Two new record­ings from Eng­land’s Breeze & Wil­son

New sum­mer step dance school to open in Mabou

Cape Breton Post - - ARTS/ENTERTAINMENT - Dan Mac­Don­ald Dan Mac­Don­ald is a for­mer In­ver­ness County na­tive who has been in­volved with the Cape Bre­ton and East Coast mu­sic scene for over 40 years. creignish_hills@hot­mail.com

I’m go­ing to take the time now to catch up on some of the CDs that have been sit­ting on my desk for the past few months. I’ll start with a pair from some Bri­tish friends who were in Cape Bre­ton for a show this past sum­mer.

I first heard Breeze & Wil­son on CBC Ra­dio’s “Week­end Morn­ings” show, hosted at that time by the late Stan Carew. I first met them when they played the Stan Rogers Fes­ti­val with Stan in 2008 and quickly be­came a fan. Their in­tro­spec­tive songs, cou­pled with their great in­stru­men­tal work and their some­what un­usual har­monies, gave them a dis­tinc­tive sound that caught a lot of at­ten­tion. Breeze & Wil­son have been tour­ing the Mar­itimes for most of the past decade, in­clud­ing sev­eral stops in Syd­ney and last year’s stop in Iona.

Their most re­cent re­lease is ti­tled “Heart­breaker” and re­ally high­lights their “re­laxed” style of mu­sic. Ten of the 11 cuts come from their own pens, with the ex­cep­tion (“Sailor’s Song”) writ­ten by Stan Carew.

I re­ally like the ti­tle cut, and can eas­ily re­flect on the sen­ti­ments voiced in “Wing And A Prayer,” but I’m most taken by “I’ll Never Drown In You.” It’s the story of a man’s at­trac­tion to a beau­ti­ful woman, who knows her beauty but has lit­tle else to of­fer. Af­ter all, “if thoughts are made of wa­ter, I’ll never drown in you.” Some­how that says it all.

The se­cond CD is called “Ret­ro­spec­tive” and con­tains work from their first two record­ings as well as a pair of pre­vi­ously un­re­leased songs recorded live with Stan Carew, Neil Dal­ton and Rick Jones. While some of the cuts are penned by Breeze & Wil­son, the ma­jor­ity came from as var­ied a lot as Len­non & McCart­ney, Lyle Lovett and Del­bert McClin­ton.

They get quite “bluesy” on songs such as “Cold In­side” and “Am I Wrong?” They do great credit to Len­non & McCart­ney’s “I Will” and their heart­felt ver­sion of Richard Thomp­son’s “Dim­ming of The Day” is one of the best I’ve ever heard. The CD even in­cludes Har­riet’s Song, the orig­i­nal piece that Stan Carew first played on CBC that started their con­nec­tion with Canada’s East Coast.

Both Gra­ham Breeze and Toby Wil­son are su­perb mu­si­cians and both CDs re­flect this. Sprin­kle in some Kim Dunn on “Heart­breaker” and Carew, Dal­ton and Jones on “Ret­ro­spec­tive” and you have a great mix. These record­ings are likely hard to come by on this side of the wa­ter but check out Breeze & Wil­son on YouTube or go to their web­site and or­der from there. And this year, when they wan­der through, take an evening and en­joy them live.

So, you’d like to learn to step dance? Here’s an op­por­tu­nity for you to learn from some of the best at the Mabou School of Cape Bre­ton Step Dance run­ning from July 24 to July 28. The school is un­der the di­rec­tion of noted dancer and fid­dler Melody Cameron and will fea­ture a good cross-sec­tion of Cape Bre­ton dancers, mu­si­cians and guest speak­ers. If you have any­body who is se­ri­ous about learn­ing to dance or im­prov­ing their skills, this looks like the per­fect way to do it. If you want more in­for­ma­tion you can check out the web page at cape­bre­ton­step­dance.com.

Com­ing up: Old Tri­an­gle, Syd­ney Live mu­sic from Wed­nes­day to Satur­day. Blue Mist Tav­ern, Lit­tle Bras d’Or Every Thurs­day evening Tra­di­tional fid­dle mu­sic ses­sion. High­land Arts Theatre, Syd­ney

Feb. 8-11, 8 PM – “Crim­i­nals In Love”

Feb. 14 & 18, 7:30 p.m. - “100 Years of Song (Si­na­tra - A Cel­e­bra­tion)” - Paul Gatchell and Friends. Mem­ber­tou Trade & Con­ven­tion Cen­tre Wed­nes­days, 6 p.m. - Kiju’s Restau­rant: Celtic Ser­e­nade Jam Ses­sions.

Thurs­days, 6 p.m. - Kiju’s Restau­rant: Live & Lo­cal.

Fri­day, Feb. 10, 9 p.m. - Matt Min­gle­wood’s 70th Birth­day Party & CD Re­lease.

Tues­day, Feb. 14, 8 p.m. - Yuk Yuk’s On Tour.

Sun­day, Feb. 19, noon - 2017 Wed­ding Show.

Savoy Theatre Fe­bru­ary 10, 11,14,17-18, March 3, 7 p.m. – “Are You Be­ing Served CB?” (Din­ner Theatre).

Satur­day, March 4, 7 p.m. – “Salem 1692”

Tues­day, March 14, 7 p.m. – “Celtic Ser­e­nade (The Con­cert)” - Don­nie Camp­bell and Friends. Frolic & Folk Pub, Iona Feb. 11 & 18, 5 p.m. - Ceilidh. St. Mark’s United Church,

Port Hawkes­bury

Satur­day, Feb. 11, 7 p.m. - The Cape Bre­ton Fid­dler’s As­so­ci­a­tion. Bre­ton Brew­ing Com­pany, 364 Keltic Drive, Cox­heath Satur­day, Feb. 11, 8 p.m. Anita Mac­Don­ald, Ben Miller.

Satur­day, Feb. 25, 8 p.m. Buddy Mac­Don­ald, Cyril MacPhee. Syd­ney Mines Fire­men’s

Cen­tre Satur­day, Feb. 11, 9 PM Valen­tine’s Round and Square Dance:

Kyle & Shamus MacNeil, Howie Mac­Don­ald, Kim­berly Fraser, Aaron Lewis Triple Crown Bistro, 100

Kings Road, Syd­ney Tues­day, Feb. 14, 7 p.m. - Spe­cial Valen­tine’s Show: Aaron Lewis and the Keltic Drive Band. Celtic Mu­sic In­ter­pre­tive

Cen­tre, Judique Thurs­day, Feb. 23, 7:30 p.m. - Scot­land’s Paul McKenna in Con­cert.

Breeze & Wil­son’s Ret­ro­spec­tive in­cludes mu­sic from their first two re­leases.

SUB­MIT­TED IMAGES

Heart­breaker, the most re­cent CD from Breeze & Wil­son.

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