Amelia Curran

Newfoundland’s Amelia Curran is performing in Peterborough in March as part of Folk Under the Clock’s 29th season. In 2000 she released her first CD “Barricade” after a stint as a busker. She followed it up with “Trip Down Little Road” in 2001 and then “Lullabies for Barflies” in 2002. In 2006 she caught the ear of Six Shooter Records and released “War Brides” to Canadian and European audiences. In 2009 the rubber really hit the road with the release of “Hunter, Hunter” which would go on to win a Juno for Roots and Traditional Album of the Year. Since then the industry has truly welcomed her comparing her songwriting to that of the great Leonard Cohen. Her latest CD “They Promised You Mercy” was released late in 2015 and she’s been out performing the new songs and spreading the word ever since. I caught up with her when she gave me a call and right on schedule I may add. Though she wasn’t too talkative it seemed she had things on her mind…

Mb: Boom. Right on the dot 1’oclock. I bet you don’t miss many stage calls.
Amelia: Not late to the stage. Telephone calls though.. my natural enemy. [laughs]
Mb: So you’re coming to Peterborough and playing Market Hall on the 20th. Have you been through this area before?
Amelia: Very rarely. We just played in Tamworth, which is more the Kingston area I guess.
Mb: I see on your site, you have 10 dates this month, back to back… Do you tour a lot or is this a short run of dates?
Amelia: This is a little run, but I’m on the road, sort of constantly myself. These dates with the band we do it twice a year.
Mb: So you go out solo a lot?
Amelia: Ya.
Mb: So do you like the stage more than the studio.. or?
Amelia: That’s always the thing, isn’t it? I mean, you want to be in the studio when you’re on the road and you want to be on the road when you’re in the studio! [laughs]
Mb: Do you like making records?
Amelia: Ya, of course! It’s great!
Mb: What’s the recording process for you? Do you have everything ready to go when you hit the studio or do you create a lot when you’re there?
Amelia: I’m writing all the time so I try to have the arrangements. Tape is cheap but time is not. I don’t know, I always try to shake it up a little bit. I don’t like to repeat the experience. I like to try different things every time.
Mb: Like?
Amelia: Well last time it was Michael Philip (Wojewoda). I handed the reins over completely and he produced that record head to toe and I just wrote the songs. I was really thinking “If I only do my job and no other job, what would that be like?” And that was that experience and I’ve never done that before.
Mb: Allow someone else to shape the sound. Are you happy with the result?
Amelia: Ya, completely! You can hear me on the record but you can also hear Michael.
Mb: I noticed the difference in the sound from this CD to earlier ones. It’s a bit more “commercial.”
Amelia: Ya for sure. Michael is known for the “wall of sound” but in a good way.
Mb: So what’s happening today? Enjoying some time off or….
Amelia: I’m flying to Nashville in about an hour.
Mb: Well, appreciate the call! I’m sure you have a few things to do before you go.
Amelia: A busy day!
Mb: So what’s happening in Nashville?
Amelia: I’m going down to see what all the fuss is about. Doing some writing sessions and getting out of the extreme cold for a little while!
Mb: Make some new contacts, find some new inspirations, warm your hands…
Amelia: If that’s what all the fuss is about, then ya!
Mb: I see that March takes you right across the country performing. Hopefully the weather is good for you…
Amelia: It means February is gone, so it’s hopeful. But it’s still bloody winter isn’t it!
Mb: So when being interviewed, what do you like to talk about? Sometimes it’s like pulling teeth to get someone to talk about their music, but mention politics and “look out”.. you?
Amelia: Gosh, I don’t know. I think of interviews as I’m just a willing participant. [laughs]
Mb: Just part of the job? Giving we publishers something to print?
Amelia: (laughs) Hopefully!