...AND, ANOTHER THING
I've been a fan of Joel Fafard's since reviewing his 1996 release Fierce Warmth, and my interest only grew with the 2003 release Rocking Horse. Sadly I missed a couple of releases in between but that is a reality of following a Saskatchewan performer, the publicity is not always widely available.
Thankfully I have my greedy little hands on ... And Another Thing.
This is certainly the most pleasing of Fafard's works to-date, and I truly enjoyed the two earlier releases I reviewed to start with.
This is also an album which is receiving its share of accolades within the music industry, suggesting Fafard's work is beginning to reach a higher plane in terms of skill. The CD was named Outstanding Instrumental Recording at the 2006 Western Canadian Music Awards, and was a nominee at the 2006 Canadian Folk Music Awards.
That pretty much tells the tale of ...And Another Thing, in the sense that it is an instrumental album, so you best enjoy guitar work to pick this one up, although if you do you will find Fafard can pick with the best of them.
Stylistically the music has a folkish feel. It would not be hard to envision folk, or perhaps a slightly country blues-feel to a set of lyrics for these tunes.
This is definitely an album which brings the overall talent of Fafard into tight focus. The material, and there is a healthy slice of it here, were all composed by Fafard himself, and he produced the CD as well.
The CD begins with 11-cuts which highlight Fafard on guitar, accompanied by Richard Moody on viola and Gilles Fournier on double bass.
Eight additional tracks are guitar solos by Fafard.
All the works are recorded live off the floor at Private Ear Recording in Winnipeg.
Listening to this work, the Yorkton Arts Council should forgo one of its import concerts and simply bring Fafard and company to the Anne Portnuff Theatre. He's that good. In fact, it would be great to see a new series started by the Organization of Saskatchewan Arts Councils (OSAC) highlighting a tour of a few Saskatchewan, home grown stage acts each year. You do not have to come from Alberta or Ontario to be good. But, alas I digress.
Back to Fafard, from the opening tune Auckland Express through cuts such as Sufferin' Socotash, Tricky Trout Tickler and Megan and the Wascana Cyclone, this is a great CD. Well worth searching out at www.joelfafard.com
-- CALVIN DANIELS
- Review first appeared Yorkton This Week newspaper May 2, 2007 - Yorkton, SK. Canada