VICTORIA BAND CAPTURING FEELINGS OF NEWFOUNDLANDERS
VICTORIA, NL — A band from Victoria is having a big impact on homesick Newfoundlanders.
Driftwood Cross, a three-piece band based out of Victoria, has been together for about five years, consisting of Larry Baldwin performing as lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist, Hannah Lovoie contributing backup vocals and Bob Tetford manning lead guitar.
The trio’s most recent single, “My Newfoundland Home,” has widened its audience to people far outside the province’s borders.
Baldwin spoke with the Compass about the new song and the significant impact it’s had on the track’s target audience – Newfoundlanders who have moved out of the province for work.
“I was talking with someone (who was) retiring, and was home for a holiday, but was preparing to go back to Alberta. To him, it seemed like Alberta was home – and this is a person who had been in Alberta for 25 or 30 years – but he found himself missing Newfoundland, where he was born and raised,” said Baldwin.
“He told me it was like the ocean was calling him to come home, and it turned out his wife felt the same way, so after they retired that was their plan. I said
to myself, ‘well now, what a great song that would make,’ and I got to writing not long after that.”
Baldwin first started writing the song in 2015. It took several years of putting off the recording session before Driftwood Cross took the song to the studio.
Baldwin said he’s actually happy they waited, saying he, Tetford, and Lavoie have grown a lot as a band over the last three years and have a stronger connection as a group in 2018 than they did in 2015.
The group got together with Derrick Vaters in Victoria to officially record the single, which they released via YouTube in early March.
Since then, Baldwin said he and the rest of Driftwood Cross have received a fair amount of feedback from not only their core audience, but also plenty of Newfoundlanders who left their home province to work, specifically in the western reaches of Canada such as Alberta where many Newfoundlanders go to find work on large-scale job sites.
“The song talks about your time out west and your retirement, and how you can never really let go of your Newfoundland roots. It’s all about how a lot of people, whether they realize it early or later in their careers, tend to get pretty homesick, and the call a lot of them feel to finally get back home,” said Baldwin.
“From what I can see, those words, those lyrics, they’re striking a chord in people. A lot of people have told me how it really made them think of home, and even made some people homesick. That seems to be the general reception, but people have loved it so far, and that’s the main thing.”
While it was Baldwin who originally wrote “My Newfoundland Home,” he was sure to note it’s since become not just his song, but Driftwood Cross’ song. He told the Compass he’s happy with the final product and its smooth transition from paper to the studio.
Baldwin said he would like other up-and-coming musicians to follow their goals like he, Lavoie, and Tetford have. He says there are plenty of avenues for young musicians to create the music they spend so long dreaming about, despite the common misconception they have to leave the province, much like the people he references in the song have, to see their musical goals fulfilled.
“I’m just very happy with the outcome so far, and hopefully (the song) can reach out to even more people in the future. There are plenty of people out there who miss Newfoundland, and I think our song really speaks to how they feel.”
Driftwood Cross is a three-piece band consisting of Bob Tetford (left), Hannah Lavoie (center), and Larry Baldwin.