Thursday, February 4, 2016

smash it, crash it... whatever it takes.

  !WHOOP!
 !!WHOOP!!
!!!WHOOP!!!

The first single from The Unrequited Love got released out into the world today. Thanks to exclaim.ca for previewing it.

You can hear it HERE.

I am super stoked.  So happy.  Nervous.  I've been hatching this egg for quite some time, and it's a bigg'un.  Some new songs, some old songs, some songs I love by other people.  It's a real mixed bag, and I made it because I want people to get what I do when I'm on stage.  If you're here, reading this, you might already know what that is.  And you might also know it's weird to answer the question of what kind of music it is.

So what am I doing to celebrate?  Y'know, the usual: cultivating myopia by staring into the blue light of my MacBook Air.  I'm composing emails to people that I don't know.  Asking them to weigh in on my album so that I can get a quote or two.  My Grandma Laila told me, "Be careful about asking questions that you might not like the answers to."  I'm wading deep into those waters.  May the critics be kind.

All things aside, The Unrequited Love feels like a great step towards the artist that I want to be. And as I release this album I'm working hard at writing a new album for you.

If you haven't, go listen to "Crashing Through".  And then tell me what you think.  I'll just call my Gran and cry to her if I don't like it.

xo
bp

Monday, January 18, 2016

the return of unrequited love

Carey Shaw Photography
You know what's super exciting? Releasing an album. And guess what? I'm doing that this year. The Unrequited Love is coming out on March 4th. Huzzah! What's more, my sweet band of buddies (the chaps that make up The Unrequited Love) are going out on the road for a mini tour in March.

I've got lots of news to share about the making of this little baby, and I'll be doing so over the coming weeks. Old stories, artwork as it moved along, tunes(!). You'll get it all.

For now, I'm looking forward to getting in a van, and hitting the road to visit some of my favourite joints. You can read about the whole thing here, in this fancy press release.

The dates on the horizon are:

March 3
The Park Theatre
Winnipeg, MB
with Kevin Roy

March 4
The Bassment
Saskatoon, SK
with special guests

March 5
The Artesian
Regina, SK
with Megan Nash

Very happy to share this news with y'all.

xo
bp

Sunday, January 10, 2016

hello to 2016

Me and my pal Dale.
First things first: Happy belated 2016, friends!  It's already a good looking year.  Lots of creative work ahead.  I gots the urge to write, and I'm digging in.

Last year was a big one - for me, for my friends... I got caught up in the whirlwind of activity.  I kicked 2015's ass, and it kicked mine too.  In the end, 2015 and I have settled at being even, with a mutual respect for what we learned from each other. 

I'm getting things back into motion with my first show of the year on Friday.  Blake and I are opening up the 2016 Northern Lights Bluegrass concert series in Saskatoon.  (Check tickets out here.)  I'm so pleased I'm part of their programming, and very excited to be back on stage with my cowboy.

On a related note, here's from our last show of the fall tour that promoted our 7" vinyl.  It's a proud moment from the biggest tour BB and I have ever done – and with a smokin' live band.  I love these guys.  I hope you enjoy too.

xo
bp

Friday, September 4, 2015

five humans, one van.

photo courtesy of Dan Canfield
Friends!

It's our vinyl release day!  Can you believe it?  My 7" with Blake Berglund is officially out in the world.  You can now hear our take on a couple Zachary Lucky songs on iTunes, and we're off and running on the big Western Canadian tour.  Pretty excited to be out promoting a new release again.  We're in good company too.  Zachary himself released a 7" today, as did my dear friend, Mr. David Newberry.  Please take the time to check out what those fine songwriters are putting out in the world.  (I should mention that I've been digging on Newberry's release for a couple of weeks now, and I can say it is fine.)

We started this run of dates off strong with a sold out show at Village Guitar & Amp Co.  And we spent the day leading up to the show visiting media outlets in Saskatoon including CTV, Global and CJWW.  If you missed those early morning performances, you can see them here and here.  (Keep in mind we had a 5:15 AM wake-up call!)  It couldn't have been a better day or a better show.  Lots of new faces, and so much support from our friends and family.  Our hearts were filled after a big night.

If you're wondering where we're at and when, you can check that out on my shows page.  Or you can follow our tracks on Facebook or Twitter.  I just posted a whack of photos to Facebook that you may enjoy.

Thanks to all of you out there who are supporting us by coming to the shows, and listening to the tunes.  Thanks also to Creative Saskatchewan for their generous support of this tour.  We're out to make you proud.

xo
bp

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

full circle

Chris Graham Photography
I think Saskatchewan might be a little sad that the long weekend is over.  It's always bittersweet... such beautiful sunny weather, but there are those little wasps buzzing around your plate of BBQ reminding you that sweet summer is fleeting, and soon will become autumn.

Though if you're blue about that, I think I have something to lift your spirits.  Blake Berglund and I are cooking up lots of activities for the fall.  We've got an announcement of tour dates for September,  the release of our 7" vinyl on September 4th and a new video to enjoy in the meantime.

Blake is putting out our first release from the vinyl to commercial country radio, which is a crazy thing to me.  Everything has come full circle back to me singing "Islands In The Stream" to my dog when I was a toddler.  Country radio is what formed my early understanding of music, and now you can apparently call in to your local country station and say,

"I'd like to hear Blake Berglund and Belle Plaine's song 'Town to Town'."

Will you have to sit on the phone for two hours?  Will you be nervous to hear your voice on air?  Will you be waiting by the radio to record a version through your ghetto box onto a cassette tape?  That, I don't know.

But I sure hope so.

These days are full with tasks, with achievements, and with my deep gratitude for your support.

xo
bp


Wednesday, July 29, 2015

don't let summer pass you by


Hi friends,

I'm doing a favourite thing tomorrow: playing a free show outdoors, with fantastic musician friends.

At 6:30 pm in the Regina city plaza, I'll be singing with a five piece band that includes Jeremy Sauer and Elizabeth Curry, who you know and love. Joining them are Bryce Lewis (Telecaster) and Steve Leidal (drums).  I stole them from Blake Berglund's band. And Blake himself will make an appearance, since you're already probably wondering about that. 

It all happens during the evening farmer's market.  It's a magical and fleeting moment in Regina's summer season when it's warm enough to be outside, there are few bugs and you can buy your supper from a man in a hot dog truck if you so desire.  There are lots of things to be thankful for in life, aren't there?

So don't miss it.  Summer will be gone before you know it. 

BB and I will certainly be singing the song below, which was just released to the world through CBC Saskatchewan on Monday.  Have a listen now, marvel at Bryce's skills on the Telecaster, and then come down to see the whole band knock it out of the park tomorrow.  

xo
bp

Thursday, July 23, 2015

catch up

The Ironwood Stage, Calgary; John Duff, Qmax Photography
Hello dear ones,

It's amazing how fast a month flies by.  I've been keeping very busy since the end of the East Coast tour with various adventures.

Five days after I got home from the east, I was tucked into Blake Berglund's tour van on the road to the Calgary Stampede.  As always, the Stampede delivered.  I was surprised, delighted and disgusted... in equal parts.  It's quite the experience.  And I got much better at singing harmonies.  It was a guerrilla-style, crash course approach to finding the third or fifth or whatever damned note sounded decent, but by the end I was nearly Emmylou Harris.  Sonny Rollins once said that one hour on stage is worth 1000 of practice, and I'd say the man was right.

After a rather rigorous schedule of back-up singing, I returned home to prepare with my band for the Festival of Words in Moose Jaw, SK on July 18th.  I shared the stage at the exquisite Mae Wilson Theatre with Miss Megan Nash.  It was a very special night.  Long to be remembered, and a definite highlight of my career.

The Mae Wilson Theatre; via @BlairWoynarski
As always, there's still lots on the go.  Tomorrow I'm headed up to Saskatoon with Elizabeth to play at a fundraiser for The Neural Health Project.  Saturday will see me at The Gateway Festival singing those harmonies alongside Blake Berglund again.

There's so much to come.  Too much to tell you all at once.  So keep in touch, friends.  I love hearing from you.

xo
bp

Monday, June 22, 2015

farewell, sweet isle.

Hello friends,

I've overridden my desire, and departed beautiful Prince Edward Island. Although a soft landing awaited in Pictou County NS, I was reluctant to say goodbye to the new friends I made at the Festival of Small Halls.

The festival is after my heart.  The venues are in rural locations, and allow for a comfortable environment to meet the people who attend. Many venues are churches with extraordinary architecture and acoustics.  Every one of our shows sold out, which is evidence that there is faith in the programming and their audience is willing to take a chance on acts they're unfamiliar with.  I'm so grateful for the opportunity and will sing praises for Small Halls until I'm invited to return.

Being on the island also allowed me to reconnect with friends from Canoe Cove, PE who I met last summer when I was on tour.  I've been adopted by families across Canada, and it has made for a better tour life.  My Canoe Cove kin, JoDee and Mari, have the rare ability to recharge my introvert batteries and give me a taste of home – a flavour which resembles rhubarb pie.

I have one more week on the East Coast until I return to Saskatchewan.  There's still a few new spots to see, including Cape Breton.  We've all grown fond of Maritimes, and are already planning our return.  Looking forward to New Glasgow, Antigonish, Inverness, Guysborough and Halifax!  I'm anxious to sing for you.

Thanks again to the Saskatchewan Arts Board for their funding of the tour.  I'm so proud to be supported by this historic organization.  It's an honour.

xo
bp

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

tour tunes


Hello friends,

All is well in the land of lupins, sea breezes and mud flats.  We're halfway through the tour, and today we'll make our way to PEI for the delightful Festival of Small Halls.  I've been keeping uncharacteristically on top of the photo evidence, which you can see hereVery thankful for all the media attention we've been getting, and the good people who have booked us, fed us, provided beds and all the kindnesses that make touring enjoyable.  It's been a fun ride.  We'll be back to see our East Coast friends next year for sure.

Before I got on the amazing aeroplane for Halifax on May 28th, I spent the afternoon with my old friend, Brent Nielson.  I met Brent at CBC Saskatchewan when I started singing around Regina.  Brent keeps himself busy with all kinds of projects: his own band Stillhouse Poets, shooting videos and doing sound at Creative City Centre.  The latter two came together recently in a video series he started called "An Empty Room".  He's been busy doing the videos with a host of wonderful artists, and I'm happy that I got to be one  Give the video a watch, and see what great work he does.

And the song is about touring! How appropriate for the times.

Lotsa love from the East Coast.
xo
bp

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

pegs



It's about time that this was shared on my webpage.

I love this video.  The way her mouth goes all sideways.  The straightforward way she sings.  The way her and Dave Barbour share glances.  His solo.  Her dress.

It's perfection, really.

enjoy.
xo
bp