Blues matriarch Dalannah’s new single asks what we’re all thinking in 2020
Canadian matriarch of the blues Dalannah wants to know “What The Hell Is That” when it comes to the state of the world in her empowering single and exceptionally powerful video.
“This song is simple in its structure with a message of disdain for what is,” she said. “It’s a musical commentary on the state we are in.”
The song is the latest to come from her fifth and most recent studio album, Looking Back, out via Quest Records and supported by Creative BC and the Province of British Columbia.
“I am very fortunate at this time in life as I usually get a message from spirit that it is time to do a CD,” Dalannah said of her creative process and how Looking Back came to be. “All my albums have come from a waking moment where something comes through me…
“There has always been an underlying theme for my recordings,” she added. “For Looking Back, I woke up one morning and knew I still had something to say musically at this crucial time. The more I thought about it, I knew that it was — and is — the undeniable fact that we need to take a good look at how we walk on Mother Earth…
“A good look at how we ‘be.’”
Born of African-Canadian and Cherokee heritage, Dalannah Gail Bowen’s indisputable prowess as a singer, songwriter, actress, playwright, storyteller, event producer, social activist, International Memphis Blues Awards semi-finalist and Blues Hall of Fame Master Blues Artist has secured her standing as a fixture of the blues, rock and soul scene for over 40 years.
She either performed alongside or opened for Led Zeppelin, B.B. King, Willie Dixon, the Monkees and The Guess Who during her time with the all-female group the Feminine Touch. Downbeat magazine named her 2015 release, Been Around A While, one of the top blues albums of the year. And she was awarded the Key to the City of Vancouver by its mayor and council.
Looking Back takes the dynamic artist’s work in a new direction, drawing more from Dalannah’s own personal story.
“My journey has led me from an unsettled childhood to finding music to getting lost in the trauma, to finding traditional ceremony and all that that means as far as healing is concerned,” she said. “My journey as an activist started way back in the 60s, marching for the anti-apartheid movement and human rights… Women’s rights.
“Now, at this place and time, I have the opportunity to be a messenger through my music, and through Looking Back.
“The album also takes a hard look back at our world, and our cultures,” she added. “It takes a look towards our future, too.”