Jeremy Fisher

Over the past few years, we have been introduced to a great Canadian musician by the name of Jeremy Fisher.  We met Jeremy when he was living in Vancouver, and were instantly immersed in his song writing which moved through super catchy guitar rhythms and springy lyrics to flowing finger picking and thoughtful melodies.  With a harmonica weaving in through his words, he incites reminders of Bob Dylan, but his ability to work beyond any one style of songwriting is strongly evident throughout his variety of albums spanning the past ten years.

To support his 2001 independent album, Back Porch Spirituals, Jeremy spent six months touring from Seattle, across Canada to Halifax, Nova Scotia by bicycle.  The tour, dubbed “One Less Tourbus”, pedaled 7500 kilometres, included 30 performances, and worked with the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy to raise funds for promoting access to bicycle transport and education for girls in Africa.  Since then, he has recorded Let It Shine, his first album on a major label (Sony BMG Music Canada), released in 2004, and Goodbye Blue Monday, with fellow Canadian Hawksley Workman, released in 2007 by his new record label, Aquarius Records.   A home-made video for the song “Cigarette” from this album has been viewed over two million times on YouTube, and includes a claymation cigarette filmed with stop animation.  Jeremy has created and filmed many of his own music videos, putting an amazing amount of energy into these works of art, like the Lite Bright animation of his newest release, Come Fly Away, from the album Flood (2010).  At the eighth annual Hamilton Music Awards in November, 2011, Jeremy won album of the year, as well as being named male artist of the year and songwriter of the year.  He also won the award for best music video for a self-produced video he made to promote his song Shine A Little Light.

On stage, Jeremy is a juke box of music.  His stage presence invokes Arlo Guthrie type mid-song dialogue, where he embarks on stories or expresses thoughts while rolling through the music, sometimes getting off track and light-heartedly bringing himself back again, with ease and with a comfortable connection to the audience.  And while his albums are full of layers of instruments that he plays mostly himself and layers in recordings, his stage set-up is simply him, his guitar and a harmonica.  The fullness of each song is strongly present, or at least, for me, the extra instrumentation that I hear in his recordings comes through in my head while listening to the foundation of the songs… but it is really not necessary.  The songs he writes and plays stand alone as whole songs.  We went to listen to him play once again on Salt Spring Island, where he was playing with Aidan Knight as a double bill for raising funds and awareness for Velo Village, a festival and gathering that celebrates rural cycling, bringing diverse cycling communities together to address common challenges, share rural mobility solutions and enjoy cycle-themed art, music, performance and family events.  It is being held June 21-23, on Salt Spring Island, BC-   http://velovillage.ca/.

Recently, Jeremy has undertaken yet more diverse projects: he started his own animated web series, “For Real with Jeremy Fisher,” and has created music videos for artists like Xavier Rudd, Hannah Georgas and Hawksley Workman. He also founded The Malahat Revue; an ensemble that includes fellow Canadian pop masters Said the Whale, Hannah Georgas and Aidan Knight. The collective toured British Columbia on bicycle over summer 2010, keeping in line with Jeremy’s values of living and touring in a low impact way.  Their final destination that summer was to an enthusiastic crowd at the Vancouver Folk Fest.

For more information and music links, take a moment at  http://www.myspace.com/jeremyfisher and enjoy the continuing projects of Jeremy Fisher.

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