Deeply personal and moving, melodic and uplifting and lyrically rich – these are the songs that will tear your heart out, one note at a time, master storyteller and multi-instrumental performer Gordie Tentrees has arrived.
Yukon based, Ontario raised, farm boy, golden glove boxer, school teacher, youth counsellor turned folk artist Tentrees has released 6 records touring North America, UK, Australia and Europe up to 200 concerts each year, nominated for Western Canadian Music Awards, International Song Competitions and toured with Kelly Joe Phelps, Fred Eaglesmith, Steve Poltz and Mary Gauthier. He offers the perfect example with his sixth album, Less is More, presenting an incredible soundtrack to a storied past with songs of triumph, heartache and redemption. Produced by Juno award winner Bob Hamilton who also contributes textured beauty with tasteful tones, the album features Tentrees blend of folk, roots and blues sounds on 11 tracks including “Camelot Hotel“, written by Mary Gauthier. Tentrees plays dobro, guitar, harmonica, with stellar accompaniment from Aiden Tentrees on upright bass & Fabian Brook on guitar and fiddle. The album also includes guest appearances by Patrick Hamilton, Annie Avery, Lonnie Powell and the voice of east coast darling 2015 Juno winner Catherine MacLellan.
In the three years since his last release North Country Heart, Tentrees wrote more than 30 songs for his new album, mercifully letting most of them die before hitting the tape. Says Tentrees, “I was selective. I wanted to make an album I knew I could make, if I invested all my time and energy.” New album keepers include “Somebody’s Child”, written after watching the bombs go off at the Boston Marathon, all while wondering if his wife had crossed the finish line, and “Tired of Time“, the heartbreaking story of a man who dies of brain cancer years before his prime, while watching his family grow. Themes of despair turn to courage in “Wheel Girl”, an ode to northern hero Jessica Frotten who went from accident victim to wheelchair athlete. Tentrees’ attraction with the downtrodden human continues in “Broken Hero”, a collection of vivid shots of everyday heroes, and include the story-driven hit “Love in Ink“, co-written with childhood friend Oliver Greer. Love rings true in ‘Keno City” and “Wrong Town”, and album highlight “Dead Beat Dad” may be the first recorded confession of a struggling father urging on his male mates to make a difference.
Most of Tentrees’ past three years were spent on the road, with concert dates from Spain to Texas, which keeps through in the title track “Less is More”, written in Holland after sleeping in the same bed as Townes Van Zandt on his last European tour before he passed. Dancing outside the music industry box against all odds, there is no end in sight for Tentrees with upcoming 2015 performance around the world.
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