Russell deCarle – CD Release

Held together by equal measures of heartbreak and hope, and featuring performances from some of Canada’s most accomplished instrumentalists, Under the Big Big Sky plays like the soundtrack to a vintage film. A fluent mix of blues, jazz and R&B tinged western swing that pays homage to some of Russell deCarle’s all-time favourite artists while remaining simultaneously fresh and familiar.

As lead vocalist and bassist of iconic Canadian country roots band Prairie Oyster, deCarle is no stranger to awards and accolades. Over their career the 2008 CCMA Hall of Honour inductees have racked up an impressive list of JUNO and Canadian Country Music Awards, gold and platinum selling records and number one singles. As a songwriter deCarle has also been honoured with two SOCAN Song of the Year Awards. Once in 1994, for Prairie Oyster’s first number one single ‘Such A Lonely One’, and then again in 2008 for ‘One Way Track’, his co-write with Canadian folk legend, Willie P. Bennett.

For some artists the urge to make a solo record asserts itself almost as soon as they start to gain attention as part of a successful band – sometimes even before they, or their audience, truly know who they are. Not so for deCarle. “For decades people have been asking for a solo record,” he says, “but I never thought I was ready and the band always satisfied the musical part of my life.”

What finally got him fired up enough to strike out on his own in the studio was spending some quality time alone with his acoustic guitar. Although he’d initially intended to weight Under the Big Big Sky more heavily in favour of covers than original material, the more he played and wrote, the more he found himself falling naturally into a style that marked a definite, if unintentional, departure from his past work.

When it became clear that the balance of the record would feature his own material, deCarle approached longtime friend, pianist/arranger/producer John Sheard (The Guess Who, Dan Hill) and asked him to take a listen. “We’d wanted to do a project together for years. He’s absolutely one of my favourite musicians in the world and musically we share a lot of things.”

After Sheard signed on to produce the record, deCarle enlisted the talents of another old friend, engineer L. Stu Young (Prince, Ronnie Hawkins, Guns n’ Roses, David Wilcox), who assisted on Prairie Oyster’s 1991 breakthrough record Everybody Knows and mixed their most recent release, 2006’s One Kiss.

With Young manning the board and Sheard producing and playing piano and vibes, the next step, deCarle says, was putting together a wish list of players to join them in the studio. Among them, guitarist Steve Briggs, string bassist George Koller and drummers, Mark Kelso and Al Cross, as well as an all-star cast of guests including: bassist Russ Boswell, fiddler Drew Jurecka, percussionist John Adames and B3 virtuoso Denis Keldie; guitarists Kevin Breit, Amos Garrett, David Wilcox and Prairie Oyster bandmate, Keith Glass; vocalists Amoy and Ciceal Levy, Amanda Walther and Sheila Carabine of Dala and Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy; and a horn section featuring deCarle’s old friend and musical compadre Chris Whiteley on cornet, Gord Myers on trombone and Colleen Allen on tenor and baritone sax.
“I’m honoured that everybody I wanted on the record ended up on it. They really dug deep and did an incredible job.” But assembling this ‘fantasy camp’ of players wasn’t about cramming as many talents on each track as possible, deCarle stresses. It was about complimenting the songs with performances by people he believed would make a personal connection with his songs; the same kind of connection he hopes his audience will make. “For people to be emotionally invested in this, to be touched in some way, that would be the best thing that could happen. That’s why I made the record.”

As much as Under the Big Big Sky may represent a new beginning for deCarle, it’s not a conscious effort to shake off the label of ‘country singer’, but a natural extension of his talents as both a songwriter and interpreter. “I’ve always thought of myself as a singer, not just a country singer. I’m a music lover first and foremost – a product of all the stuff I’ve ever listened to – and my tastes are very broad. To me this is a torchy, bluesy record more than anything else. It’s certainly a product of where I came from musically.”

Just exactly where that is, however, isn’t easy to pin down, and nor should it be. The songs and the subjects deCarle writes about defy being crammed into some fabricated musical zip code for the sake of convenience. “Growing up when I did, radio wasn’t homogenized. I’m pretty sure that the Beatles ‘Ticket To Ride’ and ‘Tiger By the Tail’ by Buck Owens were on the pop charts at the same time, and I’m sure there was a Frank Sinatra song on that same chart.”

Like the soundtrack deCarle grew up with, Under the Big Big Sky covers a lot of ground stylistically. From the sweet soulful blues of ‘Can’t Find the Song in My Heart’, to melancholy ballads like opener, ‘East of the Sun, West of the Moon’ by Robert M. David, to unabashedly upbeat tunes like ‘Girl With the Golden Hair’ that are as reminiscent of old time rock and roll as they are of the music of classic crooners like Dean Martin. And although the record defies easy classification, it’s perfectly clear about the fact that deCarle can find inspiration for his songs just about anywhere; from the big, big Saskatchewan sky he references on the album’s title track, to the ‘Fingernail Moon’ hanging above his own backyard in rural Ontario, to the sad songs and ballads he’s loved since first hearing them on the airwaves as a teenager.

“I could sing sad songs and ballads all night. It’s true, man. I kind of live at 72 beats per minute. Emotionally I think I’ve always been affected by the bluesy side of life; that’s always been what stirs it up for me.” Still, even on heartbreakers like his cover of the Cindy Walker classic, ‘Goin’ Away Party’, or his own ‘Blues for Christmas’ and ‘Don’t Ask The Question’, deCarle possesses an uncanny ability to weave a little bit of hope into every line he sings.

The result is a remarkably eclectic, but entirely cohesive record. Recorded over the course of 2008-2009 and freshly released in October 2010, Under the Big Big Sky is more than just a confident, compelling exploration of deCarle’s singular voice as a songwriter. It’s an unflinching reflection of where he lives musically and literally, a celebration of the music and musicians who began to influence him long before he began his career forty years ago and a gathering of his closest and dearest musical friends.

Dar Williams

Friday, October 11, 2019

Dar Williams
Advance $35 / Door $40 *

Dar Williams has been called “one of America’s very best singer-songwriters” by The New
Yorker. She’s released ten studio albums and authored four books including her latest, “What I
Found In A Thousand Towns,” to be released in September.

Known as much for her staunch progressive ideals as her raw acoustic energy, Williams has
been captivating audiences with her sheer elegance and honesty in her folk-pop songwriting
since the ’90s. Williams’ growth as an individual over her two-decade-long career has gone
hand-in-hand with her evolution as an artist, touring along the way with such distinguished peers
as Joan Baez, Patty Griffin, Ani DiFranco, Loudon Wainwright III and Shawn Colvin among
others.

Dar’s most recent album, Emerald, “deals as bluntly as ever with the shadowy, subtle corners of
humanity” according to Rolling Stone, and was recorded with friends such as Richard
Thompson, Jill Sobule, Jim Lauderdale, the Milk Carton Kids, Lucy Wainwright Roche, Suzzy
Roche, the Hooters and others in various studios across the U.S. It is a sparkling collection of
new original material, inspired collaborations and some surprising covers such as B.A.D.’s
“Johnny Appleseed” making this album one of her best yet.

“Dar Williams, one of America’s very best singer-songwriters… Her songs are beautiful. Some
are like finely crafted short stories. They are, variously, devastatingly moving, tenderly funny,
subtle without being in any way inaccessible, and utterly fresh—not a cliché or a clunker in her
entire songbook.” – The New Yorker

* Advertised pricing excludes taxes and fees.

Melanie

Thursday, July 4, 2018
Melanie

$60 Advance / $65 Door

“It’s me — I’m back.”

Melanie, who became the voice of an era in one magical instant onstage at Woodstock, has been putting the pieces in order. Pieces of a career, scattered by the winds of experience and assembled again by the force of love into the most personal and brilliant moments of her musical journey. Melanie is poised to enlighten new generations about what it means to sing with both passion and eloquence, to write at once with intelligence and emotion, and to inspire through song… and nobody does this better than Melanie.

Others learned this that night at Woodstock, where as a New York kid barely known outside of the coffeehouse circuit in Greenwich Village, she sang her song “Beautiful People” and inspired the first panorama of candles and cigarette lighters ever raised at a concert event. That, in turn, moved the young singer to write Lay Down (Candles in the Rain), which sold more than one million copies in 1970 and prompted Billboard, Cashbox, Melody Maker, Record World, and Bravo to anoint her as female vocalist of the year. Her single “Brand New Key,” an infectious romp about freedom and roller skates, topped the charts in 1971.

And so her story began.

With guitar in hand and a talent that combined amazing vocal equipment, disarming humor, and a vibrant engagement with life, she was booked as the first solo pop/rock artist ever to appear from the Royal Albert Hall to Carnegie Hall, the Metropolitan Opera House, and later opened the New Metropolitan Opera House in New York, the Sydney Opera House, and in the General Assembly of the United Nations, where she was invited to perform on many occasions as delegates greeted her performances with standing ovations.

The top television hosts of all time — Ed Sullivan, Johnny Carson, and Dick Cavett — battled to book her. (After her stunning performance on his show, Sullivan goggled that he had not seen such a “dedicated and responsive audience since Elvis Presley.”)

Accolades rolled in, from critics (“Melanie’s cult has long been famous, but it’s a cult that’s responding to something genuine and powerful — which is maybe another way of saying that this writer counts himself as part of the cult too,” wrote John Rockwell in The New York Times) as well as peers (“Melanie,” insisted jazz piano virtuoso Roger Kellaway, “is extraordinary to the point that she could be sitting in front of us in this room and sing something like ‘Momma Momma’ right to us, and it would just go right through your entire being.”)

In the years that followed Melanie continued to record, continued to tour.

UNICEF made her its spokesperson; Jimi Hendrix’s father introduced her to the multitude assembled for the twentieth anniversary of Woodstock. Her records continued to sell — more than eighty million to date. She’s had her songs covered by singers as diverse as Cher, Dolly Parton, and Macy Gray. She’s raised a family, won an Emmy, opened a restaurant, written a musical about Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane…

She has, in short, lived a rare life. But all of it was just a prelude to what’s about to come.

“For the first time, I’m not afraid to voice exactly what I feel. I used to feel that I didn’t want to say too much, but now I can say anything. I feel like a person who’s never been heard. Maybe people think they’ve heard me, but they never really have. I’m a new artist who is having so much fun with my voice — a person shouldn’t be allowed to have so much fun. I’m the woman I wanted to be when I was sixteen and going for Edith Piaf. It’s me — I’m back.”

We are simply elated to announce this performance and invite everyone to Hugh’s Room Live on Thursday, July 4, 2019 for a rare, intimate performance by the folk icon who struck a generation, Melanie Safka.

 

Doors: 6:00 PM
Performance: 8:30 PM

*Advertised pricing excludes taxes and fees.

Chris Antonik

Chris Antonik
$20 Advance / $25 Door

Thursday, June 20, 2019 | 8:30PM

Toronto-based Chris Antonik was nominated for Best New Artist in 2011 at Canada’s Maple Blues Awards after the release of his debut album, and has since become one of Canada’s fastest-rising blues artists. Blending innovative, thoughtful songwriting with stunning blues guitar work, some music critics have drawn comparisons to Eric Clapton.

In its 2010 year-end review, Chris was named the “future of the blues” by Canada’s Blues Underground Network. In 2013, Chris’ sophomore album Better for You was hailed by critics as “a masterpiece” and “the best Canadian blues-rock album of 2013” and “the sound of someone taking the blues to a new place.

The album spent three weeks at #1 on DAWG FM (Canada’s only all blues FM station), attained significant airplay across Canada, the US and Europe, including on Sirius XM Bluesville, and was nominated for Best Blues Album by the German Record Critics’ Association. Oregon’s Cascade Blues Association called it “one of the finest releases from the Great White North in many a year.

Guests on Better For You included two-time Grammy award-winner Mike Mattison (The Derek Trucks Band, The Tedeschi-Trucks Band), Blues Music award-nominee Shakura S’Aida, and Steve Marriner (Monkey Junk).

Chris has performed at major blues festivals across Canada, and has toured the US extensively, including performances at Buddy Guy’s Legends in Chicago (for the 2015 Buddy Guy’s Legends Blues Festival), and Biscuits & Blues in San Francisco. In 2016, Chris returned to Buddy Guy’s Legends in Chicago, and also undertook his first UK tour. Chris released his third studio record “Monarch” in April 2017, which was nominated fro Recording of the Year (and Chris as producer) at the 2018 Maple Blues Awards. Chris was also nominated for Songwriter of the Year.

​In 2018, Chris undertook his second successful UK tour, which included a sold-out appearance at the O2 Academy in Sheffield. Chris also performed on stage with Buddy Guy at his club in Chicago. Coming up for 2019, Chris returns to his hometown with a special performance at Hugh’s Room Live for a night of blues that shouldn’t be missed. Tickets are on sale now.

* Please note that advertised pricing excludes taxes and ticketing fees.

Jane Siberry

Jane Siberry
$40 Advance / $45 Door

Friday, May 31, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Saturday, June 1, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Sunday, June 2, 2019 | 8:30pm
Jane opens the show, followed by a full performance of “Leonard Cohen Koans” and a post-show Q+A by Jane Siberry.

Iconic and enigmatic; Jane Siberry is one of the world’s most unique and gifted singer/songwriters. Blessed with a sincere integrity and emotional depth, her work has spanned 3 decades, with the release of 14 studio albums and performances on concert stages around the world.

Australian vocalist Ali Hughes plays Toronto’s beloved Hugh’s Room this June, celebrating Leonard Cohen with her critically acclaimed narrative concert, LEONARD COHEN KOANS!!

Buoyant and vigorous in its celebration of the music and spirit of the iconic legend, LEONARD COHEN KOANS is a must see for Cohen lovers and newcomers alike – the critically acclaimed show being hailed as

“Heart-stopping” (www.theatermania.com)

“Spine-tingling” (SX Magazine) 

“… Hands down the best I’ve ever heard!” (nytheater.com).

Best known in Canada for her work touring and recording as a backing vocalist for Jane Siberry, Ali is making a name for herself in music and cabaret circles with her dynamic performance, sensuous voice and captivating presence.

Supported by outstanding jazz musicians, LEONARD COHEN KOANS moves from ethereal to full throttle in a heartbeat through a thoughtfully curated collection of Cohen’s famous poetry, prose and song.  As well as lesser known gems such as ‘The Guests’ and ‘The Butcher’, you will hear Cohen favourites – ‘If It Be Your Will’, the magnificent ‘Chelsea Hotel #2’, and the undeniable masterpiece ‘Suzanne’ – in all new arrangements highlighting the dynamism and intimacy in his incredible musicality.

Inspiring, passionate, intimate and sincere, LEONARD COHEN KOANS gives you another chance to savour the creative spirit with which he so exquisitely courted the world.

 

“… Ali & the thieves majorly succeeds!!”  –Amber Gallery, nytheater.com NYC

 “…  Sensual, enigmatic… intense warmth, startling range.”  -Veronica Hanlon, SX Magazine

“… Exceptionally well-crafted…***1/2 out of ****” -Michael Giltz, Huffington Post NYC

Jane Siberry

Jane Siberry
$40 Advance / $45 Door

Friday, May 31, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Saturday, June 1, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Sunday, June 2, 2019 | 8:30pm
Jane opens the show, followed by a full performance of “Leonard Cohen Koans” and a post-show Q+A by Jane Siberry.

Iconic and enigmatic; Jane Siberry is one of the world’s most unique and gifted singer/songwriters. Blessed with a sincere integrity and emotional depth, her work has spanned 3 decades, with the release of 14 studio albums and performances on concert stages around the world.

Her 1985 album The Speckless Sky was a huge critical and commercial success and the follow up albums The Walking, Bound By Beauty, When I Was A Boy and her signature song Calling All Angels cemented her status as one of the world’s foremost performance artists. Jane’s recent album Angels Bend Closer has been released to rapturous acclaim and she will be performing tracks from this alongside her classics some new songs as yet unrecorded. A Canadian native, Jane’s songs have been covered by numerous artists, with particular success by k.d. lang on her stunning renditions of Love is Everything and the 23rd psalm-inspired The Valley.

She is recognized as a forward-thinking artist, using her creativity both in song and in how she operates in the music business. She was one of the first to setup ‘self-determined transactions’ (otherwise known as ‘pay what you wish’) on her website. Preferring to create without grants or fundraisers (though she had a very successful one for her last recording), she continues to explore coaching, webinars, online fashion stores and passive income streams in order to ‘keep the joy up’ and remain aware that ‘it is a privilege to be a musician’. This is guaranteed to be a very special evening with Jane performing some of her most beautiful music.

She is on tour for 7 months from November 2018 until June 2019 in Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the USA performing in formal concert halls and living rooms with her style and enthusiastic aplomb.

Jane Siberry

Jane Siberry
$40 Advance / $45 Door

Friday, May 31, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Saturday, June 1, 2019 | 8:30pm
Ali Hughes to do a sampler from her “Leonard Cohen Koans” show, followed by a performance by Jane Siberry.

Sunday, June 2, 2019 | 8:30pm
Jane opens the show, followed by a full performance of “Leonard Cohen Koans” and a post-show Q+A by Jane Siberry.

Iconic and enigmatic; Jane Siberry is one of the world’s most unique and gifted singer/songwriters. Blessed with a sincere integrity and emotional depth, her work has spanned 3 decades, with the release of 14 studio albums and performances on concert stages around the world.

Her 1985 album The Speckless Sky was a huge critical and commercial success and the follow up albums The Walking, Bound By Beauty, When I Was A Boy and her signature song Calling All Angels cemented her status as one of the world’s foremost performance artists. Jane’s recent album Angels Bend Closer has been released to rapturous acclaim and she will be performing tracks from this alongside her classics some new songs as yet unrecorded. A Canadian native, Jane’s songs have been covered by numerous artists, with particular success by k.d. lang on her stunning renditions of Love is Everything and the 23rd psalm-inspired The Valley.

She is recognized as a forward-thinking artist, using her creativity both in song and in how she operates in the music business. She was one of the first to setup ‘self-determined transactions’ (otherwise known as ‘pay what you wish’) on her website. Preferring to create without grants or fundraisers (though she had a very successful one for her last recording), she continues to explore coaching, webinars, online fashion stores and passive income streams in order to ‘keep the joy up’ and remain aware that ‘it is a privilege to be a musician’. This is guaranteed to be a very special evening with Jane performing some of her most beautiful music.

She is on tour for 7 months from November 2018 until June 2019 in Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the USA performing in formal concert halls and living rooms with her style and enthusiastic aplomb.

An Evening with Judy Collins

Judy Collins has inspired audiences with sublime vocals, boldly vulnerable songwriting, personal life triumphs, and a firm commitment to social activism. In the 1960s, she evoked both the idealism and steely determination of a generation united against social and environmental injustices. Five decades later, her luminescent presence shines brightly as new generations bask in the glow of her iconic 50-album body of work, and heed inspiration from her spiritual discipline to thrive in the music industry for half a century.

The award-winning singer-songwriter is esteemed for her imaginative interpretations of traditional and contemporary folk standards and her own poetically poignant original compositions. Her stunning rendition of Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now” from her landmark 1967 album, Wildflowers, has been entered into the Grammy Hall of Fame. Judy’s dreamy and sweetly intimate version of “Send in the Clowns,” a ballad written by Stephen Sondheim for the Broadway musical A Little Night Music,won “Song of the Year” at the 1975 Grammy Awards. She’s garnered several top-ten hits gold- and platinum-selling albums. Recently, contemporary and classic artists such as Rufus Wainwright, Shawn Colvin, Dolly Parton, Joan Baez, and Leonard Cohen honored her legacy with the album Born to the Breed: A Tribute to Judy Collins.

Judy began her impressive music career at 13 as a piano prodigy dazzling audiences performing Mozart’s “Concerto for Two Pianos,” but the hardluck tales and rugged sensitivity of folk revival music by artists such as Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger seduced her away from a life as a concert pianist. Her path pointed to a lifelong love affair with the guitar and pursuit of emotional truth in lyrics. The focus and regimented practice of classical music, however, would be a source of strength to her inner core as she navigated the highs and lows of the music business.

In 1961, she released her masterful debut, A Maid of Constant Sorrow, which featured interpretative works of social poets of the time such as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Tom Paxton. This began a wonderfully fertile thirty-five year creative relationship with Jac Holzman and Elektra Records. Around this time Judy became a tastemaker within the thriving Greenwich Village folk community, and brought other singer-songwriters to a wider audience, including poet/musician Leonard Cohen – and musicians Joni Mitchell and Randy Newman. Throughout the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and up to the present, she has remained a vital artist, enriching her catalog with critically acclaimed albums while balancing a robust touring schedule.

Prolific as ever, Judy recorded a DVD special Judy Collins: A Love Letter To Stephen Sondheim, in her hometown of Denver, CO.  Along with the Greely Philharmonic Orchestra, Judy dazzled the audience with Sondheim’s beautiful songs and her lovely, radiant voice.  DVD and CD companion will be released in early 2017.   Judy also released a collaborative album in June 2016, Silver Skies Blue, with writing partner, Ari Hest. Silver Skies Blue has been GRAMMY nominated for BEST FOLK ALBUM in 2017, this is the first GRAMMY nomination for Collins in over 40 years.

On September 18, 2015, Judy released Strangers Again.  She invited a cast of icons and young talents to sing with her on this fresh collection, from Willie Nelson, Jackson Browne and Jeff Bridges to Glen Hansard, Ari Hest and Bhi Bhiman. Judy delicately soars over a revitalized “Send In The Clowns” and breathes new life into “Hallelujah.”  She puts her indelible touch on songs by Leonard Bernstein, Randy Newman, James Taylor and more.

In 2012, she released the CD/DVD Judy Collins Live At The Metropolitan Museum Of Art which aired on PBS.  This special television program was nominated for a New York Emmy and won a Bronze Medal at the 2013 New York Festival International Television & Film Awards.  Based on it’s success, in 2014 she filmed another spectacular show in Ireland at Dromoland Castle.  Live In Ireland was released in 2014.  This program also won a Bronze Medal at the 2014 New York Festival International Television & Film Awards and the program will broadcast on PBS in 2014 and 2015.

Judy has also authored several books, including the powerful and inspiring, Sanity & Grace and her extraordinary memoir, Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music. For her most recent title to be released in 2017, Cravings, she provides a no-holds barred account of her harrowing struggle with compulsive overeating, and the journey that led her to a solution. Alternating between chapters on her life and those of the many diet gurus she has encountered along the way (Atkins, Jean Nidtech of Weight Watchers, Andrew Weil, to name a few), Cravings is the culmination of Judy’s genuine desire to share what she’s learned—so that no one has follow her heart-rending path to recovery.

In addition, she remains a social activist, representing UNICEF and numerous other causes. She is the director (along with Jill Godmillow) of an Academy Award-nominated film about Antonia Brico – PORTRAIT OF A WOMAN, the first woman to conduct major symphonies around the world–and Judy’s classical piano teacher when she was young.

Judy Collins, now 77, is as creatively vigorous as ever, writing, touring worldwide, and nurturing fresh talent. She is a modern day Renaissance woman who is also an accomplished painter, filmmaker, record label head, musical mentor, and an in-demand keynote speaker for mental health and suicide prevention. She continues to create music of hope and healing that lights up the world and speaks to the heart.

Martyn Joseph

Martyn Joseph
$25 Advance / $30 Door

Thursday, May 9, 2019 | 8:30PM

Martyn Joseph is a performer like no other. Shades of Springsteen, John Mayer, Bruce Cockburn and Dave Matthews there may be – but he stands in his own right, built on a reputation for giving what thousands have described as the best live music experience of their lives…” – Bob Harris, BBC Radio

Martyn Joseph is a completely unique and mind blowing artist. Take everything you think you know about singer songwriters….and rip it up. For one man and a guitar he creates a performance with a huge far-reaching sound that is energetic, compelling and passionate. Be it to two hundred people or twenty thousand, he blows the crowd away night after night.

He is gifted with the rare ability to speak to the soul with his expressive and poignant lyrics and has a career spanning 35 years, 32 albums, over a half a million record sales and thousands of live performances.

Often compared to Bruce Springsteen, John Mayer, Bruce Cockburn and Dave Matthews, he has created his own style and reputation as a mesmerising live performer and stands in his own right, built on a reputation for giving what thousands have described as the best live music experience of their lives. A unique talent driven by passion, social awareness and love for his trade, he’s a jaw dropping guitar player who has developed a unique percussive style, teamed up with a powerful show stopping voice, and has been called “The Welsh Springsteen”

In addition to his 5 top 50 UK hits, the importance of his work has been recognised by programmes such as BBC Radio 2’s primetime series on Singer-Songwriters. Social justice has an essential presence throughout his music, which has been recognised with various humanitarian awards and plaudits.

Concerned with making music that is relevant and vital to his audience, he engages with challenging narratives tackling the complexity of the human condition, underpinned with a promise of hope. In his own words “Really what I do is to try and write songs that might step up and make some sense of a moment in time. A good song makes you feel like you’re not alone in the world.

There is a versatility to Martyn’s music that is hard to categorise. Many have tried, resulting in labels such as Folk, Rock, Soul, Folk Funk and Americana; all of which somehow miss the mark. But sometimes music doesn’t need a defining genre and with the ability to articulate a sense of the bigger picture, Martyn’s music and social commentary manage to empower and speak for many. His songs are pictures, and stories, and feelings all put to music and delivered by a master craftsman.

Please note that advertised pricing excludes taxes and ticketing fees.

Cootes Paradise

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Coots Paradise
Advance $20 / Door $25 *

Cootes Paradise is a collective of six musicians who chose to play together based not only on their talents, but who they are as people. The business of music can be a cold and punishing enterprise, so forming a group comprising of kind, enthusiastic, collaborative individuals was the goal that founding member Lily Sazz had in mind when she began to recruit the musicians. The hope was that if these gifted individuals gelled personally, great music would follow. And she was right.

Cootes Paradise specializes in roots based music that is bluesy, funky, and filled with soul. Featuring lead vocals by the legendary Sue Leonard (k.d. lang, Bruce Willis, Bon Jovi), and Wayne Krawchuk (Sidestreet, Tight Little Island) supported by Mark Volkov (a triple threat, playing flute, sax, and violin), Lily Sazz (keyboards, vocals), Amy Di Nino (drums, vocals), and Ian Taylor (bass, vocals), the result is an infectious, groove-based sound with a mix of super cool covers and originals that easily stand up to the rest of the repertoire.

On April 28, catch their debut performance at Hugh’s Room Live. Tickets available right now.

* Advertised pricing excludes taxes and fees.

Còig

Saturday • April 27 • 2019 @ 8:30pm
$25 Advance / $30 Door

Còig, one of Atlantic Canada’s premiere traditional groups, is an ensemble of East Coast musicians. In one explosive coming together, what was once solo acts on stage has amalgamated into one electrifying super group, picked as Penguin Eggs magazine’s 2014 #1 New Discovery internationally. With driving tunes, haunting songs, and infectious energy, Còig is an unparalleled musical force.

“…Every number is convincing and compellingly delivered. This group’s ability to back songs on piano, fiddles, cello, guitars and more gives them enormous scope, and keeps the surprises coming throughout Rove. Slow reels and strathspeys, smooth fiddle and staccato banjo, plenty of their own material as well as the best of three centuries of tradition: there seems to be no end to Còig’s talents, and I’m sure their story will continue well beyond this outstanding recording.”
– Alex Monaghan, FolkWorld