Hometown: Langley, BC
Vancouver based Indie-Rock outfit Derrival combines synth-heavy elements of bands like Phoenix and Chvrches with guitar driven hooks and melodies reminiscent of Two Door Cinema Club and Young The Giant.
Formed in 2009 by combining high-school bands, the 5-piece quickly developed a bond like brothers. Since graduating, they have each pursued different post secondary studies to develop the skill sets of a record label for independently releasing their own music. The band’s latest EP “Departure & Arrival” (release date: August 21, 2015) is a decompression of the group name Derrival. The EP’s first single entitled “Original Script” debuted in 2014 and led the band to winning a highly coveted top prize in the BC PEAK Performance Project. Derrival will be touring across North America in late summer/fall 2015 to support the newly released EP.
Hometown: St. John's, NL
Fortunate Ones is a Newfoundland pop-folk duo made up of singer/guitarist Andrew James O’Brien and singer/pianist/accordion player Catherine Allan – endearing audiences with wide-eyed energy, pragmatic optimism, and an earnest mission for connection.
Andrew and Catherine grew up on opposite sides of the island of Newfoundland – Mount Pearl and Corner Brook respectively. It was in St. John’s where the pair met and began to sing together. One night in 2010, Andrew heard Catherine sing harmony with her brother at a private gathering in downtown St John’s. He had to sing with her. The next day he got up the nerve, left her a note, she acquiesced, and within 48 hours they were singing together on stage. While it was a road from that evening to the formation of Fortunate Ones in 2013, their beginnings are in keeping with one of the core messages they carry. That sometimes the most important decision you can make is to just say YES.
From a musical family, the Allan home was a constant eclectic flow of instruments, singing and the stereo. Catherine studied classical piano, taught herself guitar in secret, and discovered the accordion by chance when her brother brought one home over Christmas in 2011. Musical exploration was the norm. After moving to St. John’s, Catherine’s induction to the East Coast music scene was rapid – performing with Andrew, recording and touring extensively with JUNO award-winning songwriter Amelia Curran, and appearing at festivals with Curran and East Coast songwriter Don Brownrigg.
Andrew James O’Brien launched his music career with a well-received solo album Songs for Searchers (2011) – nominated for Best Pop Recording at the 2012 East Coast Music Awards. He toured heavily in Canada and the UK, opening for artists such as Sharon Shannon and Paul Brady. Catherine accompanied him. It was on a UK tour that they realized the direction their collaboration was taking. The appreciation shown by UK audiences bolstered the pair’s sense of purpose. Their music began to evolve to represent both of their sensibilities, skills and sounds.
“We put a name on something that was naturally occurring, and then we took steps to follow it up. We would share equal duties vocally, musically, and conversing with the audience. It wasn’t Andrew James O’Brien with Catherine Allan anymore – it was already Fortunate Ones.”
Plain and simple, they consider themselves fortunate to pursue their dreams. Their name reflects shared experience with audiences. It is about connecting people of all kinds, to make strangers friends, to elicit feelings of joy, hope, sadness, and contemplation – and the spirit that we are all in this together.
Produced by multi-ECMA winner Daniel Ledwell, THE BLISS was recorded at Lake Echo in Nova Scotia during the winter of 2014, and features guest appearances by East Coast favorites Jenn Grant, Don Brownrigg, and Kinley Dowling. The Bliss was released on JUNO award winning songwriter Rose Cousins’ record label Old Farm Pony Records on February 10, 2015.
Hometown: Winnipeg, MB
Slow Leaves is Winnipeg's Grant Davidson. His songs, genuine and honest, spare nothing in creating vivid images and heartfelt connections. 2014's Beauty is so Common, like a California country-folk record newly discovered in your parent's attic, straddles the line between new and old, revealing an album deceptive in its simplicity, rich in melody, and immediately classic.
Winnipeg born and raised, Davidson cut his teeth in Winnipeg's coffeehouses before assembling a band for his first official release, the hard-luck roots record Tired Limbs for Ashes (2009). His next release, 2011’s Dust and Violets, showcases a beautifully understated production that focuses the listener on the honesty and emotional power of Davidson's words.
For his most recent project, Beauty Is So Common, Davidson, impressed by the production choices on Imaginary Cities' debut album, sent a letter to producer Rusty Matyas. When they met as near strangers in a downtown Winnipeg jam space, the potential of their collaboration was instantly obvious. With Davidson's songwriting, rooted deep in folk and Americana and Matyas' keen sense of pop harmony and arrangement, they stumbled on that subtle and elusive quality that anchors all great recordings: the capture of a special moment in time.