July 18, 2013: We’re so excited to be in Yellowknife, and just played out first show ever in the Northwest Territories! Folk On The Rocks is looking super fun so far, planning on eating at The Wildcat tonight and looking forward to meeting all the other artists at this wonderful festival. Check it all out at: Folk On The Rocks!
Old Town, Yellowknife, NWT
June 29, 2013: We are very excited to have been selected for a showcase at the Mission Folk Festival on July 27 at Fraser River Heritage Park! Had a great time yesturday at the Beacon Hill Park Summer Concert Series!
June 23, 2013: Happy summer solstice! We spent a fun day in Calgary yesterday performing at the Foothills Bluegrass Pick-nic, and enjoyed an incredible moonrise as the rain clouds receded…our hearts go out to all those affected by the flooding in Alberta and eastern BC…
June 18, 2013: We had an amazing time in Whitehorse at the Kluane Mountain Bluegrass Festival! And last weekend at the Sooke River Bluegrass Festival! Now getting ready for a weekend in Alberta, check out our show dates if you’ll be near there. PS – we have some exciting new merch in the works, to be unveiled soon!!
May 16. 2013: We’re booking our first UK tour…for spring 2014!! Stay tuned! Also, we now have download cards for sale for both our albums, $10 each. Gettin’ with the modern times!
April 30, 2013: Wow, we are thrilled to have won the ISLAND ROOTS ALBUM OF THE YEAR award for “May”, at the Vancouver Island Music Awards last Sunday. Thanks so much to Adrian Dolan (winner of PRODUCER OF THE YEAR!) for helping make the production of this album such an incredible experience. And thanks for all you for helping to support our music making, we’re feeling pretty blessed these days!
April 22, 2013: We have been nominated for a Monday Magazine Award, and have our fingers crossed for the M Awards gala this coming Tuesday! And next week are the Vancouver Island Music Awards!
March 22, 2013: We are happy to be home after a very fun couple of weeks in Ontario and Quebec for a Home Routes Tour! Please check out our new blog for more on that!
March 31st, 2013: We’re so happy that the fundraiser for the Sooke River Bluegrass Festival was such a success! We can’t wait to play there in June and we’re so happy to have a bluegrass festival once again so close to home! Thanks again to all the organizers and all the people who came out for the concert. Hope to see you all at the festival!
March 6-19th 2013 HomeRoutes Tour (Ontario & Quebec)
DAY 13: Monday March 18
Monday took us back to OTTAWA for our very last Home Routes concert, at Dean’s house, and with our audience lounging on pillows and cushions we played our sets for the last time. After a quick dunk in the hottub while the snow storm descended over the city, we caught a few hours sleep and got up early to catch our flight home. It’s been an incredible 2 weeks full of wonderful musical experiences, food, new friends and old friends, and new connections. We’re so grateful to everyone who came to these shows and shared in our adventures!!
DAY 12: Sunday March 17
On Sunday we drove north, across the Ottawa River into Quebec to VAL DES MONTS, where we played a show in a lovely cabin in the woods.
A delicious potluck dinner and copious cans of Guiness (kind of a crime if you’ve ever had Guiness in Dublin) helped us celebrate St. Paddy’s Day in style. Our host Ed was exceptionally warm and welcoming, and if you have a moment please check out his amazing website – charterdefence.ca – this man is a true Canadian hero.
DAY 11: Saturday march 16
Saturday was a long drive to OTTAWA, we took the scenic back roads, and after arriving at Derek and Pat’s house we had a lovely dinner of chicken soup, warmed up our voices and played our show in the living room! It was another epic night for Miriam – she met her cousins Anders, Nissa and Clara for the first time! We had poutine for breakfast at the Elgin Street Diner and then took a tour of the Parliament building…and it being a Sunday we got to see the House of Commons, and the Senate, and the Parliament Library. Did you know that the whole Parliament building burned down (except the Library) during the first World War, due to a mysterious fire?
DAY 10: Friday March 15
On Friday we played in HALBURTON (in conjunction with the Haliburton Folk Society) in a beautiful building (Abbey North) overlooking frozen lakes and forests, with our largest audience yet! Our hosts John and Thea introduced us to many lovely people in their vibrant local arts scene…
DAY 9: Thursday March 14
We played in MT. ALBERT on Thursday night, at a lovely house on 2 acres of land. It was one of our liveliest shows yet, with lots of fun audience banter between songs. It was a very special night for Miriam because her first violin teacher came to the show. They played tunes afterwards, and caught up on the last 17 years of their lives…
DAY 8: Wednesday March 13
Our show in NEWMARKET was a lot of fun – our hosts Peggy and Dave welcomed us into their beautiful home (which had the most incredible collection of pigs – and pictures of pigs – I counted 31 pigs in the bathroom alone!!) We learned that the significance of pigs related to their granddaughters inability to pronounce “Grandma Peggy”…
DAY 7: Tuesday March 11
The last few days have just flown by! Monday was a day off in Toronto. Tuesday was a long drive through blowing snow up to MIDLAND, for a show at the Rub Of The Green, with hosts Christine and Jim, who served us fantastic curry after the show and let us try on the beautiful clothes in their shop. A crackling fire warmed the room where we played, while the snow fell outside.
Lots of musicians in the audience, and a sweet 5 year old girl who wore her highland dancing shoes and did some lovely stepping for us! We are now in NEWMARKET, getting ready for a sold out show tonight!! Woohoo!
DAY 5: Sunday March 10
What a lovely afternoon house concert in MISSISSAUGA today! It’s a very warm and sunny day, and all the heaps of snow are melting fast. Our hosts Darren and Cathy have been doing HomeRoutes for about 2 years, and were featured in Readers Digest on their very first show! They were truly lovely and have some very loyal HomeRoutes concert audience members.
Our show in Georgetown was Saturday night, with our hosts Ruth and Frank! Amazing pasta and sausages for dinner, a lovely attentive crowd…and Amanda’s room held an amazing collection of literature! I would have happily stayed in their house for a week, working my way through all the classics I have yet to read….
We’ve taken to talking a bit about our instruments during the show, and I end up learning some surprising things: like a detailed breakdown of the dirt marks on Shanti’s banjo (and which styles of playing they are caused by). The ever popular question “what’s the difference between a fiddle and a violin” has also come up, with some hilarious audience member’s responses! We are having so much fun, and feel incredibly grateful for each opportunity to perform and hone our live show skills! Some interesting banter is developing…and I’m particularly enjoying Amanda’s terrifying re-telling of the fateful ferry ride that inspired my tune “Big Wave.”
Tomorrow we will have a restful day off in Toronto, all doing our own things, and are headed for MIDLAND on Tuesday. Can’t wait!
DAY 4: Saturday March 9
Last night’s show in GUELPH was a big success, with 40 people packed into our hosts Judy and Roger’s living room. It was a real treat to have vocal mics for this show, and Roger’s patient tweaking of the sound until we had a great balance between our un-mic’d instruments and amplified vocals.
There were lots of musicians in the audience, so the music continued soon after our show, and I got to pull out some of my favourite old time Canadian fiddle tunes, with excellent piano accompaniment, how fun!
Big thanks to Judy and Roger for such a great turn-out and all the delicious meals and snacky food! After a late breakfast (eggs baked in tomato sauce and salsa – mmm!), we drove to St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market, in the heart of Amish country, and enjoyed the famous deep fried apple fritters – yup, with ice cream and maple syrup! Now driving through snowy farm country on our way to Georgetown, (just passed a flock (?) of wild turkeys on the side of the highway!), listening to the sweet cajun fiddling of Courtney Granger.
DAY 3: Friday March 8
Happy International Women’s day! It’s a sunny bright winter day here in GUELPH. We had a great show last night at Derek and Mel’s house, in a lovely acoustically perfect room!
Dinner included pork tenderloin, and lots of treats and wine later on…the audience consisted of many neighbours and an ex-professional musician from Ireland! We had a good sleep and headed out to explore the town the next morning, hitting up an incredible Dutch store with everything from tulip bulbs, to fine Dutch pottery, meats and cheeses, and the biggest selection of bulk licorice (every kind imaginable) I have ever seen in my life. I now have a lifetime supply. Another fine cheese shop offered excellent biscotti, chocolate, and bagels. We are now pulling up to our 3rd house, also in Guelph. It’s sold out already!! Gonna be a great night!
DAY 2: Thursday March 7:
We are currently headed to GUELPH for our second show. It’s a mild, snowy grey day here in Ontario. Amanda and I had a few glorious days of big-city shopping in Toronto this past weekend, and a chance to see old friends and catch a bit of live music! We played our first show last night in Windsor to a lovely crowd, some of whom had never been to a house concert before. A cute little toddler bounced and clapped along to our music, and everyone sang their hearts out on “Going Up On The Mountain.” What fun!
Our hosts Jeff and Suzanne made us feel very at home, though their cats, Grendel and Chigger were not so happy about our arrival! We had a delicious Caribbean meal (!), and hunkered down soon after the show for a good long sleep. After visiting the eclectic and enticing Taloola Cafe this morning for lavender and Mexican hot chocolate, we hit the road, stopping only once in London for excellent sushi!
DAY 1: Wednesday March 6
It’s the start of our Home Routes/Chemin Chez Nous house concert tour of southern Ontario and Quebec! We’re so excited to embark on this journey through people’s living rooms, and it’s our first tour in this part of Canada. We are headed to WINDSOR for our first show!!!
February 7, 2013: We have just been nominated for three Vancouver Island Music Awards (Roots Album of the Year, Island Artist of the Year, and BC-Wide Artist of the Year)! Thank you and congratulations to all of the other nominated artists too! Looking forward to the VIMAs on April 28, 2013, early bird tickets available now. To purchase tickets starting Feb.22, call VIMA at 250 885 4209 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
February 7, 2013: In a little less than two weeks, we will be heading to Ontario and Quebec to do a Home Routes House Concert Tour! (Schedule below). We’re thrilled to have received a Canada Council for the Arts Travel Grant for this tour!
February 7, 2013: We’re thrilled to be at No. 1 on CFRO Radio‘s January BLUEGRASS/OLD TIME chart! We also have reviews in the current Penguin Eggs and Maverick Magazine (UK).
January 30, 2013: Very excited to see MAY is at No. 5 on !earshot’s National Folk/Roots/Blues chart!!
January 24, 2013: Howdy folks, and happy new year! We’ve had a good restful holiday and are now back in full swing, booking summer festivals and tours and super excited about bringing our music to new audiences all over this country!
We’d like to take a minute too and share a very important Indiegogo campaign that is happening right now, which is close to our hearts as it is for our dear friend and fellow musician Chris Suen who was in a terrible car accident in the States last year. Please check it out and share it around: http://www.indiegogo.com/welovechrissuen Let’s help Chris get back to normal life and music making! Thanks so much.
December 27, 2012: Our new album is available now on iTunes! Check it out here! It’s also available in Victoria at Larsen Music, Lyle’s Place and Gordie’s Music, and The Fernwood Inn.
December 24, 2012: Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays folks!
November 16, 2012: We are a very happy bunch right now, thanks to the amazing folks who came out last night to celebrate the release of our new album, MAY! Your smiling faces, support, help, love, and encouragement are so very appreciated. Thank you all. Love, SLD
November 15, 2012: The new album is available online now! And tonight is our hometown CD release in Victoria! At the Victoria Event Centre, doors at 7, show at 7:30.
October 18, 2012: Well, we’re back in Victoria for the week, and excited to announce that our hometown CD release is now less than a month away! Tickets are available now at Lyle’s Place, Larsen Music, and with any of us on Tuesday nights at The Fernwood Inn! We are heading east next week, with shows in BC and Alberta. Please check “Shows” for more info!
Our wonderful students at the Old Town School of Music in Chicago where we taught on Oct. 13, 2012!
Oct 11, 2012: Hi! We spent the last week at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass in San Francisco, and then a great couple of days near LA. Now we’re in Iowa City, playing at The Mill tonight. Tomorrow off to Chicago to play at The Heartland Cafe (Friday, Oct 12) and Uncommon Ground (Saturday, Oct 13) with a Saturday afternoon workshop at Old Town School of Folk Music!
Los Robles, Conejo Valley, California
Oct 1, 2012: Getting ready for our US tour, and super excited to announce our Victoria CD Release Concert date! Tickets are now available at Lyle’s Place (770 Yates St).
Victoria CD Release: Victoria Event Centre, 1415 Broad Street. $10 advance, $13 at the door, 12 and under Free! Doors 7:00, show 7:30. Tickets available now at Lyle’s Place (770 Yates St).
Sept 23, 2012: We’re finally decided on a final track list for the album, and are putting the finishing touches on the cover design. Gearing up for California/Iowa/Illinois, and just received our beautiful new hand built omni mic from Ear Trumpet Labs in Portland. It’s a mic the Foghorn String Band have been using for some time with much success. Can’t wait to try it out! In the meantime, here’s a fun little video from our recording session last May…
May 7, 2012: Well, it has been quite a summer… Cape Breton, Lunenburg, Saskatchewan, and Vancouver Island Music Workshop. Lots of tunes, traveling, and good times. We are excited for the fall though too, and are thrilled that the new cd is about a month off! Please check “Shows” page for updates on tour news. In October we will be heading to California and the Midwest, then back to Canada for the Gulf Islands, BC mainland, and Alberta portion! Thanks everyone for a great summer!
July 22, 2012: We’ve just launched our Indiegogo campaign to help with the completeion of our album! Check our all the cool “perks” we’ve designed in exchange for your contributions. And thanks for all your support, we are SO excited to get this album out into the world!! http://www.indiegogo.com/sld?a=879367&i=wdgi
May 7, 2012: We are now on Twitter! @TweetLowdown. Also, we are in the middle of recording our second album on beautiful Mayne Island, BC. You can have a sneak peek on our YouTube channel where we’re posting videos of our adventures…SLDonthetube
March 27, 2012: Our album is now available at Larsen Music and Lyle’s Place in Victoria.
March 22, 2012: We’ve just confirmed an endorsement with L.R. Baggs… We love their gear!
February 15, 2012: Thank you to everyone who came out on Valentines and made it such a fun party at The Fernwood!
February 12, 2012: We’re so thrilled to announce our nomination for “Album of The Year” from the Vancouver Island Music Awards! Gala ceremony is on April 21. We have our fingers crossed!
December 17, 2011: Happy Holidays all! Love, SLD
December 2, 2011: New CD Reviews are up… Roots Music Report Review by Joe Ross and Earshot’s Marshal Hignet’s Review!
November 10, 2011: The lyrics to all our album songs are now up, under “Albums”.