“There’s no place like home” sings Juno Award winning singer-songwriter Melanie Doane on Ruby Slippers, the opening track from her new album The Emerald City, just released last month.
While a Wizard of Oz theme is apparent, Doane isn’t channelling her inner Dorothy on this fresh set of pop-rock gems.
“The Emerald City is an image we all know,” says Doane. “It means different things to different people, but ultimately it’s the only image I know of that embodies disenchantment and hope at the same time. It’s the shattering of something you believe in, but somehow optimism remains. That’s where I’m coming from with these songs.”
Doane is also coming from back east just to perform for Campbell River at the Tidemark Theatre on Friday at 7:30.
“The Tidemark and 99.7 The River are thrilled to be able to bring her to town,” says the Tidemark’s Gord Jaques. “She has gone through a lot of changes recently and her new album is a reflection of those. Melanie is one of those artists that we west coasters hear all the time; we just don’t recognize the name.”
The product of a musical family, Halifax-born Doane has spent a large portion of the last 15 years on the road supporting her numerous solo albums. While her debut album Shakespearean Fish received critical praise and garnered a loyal following, the release of Adam’s Rib in 1998 brought Doane’s music to a mainstream audience, brilliantly showcasing Doane’s flair as both an instrumentalist and songwriter, featuring punchy-relevant lyrics laced with strong musical wit. What followed the album’s release is nothing short of extraordinary: multiple top 40 singles, a Juno Award for Best New Artist, a Canadian Radio Award for Most Charted Rock Artist, over 200 shows in Canada and the U.S. with the likes of Jann Arden, Sarah McLachlan’s Lilith Fair, and Great Big Sea, and a Gold record award.
Since Adam’s Rib, Doane has pursued her career independent of the label system. In 2001, she recorded and released the fan cherished Melvin Live, an album showcasing her energetic and diverse live show. Her third studio album You Are What You Love followed in 2003, preceded by the lead single Still Desire You, which spanned multiple formats and eventually went Top 5.
A Thousand Nights followed in 2008, preceded by the albums lead single Songbird with Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy which reached Top 5 on the iTunes Country singles chart. The album was inspired by Doane’s experiences with motherhood and featuring an assortment of original tunes and classic covers re-arranged as lullabies. That album generated prominent song placements in hit shows like CBC’s Being Erica and CBS’s Flashpoint, and celebrated Melanie’s softer side musically and lyrically.
In contrast, The Emerald City feels like a return to form, recalling the edgier style of her breakthrough Gold-selling record Adam’s Rib while tactfully showcasing Doane’s multifaceted skills as a vocalist, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist (she plays guitar, violin, piano, ukulele, mandolin, and bass).
Get your tickets now for Melanie Doane, April 29, 7:30 p.m. at the Tidemark Theatre. Tickets are only $27Adults, $22 members, $15 Students and $5 eyeGO (grades 9-12) and are available at the Tidemark Ticket Centre 10 am to 4 pm, Tue. through Sat. or Charge-by-Phone at 287-PINK (7465) or 1-800-994-0555. Tickets are also available On-Line at www.tidemarktheatre.com