Teme-Augama Anishnabai singer-songwriter David Laronde is doing a series of shows around the upcoming Folk Music Ontario conference, where he’ll showcase twice on Oct. 14 and 15.
Before that, he’ll play the Gordon Lightfood Performance Hall in Toronto on the 12, and he’ll close the mini tour with a gig at the Classic Theatre in Cobalt on the 28.
David, who lives in Temagami, ON, performs contemporary roots, folk, rock, and blues and is a recent nominee for the Performing Arts-Johann Metcalf Award.
He just wrapped up an Eastern Canadian tour to promote his latest of three albums, I Know I Can Fly.
David’s debut album, Right City Wrong Town, was nominated for the Aboriginal People’s Choice 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 No.9 on the Indigenous Music Countdown. Given this history, audiences already know that his storytelling is sharp, and his music is uplifting.
“The message in my music simple,” David said. “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.”
The tour will give people a chance get to know the latest album, a quietly powerful meditation on the perseverance of loving relationships and personal freedom. It features crisp acoustic guitar, compelling vocals, and gentle but captivating production throughout.
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 US penitentiary for the past 47 years after being wrongly convicted of killing two FBI agents at the 1975 shootout on Pine Ridge Reservation, SD.
“Right Here For You” is about a teenage mother giving up her baby at birth and reuniting some 50 years later.
And “One Last Time” is about the aftermath of teen suicide.
“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 said.