Gordon Lightfoot Book, Music and More!

The home of music journalist Nicholas Jennings, author of Lightfoot, the definitive new Gordon Lightfoot biography from Penguin Random House.

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Obituaries, Books

Sheila Chandra - Drone Sweet Drone

One of the most beguiling albums of the summer of 1994 is Sheila Chandra's The Zen Kiss (Real World/Virgin). Like Chandra’s previous Weaving My Ancestors' Voices, it's a recording of solo voice with simple drone-note accompaniment. But the songs are so rich and the vocal techniques so entrancing that the album comes across as a deep, full-bodied work. The Zen Kiss draws on influences as diverse as Islamic, Andalusian, Bulgarian and Celtic musics. And, of course, being of East Indian heritage, Chandra also employs ragas and classical Indian musical ornamentations—always anchored by the incessant drone. As she writes in the liner notes: "The concept of drone has been important in bringing thes...
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  220 Hits

k-os and the changing sound of hip-hop

Pigeonholing is an act of laziness, while stereotyping stems from ignorance and prejudice. Either way, for those targeted, it’s a cultural straitjacket—something that Kevin Brereton knows all too well. Growing up black in middle-class Whitby, Ontario, Brereton discovered that corner-store owners only suspected him of shoplifting, never his white friends. As k-os, Brereton learned that narrow musical definitions would restrict him from singing as well as rapping, and from adding acoustic guitar and piano to hip-hop’s usual soundscape. But he did it anyway. “It’s just how I express myself,” says Brereton modestly. “It doesn’t make me a revolutionary.” Modesty aside, k-os is in the vanguard of ...
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  298 Hits

Glenn Lewis - You Sexy Thing

Smooth, slow and seductive, Glenn Lewis’ debut album, World Outside My Window, was the musical equivalent of a candlelight dinner. Packed with power ballads and laced with Lewis’ soulful, Stevie Wonder-like vocals, it was also a commercial smash, reaching # 4 on Billboard’s Top 200 and featuring the Top 10 hit “Don’t You Forget It.” The Toronto-born singer suddenly found himself in the vanguard of the neo-soul revolution, alongside the likes of Macy Gray and Alicia Keys. So why has Lewis opted for a rougher, more uptempo and decidedly sexier sound on his second album, Back for More? "I’m in a good place right now and the album reflects that,” says the coolly confident Lewis, w...
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  255 Hits