It occurred to me today that it’s been a while since I featured musicians from my province, Manitoba. You may have seen my posts on songs by Scott Nolan, Kieran West and His Buffalo Band, and Lakes and Pines. After posting write-ups on more than 300 songs, it feels like I’m overdue to spread some more love a little closer to home.
Tonight I visited the website and Bandcamp page of Slow Leaves, the name Winnipeg singer-songwriter Grant Davidson performs under. I haven’t known of him that long but have seen Slow Leaves perform at least twice. I think once at a songwriters’ session at the city’s Millennium Library, and once with a full band at a music venue… it might have been the Times Change(d) High & Lonesome Club. My memory is one of a superb musician with a self-deprecating manner whose music draws in his audience. I also have a vague memory that he may have been the singer I once heard do a brilliant impersonation in homage to American singer-songwriter Roy Orbison (1936-1988). You will recognize a similar vibrato at times in Davidson’s voice.
About the music of Slow Leaves and his latest release, Shelf Life (2020), his website says, “The 10-track album leans into themes of romantic memory, domestic duty, artistic ambition, and dreams unfulfilled, underpinning the belief that there is indeed strength in vulnerability.” The site also describes Davidson as being known for “… his ability to breathe poetry into the ordinary… “
For today’s selection, I’m featuring the opening track of Shelf Life, “Looking Out My Window,” a beautifully sung and instrumented piece with pleasing melodies. I find it a reflective yet hopeful sound, and recommend checking out Slow Leaves if you don’t already know him or his music.
Now you know a little about why this is my song of the day for today. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy. And if you like the music, please buy it to support the artist who created it.
We all rely on the artistic community for the beauty we see, hear and feel and with venues closed, it must be challenging for many of them to stay ahead of the bill collector. Why not check out a local artist’s website, Bandcamp or iTunes Store page today. Buying their music and merchandise puts money in their pockets, more than streaming does. I’ve quoted Elbow’s Guy Garvey before: “… don’t stream it for a pittance… buy the recording so the musicians can make more!“
There is a store on the Slow Leaves website where you can buy vinyl, CDs, and even leave a tip! You can also buy digital copies of his music on the Slow Leaves Bandcamp site. (While I love the traditional long-play record cover, liner notes and all that experience, I generally purchase my music digitally these days. Listening to Shelf Life while writing this, my next step will be to buy the album; it’s a beautiful collection.)
Here’s the audio for the song from the Slow Leaves Bandcamp album page.
Edit, November 14: Here’s a video posted to Facebook yesterday, by Winnipeg’s Village Idiots of a performance by Slow Leaves at the West End Cultural Centre in October…