs driving dance-tunes with expressive Gaelic airs and songs, bringing their listeners a powerful combination of passion and grace.
Ben is an American-born player of Scottish bagpipes, currently living in Edinburgh, Scotland. His interest in traditional music stems from his exposure to the pipes at a young age in his home town of Queensbury, as well as his family’s strong connection to it’s Scottish and Irish roots through both his American mother and Canadian father. He began studying the Highland Bagpipes around age eight, but by twelve he began to shift his focus to the bellows-blown Scottish smallpipes and Border pipes. Ben is also an academic, holding an undergraduate degree in Music as well as a Master’s degree in Scottish Ethnology from the University of Edinburgh’s School of Scottish Studies. His repertoire and style draw mainly on the Gaelic traditions of Western Scotland and the Canadian Maritimes, blended with a healthy dash of Irish tunes for good measure.
Anita is an accomplished musician, dancer and Gaelic singer from Little Narrows, Cape Breton. She began stepdancing in the family kitchen at the tender age of four and picked up the fiddle a few short years later, at age eight. Anita has been wowing audiences with her impeccable timing and neatly choreographed steps ever since. Anita’s fiddle playing has a distinctive sound, influenced by the deep roots of her musical family and her teachers throughout the years. Her energetic style has put her in demand as a performer and teacher across Cape Breton and beyond. She has been a featured artist in the Celtic Colours International Festival and has toured throughout New England with Cape Breton folk trio The Goin’s On. Anita is also the recipient of the Frank “Big Sampie” Sampson Award, nominated by the Festival Volunteer Drive’ers Association and supported by Lakewind Sound Studios. Following this award, Anita released her debut album, Stepping Stone, during the 2011 Celtic Colours International Festival.
August 30, 2015
Micah (Toronto, ON) and Delia (Antigonish, NS) met in Halifax, NS where their friendship quickly blossomed over a love of music and performance.
They recently moved to West Coast of Canada from Nova Scotia to play original music. Starting in Calgary, AB they played over a hundred venues making their way to Vancouver, BC. From there, home base became Toronto, ON. After touring the country in their 2001 Acura TL with two dogs for almost two years, Micah and Delia are now back in Nova Scotia.
Their music is a fusion of modern blue grass, old rock n’ roll and 300 year old Scottish and Irish shanties that Canadians from across the country of every age can identify with.
Micah opened the Deep Roots Music Festival in Wolfville, NS. The duo also opened for the internationally renowned celtic/rock band Celtica at the Canmore Highland Games in Alberta.
September 6, 2015
Named after his grandfather MacFarlane, Mike Milne (lead vocals and guitar) along with Kory Bayer (bass and vocals) and Randy Feener (bodhran) make up this upbeat Celtic trio. MacFarlane’s Rant plays a mixture of traditional Irish, Scottish and Maritime folk music with musical influences such as Stan Rogers, the Dubliners, The Clancy Brothers and the godfather of folk himself, Tommy Makem. They have played some major festivals around the province this past year such as the Lunenburg Folk Harbour Festival, Kempt Shore Acoustic Maritime Music Festival and the Deep Roots Music Festival. Their music will have you singing along, tapping your toes and maybe even up dancing.