Album Visioning & Collaborative Songwriting Workshop


This past Sunday I hosted my first “Album Visioning & Collaborative Songwriting” workshop at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre in Kingston. It was a brilliant experience – the group of participants coming together to create 12″ album art and then creating quick and fun short songs from these albums – usually within 15-20 minutes per song – using my random chord method. “Playful, insightful, and therapeutic” were a few words participants used after when I asked how they found the workshop. Scroll below to hear the track from Barb’s album entitled “Don’t Forget to Breathe.” (note: recorded using phone only and not edited – enjoy it raw/live) I’m now seeking other places, spaces, institutions and galleries that might be interested in programming this unique multi-arts workshop – OUI!


If you had a record reflect/represent a chapter in your life (past, present, future) what would it look like? What would it sound like?

Music is a powerful medium – a living and breathing art form that accompanies us throughout our lives should we choose to tune in and turn up the volume. I’ve long enjoyed exploring the ways in which visual arts and music intersect, having collaborated with visual artists on several of my albums and having my music play a role as in-studio soundtrack for painters such as David Lafrance (Montréal) and Stefanos Rokos (Greece).

In this playful 2-part workshop, participants will first create a 12”x12” collage representing a chapter in their lives (past, present, or future) – the cover of their personal “single” complete with themes for Side A and Side B.

From these album covers, we’ll randomly select of one or more “singles” and using my songwriting machine game, collaboratively write songs inspired by the stories that emerge. Simple, complex, metaphorical, literal, whimsical, comical – the unique group of participants will shape the content and flow.

Please note, no musical experience or equipment is necessary, only a desire to participate and enjoy exploring these mediums.

From the Rocky Mountains to Mount Lycabettus!

It’s been a whirlwind 6 weeks. I’ve been completely engrossed in songwriting, workshopping, exploring new places and collaborating with musicians from around the globe. Banff was surreal! And then off to Greece to see Stefanos Rokos’ exhibit And No More Shall We Part and to perform and continue writing. Stefanos created the beautiful cover for my first baritone ukulele album Leave Alight. It’s mentioned in this article in the Greek press re: his top 5 album cover designs. Neat! Here I am playing at Romantso on Saturday night (taken by: Giannis).


Here’s the live debut (complete with nervous goat voice…ha haaa!)  of one of the pieces I finished at Banff “New Math” featuring some brilliant, adventuresome musicians I met there. Hope to return one day…new album in the works! Margaret Greenham Theatre, Banff Centre For the Arts & Creativity Singer Songwriter 2019.


Westwards I be! Final Banff + Calgary serenade!

IMG_1180.jpghaven’t yet had time to process any of the Banff Singer Songwriter Residency as I’m still in the midst of the final two days…rehearsing for “Cabin Party” by my new friend Claire Ness (tonight at THE CLUB!) and about to hike Sulphur Mountain with Molly Sweeney and Jeff Pitman. Tomorrow night I’m rocking at Margaret Greenham Theatre with a host of musicians from the program as well as our mentors Kevin Welch, Kim Richey, David Francey and Fats Kaplin. Here are a few quick beauty n’ fun snaps. More to come when this jig is up! If you are in Calgary Sunday, March 24th come see a full show with new Banff works at the County Line Saloon! Promise of laughter, song and lights!DWHQ4190.JPG