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.

Joni Mitchell - Dog Eat Dog

Joni Mitchell’s last album, Wild Things Run Fast, reflected the maturity of a woman who had chased away her romantic demons. Now, Dog Eat Dog, her first release in three years, reveals that the 42-year-old musician has experienced a political awakening. The 10 new songs, which tackle such subjects as corporate greed, African famine and right-wing evangelism, may alienate her loyal listeners. But with its clever pop arrangements and engaging vocals, the album includes some of Mitchell’s most exuberant work in years. On the playfully syncopated title track she decries the “prime-time crime” of “bigwig financiers,” while in "Tax Free" actor Rod Steiger impersonates a raving evangelist who warns...
Continue reading
  126 Hits

From the Vaults: Kate and Anna McGarrigle's historic first recordings

Several years ago, I was contacted by a Montreal man named Peter Weldon who asked if I’d like to hear an unreleased 1969 recording of Kate and Anna McGarrigle’s original folk group, the Mountain City Four, singing the music of Wade Hemsworth with the composer himself. Absolutely, I told Weldon. I’d long loved Hemsworth’s songs and was excited to hear anything unreleased that included the wondrous McGarrigles. The Mountain City Four had begun when Weldon and another musician, Jack Nissenson, recruited the younger McGarrigle sisters to join them in song (I have a personal connection with Nissenson, but more on that later). Soon, the MC4 were packing coffeehouses as stars of Montreal’s burgeoni...
Continue reading
  262 Hits

Nick's Picks of 2021

Here, in alphabetical order, are the artists who made some of my favourite music of 2021. These are the albums that excited me most and that I turned to again and again throughout the year. Some, like Adele, Rhiannon Giddens and Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, are international musicians I’ve been following from the start of their careers. Others, like Arooj Aftab and Mdou Moctar, are more recent global discoveries. The rest all come from closer to home and stand alongside the best I’ve heard in the past 12 months. Adele - 30  England’s Adele has a habit of naming albums after her age. She also has a tendency to belt out ballads, the kind that huge numbers of people respond to, s...
Continue reading
  503 Hits