Blundstone Playlist Volume III: A Cross-Country Musical Journey
Three years ago, Pat LePoidevin was working at the Australian Boot Company on Toronto’s Queen Street West when he had an idea. As a musician working in Canada’s independent scene, he knew what every musician wanted most – to be heard by as many people as possible. And the move from vinyl and CDs to streaming digital had opened up new ways for music fans to discover new artists – no matter where they were.
“Walking around Toronto, I would pick up playlists in the form of digital download cards at cafes and bars across the city,” he says. “Knowing the folks at Blundstone Canada are interested in creative community initiatives, I figured they would respond well to the idea of creating a Blundstone Playlist. This type of cross promotion allows Blundstone Canada to demonstrate their support for various hard-working artists and bands across the country.”
He got to work, and before long when people bought a pair of Blundstone boots at the Australian Boot Company in Toronto and Vancouver, they left with a card to download some great Canadian music. “The reaction was very positive from the public,” says Pat. “It came by surprise when folks would pick up a new pair of boots. And the artists were thrilled to be showcased by a national brand as it allowed them to share their music with a vast audience. This type of initiative only creates a positive effect on all sides.”
So when we decided to launch the Blundstone Playlist with a fresh selection of young artists, we knew who to turn to.
Pat has searched far and wide and created a cross-Canada musical odyssey, with an artist from every Canadian province and territory. And this week, the Blundstone Playlist kicks off as an annual event.
“We looked for hardworking musicians across Canada who are playing lots of shows and festivals – artists and bands who have a unique sound and haven’t yet been heard by most of the general public,” says Pat.
Blundstone Playlist Volume III offers music as diverse, exciting and inspiring as our country from emerging musicians, singers and bands. Explore Canada from one end to the other, or shuffle from place to place and sound to sound.
Here are your companions on your cross-country musical journey.
In 2018, Calla Kinglit released her debut album comprised of songs written while living in various places across the world. As a researcher in the Congo Basin in the Central African country of Cameroon, exploring the vast and redemptive beauty of her home base in Canada’s Yukon wilderness, manoeuvring through landslides in the Himalayas, and contemplating the spiritual journey of one small being.
Quantum Tangle – “Freeze, Melt, Boil”
Fusing old world sounds and new world flair, Quantum Tangle are a Juno Award-winning Canadian musical group who combine traditional Inuit throat singing and spoken word storytelling with blues-influenced folk rock.
Aasiva – “Qalunaat Nunanganit”
Aasiva’s sound—airy and lively—is shaped by her melodious voice set against playful ukulele. With Inuktitut lyrics and delicate throat singing elements interwoven throughout her songs, her music offers a fresh, buoyant, and distinctive twist on Indie folk.
Adrian Teacher and the Subs – “Hello Everyone”
After self-releasing music for over a decade, it is no surprise that Adrian Teacher and the Subs recently supported Japandroids and Wolf Parade on a tour through the United States. His album Mount Benson was nominated for the 2010 Polaris Music Prize.
A journey that started with an accidental meeting at a show in Toronto 13 years ago has led Peter Stone and Denise MacKay to share their unique brand of transatlantic folk at shows and festivals across Canada. With past works receiving critical acclaim and multiple award nominations, there is plenty of reasons why 100 Mile House is one of Western Canada’s top emerging bands of 2018.
Ava Wild – “White Toothed Bastard”
From the skies of Saskatchewan, Ava Wild began to collect inspiration and translate her world through music. With a honey sweet voice laced in a red shoe attitude, Ava Wild dances with crowds and grasps her audience’s attention with her authentic storytelling.
Micah Visser named his band after the Winnipeg neighbourhood where he grew up and spent his childhood learning violin, saxophone, guitar, piano, and computer programming. It was there too, where Visser forged a sound that would take an indie sensibility and make it glisten, finding its way to a new kind of 21st century pop.
Conor Gains – “Walking Alone”
With deep respect to jazz and blues, Gains’ tone is paired with the soulful, adventurous exploration of contemporary music and gives an air of familiarity while at the same time acting as something unique and transcendental.
Meryem Saci – “Good Life”
Meryem Saci is a soulful singer, songwriter and MC with a vibrant vocal range that reflects the diverse influences of her upbringing. She commands the stage with her powerful voice and eclectic fusion of sounds creating her own unique genre with primal, high energy Afro-Arabian rhythms and compelling melodies.
Bleum – “Visit”
Bleum is an electronic music project created by producer Daniel James and singer/songwriter Brittany McQuinn. Finding a match in a sensational electronic pop sound, they decided to join forces as Bleum.
Pat LePoidevin – “Broadcast”
A songwriter truly inspired by stories and community, his latest album has been nominated for two Music Nova Scotia awards and has received critical acclaim in Atlantic Canada. Engaging in the topics of futurism and outer space, Captain Myles & The SPR is a raw collection of songs based on a story involving two children flying in a rocket ship, while dealing with isolation and relationship struggles.
Prince Edward Island
Kinley– “Golden Days”
A vocalist and multi-instrumentalist from Charlottetown, Kinley Dowling is a well-known member of Newfoundland’s Indie ensemble Hey Rosetta! Her recent solo album release, Letters Never Sent, was produced by Colin Buchanan of Paper Lions. With each song representing a letter addressed to a different and specific person, the music is brought to life in a tropically tinged indie-pop style that is a treat to the senses.
Property – “Meditations”
With three nominations for Music Newfoundland awards, the trio has rightfully named their unique sound as “angular pop,” spreading their catchy guitar licks and beautiful melodies throughout the East Coast.
Volume III artwork by Jud Haynes