My Voice" is about making sure that every voice has a chance to be heard. The barriers that get in the way of the voice being carried continue to prevail, and some of us struggle to find our voice. Recognizing the privilege I hold, this is one artist’s perspective of some of the ways the voice interacts with the world, other people, and its own body and mind. To be honest, many of the songs were born from arguments with my husband; 2020 almost ruined us. It soon became clear that not hearing each other was a big problem; ironically, physically closer than we had ever been.
I began thinking outward and it occurred to me that many of us were living in microcosms of the world..inside of our homes. Relationships ruptured or grew closer. Many lived in longing and loneliness with only a screen to talk to, or noone to hear their voice. Children struggled to find their voice buried in the everyday work stress that parents had to sift through while home. Some took the opportunity to put the outside world aside and snuggle in. Some of the privileged remain privileged while others were not as lucky, and glaring disparities in the world continue to show their gaping wells.
The album features a variety of stories- there is a song about amplifying the voice, a song about two people getting lost from each other while sitting in the same car. In one tune, a battered woman murders her husband, as per the advice of a bird that sits on her shoulder. There are songs about stopping everything to hug, and one about two jailbirds having one more moment of fun before being taking away into cuffs and masks. There are songs that simply feel good on the voice; silky jazz put through a pop sieve; I may have even written some alternate verses. Of course, I had to attempt to cover two of my favourite Canadian songwriters: Rufus Wainwright and Jann Arden. I can't wait to hear what you think!
Produced by multi-instrumentalist and bass player extraordinaire, Tyler Emond (Tyler Shaw, Alessia Cara, Matt Dusk) the album mixes sounds of folky-pop, dreamy 60's, and desert synth to create a distinct flavour that settles somewhere between the new and the old.
Working with Tyler has been one of the most amazing musical experiences of my life. He immediately understood every vague and distorted thought I had for the project and expertly created a vision that we both shared. His instinct, creativity, and foresight were not dwarfed by his attention to detail and organization. I am so excited to share what he has done to my music, rather, the music that we created from my stories.
I have had the unique and magical experience of bringing my finished music to a visual light. Working with director Simon Paluck on "The Day We Stopped" has been a beautiful, raw, and thoughtful experience. Additionally, Carlos Coranado created the perfect visual story for "My Voice." Both directors heard and understood the stories of the songs and used spot on intuition to create video magic.
A very special thanks to Nathan Hiltz (guitar/and lyrical inspiration) and David MacDougall (drums/percussion) for you patience, and willingness to go many extra miles to layer your extraordinary sound to the album. I value you not just as a colleague but as friends (and a husband!)
Of course a very big thank you to FACTOR Canada for your support on this project and all the things it encompasses; the album itself, the videos, tour and showcase support, marketing and all the other things it takes to make an album.
Please stay tuned for tour dates, single releases and the CD release details.:)
Melissa will be doing an opening set at 6:30, Samways on at 8pm.
Join us for dinner and a show! Order food on Thursday, and it will be delivered for the show on Friday. It is delicious!
Presented by Jazz In Toronto and The Emmett Ray.
A live stream concert, presented by JazzInToronto and The Emmett Ray.