John Southworth is one of Canada’s most distinctive and iconoclastic music artists, respected for forging ahead with his own unique brand of music-making, while garnering high praise for his inimitable contribution. His most recent and current release is Niagara (Tin Angel Records), a magnum opus double record featuring a Canadian and American side. To date Niagara has received overwhelmingly rich critical praise, including album of the year 2014 accolades by Rolling Stone Germany and Canada’s National Post. In the previous five years, Southworth traveled a rogue whirlwind, releasing the cassette-only SPIRITUAL WAR cassette tape - a collection of modern peasant songs recorded on a shoebox-size Sony cassette corder model TCM-939, an anti-record of actual rejected jingles (Failed Jingles for Bank of America & other U.S. Corporations), the grave and austere synth-rock of 2009’s Mama Tevatron quickly followed by Human Cry’s stunning, elegiac balladry, the grand delusional show-tunes of West Coast Persona 98 EP, and Easterween, a surreal cabaret-operetta featuring the Klezmer-Stravinskyesque arrangements of Juno-winning composer-bassist-cellist Andrew Downing. Other notorious and distinctly Southworthian albums preceding the aforementioned, include the miniature, dream-soaked songs of The Pillowmaker, the child hymned Yosemite, and his orchestral debut Mars Pennsylvania, considered ”the most original Canadian debut record since Mary Margaret O’Hara’s ‘Miss America’” - Exclaim Magazine. His songs have been covered by or written for Canadian artists Sarah Slean, Buck 65, Martin Tielli (Rheostatics), Veda Hille, Hawksley Workman and Jully Black. Southworth has recently authored Daydreams for Night, a children’s book with illustrations by New York artist David Ouimet, published in February 2015 on Simply Read Books. A key collaborator with Toronto’s Art of Time Ensemble, he performs regularly with his band ‘The South Seas’, featuring some of Toronto’s top avant-improv musicians including Jean Martin (drums), Andrew Downing (bass), Thom Gill (guitar), Justin Haynes (guitar), Craig Harley (piano) and Felicity Williams (vocal). He makes his own videos.
John Southworth Singer / Songwriter
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