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Linda McRae is a Canadian folk-roots-Americana musician. A multi-instrumentalist (clawhammer banjo, acoustic and electric guitars, accordion, bass, and Porchboard stomp box) singer-songwriter, she is a former member of Spirit of the West. She has released a series of albums, including Flying Jenny, Cryin’ Out Loud, Carve It to the Heart, Rough Edges and Ragged Hearts, plus a career retrospective entitled 50 Shades of Red (June 2014).
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SKYDIGGERS record covers of great Canadian artists including Gordon Lightfoot, Ron Sexsmith, LINDA McRAE and Neil Young!” (Montreal Gazette, Metro Winnipeg, Nova Scotia Herald, July 2013)
It’s no accident that the current buzz surrounding Linda McRae is building. Linda’s recent release Rough Edges & Ragged Hearts was nominated by the Canadian Folk Music Awards for Contemporary Album of the Year has been on the Roots Music Report Charts for 48 straight weeks. That fact and the recent signing of Linda to seminal Canadian Folk Music Label Borealis Records is definite proof of that fact.
Produced by Linda and Marc L’Esperance featured performers include The Sojourners, Doug Cox, Gurf Morlix, Ray Bonneville and Samantha Parton (Be Good Tanyas). Charting #1 at CKUA, #4 Top Canadian Album, #1 & 2 Top Canadian Songs (Rough Edges & Ragged Hearts/Be Your Own Light) and #8 Top Canadian Artists on the Folk DJ’s list the recording also earned 5* reviews in No Depression and Rock Star Weekly, and 4.5* in Penguin Eggs. All this and the recent inclusion of Linda’s song Burning Bridges on the The Skydiggers most recent CD confirms the buzz is definitely building.
Earning two-platinum and three gold records as a member of Spirit of the West Linda left the band to resume her solo career and has since released four critically acclaimed recordings: Flying Jenny with producer Colin Linden (Bruce Cockburn, Bob Dylan), Cryin’ Out Loud, producer Gurf Morlix (Lucinda Williams, Mary Gauthier), Carve It To The Heart producers Linda McRae and Marc L’Esperance and her fourth release as mentioned above.
Performing on clawhammer banjo, acoustic guitar, accordion and porchboard stompbox, Linda combines old-time sounds with universal themes of heartbreak & redemption offering an intriguing sepia postcard from the past that is vibrant and alive in the present. Recordings and performances with musical luminaries include Bruce Cockburn, Neko Case, Alejandro Escovedo, Gurf Morlix, and Ray Waylie Hubbard.
Recent performance include Plainsong Festival NE, Yukon Arts Centre, Vancouver Island Music Festival BC; South Country Fair AB; Barbican Theatre UK; Maverick Festival UK; The Bluebird Café TN; and New Folsom Prison, California’s infamous maximum-security prison where she performed in concert and facilitated writing workshops for the inmates.
These workshops lead to the creation of her EXPRESS YOURSELF Writing Workshops currently being presented in partnership with North American Music Festivals as part of their community outreach programs to detox centres, alternative schools, and youth and adult correctional facilities across North America.
For more information on these workshops please visit http://lindamcrae.com/writing_workshops
"Beautiful folk/roots music, one song breaks your heart and the next one puts it back together".
Fernando Pinto, Promoter Oddball Events
“25 years from now the folksingers of the day will still be borrowing songs from this disc."
Mike Sadava, Penguin Eggs
"Linda's absolute love of traditional roots music runs deep down into the Appalachian dirt, and it shows in everything she does, total commitment! And now she's playin' clawhammer banjo! Gotta love it!"
Gurf Morlix (Lucinda Williams, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Mary Gauthier)
"one of the most pure, soulful, honest and distinctive voices in Roots music, period!”
Allison Brock, Wide Cut Country, CKUA
"Linda's music intrigues like a sepia postcard from the past, but is vibrant and alive and very much of the present. The singing and playing are just right. And that is a great accomplishment indeed."
Eddie Schwartz (The Doobie Brothers, Paul Carrack, Rita Coolidge)
“I’d be hard pressed to name an artist who has upped the ante to such a degree at this stage of an artistic journey. Her command of the instruments she plays is impressive and her assured confidence as a singer infuses that much more range and emotion to a lyric.”
Peter North, CKUA
"When all the trends fade and become dated, and all the music from the cutting edge becomes dull, Linda McRae will continue to stand tall, singing and playing music with honest soul and humility, cutting through the fog with her timeless clarity. Linda is one of the true, soulful pioneers of honest roots music. Her singing and playing brings honour to her heroes and to her friends and fans."
Colin Linden (Bruce Cockburn, Emmy Lou Harris)
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