Very excited to have the Juno-award winning songwriter, author of an international #1 hit song and the very first MuchMusic VJ join us on SongTalk. Christopher Ward has done all that and more. In our recent interview, Chris talked about his new release Same River Twice, its unique recording process and why he wanted to include his version of his song Black Velvet on the album.…
This week SongTalk welcomed Jay Gordon Wright to our show.
Jay a multi-instrumentalist songwriter and performer who has entertained audiences around the world. He is classically trained on violin, and has expanded his musical toolshed to include just about every instrument he can get his hands on.…
This week SongTalk featured a few songs from our listeners. And it was loads of fun.
We chose three of our listeners’ songs to take a closer listen to.
Stuart Cook – near Manchester, England penned a delightful song inspired by the view from a hill near his home.…
This week SongTalk welcomed our old friend Blair Packham to our studio.
The Toronto-based artist, first gained attention for his work with ’80’s power pop band The Jitters. He is now an acclaimed solo artist and musician. Blair released two strongly-reviewed solo albums before shifting his focus to composing music for TV and films, teaching songwriting at the post-secondary level and in numerous special event workshops, and co-hosting a long-running major market weekly radio show about music (“In the Studio” on the BellMedia talk radio network).…
This week SongTalk welcomed FEATURETTE to our studio.
The Toronto-based duo FEATURETTE, formed by singer Lexie Jay and drummer, Jon Fedorsen, makes emotionally-charged, heavy-hitting electro-pop music that has been met with international critical acclaim.
After receiving their first full recording grant from FACTOR Canada, the duo released their debut LP CRAVE in October, 2016.…
Beige Shelter is an ambitious and eclectic five piece band from Toronto that brings fire, passion and a political conscience to their music. Through electrifying live performances, the band showcases both original songs and interesting twists on cover songs. Beige Shelter is currently working on their 2nd EP release.…
This week, professional singer/songwriter, voice actor & co-founder of Silverthorn Studios recording, Taylor Abrahamse joined us in the studio at SongTalk World Headquarters. Taylor was a Top 40 finalist on Canadian Idol, has performed on stages across Ontario, has also written & produced musicals, and music for animated series and viral internet music through Corus, DHX & Super Planet Dolan.…
OK, so we’ve got a thing for the cowbell. Or maybe that was just Phil. In any case, the under-appreciated cowbell gets the most love it’s had since Christopher Walken’s fever.
We talked about:
- the history and distinctive sound of the cowbell
- the heyday of the cowbell in 70s rock
- syncopated vs.
Multi-talented Toronto poet, novelist, and singer/songwriter Robert Priest brought two great songs to the show. He also brought two talented musicians to back him up – guitarist and vocalist David Hines and guitarist Bob Cohen. We talked about a wide range of things including:
- the difference between poetry and song lyrics
- collaboration in song writing
- song structure
- work habits
- breaking down the inner critic
- “highway” songs
- writing for children
- a poem about John Lennon
- Robert’s website
Watch the live performances
Listen to the show
The always surprising, risk-taking, gear-shifting, soul-belting Oh Chays are beholden to no single genre. Currently writing and recording their second album, The Oh Chays are a husband and wife duo raised on trad jazz, rockabilly, gospel, and the Detroit radio of the 70’s and 80’s.…
The Song Talk Radio team of Bruce, Neel, and Phil received an education in Industrial music with Eric Scrape. Here’s some of what you can learn by listening to the show:
- What makes it “industrial”
- Industrial love songs
- How it got started during the punk music years
- Why Scrape starts with a beat
- Electronic Body Music (EBM)
- Digital Audio Workstations (DAW)
- To “quantize” or not to “quantize”
- Choosing a non-melodic chorus
Have a listen right here!
For our Valentine’s Day special, each member of the Song Talk Radio team brought a favourite love song too woo our listeners. All the songs were very different, and we each had a different take on what makes a good love song:
- Bruce appreciates authentic, honest expressions of love
- Neel likes it when there’s a nuanced message
- Vanessa looks for a specific emotional response in the listener
- Etain likes sincere and from the heart love songs that you can dance to
- Phil likes honesty and originality in his “happy” love songs, and
- favourite twitter follower of the show, Sharon (@), said “Love songs should make you remember what it’s like to be in love.”
Moody, original and unexpected are three words that describe the song writing of Louis Moon.
He started his musical life when he took piano lessons at age seven. Three years ago, influenced by Korean Hip Hop artists, he began to create his own beats.…
Piper Hayes is a New York born singer/songwriter currently living on the outskirts of Hamilton, Ontario – home to a burgeoning arts scene. Piper started writing her own songs because she couldn’t play other people’s songs on her guitar. On this fast-paced and informative show, she sang “You’re Gone” and “Honey” and we talked about:
- musical theatre training and the singer/songwriter
- the influence of Stephen Sondheim
- specific versus ambiguous lyrics
- using the rhythm guitar to drive a song
- the right mood for writing
Connect with Piper
Frank dropped by Song Talk Radio again, this time with songs from his recent release, Strange Machine. We talked about:
- using wikiloops for free backing tracks
- unconventional time signatures, and unusual uses of 4/4
- the differences between art songs and pop songs
- a modern twist on the protest song
- Frank’s experimental writing process using Logic
Listen to the show:
About Frank Horvat
With a Broken Social Scene-like attitude, Toronto’s ambient-edged art rock band, The Frank Horvat Band, uses a colourful canvas to create songs for a dynamic and intoxicating aural experience.…
The uber-talented duo of Talyor & Bryn impress the team with their fusion of styles and great sense of humour with 3 live performances, including an improvised lyric and melody by Taylor for their final song.
- Taylor’s songwriting workshop
- Bryn’s harmonica workshop
- The IMSTA Songwriting Contest
- lyric progressions
- the effectiveness of stops in a song
- why the need for so many harmonicas
Returning guest Bojan Lands talks about his song “Bojol Ojo” and the breaking of the beat.…