“Voyageur In Song” is a concept record, each song inspired by unique pieces from the Six String Nation Guitar. Nick-named Voyageur, the guitar is made from 64 pieces of Canadian culture and history. The project came about after hearing Jowi Taylor’s inspiring multimedia presentation and being given the opportunity to spend time writing songs on Voyageur. The guitar pulled me to write in a way which was both very stirring and very quick. I sat down, put my arms around Voyageur and I asked her to tell me the stories in musical language. I kept listening and tried to translate the emotion I felt from the stories inside, trying to crack the code. Of everything I heard in the writing sessions, nothing was denied, it seemed to flow through me at en-lightening speed! I wrote from different points of views describing these historical objects and the stories that went with them. But at the same time, it was important for me to write in a metaphorical way and keep the songs as universal as possible. Ultimately, it was a journey that brought me a deeper connection to the places & people in different provinces across Canada and closer to my adopted home.
Of course, as an artist, I heard exactly where these songs could go and continued to take them down that road with the invaluable guidance of producer Justin Abedin and talented musicians Gary Craig, Drew Birston, Drew Jurecka, Jaron Freeman-Fox, Scott Galloway, Davide DiRenzo & Kevin Turcotte. I commissioned Paul W Thompson to do a painting portraying this journey that is wrapped around the music in the CD packaging. This record is a collection of songs and stories as varied as the country itself - songs written from the point of view of a piece of Labradorite and it’s billion year journey; the historic & mysterious Massey Hall; the amazing and tragic story of the Golden Spruce in Haida Gwaii; Canada’s champion Oyster Shucker Joe Labobe, from PEI; the Doukhobors brave passage from persecution in Russia to Saskatchewan; and finally, a song about my writing experience with Voyageur, all the diversity and contradictions of Canada that are found in this extraordinary instrument – the pain and the beauty.
Meet you in the music,