Kevin Head ‘Live’

Kevin Head - Cashbox Cover Sept. 6.jpg

Submitted by Sandy Graham

In this current age of auto tune and ‘we’ll fix it in the mix’ it is refreshing to hear a live album, recorded ‘off the floor’ with an audience enjoying a true singer/songwriter and talented musician offering all original tunes.

The opening track (Was That) ‘Your Heart or Mine’ has an infectious hook, all tied up in an offering of clichés (falling through the cracks, hidden up a sleeve, if it fits then wear it, howling at the moon, reading between the lines) a little reminiscent of Dr. Hook, with great piano offerings by Cam Schaefer.

‘What Can I Say’ shows off the vocal talents of Head, and is blues at its best, while ‘Cheap Talk & Jive’ has a cynical undertone, moving it along with strong percussion with such a quiet audience you forget it is a live recording.

One of the strongest songs on the CD, ‘The Arrow’ has Kevin Head going back to his early roots of folk days, playing the Montreal circuit. Loosely based on a personal experience, the storyline keeps you hooked to the whole song from start to finish. ‘Thanks Hank’ takes its place on this CD as the first song ever written by this Canadian songwriter; honouring Hank Williams and the influence he had on a young boy, wanting his own ‘big day’ in the music world.

‘Saturday Night in South Margarree’ captures the feel of the Maritimes and the ceilidhs that happen in small towns on the East Coast. ‘Good as Gold’ is a love song in the truest sense, with an innocence to try again for old hearts willing to try again, ‘Laying It On The Line’ Head says ‘is a story someone told me in a bar’ that has an early Jackson Browne feel to it, with clear, clean vocal harmonies blending with the sweet voice of Vanessa Burnett. ‘Old Friends’ is the bittersweet story of love lost, found and lost again.

The final track on the CD, ‘Backyard’ is a swing-style tune that sums up the style of Kevin Head, giving an inside look at a musician’s time on the road, and the fact that ‘everyone needs a backyard to come home to’, showing off the strength of the backup band, with Bob Arlidge on bass and Jak Thrasher on percussion, once again Cam Schaefer rounding out the sound of this live recording.  The video of this song (originally entitled ‘Everyone Needs A Backyard to Return To’) captures the magic of this perfomer and his easy way of shining on stage.

Kevin Head is no stranger to the touring circuit, having tried his hand at theatre both as a musical director and actor. He has performed shows with Valdy, Charlie Major, The Rankins and Gowan to name a few, and was the opening act on a cross-Canada tour for Chris DeBurgh.

His Canadian roots had him living in Montreal for many years, moving to the East Coast, then raising a family in Ottawa, finally settling into Kingston, Ontario, where he plays consistently as a solo act and as a duo with ‘Head Over Heels’, performing and teaching, living rurally, planting trees, collecting old Volvos and ‘howling at the moon.

A great CD for a music lover’s collection, Kevin Head LIVE CD is available at:
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