Posts Tagged ‘kith&kin’

kith&kin comes home

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

I'm excited to let you know about a show I'm doing with kith&kin (aka my family) in a couple of weeks. The show is happening at St. Andrew-by-the-Lake church on Toronto Island. This church is very spceial to us because it's where we started singing together as a trio in our community, and also because it's where we recorded our two albums. We'll be joined by our fantastic choir Isla Criag, Max Milton Kelly, Frank Griggs, Gabe Levine, and D. Alex Meeks. We'll perform songs as a trio, with the choir, and the choir members will lead some of their own songs as well. Oh and it's happening on MOTHER'S DAY! Music starts at 4pm, so come and ramble on the Island beforehand. All details are on facebook here. We'll be singing songs from our recently released album Cool of the Day, which you can listen to below… 

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Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

It's finally Spring in Toronto! I wanted to share a video with all of you. This is a trailer for a new web series called FLUSH, which is created by my friends Maisie Jacobson and Natasha Greenblatt. They have been working really hard on it and created the trailer as part of an application to get more funding to finish the series. Please take a second to watch the trailer if you can – the more views they get, the more likely they are to get funding! And they used parts of a new song that I recorded with my best bud Matthew Bailey as the background music! This is the first taste of a bunch of new music I've been working on over the past few months! 

I've also got a couple of fun shows coming up in the next few weeks. On Sunday April 13th I'll be singing with Isla Craig and Tamara Lindeman as a trio-version of our all-lady a capella group Soul Sisters Supreme Redux V 2.0. We'll be performing a breakfast show at the wonderful Kazoo! Fest in Guelph Ontario, at Innovation Guelph. More info on that show is here – admission includes coffee and pancake breakfast! 

And then on Saturday April 19th I'll be doing a short set with my family trio kith&kin at One Sweet Day, a great event put on by Sierra Club Canada in Toronto's Sorauren Park to celebrate honey bees and beekeepers! You can get more info on facebook here

Happy Spring! 

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A little update

Friday, June 28th, 2013

I've been busy working and singing and working and singing this past month and wanted to round it all up right here! 

First up my family vocal trio kith&kin have been asked to sing at Harbourfront Centre's annual Canada Day festivities! This is a real honour, and we've so excited! We'll be on the Redpath Stage on Monday July 1st at 1pm. 

Another piece of news – I've reached a new milestone – my first-ever youtube cover! You can watch it here

I've been doing lots of singing with my dear friend Matthew Bailey, and also with Isla Craig's lady a capella group, which features some of my favourite Toronto singers. I'll be singing with Matt at the Island Cafe on Wednesday July 17. 

That's it for now! Check out this beautiful video of Isla and the girls at the Music Gallery last month! 

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A Capella Weekend

Friday, May 10th, 2013

I'm performing in three a capella shows this weekend! 

On Saturday May 11th, kith&kin, the vocal trio I sing in with my mother Kathleen McDonnell and sister Martha Farquhar-McDonnell, will be performing an a capella set as part of Habourfront Centre's SING! Vocal Arts Festival . We'll be performing at 5pm sharp in the Lakeside Terrance and the show is FREE! We're excited to be premiering some new songs that we've recorded for our next album!

This Friday and Saturday (May 10 and 11) I'll be doing two shows with my dear friend Isla Craig and our recently-christened girl group Soul Sisters Supreme Redux 2.0 (for real!). This a an amazing group – Tamara Lindeman (the Weather Station), Daniela Gesundheit (Snowblink), and Felicity Williams (Bahamas and Hobson's Choice) round out the crew! We'll be singing music off Isla's recently-released Both the One and the Other tape, as well as putting our own spin on some traditional vocal music. We will be doing these two shows entirely a capella! These concerts are being presented by Weird Canada and the Suoni Per il Popolo festival, and are really not to be missed! More information about both shows is here.

Here is Isla and the Soul Sisters' new video for "Played in the Cards". Beautifully shot by Yuula Benivolski and danced by Mairi Greig.

Isla Craig - Played in the Cards from Yuula Benivolski on Vimeo.

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Happy (belated) New Year!

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

 I have no idea where December and January went! The holidays have always tended to be a pretty busy time for me, but this year was the craziest in memory and had me performing regularly throughout december and right into the early new year.

Now that I've had a chance to catch my breath, I want to share a few highlights here (and news of what's coming up next, which is also lots!). 

My good friend Jared Rosenbaum took some beautiful photos of me and the band at the El Mocambo on Dec 8th. You can see them here.  

The wonderful Joe Strutt, of Mechanical Forest Sound, made some great recordings at the kith&kin Holiday Wassail at the Music Gallery on Dec 16th. Listen to them here. Thanks Joe!

I don't have any link-able material from the kith&kin shows on Dec 21 and 22, or from the Bruce Peninsula show in Hamilton on Dec 29th – only good memories! On January 4th I performed at Hugh's Room in A Man Called Wrycraft's James Taylor tribute night, and Robert Saxe took this beautiful photo…

And now onto what's next! This Saturday Jan 19th I'll be playing a few songs at the Cameron House as part of the Elsethings Festival – a nation-wide celebration of local music that also marks the release of my good friend Nick Everett's new album, Elsethings. Read more about the festival here

Then, on January 30, my best friend and collaborator Matthew Bailey will be releasing his first solo album, Tendrils, at the Tranzac Club. My sister Martha and I sang lots on this album and I'm so excited for the big old world to hear it – we're so proud of Matt! You can get a sneak preview of the album here, and watch the new Southern Souls video we did below. 

In other other news, my family vocal trio kith&kin has begun recording our long-put-off second album! 

Ok lots going on – talk soon!

MATTHEW BAILEY - 'Swimming' / 'A Love So Plain' from Southern Souls on Vimeo.

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Holiday Shows Galore!

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

It's that time of year! After a break from playing live after my October tour, I'm now busy rehearsing for a few big December shows. 

The first is the Holiday Highnote on December 8th at the famous El Mocambo with some of my best musical friends KIRTY, Joshua Cockerill's Animal Parts, and Dear Sister. It's going to be an amazing night of young roots musicians. All details are at the facebook event here

The second show is the fifth annual edition of kith&kin's Holiday Wassail at the beautiful Music Gallery. kith&kin is the vocal trio I sing in with my sister Martha and our mother Kathleen McDonnell (you can hear our seasonal album Yet Will I be Merry on my music page, here). The show has become a wonderful holiday tradition for our friends, family, and musical community, and includes a 7-person choir, a contemporary Mummers Play by the Shadowland Youth Theatre Troupe, and opportunities to sing along with our collection of lesser-known carols from Appalachia, the British Isles, and Medieval Europe! All the details and facebook event are right here

kith&kin will also be playing a more informal concert at the Imperial Pub on December 21st which will feature yet more musical friends and a special puppet show by Max Kelly! More details on this show coming soon. And finally, we've been invited to perform as part of the Rivoli's annual Christmas Show, which raises money for Second Harvest. This show is always a great one! 

Another piece of news – I'm on a new release! This past Sunday a group of devoted fans and friends came together to celebrate the release of my good friend Isla Craig's new tape Both the One and the Other on the Totally Disconnected label. The album is now available on cassette tape (old school cool!) and for digital download at bandcamp here. Side A of the tape features arrangements of Isla's solo music for 5 singers: Isla, Daniela Gesundheit of Snowblink, Tamara Lindeman of the Weather Station, Felicity Williams, and myself. It is a heavy-hitting group that I'm honored to be a part of! Do yourself a favour and check out this amazing release! 

To prime you for my upcoming holiday shows, here's a video from last winter of kith&kin singing Jean Ritchie's The Cool of the Day. See you soon! 

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Two videos of my beautiful family singing!

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

On January 3rd (the only cold day we’ve had this winter so far!) the incomparable Mitch Fillion of came and filmed kith&kin singing two unrecorded songs: Cool of the Day, by the Appalachian folk singer Jean Ritchie, and Thousands or More, a folk song we learned from a version recorded by the Copper Family. Enjoy, and happy new year!

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Christmas Playlists for YOU

Sunday, December 25th, 2011

Happy Season everyone!

I’m out on Toronto Island with my family for the week. One of our family’s Christmas traditions is making hand-dipped beeswax candles that we give to our friends and neighbours as gifts. My mom has been organizing this for as long as I can remember. We cover the dining room table with newspaper and heat up 4 different colours of beeswax on the stove. We make long, tapered candles. They are dipped in pairs, and then hung to dry and harden underneath the stairs (see above!!). We listen to some of our favourite folk records like Nowell Sing We Clear by John Roberts and Tony Barrand, and Frost and Fire by the Watersons. There’s this really rich smell in the air – a mixture of beeswax, the Christmas tree, and the curry and mole sauces my dad makes. It’s the best place to be this time of year!

This year both myself and kith&kin, the vocal group I have with my mom and sister, were included on holiday compilations put together by some great blogs. You can listen to Sound Vat’s playlist “If Jesus had been born in Canada, he would have needed more than swaddling clothes” here, and British blog The Line of Best Fit’s third annual Ho Ho Ho Canada comp here.

Some beautiful music to propel you into 2012!

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Monday, November 28th, 2011

Last night I stayed up stuffing CDs. It’s an activity many independent musicians know all about – assembling your own packaging saves dollars, and, if you’re in good company, can actually be pretty fun. Last night we were stuffing the remaining copies of Yet Will I be Merry: Carols and Songs of the Season, the holiday album of lesser-known carols I made with kith&kin back in 2008. kith&kin is myself, my sister Martha, and our mother Kathleen. We sing traditional music, often a cappella. You can hear our songs on the ‘music’ section of this website!

All that CD stuffing is in anticipation of kith&kin’s fourth annual Holiday Wassail on December 15th at the Music Gallery in Toronto. Our Wassail is a HUGE affair, complete with an 8-singer choir, a kids’ Mummers Play, and of course kith&kin’s beautiful 3-part harmonies. It all happens at the beautiful Music Gallery, which is housed inside St. George-the-Martyr Church. The Wassail is a wonderful musical and community event that has come to be one of my favourite days of the year! You can find all the details you need about the event here.

I’m also pleased to announce a special house concert next Sunday Dec 4th in Ottawa, which will be a split Ivy Mairi / kith&kin bill! My great friend Phil Nicolson is helping us put it on. Phil is the host of all hosts, so it should be a spectacular evening. It will be the first time Matt, Lucas, and I have all played together since I’ve been on tour with Bruce Peninsula, so I’m very excited. Space at this concert is very limited, so please email for more info.

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