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)