John Borra and David Picco announce eastern Canadian fall tour
Looking for a hopeful sign that we’re nearing the end of the pandemic? You might find it in the fact that more artists are starting to play live again in actual venues to actual audiences. Singer-songwriters are among those leading the way, and two of Canada’s best are teaming up for a trip across the eastern half of the country this fall.
John Borra and David Picco‘s Goin’ Down The Road tour – a sly tribute to Don Shebib’s classic 1970 film – kicks off Oct. 22 in David’s hometown, St. John’s, and works its way to Ontario over the next several weeks, wrapping up in Hamilton on Nov. 20. The full slate of dates is below, with ticket info available at the respective venues.
John Borra‘s early 2020 album Blue Wine is the veteran Toronto troubadour’s first solo effort since 2002, after three albums with his band, Rattlesnake Choir, and it finds him at the peak of his writing and performing powers. On one hand, it’s exactly the kind of album you’d expect from one of the most influential figures within Toronto’s roots rock scene – raw, melodic, and bursting with heart and soul. On the other hand, Blue Wine displays maturity and lyrical sophistication only an artist as experienced as John could convey.
In that spirit, John put together a top-notch band for Blue Wine anchored around Blue Rodeo keyboardist Mike Boguski, longtime collaborator Sam Ferrara and drummers Glenn Milchem, Cleave Anderson, Dani Nash and Tim Timlek. As well, John collaborated with award-winning poet Eva H.D. on three songs: “Machu Picchu,” “The Wars” and “Hambre And Dolores.” While these were the most recently written songs on Blue Wine, they perfectly complement John’s own standout compositions, such as “Seven Days,” “Trace In The Wind” and “Tonight.”
With his sixth album, Live It Down, David Picco veered away from the gritty alt-country sound of his acclaimed 2019 release Out Of The Past, and experimented with looser, Kurt Vile-esque vibes. The change is partly a reflection of David’s experience during pandemic restrictions, with the album’s nine songs written over a three-month span in 2020.
Live It Down is a glimpse of an exciting new world of sonic possibilities for David, an evolution that has been playing out since the mid-‘00s when he was a member of the roots rock band Jet Set Motel. From there, he became a familiar face within the Toronto roots rock scene, working closely with producer Don Kerr (Rheostatics, Ron Sexsmith) and cult hero songwriter Kyp Harness.
Following his move back to St. John’s in 2015, David relaunched his career with the album Start Again and has been winning over critics ever since, with outlets such as Americana UK hailing him as “a rock-infused country [artist] with echoes of The Velvet Underground.” Get more info at davidpicco.com and his Bandcamp page.
See John Borra and David Picco live:
- Oct. 22 – The Black Sheep, St. John’s, NL
- Oct. 26 – Trailside Music Hall, Charlottetown, PEI (w/ Nathan Wiley)
- Oct. 28 – Gus’s Pub, Halifax, NS
- Oct. 29 – Candid Brewing Company, Antigonish, NS
- Nov. 2 – Barfly, Montreal, QC
- Nov. 13 – The Dakota Tavern, Toronto, ON
- Nov. 20 – The Capital Bar, Hamilton ON