Thanks for taking a moment to stop by the Kickstarter campaign for my new album "Midwestern". When I hit the road with my guitar and an armful of songs back in 2010, I don't think I had a clue how far that road would take me and that I'd still be pickin' and singin' these songs nine years later. This new album has been three years in the making and I'm excited to get it into your hands as soon as possible. I've got a bunch of great incentives for you to check out, and I know with your support, we're going to make this album a reality!
I feel as though this new album of mine, Midwestern, has been a long time coming. It all started with a trip I took from Saskatchewan to Ontario to perform at the Mariposa Folk Festival in 2014. Little did I know when I made that trip that I would meet my partner and that my life would change forever. The past few years have been a whirlwind to say the least. All of that motion and change sparked something in me and caused me to really examine myself and where I come from. It was in that period of change and motion that I found these new songs.
I had a moment a few months back where I realized just how uncanny life can be. We often find ourselves in these situations that we couldn’t even concoct if we wanted to and I quickly realized that the songs that I was looking for were right in front of me. Stories about the moments and situations that we find ourselves in and experience every day.
I wrote songs reflecting on the past and my childhood and what it felt like to leave my home for a new life halfway across the country. I wrote a song inspired by becoming a father, and my fear of becoming a mini-van-driving dad. I tried to write a funny song which ended up being about how it feels as though we’re living in the end times. I even got the chance to write a couple of songs with two of my good friends, Del Barber and Richard Inman, about love, being down on your luck, and wondering how we’ve all made it this far.
I like to think that the songs on Midwestern are montages and a glimpse into the moments that we’ve all lived and experienced at one point or another. These songs are our stories.
I knew going into the recording of Midwestern that I was going to be taking a huge risk making this record with no grant funding secured, but I also knew that I didn’t want to cut any corners. I wanted to make a recording that sounded real, as if the listener were sitting in the room with us while we were playing these songs. Last October I headed to Catherine North Studios in Hamilton Ontario. It was the perfect space for such a recording, with more than enough room for the full band to perform live off the floor and a 24-channel tape machine to capture it. I enlisted Dan Hosh as producer alongside audio engineers Will Crann and Scott Peacock.
A big part of my vision for this record was the people who would be performing on these songs. I acquired the talents of two amazing Canadian bluegrass and old time musicians that I had long admired, John Showman (fiddle) and Ivan Rosenberg (dobro). I was also fortunate enough to have my amazing band who have been playing with me for the past three years: Mitchell Thomson (upright bass), Will Fisher (drums) and Kevin Neal (pedal steel). After playing so many shows with these guys, it was awesome to finally have them perform on a recording of mine. I was also lucky enough to have the vocal stylings of Meg Contini (from “The O’Pears”) and additional vocals from both Ivan Rosenberg and his partner Kristin Cavoukian.
I honestly couldn’t have dreamed of a better and more talented group of people to help bring these songs to life and am so thankful to each of these folks for their contributions to "Midwestern".
As you'll discover, you'll not only be able to pre-order Midwestern album as a digital download, CD or Vinyl, you'll be able to bring home a special gift - a work of art or a limited edition Midwestern Merch item - for yourself or a loved one. You'll find details on the side and some photos to explore below:
Risks and challenges
It goes without saying that making records isn’t getting any more affordable these days, and without the financial backing of a label, putting out a record can be financially risky to say the least! The short-term challenge is raising enough funds to cover the hard costs of album; mastering, paying the musicians who shared their talents on these recordings, and pressing CDs and Vinyls.
Over the years, I have also been fortunate enough to learn the ins and outs of independently releasing albums. I am lucky to have a great team of folks who are working tirelessly on the songs, the artwork and the vision behind Midwestern to help bring this album to life. With all of us working together, and your support by preordering “Midwestern”, these songs and stories will soon see the light of day!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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