Lethbridge Herald - - FRONT PAGE - Al Bee­ber LETH­BRIDGE HER­ALD

Fans will hear McLauchlan clas­sics as well as songs from his lat­est al­bum

The word “icon” is one that is used of­ten to de­scribe mu­si­cal lu­mi­nar­ies whose work has touched the souls of their au­di­ences.

It’s a word that de­serves to be used as a de­scrip­tion of Mur­ray McLauchlan, a Cana­dian in­sti­tu­tion whose var­ied pro­fes­sional life has in­cluded ca­reers as a singer/song­writer, ra­dio host, ac­tor and even com­mer­cial pilot.

McLauchlan, who last ap­peared in Leth­bridge two years ago with the Cana­dian su­per­group Lunch at Allen’s fea­tur­ing Cindy Church, Mark Jor­dan and Ian Thomas, re­turns to the newly ren­o­vated Yates Cen­tre on Oct. 25 for an in­ti­mate show backed up by bassist Vic­tor Bate­man.

The show will fea­ture the songs fans have come to know and love the Scot­tish-born McLauchlan for — “Farmer’s Song,” “Whis­per­ing Rain,” and “Down by The Henry Moore.”

It will also give au­di­ences a chance to hear McLauchlan’s lat­est works from his 2017 al­bum “Love Can’t Tell Time,” a col­lec­tion of mu­sic from the so­called Amer­i­can Song­book and tunes he co-wrote that fit the theme of the record­ing, that love can be found at all ages.

The show here is part of a busy fall sched­ule for McLauchlan who has 15 tour dates of his own be­fore join­ing the Lunch at Allen’s crew for an­other 10 be­fore Christ­mas.

McLauchlan’s lat­est al­bum was recorded live off the floor, harken­ing back to the era of Frank Si­na­tra and other clas­sic artists, he said in a tele­phone in­ter­view Tues­day.

“I’m a great be­liever in record­ing live,” said the 70-yearold McLauchlan, who grew up in Toronto af­ter im­mi­grat­ing to Canada with his fam­ily when he was five years old.

“You lose the soul” if an artist spends too much time record­ing, he said, re­fer­ring to the pop­u­lar­ity of the Rolling Stone’s record “Ex­ile on Main Street” which was par­tially recorded in a rented French villa.

“My feel­ing of a record­ing is the pic­ture of Frank Si­na­tra and an or­ches­tra record­ing live in a stu­dio,” he said.

For his 19th stu­dio al­bum, McLauchlan per­formed on an old 1938 Hensell gui­tar he dis­cov­ered hang­ing on a wall at a mu­sic store in Graven­hurst, Ont. He played a few Robert John­son licks on it and was sold.

“It’s the most won­der­ful record­ing gui­tar,” said McLauchlan who since has added a 1934 Gib­son Arch­top to his col­lec­tion.

His new al­bum fea­tures stan­dards by the likes of Si­na­tra as well as those co-writes.

“It’s a col­lec­tion of songs I love to play. I just went in with the up­right bass (played by Bate­man) and just played the songs,” singing them, he said, into an old-fash­ioned tube-style mi­cro­phone.

The co-writes were all specif­i­cally writ­ten for a mu­si­cal project that never panned out, those songs which have now been given a new life.

The mu­sic of the Amer­i­can Song­book, a term he makes clear he isn’t a fan of, “is dis­guised sim­plic­ity,” said McLauchlan, who started his ca­reer play­ing Toronto cof­fee­houses in his teens.

Af­ter a brief stint in New York City, McLauchlan re­turned to Canada and be­gan hav­ing chart suc­cess with tunes such as “Child’s Song” and “Farmer’s Song” which won a Juno in 1973.

“Love Can’t Tell Time,” he said, is about find­ing love in the golden years.

“It can hap­pen any­time,” said McLauchlan, who sub­scribes to the phi­los­o­phy that “the process of get­ting through life is an en­rich­ing process.”

Too of­ten, he sug­gested, ag­ing be­comes “a thing of den­i­gra­tion. . .it’s time to start knock­ing down the si­los.”

Age and even heart surgery a few years ago cer­tainly haven’t slowed down McLauchlan, who is a mem­ber of the Or­der of Canada, an au­thor, a painter and un­til his heart is­sues, a com­mer­cial pilot who flew ev­ery­thing from F-18s to Piper Cubs and spent time work­ing as a bush pilot in North­ern On­tario, based out of Red Lake. Fans may re­call a TV spe­cial in which he flew a Cessna float plane across Canada.

Be­tween his gui­tars and pi­ano and Bate­man’s bass, McLauchlan said the duo will sound like a sym­phony when they hit the stage.

“We have us cov­ered mu­si­cally,” he said, jok­ing that fans will re­al­ize he can play gui­tar when he breaks into the new mu­sic.

Tick­ets for the 7:30 p.m. show are $52.50 at the Ticket Cen­tre lo­ca­tions, 403-329-7328.

Fol­low al­bee­bHer­ald on Twit­ter.

Photo con­trib­uted

Mur­ray McLauchlan per­forms fan favourites and mu­sic from his lat­est al­bum on Oct. 25 at the Yates Cen­tre.

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