Home Feature David LaRonde offers more award-winning folk-roots and blues on his new album

David LaRonde offers more award-winning folk-roots and blues on his new album

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David Laronde. Photo by Paul Corby.

Teme-Augama Anishnabai singer-songwriter David Laronde performs contemporary roots, folk, rock, and blues that fuses an urban influence with the mystery and ancestral philosophy of his homeland.

His songs offer fresh takes on the human condition and examine themes of personal strength, freedom, love, hope, and joy, with the ever-changing seasons in the background.

David, who lives in Temagami, ON, has just received a nomination for the Performing Arts-Johann Metcalf Award. He’s also embarking on an Eastern Canada tour to promote his latest of three full albums, I Know I Can Fly, which out now on all major platforms.

David’s debut album, Right City Wrong Town, was nominated for the Aboriginal People’s Choice Music Awards’ Best Blues Album in 2013. Then came Under the Raven’s Wings, and then I Know I Can Fly – which received a nomination for Indigenous Songwriter of the Year from the Canadian Folk Music Awards in 2022.

Plus, his song “I Need You” reached number nine on the Indigenous Music Countdown.

“Music transcends all,” David said. “The message in my music simple. In this great land of ours, let’s use the strength and power from our ancestors – who thrived for thousands of years, holistically, physically, and spiritually connected to Mother Earth. We all have the power to live free and healthy just by being aware of our connection to our ancestors.”

On the current tour, audience members will get to know I Know I Can Fly, a quietly powerful meditation on the perseverance of loving relationships and personal freedom through all sorts of challenging circumstances. It features crisp acoustic guitar, compelling vocals, and gentle but captivating production throughout.

“I Need You” offers a simple confession of timeless, eternal commitment, while “Run With My Father” combines a Roma feel and haunting vocals with an unusually wordless chorus. David said the song is about feeling free and connecting to his parents as he was running along a beach in Cuba.

The gently rolling title track offers an evocative slide guitar, a distinctive hand drum, and a rootsy Americana vibe. David said he wrote this song of freedom while sitting on a rock watching a gull float in the summer breeze.

On the other hand, “Leonard’s Lament,” a dark, moody piece, with tremolo’ed electric guitar, was written for Leonard Peltier — who’s been in a federal penitentiary for the past 47 years, after being wrongly convicted of killing two FBI agents at the 1975 shootout on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.

“Right Here For You” is about a teenage mother giving up her baby at birth and reuniting some 50 years later. Trumpets sound in celebration of the fulfilled quest to find each other.

“Gonna Be Alright” is a lighthearted, bouncy, old-school country song of reassurance that relationships will last through tenuous times of lockdown and forced co-habitation.

“Teen suicide on Canadian Indian reservations remains an unsolvable human problem,” said David. “‘One Last Time’ is meant to bring the listener into the aftermath of one such event.”

“Footsteps” is the most purely “folk” song on the album and is a personal account of the inner turmoil one faces when making the decision to end a relationship or an unsatisfactory job.

“‘Where Are You‘ is about the void left when a lover is alone during the holidays.”

And “I Carry Your Smile” is an instrumental about the ever-present smile of David’s mother, Barbara Laronde (nee Turner).

“When I smile, I think of her and carry her love wherever I go,” he David said.

See David live!

  • July 27 – Avant Garde, Ottawa, ON
  • July 29 – Broken Record Bar and Music Room, Fredericton, NB
  • Aug 8 – Harmony House, Hunter River, PEI
  • Aug 9-11 – The Sound of the Waterfront Concert Series, Charlottetown, PEI
  • Aug 26 – Block Party, North Bay, ON
  • Sept 3 – Bluesfest – North Bay, ON
  • Oct 3 – Jazz at the Junction, North Bay, ON
  • Oct 12 – Avenue Road Performance Academy, Toronto, ON

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