Mary ~ “Tidings Concert” (song 6)

Here’s “Mary“, a song Allison Crowe first heard on an episode of the “Sons of Anarchy” television drama – and which got her into Patty Griffin, the song’s brilliant creator. Allison’s friend, driver, and European tour manager, the legendary Axel Dollheiser, was Patty’s driver in the 1990s and has been raving about her ever since – particularly the “Living With Ghosts” album. Things happen when and how they do – and, it’s a confessional scene involving Gemma Teller (played by Katey Sagal) on SoA that brought this music into Allison’s repertoire and “Tidings Concert“.

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Up to the Mountain ~ “Tidings Concert” (song 10)

Continuing as best we can, (counting, that is,), in reverse chronology – presenting the songs of “Tidings Concert” – here’s a tune written by Patty Grffin, an artist Allison Crowe discovered while watching a favourite television show, “Sons of Anarchy“. This particular song, not in the SoA soundtrack, was recommended to Allison by Canadian acoustic soul-singer Bob Benvenuti (seek him out!): “Up to the Mountain“.

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Dr. Heck’s Holiday Prescription

The much-liebed “Heck of a Guy“, a shining star in the universe of Leonard Cohen-centric blogs, is rockin’ around the tree to the sounds of Allison Crowe’s just-released “Tidings Concert” album. Listening is invited: “if you’re into something more enthusiastically, gleefully, contagiously joyous… welcome home”.

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Tidings Concert video playlist

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New album, concert tour, and documentary film come a’pealing

It’s coming on “Tidings” – and that means the voice of Allison Crowe will soon ring out traditional favourites, Christmas carols such as “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear”, “In the Bleak Midwinter”, and “The First Noel”, alongside the modern canon of Joni Mitchell, Patty Griffin, Lennon & McCartney and original song selections including the elegiac “Arthur”, and the epic, foot-stomping, “Disease”.

Allison’s just off the road, wrapping up her second engagement of this year with Canada’s amazing Royal Winnipeg Ballet – performing songs of Leonard Cohen. With the love experienced on the dance stage, as well as recent European concert dates and this Summer’s Gros Morne Theatre Festival hit, “Newfoundland Vinyl”, still touching souls – it’s time to rally a repertoire that decks us all in comfort and joy whatever life’s circumstances.

“Allison Crowe is a stunningly talented performer. Her voice celebrates the music with a bluesy rock-gospel intensity; her controlled vibrato, silken rasp, and powerful projection rivet your attention. This is no casual background music… be prepared to be amazed,” says Carol Swanson (ChristmasReviews).

Drawing themes of faith, hope, sorrow, joy, redemption, transcendence and more from an abundant well of music, this year, there’s plenty of ways to rejoice with Allison as she melds the sacred and secular in “songs of the season” and spirit.

Tidings Concert”, captured truly by Engineer and Mixer Brad Graham, and FOH Engineer Ed Johnson, and mixed at Turtle Recording in White Rock, BC, Canada is released on November 25 (debuting @ http://music.allisoncrowe.com/album/tidings-concert with some days grace for iTunes and other folks observing Thanksgiving this weekend). This album set, her eighth full-length collection, features 19 in-concert performances, and, for the first time, audio from Crowe’s “Hallelujah” video which now has a worldwide audience of greater than 10 million people (more than eight million genuine views on YouTube alone).

Right after this music release, Allison embarks on a “Tidings” concert tour allied with special guests and special causes:

NOVEMBER 29 – Campbell River, BC, Canada – St. Peter’s Anglican Church – featuring The Campbell River Childrens Choir’s “Zephyr” w. Director Barbara Prowse and accompanist Judy Melny – presented by Rockin’ Ron Nicolaye to aid Campbell River Hospice Society & CR Food Bank

DECEMBER 1 – Victoria, BC, Canada – Fairfield United Church – with guest artist, singer-songwriter, Billie Woods – to aid Artemis Place, (girls’ educational and life-skills), and HepCBC

DECEMBER 5 – Nanaimo, BC, Canada – Old City Quarter – Community Carol Sing-along in support of “Light up a Life” campaign for Haven Society

DECEMBER 8 – Nanaimo, BC, Canada – St. Andrew’s United Church – with a cavalcade of Vancouver Island’s finest young musical talent: Chelsea Peckett, Daniel Knapp, Paige Hughes, Raymond Salgado, Kaleigh Hargrove & Emily Blake – to aid The Mind’s Eye (youth newspaper) + Woodlands SS Band and Basketball programs

DECEMBER 14 – Corner Brook, NL, Canada – Arts and Culture Centre – Tidings fun barrels down the chimney in this caring and creative Atlantic community

DECEMBER 15 – Corner Brook, NL, Canada – Arts and Culture Centre – World Premiere screenings of the Peter Buckle-directed documentary ~ “A Corner Brook Tidings” – a film featuring Allison Crowe and you – created with gracious assistance of the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council (NLAC)

Fuller details @ http://www.allisoncrowe.com/tour.html – and plenty more to come!

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Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – musical tribute

It’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – and, in celebration+ of the great orator and campaigner for peace and human rights, here’s two takes by Allison Crowe on Patty Griffin’s song inspired by Dr. King’s final speech, “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop“.

Here’s “Up to the Mountain” on guitar:

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The video is by Corner Brook, NL-based artist Phil Robbins – part of his “Faces: Broadway” installation.

And here’s “Up to the Mountain” on piano:

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This video is by the “Out of the Fog” crew, makers of the epic St. John’s, Newfoundland production.

Stubby’s House of Christmas, (geographically-placed in Greenville, North Carolina), flags Allison Crowe’s recording of “Up to the Mountain” alongside a range of songs in a full and engaging tribute to Martin Luther King entitled: “Some New Music for MLK Day“. Fittingly, movingly, Stubby’s concludes by sharing MLK’s “I Have a Dream” speech:

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Arthur / Up to the Mountain – Double-A-Side from Allison Crowe

Allison Crowe releases a double-A-side single – two new song recordings available world-wide for enjoyment in audio and video formats.

In the terrestrial sphere, “Arthur” has its world premiere on CBC Radio’s “On the Go” program. Show Host Ted Blades promises to carry things “Up to the Mountain” tomorrow.

Blogger “Muruch” is helping Allison Crowe celebrate the music release, and 10th anniversary of Rubenesque Records Ltd. – with the online premiere of Allison’s two newest song recordings. And, as a treat for the next couple of weeks, the music is a gift from Muruch

Over at “1 Heck of a Guy” the two song videos make their debut along with this explanation: “Allison Crowe has often been featured on this site, in part for her gorgeous voice and in part for her exquisite songwriting.”

Both of those elements, DrHeck, says, are on display in this new release:

Arthur” – Playing her vintage upright-grand piano, at home in Corner Brook, Newfoundland, Canada, Allison Crowe sings of love weighed through life and time.

Up to the Mountain (MLK Song)” – Already a lover of American singer-songwriter Patty Griffin, Allison Crowe’s introduction to this Griffin tune came from Canadian rock and soul musician Bob Benvenuti when the two Canucks performed at a Christmas “Tidings” concert together. Crowe brings it on home with guitar and vocals – performing as her own Jordanaires for back-up.

Rubenesque Records Ltd., Canada’s most independently successful music label, celebrates its 10th anniversary with this characteristically passionate performance pairing.

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Here, above, is “Arthur” -  as it’s heard on the new release.

NB The single version of “Up to the Mountain” is on guitar. We’re fortunate to also have this video of a piano performance – Allison live-in-the-studio – “Out of the Fog” in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada.

Warmest thanks to the team behind this popular news and arts magazine – Michael Fisher, Television Producer, Bruce Lane, camera – and all the OotF crew at Rogers television.

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Allison Crowe’s New Double-A-Side-Single, and Album Plans

Acclaimed musician is ready with new recordings and fresh direction

Musician Allison Crowe, one of the world’s great songwriters and live performers, releases a double-A side digital single this Summer featuring a piano-based original song “Arthur” and an interpretation of Patty Griffin’s “Up to the Mountain (MLK Song)” on guitar.

The bicoastal Canadian artist is in pre-production of her eighth album – advancing a series of critically and commercially successful recordings. Her label, Rubenesque Records Ltd., is celebrating ten years of establishment-free creation.

In a recent interview with Helen Jayne Reid of CornerBrooker.com Crowe reveals some of the creative impetus to her next full-length release. She cites the heavier, industrial, production sound heard in “from the choirgirl hotel”-era Tori Amos, and the recordings of Nine Inch Nails. NIN’s Trent Reznor is also exemplary as a creator not bound by the corporate calculation of popular music today.

Recognizing the truth of John Lennon’s lyric, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans”, Allison Crowe is giving a window of 12 – 18 months to solve intricate production puzzles with the current album collection of ten songs and a poem, “Snow“.

While in pre-production this Summer, Crowe performs a single live show – as part of TNL’s Gros Morne Theatre Festival concert series in Cow Head, near her Atlantic home of Corner Brook, Newfoundland.

Allison Crowe’s double-A-side single, “Arthur” and “Up to the Mountain” is set for release next month (July, 2011 – on iTunes et al).

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Up to the Mountain (Patty Griffin) – Allison Crowe + “Faces” by Phil Robbins

Allison Crowe is, again, cooking up musical soul food in her kitchen. That’s where she’s recorded “Up to the Mountain (MLK Song)” - from the pen of the sublime Patty Griffin. Allison serves as her own Jordanaires – providing backing accompaniment to the lead vocals and guitar :)

Allison’s delighted by a recent opportunity to participate in a visual art project in the friendly and vibrant cultural community that is Corner Brook, Newfoundland, Canada — home on the Atlantic range to the much-loved and acclaimed singer-songwriter.

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“Friday March 4th 2011, I performed ‘Faces: Broadway’ a projection onto windows of the old Black Thorn Stick Cafe location on Broadway,” says Philip N. Robbins, one of the creators, noting “this projection creates an implied conversation, or narrative, between all of the participants in the videos.”

CornerBrooker.com, the city’s culture and news web portal (http://cornerbrooker.com/2011/03/faces-on-broadway) explains: “This was part of a project by Phil Robbins and Jillian Parsons (often known for their work with Stockpile or Larger Than a Cat) called Faces: Broadway which was a lead-up to Phil’s larger project, Faces: Newfoundland.”

Expressing a fascination “with the haunting portraits by Richard Avedon specifically his ‘In the American West’ portrait series,” Robbins is broadening the “Faces” canvas — and “crowdfunding” — aiming to sail successfully over the mercantile mosh pit to cover costs. You can learn about this project @ http://www.philipnormanrobbins.ca and aid the cause @ http://rockethub.com/projects/1082-faces-newfoundland

Allison Crowe is among the “Faces: Broadway” — and, here, Phil and Jillian’s video imagery projects a spirit as natural as the musical performance.

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Mary 2011

This week, Allison Crowe has recorded three new originals: “Arthur” (not a Kinks kover); “By Any Terms“; and “Chasing the Rain“. She’s also recorded a cover.

Cover Me” blog’s Vincent Scarpa says: “Canadian singer-songwriter Allison Crowe drops great covers every time we turn around.” Scarpa brands this newest interpretation “a lovely acoustic tribute to one of America’s most underrated songwriters. Patty Griffin would surely approve of this bare-bones delivery that exposes what are some of Griffin’s finest lyrics.”

You can hear this song @: Allison Crowe Records Patty Griffin’s “Mary” (Cover Me Premiere)

And it’s on YouTube @ YouTube Preview Image

On her most recent Tidings concert tour, Canadian musician Allison Crowe began performing “Mary“, a song written by the sublime American singer-songwriter Patty Griffin. (She’d fallen in love with the song when US cable television program “Sons of Anarchy” featured it in its Season two episode “Balm“.)

The New Year kicking in, Crowe pulled her piano stool over to the kitchen table, sat down and recorded this version simple and true.

Enjoy! Happy New Year to all!!

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