Just a short Travelogue this month, coming to you again from the passenger seat, as Melissa steers us westward for our last string of BC dates, in Revelstoke, Golden, Kaslo, and Nelson. We're fresh off an amazing weekend at Calgary Folk Fest––a wonderful, adventurously-curated festival set among the trees on Prince's Island in downtown Calgary. I had my mind freshly blown by three incredibly powerful women in particular: Shakura S'Aida, Amy Helm, and Wallis Bird. And I had SO MUCH FUN dancing to the calypso rhythms of Kobo Town. We brought along our Kiwi friend Kerryn Fields, on her first visit overseas, and it was great to give her a first taste of Canadian festival hospitality. In addition to being a soulful singer, clever conversationalist, and all-around inspiring human, she also managed to best Alberta's own badass country chanteuse Mariel Buckley in a pint-skulling contest last night. Kerryn's coming with us for these next two shows, and then heading up to ArtsWells, so please give her a warm welcome if you're heading that way!
Next weekend we're back in Alberta for Canmore Folk Fest (where I'll have the honour of sharing a stage with Buffy Ste-Marie!), then up to Edmonton Folk Fest, and then I'm heading up to play Bear Creek Folk Fest in Grande Prairie before I hit the long trail. It's an unbelievable honour to play all four of Alberta's major folk festivals in the same summer, and to share stages with so many greats.
So yeah, here's how the road ahead looks:
Mon Jul 30 - Revelstoke, BC - Summer Street Fest with special guest Kerryn Fields
Wed Aug 1 - Golden, BC - Summer Kicks in Spirit Square with special guest Kerryn Fields
Thu Aug 2 - Kaslo, BC - Bluebelle Bistro
Fri Aug 3 - Nelson, BC - House concert
Sat-Mon Aug 4-6 - Canmore, AB - Canmore Folk Music Festival! Our main stage concert is Monday from 3:30-4:20pm, and I've also got some sessions: 11:45am-12:45pm Sunday with Steve Poltz, 3:30-4:30pm Sunday with Coco Love Alcorn and Nick Waterhouse, 10:30-11:30am Monday with Jon & Roy, and 1-2pm Monday with Buffy Sainte-Marie, Dave Gunning, and Jon Brooks.
Thurs-Sun Aug 9-12 - Edmonton, AB - Edmonton Folk Music Festival! On Friday, we're in a workshop called Talkin' About My Generation with The Bros. Landreth, Kaia Kater, and This is The Kit, 6-7:20pm on Stage 2. Our concert's on Saturday at noon on Stage 7, and on Sunday we're in a workshop called The Poet Game with Gunning & Cormier and Jon Brooks from 11-11:55am on Stage 7. I couldn't be more excited to play our hometown fest again.
Fri-Sun Aug 17-19 - Grande Prairie, AB - Bear Creek Folk Music Festival! My set's at 11am Saturday on Stage 2, then I'm in a workshop with Sam Baker, Gunning & Cormier, and Guy Davis at 3pm Saturday on Stage 3, and another workshop with Little Miss Higgins, Braden Gates, and Rob Ickes & Trey Hensley at 11am Sunday on Stage 3.
From there I'll be heading off alone, and won't be back until mid-December. There are still a lot of gaps in the next month's schedule, which I could really use some help with:
Thu Aug 23 - Vancouver, BC - house concert with Kerryn Fields and special guests
Fri Aug 24 - Bellingham, WA - with Robert Sarazin Blake, TBC
Sun Aug 26 - Mt. Vernon, WA - private event
Tue Aug 28 - Portland, OR - feature at Northwest Portland Hostel's open mic
Wed Aug 29 - Portland, OR - house concert with Mark Graham and Lauren Sheehan
Mon-Thu Sep - Sisters, OR - teaching songwriting at Sisters Song Camp
Fri-Sun Sep 7-9 - Sisters, OR - Sisters Folk Festival
Wed Sep 12 - Ashland, OR - house concert with Justin Farren
Thu Sep 13 - San Francisco, CA - The Lost Church with Justin Farren
Fri Sep 14 - Sacramento, CA - The Lounge with Justin Farren
Fri-Sun Sep 21-23 - Lake City, MI - Earthwork Harvest Gathering
If you can think of anywhere I should stop and play along that route (especially on the week between California and Michigan), even if it's somebody's living room, I'm all ears!
After that big run, I'll be living in Toronto for the month of October, and playing every Tuesday from 6-8pm at the Cameron House with new recruits Mike Kerr and Matt Coldwell, as well as gigging elsewhere around the province, and in November I'm back down to the States. All my confirmed dates, as always, are on my news page.
Since I wrote you last, we had a great little run around BC, singing mostly unamplified in some lovely rooms including Benvoulin Heritage Church in Kelowna, Cranberry Community Hall in Powell River, and the Heritage Playhouse Theatre in Gibsons. We even got a sweet taste of the best of East Van, dancing to Jack Garton and the Demon Squadron with the smiling freaks at the WISE Hall. It was great to smell the coastal air, reconnect with so many friends along the way, and share three more shows and lots more laughs with our favourite irreverent self-referential power duo, Kitty and the Rooster. We wrapped up the run among our nears and dears at Wild Mountain Music Festival in Hinton, and then played a sweet house concert at our friends Reuben and Angie's place in Edmonton, with a whole bunch of old Taiwan crew in attendance.
This life's pretty amazing, friends. At times there's so much love flowing that it fills up your cup and spills all over you. Other times it's lonely and you wish for nothing more than to be easily understood. It's then, when the world's gone chilly, the last leaves are falling, and home seems a million miles away, that I'll remember these beautiful, bountiful, blazing days. Thanks for sharing them with us, friends.
Happy trails and sunny days to you,