2013 Musicians

Duane Andrews

andrewsDuane Andrews’s music is the product of a great ear, an adventurous spirit and a love of music that is beyond category. Uniting what would seem to be impossible – traditional Newfoundland music with the Gypsy Jazz of the legendary Django Reinhardt, Andrews makes it not just work – he makes it soar. As a multiple award winning guitarist, composer and producer he as literally brought his music to audiences around the world from his home in Newfoundland, Canada to Tasmania with stops in between on stages such as the Newport Folk and Cork Jazz festivals.

Anita Best

anita1Anita Best was born on the island of Merasheen in Placentia Bay on Newfoundland’s south coast the year before Newfoundland joined Canada. When she was a child, television had not yet taken over as the primary source of entertainment, and for many homes on the island, electricity was provided by gas-powered generators. Singing, dancing and storytelling were the main forms of recreation and when the
nights grew longer and colder and the fishing season was over, people would gather in each others homes and keep heart in one another with tunes, songs and stories.

Linda Byrne

IMG_0243Born in a small, now resettled, outport in Placentia Bay, Linda Byrne (nee Slade) moved to Arnold’s Cove at an early age. An interest in traditional folksongs prompted her to collect and learn a vast repertoire from the traditional singers both within her family as well as from those with whom she associated such as Mary Caul and Mac Masters. After moving to St. John’s this interest continued with her involvement with the early development of The Folk Club and the Folk Arts Council (now the Folk Arts Society). A participant, both as a volunteer and performer, in the very first Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival in Bannerman Park which recently celebrated its 36th. year, Linda’s involvement in the festival has continued and most recently she has been a convenor and organizer of the Song Circle which celebrates unaccompanied songs and recitations on the last Thursday of each month at the Crow’s Nest. Linda’s repertoire of songs includes traditional English, Irish and Scottish ballads as well as those which have become Newfoundland favourites. She also has a fond appreciation for and an ability to present faithful renditions of old time country and western favourites as well.

Pat Byrne

patbA published poet and songwriter, Pat Byrne has performed at numerous folk festivals, as well as on radio and television. He has also been active in amateur theatre. His academic interests include short fiction, Newfoundland literature and folklore, Shakespeare, and modern American and Canadian fiction. He has published on the interrelationships between folklore and literature, on the influence of the McNulty family on Newfoundland music, on the manifestations of the tall tale in Newfoundland literature, on invented traditions in Newfoundland popular culture, and on the influence of folklore and literature on the image of Newfoundland within the Canadian context. He co-edited Land, Sea and Time, a three-volume anthology of Newfoundland and Labrador texts published by Breakwater Books, which is currently in use in the Province’s high schools. He can also be heard on the CD Towards the Sunset, a collection of original Newfoundland songs, on which he is joined by Joe Byrne and Baxter Wareham.

The Fretless

The FretlessDouble winners of the Canadian Folk Music awards this past November, The Fretless are reinventing the idea of a string chamber group. Fusing newgrass and jazz sensibilities with Irish jigs and reels – their fiddles, viola and cello effortlessly merge through enchanting arrangements. Appearing at the Winnipeg Folk Festival and just off a five and a half week tour of Germany they have been delighting audiences near and far. From BC and Sask and the USA, Ivonne, Karrnnel, Eric and Trent have the percussive chops that challenge long held ideas about Canadian fiddle music and pave the way to a new living tradition.

Holly Hogan and Allan Byrne

handaAllan comes from a family of singers from Placentia Bay. According to his father, he was singing before he could talk. Allan has taken his tempered singing voice and intricate finger-style guitar work to folk festivals all across the province.

Holly has performed many styles, from Jazz to Greek folk. She has appeared at the Wreckhouse Jazz and Blues Festival, the Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival and the Woody Point Writer’s Festival.

Allan and Holly have performing together regularly for the last couple of years, combining their unique styles and beautiful harmonies on a wide range of folk country jazz and originals. Together they have performed at various concert series, and festivals, including the main stage at the 2012 Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival.

Pamela Morgan

IMGP2650 - Version 2resizeFor 19 years, Pamela Morgan was lead singer, guitarist, and arranger for Canada’s pioneering “Celtic” band, Newfoundland’s Figgy Duff, who brought the traditional music of Newfoundland to the world stage.

Since then, Pamela has been spearheading her own independent record label, Amber Music, producing music for NL’s finest roots artists, including four of her own solo CDs, and licensing tracks to various labels worldwide.

In more recent years, she has represented Canada at Expo in Japan, toured extensively in England, Canada, the US and Europe, and overseen productions of two original scores for live theater; her own folk opera, “The Nobleman’s Wedding”, and Figgy Duff’s score for Shakespeare’s “Tempest”.

In 2007 she received an honorary doctorate from Memorial University, and in 2008 embarked upon a different journey, studying Graphic Design at the College of the North Atlantic. This new skill set led to the release of her handmade book “Newfoundland Ballads for piano and Voice” in 2011.

Pamela is presently touring in support of her new release “Play On”, her fourth solo album. She continues to write, arrange, and perform in her own highly original and hauntingly beautiful style.

Fergus O’Byrne and Fergus Brown-O’Byrne

Latest PR from Ger A - CopyFergus O’Byrne became a familiar voice on radio and television from 1971 to 1983 as a member of the renowned folk group, Ryan’s Fancy. He has since followed a busy solo and freelance career, touring nationally and internationally with Jim Payne and A Crowd Of Bold Sharemen. He was also a regular fixture on the local scene performing for many years with Dermot O’Reilly. In February 2004, Fergus, as part of Ryan’s Fancy, was awarded the ECMA Dr. Helen Creighton Lifetime Achievement Award. This award recognizes an individual or group who has had a profound and lasting effect on the Atlantic Canadian music industry. In April 2005, along with Jim Payne, he was the recipient of the inaugural Arts in Education Award presented by the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council. Most recently, in August 2011 he was awarded the annual Lifetime Achievement Award from the Folk Arts Society of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Fergus Brown-O’Byrne is recognized as one of the foremost traditional instrumentalists around St. John’s. He is equally adept on anglo-concertina, accordion, and fiddle. He is a regular at traditional sessions in St. John’s and has both produced and performed at many different functions and in a variety of settings including the annual Canada Day celebrations in St. John’s and the opening reception at The Rooms, St. John’s for JUNO 2010. Besides performing as a solo artist he also appears with various other artists including Fergus O’Byrne, Mike Hanrahan and Danny Mills and was a founding member of The Dardanelles. He has also performed on video with Great Big Sea. He teaches traditional fiddle, concertina and accordion. He recently completed his Masters degree in Arts in Philosophy at Memorial University.

Daniel Payne

danielDaniel Obediah Payne grew up in the small fishing community of Cow Head, on the Great Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland. After leaving in his teens to learn music in Ireland, he returned with a mission: to do his part to keep the musical traditions of his home from fading away.

Daniel performs as a vocalist and multi-instrumentalist on fiddle, mandolin, accordion, flute, whistle, bodhran, and guitar. He has worked extensively in Newfoundland and Labrador, as well as touring Canada, Greenland, Australia, Japan, Europe, Ireland, the US and the UK. A wearer of many hats, Daniel has also worked as a composer, musical director, producer, and actor in both theatre and film. He is often recognized for his leading role in the television mini-series Random Passage, a portrayal of Irish and English settlers’ life in early Newfoundland.

A recipient of the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council’s Emerging Artist Award, Daniel has also received a Traditional Singer of the Year nomination from the Canadian Folk Music Awards, as well as nominations in the Male Artist of the Year and Folk/Roots Artist of the Year categories from MusicNL. His production company has released five titles: an album of accordion music entitled The Four Stops, three instructional DVDs (Learning the Newfoundland Button Accordion Volume 1 and 2,and Learning the Newfoundland Tin Whistle), and his solo album, Chain.

Baxter Wareham

Baxter 2A longtime performer at the March Hare, Baxter Wareham was born and raised at Hr. Buffett, a community on Long Island Placentia Bay, which was resettled in the late 1960’s. He is a performer of songs, stories and instrumental music which he learned growing up in Placentia Bay. In his long career, he took part in various festivals and events in North America, Europe and Japan. In his musical career, he has been part of several groups, including the the Wareham Brothers, the Breakwater Boys, and Bristol’s Hope. He also travelled extensively and played with the great fiddler, Rufus Guinchard. As well, Baxter taught high school for thirty years. After retiring from teaching, he worked as captain of a pilot boat out of Arnold’s Cove, where he now lives.

Craig Young

cyoungOriginally from Francois, NL Craig Young has been playing the guitar since the age of seven and started playing in his first band around the age of thirteen. Rock n’ Roll and Country music became the main avenues of learning and a move to Alberta in 1993 allowed for Young to play lead guitar with several prominent local artists on the club scene. Eventually as a member of the Terri Clark band he moved to Nashville Tennessee, where he was based for nearly eight years. Craig has won four CCMA awards for The Canadian Country Music Association All Star Band- Guitarist category and has had several top 40 singles, including a Top 10 Video on Canadian CMT for “You Can’t Take It With You” with the wonderful help of Miss Terri Clark. Craig now lives and performs in the St. John’s area and teaches at New Wave Music in Paradise.