Friday, February 19, 2010

One Heck of a Writer

Folks seeking the joys of illuminating, (often, hilarious, and, equally, poignant), commentary on Leonard Cohen's music and all manner of related and unrelated happenings, know to visit the site of 1 Heck of a Guy

That's home to psychiatrist Allan Showalter's "pastiche of posts, featuring song, dance, snappy chatter plus notes on prose, poesy, love, lust, life, and beyond."

We are delighted that the erudite, mysterious, DrHGuy has discovered Allison Crowe, and, as well as penning "essays on broomcorn and proposals for a county seal featuring Dick Tracy" he shares his appreciation of her art and artistry with the online community.

Earlier writings have focused on Allison's songs, including "Wedding Song" and covers of "Darling Be Home Soon" as well as "Me and Bobby McGee".

Last year, when her much-loved version of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" was favored by Hollywood director Zack Snyder to feature in a much-discussed love-scene in The Watchmen movie, Showalter's blog posts on the subject became web blockbusters.

The good doctor's current, and coming, attraction chronicles the course of Allison's newest album, the musical creation of which completed this past weekend, when producer, orchestrator and arranger Kayla Schmah delivered the final mixes.

It is, he notes, "the true story of the making of Spiral, featuring Allison Crowe, her best friend, her best friend’s wedding, her business manager, a baby, a deal, and music, all of which appear to have not only survived a plot premised on coincidence but to have thrived as a result."

A regular dose of 1 Heck of a Guy is as therapeutic a prescription as Goodhart, Hoffman & Sigler noting that Everything Stops for Tea (and oranges...).

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Allison Crowe (vocals, piano) here performs "Phoenix", a song on her album "This Little Bird" with musical accompaniment from Dave Baird (bass) and Laurent Boucher (percussion).

The accompanying image is by Russian-born American Val Telberg, a pioneer in photo-montage, and popularly known for his collaborative work with the French writer Anaïs Nin.

This photo from "the surrealist poet of the mind" was used for the cover of the Louise Varèse, New Directions Paperback, translation of poet Arthur Rimbaud's "En Saison en Enfer (A Season in Hell)".

" il me sera loisible de posséder la vérité dans une âme et un corps/...and I shall be free to possess truth in one soul and one body."

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Allison Crowe's "Spiral" among "Most Exciting Albums of 2010"

Allison Crowe's new album/CD Spiral is released globally March 17, 2010 - St. Patrick's Day. Production wrapped this past weekend, on Valentine's Day.

U.S.-based entertainment blog Muruch earlier this year named it as the album they most look forward to, and, now, UK music blog We Write Lists includes Spiral as one of "The Twelve Most Exciting Albums of 2010", remarking: "Crowe's speciality is startlingly beautiful piano-based songs that sort of make you wonder why you bother with anything else."

(Joining Crowe on the list are new recordings from: Fleet Foxes, Fyfe Dangerfield, Girls Aloud, Goldfrapp, Gorillaz, Joanna Newsom, Marina and the Diamonds, Massive Attack, MGMT, Music Go Music and She and Him.)

For Allison Crowe, a peerless live performer, and a singer-songwriter of the thrilling calibre known in the 1960s, Spiral is the seventh release from her label, Rubenesque Records, in as many years.

On her new song collection, the bi-coastal Canadian, (she calls Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Nanaimo, British Columbia, home), is joined by musicians Billie Rocha-Woods (acoustic guitar, backing vocals), Dave Baird (bass, backing vocals), Laurent Boucher (percussion), Brendan Millbank (cello) and Larry Anschell (electric guitar, and, also, Engineer at Turtle Studios in White Rock, B.C.)

Kayla Schmah, Los Angeles-based, Canadian-born, composer and film scorer, orchestrates and produces the album, bringing her cinematic talents to a long-time relationship with Crowe. A pair of songs captured live by Engineers B.R.N. (aka Condor) and John MacMillan complete this diverse mix of music made in Corner Brook, Nanaimo, as well as Chilliwack, White Rock, Denman Island and Salt Spring Island, Canada, Vienna, Austria, and Hollywood, USA.

The visual art of Spiral is equally beautiful - with cover paintings by Netherlands-based Tara Thelen, photographs by Canada's Billie Rocha-Woods, California's Dan Goldwasser, and graphic design by Florida's Alix Whitmire.

Allison Crowe's national and international concert tours for 2010 follow the release of Spiral.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Pray for Rain

Continuing with a series of some of Allison Crowe's songs that have not yet made it to video, here's "Pray For Rain", which has been a popular rock song in Crowe's repertoire for years - especially with fans in Europe.

This concert recording is from the "Live at Wood Hall" double-album/CD. Mobile recording captured by Larry Anschell of Turtle Recording. The accompanying image is by Canadian photographer Billie Woods.

Allison Crowe's seventh release, "Spiral", is out on March 17, 2010.

Pray for Rain - audio

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Valentines for St. Patrick

The musical creation for Allison Crowe's new album, Spiral, wrapped up this weekend, on Valentine's Day.

The physical release is pegged for March 17, 2010 - St. Patrick's Day.

It's all we've hoped for, and more than we imagined.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


As Allison Crowe readies her seventh album/CD for release, it's opportunity to post here some songs which, as yet, have not been been captured on video.

In time for Valentine's Day, V-Day, and, simply, any day, year-round romance, here's "Montreal" - a love song that joins Crowe's other originals such as "Wedding Song" and her covers, including "I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)", in expressing the heart.

During her years touring across Canada, Allison Crowe has performed in a range of concert venues in la belle province, Quebec, in the beautiful city of Montreal - from La Salla Rossa to Place des Arts.

On her first visit, she performed at a jazz venue in the old city, (or Vieux-Montréal), called Upstairs and it's there and then she penned this ballad. Allison Crowe, vocals and piano, is joined on this recording by Dave Baird, on bass, and Kevin Clevette, on drums.

This song recording is on her "Secrets" CD.

Montreal - audio

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Aquarius Rising + Songs of Hope for Haiti

The recent earthquake disaster in Haiti has focussed the world’s attention on the country. Help is needed now and in times ahead.

Randy Winchester, Events Coordinator of The Nave Gallery in Cambridge / Somerville, Massachusetts, USA has brought together a dozen musical friends of the Nave, a group of artists which includes Allison Crowe, contributing her song "Aquarius Rising", to make an album, “Songs of Hope for Haiti”.

Says Randy: “Songs of Hope for Haiti is a project to help relief efforts in Haiti. Please consider making a donation to Partners In Health. Go to their website and learn about the good work that they do around the world, especially in Haiti. PIH needs our support now more than ever during this enormous crisis.

Partners In Health (PIH) works to bring modern medical care to poor communities in twelve countries around the world, and has been working on the ground in Haiti for over twenty years. The work of PIH has three goals: to care for their patients, to alleviate the root causes of disease in their communities, and to share lessons learned around the world. Based in Boston, PIH employs more than 11,000 people worldwide, including doctors, nurses and community health workers. The vast majority of PIH staff are local nationals based in the communities they serve.

You can find the album on Jamendo:

The album features new songs by:

* The Accident That Led Me To The World
* Bill Barclay
* Yael Bat-Shimon
* Allysen Callery
* Allison Crowe
* Ken Field
* Jim Goodin and Peter Thðrn
* Allyssa Jones
* Dennis Moser
* Celia Slattery
* Michael Winograd Klezmer Ensemble
* Zefiro

And thanks to V. Van Sant, graphic designer for our beautiful album cover and Melissa Glick for promotion.

Songs of Hope for Haiti - CD front and back covers designed by V. Van Sant

I hope that you enjoy this album and please give generously to help support Partners In Health. Thank you.”

As well, Randy notes: “The Nave Gallery, is pleased to announce a Benefit Concert on Friday, February 12 to benefit Partners in Health, an organization providing medical care to earthquake victims in Haiti. The concert will feature singer/songwriters Allysen Callery, Celia Slattery, and Allyssa Jones, along with accompanist Mark Shilansky. Each of the artists appearing at the Benefit Concert have contributed a track to the album.”

Join “Songs of Hope for Haiti” in supporting Partners In Health c/o: The Nave Gallery; Partners In Health; Songs of Hope for Haiti facebook group; Songs of Hope on Jamendo ; and Songs of Hope for Haiti on MySpace

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,