We celebrated six years on Song Talk Radio with a little reminiscing, a few songwriting tips, and some random stuff. We talked about:
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, SongTalk welcomed jazz pianist and teacher Steve Koven. Steve is a composer, performer, producer and educator. He has one of the longest standing trios in Canada, performing, touring and recording together for over 26 year. Aside from performing and recording with his trio – Steve Koven Trio – Steve also has other recording projects such as the Koven Collective and Koven & Law as well as Lazersuzan
We talked with Steve about:
- his process for writing
- how he communicates his song ideas to his bands
- the touring opportunities available through consulates and embassies
- where he finds inspiration for his music
- what improvising can bring to songwriting
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.…
This week SongTalk welcomed Jeff Alan Greenway to our studio.
Greenway is a film composer, singer/songwriter and pianist from Pickering, Ontario. He has written music for film, worked as a session player, orchestrator and arranger, released his own original album “Great Expectations” and wrote the score to the international documentary The Secret Life Of Frogs, which won a Nature award at the Cannes Media and TV festival.…
This week SongTalk welcomed Robert Cross to our studio.
Robert Cross was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. He started playing guitar at 14, just so he could learn how to write songs. Cross is the singer and guitarist of the original rock band Satin, who released their first album Drop Dead Gorgeous in 2019.…
The Song Talk Radio Team discussed the latest biopic about Elton John in the movie Rocketman. Composer and Second City writer Matthew Reid joined us.
We talked about:
- The framing of the story around Elton John’s addiction and therapy
- The depiction of Elton John as a musical child prodigy
- Similarities and differences between Rocketman and the Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, which we reviewed in January
- Taron Egerton, who played the role of Elton John
- The friendship and collaboration between Elton John and lyricist Bernie Taupin (spoiler alert: this is the best thing about the movie)
Listen to the show:
This week SongTalk welcomed Robert Ball to our studio.
A native Torontonian, Robert Ball is a multi-faceted singer who has traveled to and performed in over 60 countries around the world.
His sound has been described as soulful, jazzy, Neo-soul and he is a much in-demand session singer.…
This week SongTalk welcomed Adriel Smiley to our studio. Adriel is the Music Director of CJRU – Ryerson’s Radio station – and Adriel brought a wealth of information about college radio and the best way musicians can get their music played on these stations.…
This week Song Talk welcomed Patrick Ballantyne back to our studio. Patrick is a veteran songwriter and musician who has worked with many top-selling artists such as The Trews, Meredith Shaw and Big Sugar.
On this episode, Patrick brought in a few songs from his upcoming new release so our Song Talk audience got to hear the premieres of two tracks – Vicious in Your Vanity and Beneath Your Skin.…
One of our favourite guests and friend of the show Blair Packham returned to the show to share his song ideas, from titles to bits of songs, and how he develops them into full-fledged songs.
We talked about:
Singer/songwriter Linda Lavender shares the story of her song They Won’t Catch Me Again. Follow her journey from it’s birth on a five-hour road trip to its studio recording. We talked about:
- Linda’s album The Rosseau Sessions with Often Running
- Bluegrass music
- Influencers like Lyle Lovett, Lucinda Williams, Alison Krauss
- People on the run, rebels, a female protagonist
Listen to the whole show
Award-winning and critically-acclaimed composer, songwriter, pianist, music educator and frequent Song Talk Radio guest, Frank Horvat returned to the show to talk about his latest project, The Thailand HRDs. Frank wrote 35 two-minute compositions for string quartet, where each movement was written for a Human Rights Defender in Thailand as part of photographer Luke Duggleby’s compelling photo essay., For Those Who Died Trying.…
With the holiday season just around the corner, we decided to help you out with some great gift ideas for songwriters and musicians in your life. We put them into four categories:
- Stocking Stuffers ( 0 – $15)
- Small Gifts ($15 – $100)
- Good Gifts ($100 – $300)
For our 5-year anniversary, we visited moments past and our favourite bits. Song Talk Radio Superfan Mike MacInnes joined us (for the 5th time!)
Listen to the show
Some of our favourite theme shows:
Some of our favourite guest shows:
We talked about:
- How to write lyrics that are specific but open enough to allow the listener in
- The distance between being inspired to write a song and developing it with craft
- What the heck is polytonality?
Eric Walker is a singer/songwriter from Toronto and a member of the blakeley walker band. He was a founding member of the Toronto Songwriters Association which has met the second Saturday of the month for the past 17 years. We talked about:
- playing Harry Belafonte songs on the ukulele
- writing a song with 47 chords
- master songwriting teacher Andy Krehm
- composition teacher Gordon Dalimont
- SONG – “Umbrella” – looking back at the beginnings of a relationship
- SONG – “Renovations” – building and renovating love
- short chorus – good or bad?
Julian Taylor is a Canadian singer-songwriter formerly with the band Staggered Crossing. His songs have appeared in television series including Degrassi: The Next Generation. He now fronts the Julian Taylor Band. Julian dropped by the studio with his daughter Ella.…
Virtuoso harmonica player and singer-songwriter Harpin’ Norm Lucien joined us to talk about two of his songs and why you need many, many harmonicas, ideally on a Batman-style utility belt. Sherry Jacoby filled in for Neel – thanks Sherry! We talked about:
- how to write simple songs that are also nuanced and have substance
- starting your songs with the chorus or the title
- how to incorporate sing-alongs in your performances
- our How to Approach the Media episode
Listen to the whole show:
Download the lyrics for I Wish I was the Strongest Man and Strong Enough for Love …
It was Canadian Mental Health Week‘s 66th year and we thought we’d put a spotlight on songs that talk about the challenges of maintaining mental health.
This year’s hashtag is #getloud.
For this special show, we had guest host Adi Aman from Beige Shelter, and four songs that talk about mental health.…
We had the pleasure of having the prolific Toronto poet, novelist, and singer/songwriter Robert Priest (with David Hynes on guitar) back in the studio to share a couple of his children’s songs. We talked about…
- testing a song on a 6-year old
- moving from writing for adults to writing for children on the same day
- chord choices for children
- writing for younger and older children (the differences)
- kids deserve quality songwriting
- “Inchworm” (an old favourite)
- repetition in kids’ songs
- using words that kids will have to look up (why not?)
- the work habits of a prolific writer
- Gilbert and Sullivan style (The Ships of Bath)
- do you have to have kids to write for children?
Join the gang as we go over our favourite bits of the last year and lots more stuff!
We talked about:
Popular guest co-host and guest on Song Talk Radio, Patrick Ballantyne dropped by the studio to share two of his favourite Canadian songs. “Help Me” by Joni Mitchell is a great example of her unique combination of melody, structure, and lyrics to evoke a casual conversational tone.…
The next time Halloween will occur on a Tuesday will be in 2023, so we were supernaturally possessed to take advantage of the freaky intersection and dig up some Halloween themed songs for this show.
But first, the important stuff. Since this is radio, we figured Halloween costumes were in order.…
Ed Roman is an award-winning singer/songwriter, performer and multi-instrumentalist from Shelburne, Ontario, Canada.…