Stephen Fearing creates memorable evening in Onanole

Stephen Fearing House Concert, Onanole, Manitoba. June 6, 2009     

Stephen Fearing House Concert, Onanole, Manitoba. June 6, 2009

Onanole, Manitoba ( Canada) perched on the southern  boundary of Riding Mountain National Park is certainly receiving its fine share of music.  Last night (June 6, 2009) was a rare delight, in which multiple Juno award-winning Stephen Fearing roared into Onanole, polished up his Linda Manzer-made guitar, put on his nails, and sped us across time and landscape.  From Nashville to Guelph, from Ireland to Newfoundland, and from vocals to instrumentals, this was a night to remember.  Perched on a stool, with about 45 rapt house concert guests eagerly and appreciatively settled in from Brandon, Neepawa, Dauphin and many other local communities, we came to listen to someone who has a passion for excellence in the ways that words and melodies come together.  Just listen to how long and loud the applause is after each song.

To be able to spend a few hours with Stephen Fearing is to be witness to a great songwriter, but it is also a delightful experience to be close to a man who is full of humour and care.  I am sure that the families, the folkies, the young musicians, and the elder musicians who were “in the house” with Stephen Fearing last night will remember this evening.  These songs bring to mind images of riding the rails, traveling the highways, entering the souls and personalities of ordinary people but through the extra-ordinary creative songwriting and musical crafting of Stephen Fearing.  And, we are fiercely happy and proud of this amazing Canadian.  And, thank goodness for the generosity of these artists, who agree to come to our homes, and make themselves accessible to perform.  There is nothing quite like live roots music. 

Audio Interview with Stephen Fearing

Listen to this short audio interview with Stephen (morning of June 7)  between Celes Davar and Stephen, which ends with his playing of a beautiful and haunting new song about a recent event off the coast of Newfoundland


Video highlights from House Concert



Link to the entire House Concert (audio recording)

The house concert is licenced under Creative Commons as an Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Canada Licence. Basically, this means that you are free to listen to it, but not distribute it, modify it, or charge anything for it.  (Please respect this.)

The Stephen Fearing Onanole House Concert (Audio)


Music is shaking (and stirring) Onanole

We’ve had a really great series of songwriters dropping into Onanole, Manitoba recently.  And, it does not seem to dropping off any too soon.  Which is really great news for anyone who follows and supports the live roots, traditional and folk scene.  On June 1, Miss Emily Brown, Sara Ciantar, James Lamb and Richard St. Onge from Vancouver put together a beautiful house concert that was quite mesmerizing – original songs, lap steel guitar, cello, accordion, voice, autoharp, and electric guitar.  

On Saturday, June 6th, Stephen Fearing joins us for a house concert.  He played the newly renovated West End Cultural Centre in Winnipeg on June 4th.  This is very special – to have a multiple Juno award winning songwriter here, in our community.  This house concert is almost sold out, by word of mouth. He will have his new CD with him.  Call 848.7443 to check for available tickets.

In addition, on Saturday, June 13, another Juno award-winner touches down at Poor Michael’s Bookshop and Café. Ken Hamm, a well-respected guitarist will be playing at 7:30 pm.  Tickets are available at Poor Michael’s at the door.

We find that the opportunity to be up-close and in a very intimate setting provides an opportunity for some moments of pure joy, awe, and spontaneity.  Great songs, unique stories, great guitar work, and putting your life on pause seems to be the order of the day when a house concert happens.  The growth of house concerts across the prairies is a recent innovation.  One of the innovators of this approach is none other than Mitch Podolak, who was the founder of the Winnipeg Folk Festival, and has created a new concept that is receiving wonderful support and kudoes – the Home Routes House Concert series.