One Night Two Hearts Love Was In the Air

Lisa Hartt.jpg

Submitted by Cashbox Canada
Photo: Lisa Hartt

Photo Credit: Fiona Lawson Studio 22 Photography

With the dwindling number of live music venues in Toronto and GTA, the Taste of Colombia El Salon Room in Oakville, Ontario is a beacon of light on the darkening landscape. Much Music VeeJay and celebrity icon Michael Williams and his Michael Williams Presents shows are providing a listening room atmosphere for new acts and established artists to stage mini concerts. The venue serves coffee, some of the best coffee on the planet by the way, to a seated audience of around 50 music lovers.

On the Sunday before Valentine’s Day, two veterans of the Montreal music scene now living in Ontario, Lisa Hartt and Don Graham celebrated the night of love with a concert aptly called ‘One Night, Two Hearts’.  Both artists performed solo shows of love songs to celebrate the  occasion with Hartt adding bagpipes to her set on a couple of songs.

Don GrahamDon GrahamThe night started with Don Graham and the title track of his album “ A Willing Heart”and his set contained some new tunes he’d written including “ Everything About Her Feels like Home” as well as a  version of the old standard “ The Glory of Love” to end his set.

Lisa Hartt then took the stage with her Uncle and bagpiper Leonard Ferdon to sing an homage to the musical folks we lost in the last little while with a moving version of “Going Home”. The pipes also lent a moving touch to Lisa’s heartfelt “Amazing Grace”.  In celebration of Canada 150 Lisa added some  Canadiana with Leonard Cohen’s “Tower of Song” and a beautiful  a song for her late brother Christopher called “Don’t Tell Me How I Feel”, a tune that was co-written with Don Graham.

The night ended with Lisa doing her version of Solomon Burke’s “None Of Us Is Free” joined by Graham as a finale.

Leonard Ferdon, Michael Williams, Lisa Hartt, Don Graham, Gary Richardson and Sandy Graham.Leonard Ferdon, Michael Williams, Lisa Hartt, Don Graham, Gary Richardson and Sandy Graham.Former Much Music VeeJay Michael Williams hosted the sold out night and deserves praise for ensuring that performers still have a viable venue to play their  music without having to pass a tip jar around. Bravo Michael.

Don Graham summed up the night, “It was a great night, as always at Taste of Colombia and I want to thank Michael for providing the venue and Sandy Graham from EMG for taking care of the promotion and planning of the show. Couldn’t have done it without those two. And to all the folks who come to these shows, they are great. I think that was my 4th or 5th time playing there and everytime has been memorable. Thanks to all who came out and supported us.”

And Lisa Hartt said “I am still so high on the warm feelings that were generated on that night. It was transcendent for me as my voice has never been stronger or truer and as I am more mature now the songs are all so meaningful , funny, quirky and just plain exciting to sing. My Uncle Leonard Ferdon's fireside pipes on “Going Home” and “Amazing Grace” just set up my set so well with truth and emotion ringing out. Honestly, I feel like this is a new phase for me and as all my heroes leave the planet I am grateful for this new surge of energy and the desire and commitment to share the wisdom I have gleaned over the 50 odd years I have been writing and performing, sometimes in the shadows and sometimes in the bright lights of fame. I am now comfortable in my own skin and that about says it all. I love to sing and play for you all and hope to keep doing it right to the end.”

Long live live music!