Mae Moore


Oceanview Motel - 1990, CBS/Epic Records
Bohemia - 1992, Sony/Epic Records
Dragonfly - 1995, Sony/Epic Records
Mae Moore - 1999, Big Hip Records
Collected Works 1989-1999 - 2000, Sony/Epic Records
It's A Funny World - 2002, Paras Recordings

After playing in folk clubs in Southern Ontario, singer/songwriter Mae Moore got her first break when she joined the band Foreign Legion. She crafted her intricate acoustic sound while making a name for herself throughout the mid-'80s. In 1985, she went solo, writing the song "Heaven in Your Eyes." Loverboy went on to make the song a chart smash two years later thanks to its inclusion in the Tom Cruise film Top Gun, but Moore's talent was ignored. A chance meeting with Barney Bentall's guitarist, Colin Nairne, did prove prominent for Moore. Nairne assisted her in recording her first demo, which later led to a deal with CBS Records.

Oceanview Motel, released only in Canada, appeared in 1990; first single "I'll Watch Over You" was a radio hit. Success was slow, however. When it came time to record a second album, CBS paired Moore with the Church's Steven Kilbey. The connection between the two was magnetic, but the sessions for Bohemia weren't as charming. Gavin MacKillop (the Church, Toad the Wet Sprocket) finished the record, for Kilbey's substance and drug abuse prevented him from completing the project. The album was issued on Epic in 1992 and the title track was Moore's brightest career moment up to that point. The dark, earthy feeling of the spoken-word track went Top Ten in Canada and gained attention on American modern rock radio. Dragonfly was released in 1995, but sales didn't fare as well as Bohemia. Prior to winning the SOCAN Award for most played song on the radio for "Genuine," Moore was dropped from her label. She escaped to the peaceful side of Prince Edward Island to sort things out.

While on her way, Moore began a search for the daughter she gave up for adoption at age 19. During this time, she was in a near fatal accident when another car hit her head-on at 90 miles an hour. The experience could have been worse, but Moore looked inside herself and found solace. Fellow singer and friend Jann Arden called her. Arden, who had founded her own Big Hip Records, asked Moore to start recording. The result was her 1999 self-titled effort. It's a Funny World followed three years later. ~ MacKenzie Wilson, All Music Guide


Mae Moore

Big Hip Records
0694 90378-2
Jann Arden produced this CD, as well Jann provides vocals. Former Jann Arden background singer/percussionist Lin Elder also provides vocals and plays the Tabla. Moore took some time off following the release of Dragonfly, moved away from the big city, and got back to the basics. The changes are reflected on her self-titled album (actually her fourth), which moves away from the thick production on her previous two and focuses more on pop-based songwriting. Part of the new musical feel is probably the doing of producer Jann Arden (owner of Moore's new label, Big Hip)

Mae Moore Oceanview Motel








her 1990 debut solo album Oceanview Motel. Released in Canada, the album spawned the hit single "I'll Watch Over You."

Mae Moore

Enhanced CD. Features the "Free To Love Me" music video.

Mae Moore Bohemia

CD (August 27, 1993)

Mae Moore Dragonfly

CD (May 26, 1995)
Original Release Date May 26, 1995 EK80222

Produced, recorded and mixed by Gavin MacKillop
Recorded at Namas Studio, Otter Point, Canada
and The Armoury Studios, Vancouver, Canada
Mixed at Master Control, Los Angeles, CA
Mastered by Stephen Marcussen at Precision Mastering, L.A.

Images of unrest and an ongoing mental/emotional wrestling match with the uncertainties of existence, populate this new offering of musical poems by Canadian folk/pop singer Mae Moore.

Confidentially, sometimes even with an insistent urgency, Moore half-whispers, half raps her sing-song lyrics into your speakers above a pleasing non-intrusive groove, sounding to me a bit like Deborah Harry, only in a jazzier setting than the snap, crackle and pop of Blondie's period new wave techo-pop.

Although she's no 'material girl', and living in the material world seems to be as much hassle as fun, Mae and producer McKillup do craft exquisite sound artifacts and it's a pleasure rather than a drain to hear her; even though she spends much of the time moaning on about stuff that is really pop fluff dressed up in more serious philisophical clothing.

The album opens with Genuine, a song about the strength of true love: "I know we can love and win / If our hearts are genuine"

Love Won't Find Us Here is a thoughtful and touching number sung to an "ex", which laments the passing of tenderness. The singer, awash on a sea of alienated disorientation tells us stuff like: "I can't tell if I'm happy / Or just relieved to be alive"

On the next track Moore says: "Life is All I Can't Explain We go up and down and round again / That's all you need to know " This song is more complex than the first two love-and-heartbreak offerings, worked around the story of "The palm reader and the easy mark".

Repitition and change is again the theme in Evolution which does not speak of evolving in a transcendent way, but how ":Love never leaves / the same way / it comes in"

Here is a song about flight more than about flying, flight into the comfort of a lover's arms.

Watermark speaks of the importance of time spent alone, but the artist returns all too quickly to the world of people only to address the endless labour of "How to make love stay" to keep it above the watermark" and again I found myself wishing that Mae would tell us more about what she discovered when meditating or 'leaving her body' or whatever, than just more lovesick scheming Musically, the singer weaves simple lyrics into an almost-uplifting hook.

Pleasure Grounds is a tad tougher in its realization, a song which says that physical love is a grind when the newness has gone

Hollow As Bone speaks of survival: "There is nothing harder / To keep alive / Than the hope inside / That we need to survive"

Still, we yearn for the singer to do more than ramble on about how dizzied she's become, and the next song, Kiss Of Life, is where Mae comes closest to doing so. Here she admits insight into what may be her personal tragic flaw: "Could it be that I've mistaken love as some cure for this aching of mine"

Finally, (I thought) a moment of realization! And although I wanted more, without this insight the lyrics on this album could be taken as mere lovesick ravings. Moore's ability to identify her penchant for using love as a cure-all, made me respect her poetry, forcing me to view the love songs which had come before this as less self-indulgent.

Faithless is a moment of painful honesty, where the singer admits she knew beforehand that a lover was going to be faithless, but went for it anyhow. The tune is powerful in that the singer lays no blame at anyone's feet, although a sense of loss, one that has pervaded most of the set, comes across strongly here.

The final cut, Fine, is a song that is uplifting in spirit and serves to tie the contradictions and confessions of the previous ten numbers together.

If you're still with me, and I can easily forgive you if you're not--this has been an overlong review--let me say something about the music that goes along with these angst-ridden, post-modern lyrics The melodies and bandtracks soothe and comfort, full of acceptance and forgiveness rather than anger and frustration. Moore's vocals ride atop some smooth grooves, created by some of Canada's more sophisticated players: guitarists Stephen Nikleva and Neil Clarke, keyboard guy Vincent Jones, bassist Rick May and percussion guys Greg Reely, Paul Brennen and Scott Harding. Some tasty trumpet and flugelhorn from Daniel Lapp as well.

Although I've taken the role of antagonist reviewer here, examining the poetry of Mae Moore with one of Sherlock Holmes' oversized magnifying glasses, I can recommend this album to you as a good listen. Perhaps you'll identify with the angst and the disorientation, the ongoing attempt to make love a cure-all, to substitute flight from one lover to another for self-examination, self-determination and personal philosophy Mae Moore is no airhead, but don't expect 'answers' here. You are more likely to find compassion, which is something we can all use on a day-to-day basis.


Review by Jim Brown

Mae Moore (vocals); Vince Jones (keyboards); Rick May (bass); Paul Brennan (drums); Neil Clarke.Recorded in Sooke, British Columbia, Canada.

Mae Moore Funny

CD (April 23, 2002)
Original Release Date April 23, 2002

Decked out in a black hat against a red background, a smiling Mae Moore gives the appearance of someone who enjoys making music. The cover also puts the listener in the right the frame of mind for the 48 minutes of animated music on It's a Funny World. Moore's vocals and the arrangements quickly bring to mind Joni Mitchell circa 1974, but not in a way that seems derivative. As with Court and Spark, full production provides lush support for Moore's self-penned songs. This spacious sound creates a certain depth and richness on pieces like the title cut and "Love Will Bring You Back" that is quite at odds with the more common roots approach used by many singer/songwriters. "Red Clay Hills" builds a resonant sound out of no more than acoustic guitars and dense percussion, while the pianos and guitars of "Who Knows" fashion an easygoing rhythm worthy of Laura Nyro. The smart arrangements dress up Moore's well-written lyrics into beautifully crafted pop songs with a hint of jazz, guaranteeing a satisfying listening experience. It's a Funny World qualifies as Moore's first release in the United States since 1995's Dragonfly. The strength of the material and vocals, however, make the album seem less like a comeback than a solid release from an experienced performer. With It's a Funny World, Moore has crafted a fine album that should please anyone who appreciates expressive vocals and a faultless blending of folk, pop, and jazz. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr., All Music Guide

Mae Moore & Lester Quitzau Oh My!

Poetical License
Produced by Lester Quitzau & Mae Moore
The first Time Lester Quitzau and Mae Moore performed together as a duo was opening for Taj Mahal in 2002. They were received with standing ovations. There was clearly electricity between them.
The chemistry is all the more interesting when each artist has already several cd's, with Juno nominations, and more than a dozen years into their own careers and personae. Mae and Lester come from varied and diverse backgrounds, but compliment each other, striking a perfect balance. Audiences immediately remark on their connection, an inspired collaboration in which the sum is greater than it's parts.
As Canadian solo artists, Mae Moore and Lester Quitzau have each defied simple catagories. Working today in the relative quiet of their west coast home, they are crafting a passionate acoustic sound. Lester brings his trademark groove and sweeping blues vocabulary, and Mae her acoustic jazz and familiar folk feel to this new project. This work finds both artists reaching new levels, making music with an openess and depth that only comes with maturity.
Lester has been described as "a mellow guy that throws down a heavy groove". In 1998, Lester was nominated for a Juno with his stunning second release, A Big Love, as it took blues where no one expected it to go. His songs have a way of sounding classic, yet fresh. He also performs as part of the Juno award winning trio, Tri-Continental, with Bill Bourne and Madagascar Slim.
For more details and dimensions, visit www.lesterq.com
Mae emerged from Ontario coffeehouses, moving to Vancouver into the 80's, where her music found a home in indie clubs as folk-rock-jazz. Her songwriting skills eventually landed her a deal with CBS Records and a Juno nomination for Oceanview Motel. Singles, "Watermark", "Bohemia" and "Genuine" established her as a standard and respected artist at Triple A radio in the US. After three releases and sales over 100,000, Mae returned to the indie route with her cd is, 'It's A Funny World'.