Peter Noel re­al­izes dream with new CD

Fresh­wa­ter, Con­cep­tion Bay na­tive re­leases de­but al­bum “In Case We For­get”

The Compass - - News - BY AN­DREW ROBIN­SON editor@cb­n­com­pass.ca

Some of them are bet­ter than I thought they could be from just col­lab­o­rat­ing with all the mu­si­cians in­volved and tak­ing their ideas.

MOUNT PEARL, NL — Mu­sic was a big part of Peter G. Noel’s life grow­ing up in Fresh­wa­ter, Con­cep­tion Bay.

Ev­ery­one in the fam­ily could play an in­stru­ment or sing, and Peter turned out no dif­fer­ent from the rest.

But de­spite the fact he’s been per­form­ing mu­sic live in bands since he was a teen and writ­ing songs from a young age, he’s never got­ten around to mak­ing an al­bum of his own.

All that changed this fall with the re­lease of “In Case We For­get,” an 11-song CD he recorded in St. John’s.

“It’s one of those things that though mu­sic has al­ways been a pas­sion, but it’s also been part­time,” he told the Com­pass dur­ing

Reg­i­ment in North Africa. He ul­ti­mately spent three years over­seas. The fi­nal track, “Our Vet­eran,” was in­spired by his dad’s ex­pe­ri­ences.

While Peter has lived out­side the Car­bon­ear area for many years, he re­mains in­volved with Royal Cana­dian Le­gion Branch 23 in Car­bon­ear. His own ex­pe­ri­ences with the Le­gion in­spired two other songs on the al­bum — “Sons of the Fa­thers” (a piece of his­tor­i­cal fic­tion that name checks bat­tle­grounds where New­found­lan­ders fought) and “For Matthew Brazil” (about a well-known First World War sol­dier from Spa­niard’s Bay).

“From the early days, I had those songs and I used to think about some­day do­ing an al­bum, and very early on, the whole con­cept of “In Case We For­get” be­ing the al­bum was in my brain,” said Peter. “I think

held on to her abil­i­ties even as Alzheimer’s dis­ease rav­aged her mind.

“Right up to the very end, she could still play and sing,” Peter said of his mom, who died in 2009, 11 years af­ter Roy Noel passed.

Late last year, Noel found him­self unem­ployed fol­low­ing pro­vin­cial govern­ment bud­get cuts. With new­found spare time on his hands, he de­cided to go into a St. John’s stu­dio with Rick Hol­lett and Kevin Pin­horn, the two men be­hind Record Time Pro­duc­tions. With a slew of great mu­si­cians to work with, Peter’s songs were fleshed out with elec­tric and acous­tic in­stru­men­ta­tion.

Stylis­ti­cally, the mu­sic cov­ers a lot of ground, with pop and rock in­flu­ences shin­ing through on many songs. There are also hints of roots-rock, tra­di­tional folk and coun­try scat­tered through­out the al­bum, with Peter’s strong singing voice tak­ing its place in ev­ery ar­range­ment.

“We started, I think, in Fe­bru­ary,” he said. “We spent a num­ber of months in the stu­dio put­ting ev­ery­thing to­gether, and here it is.”

He’s pleased with the fi­nal re­sult.

“The songs are cer­tainly what I had con­jured up in my mind, and you don’t re­ally know un­til you ac­tu­ally start put­ting them to­gether with live mu­si­cians … Some of them are bet­ter than I thought they could be from just col­lab­o­rat­ing with all the mu­si­cians in­volved and tak­ing their ideas.”

To help pro­mote the newly re­leased CD, Peter will per­form a home­town gig along­side gui­tarist Paul Mon­a­han (who co-pro­duced the al­bum with Peter and Hol­lett) and his brother Kerry Noel. That show hap­pens Thurs­day, Oct. 5 at the Royal Cana­dian Le­gion in Car­bon­ear. Ad­mis­sion is free, though do­na­tions for the Le­gion’s Poppy Fund will be ac­cepted. The Car­bon­ear Le­gion is also sell­ing copies of his CD.

“There was never any ques­tion as to where I was go­ing to have (the launch),” he said with a laugh. “They fig­ured that out for me. The Car­bon­ear branch has been ex­tremely sup­port­ive.”

“In Case We For­get” is Peter G. Noel’s de­but al­bum. His nephew, Bradley For­ward, cre­ated the cover art.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Peter G. Noel sits be­hind a mi­cro­phone at Record Time Pro­duc­tions in St. John’s.

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