When the world was shaken by the Covid-19 global pandemic, we all took stock of what was truly important to us. What most of us realized was that the little things sometimes are actually the big things. Being able to see and hug your family and friends, playing cards, sports or perhaps dancing. These were the things we were no longer able to do. What helped many through these isolating and depressing times was music – recorded, online, at a distance or just in our memories.
As professional musicians, it was doubly difficult because not only did we lose our livelihood, we also lost our passion to create and open our hearts with music. Nothing can replace the adrenaline you get on stage, connecting with your bandmates and audience.
This album reflects the struggles we all endured during the lockdowns and the joy felt by the blossoming of the world post-pandemic. The last two cuts from this album perhaps sum up the feelings we all have experienced. My Cape Breton Home is a plaintive melody full of emotion and hope. It represents the longing for home and for those we have missed. Old Fashioned Hoedown is just as raw and grounded as it sounds. A kitchen party set to music, a prescription for the blues.
We included several tunes we have played for shows and old-time dances for many years. And a tribute to my favourite fiddle group of the past – the Cape Breton Symphony, with the Short Grass Jig set, with four fiddles playing in unison.
As always, I am joined by some wonderful musicians on this recording. My mom, Carolyn on the piano, my sister, Kendra with her harmony fiddle, vocals and accordion; they do so much besides their performance here. I couldn’t do any of this without their support.
Darin Parise and Tyler Beckett provide their heartfelt and genuine virtuosity on a multitude of instruments.
I am so pleased to have Germain Leduc joining us with his incredible abilities on piano and bass. His composition Hommage à Waldo Munro is a loving tribute to the piano player who was such a big part of the sound of Don Messer’s Jubilee.
The gifted Courtney Drew plays an authentic set of Quebecois reels on her fiddle and button accordion.
I hope these tunes lift your spirits and offer you hope and inspiration. After all we have been through… “there’s nothing like a good Old Fashioned Hoedown.”
- Scott Woods
Scott Woods: Fiddle, Bass, Drums & Vocals
Carolyn Woods: Piano
Kendra (Woods) Norris: Fiddle, Accordion, & Vocals
Tyler Beckett: Acoustic & Electric Guitar, Manolin, & Fiddle
Germain Leduc: Piano, Bass, & keyboards
Darin Parise: 5-String Banjo, Pedal Steel, Acoustic & Electric Guitar
Courtney Drew: Fiddle, Button Accordion
Produced by: Scott Woods
Musical Arrangements by: Scott Woods, SOCAN
Recorded & Mixed by: Scott Woods, McLeod Music, Fergus, Ontario
Mastered by: Doug Stronach, Eclipse Music Productions, Arthur, Ontario
Graphic Design by: Janet McGlynn, Lumin8 Strategy & Design Agency Inc., London, Ontario
Photography by: Dan Peer, Kitchener, Ontario
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