Stephen Franke & Noises from the toolshed
songs for a platinum blond diner waitress

Sue Doman
Wish You Were Here

An exciting live album from Canadian vocalist SUE DOMAN. Here she sings ten classic tunes from the Big Band era backed by a swingin' ten-piece band.

With an amazing three-octave vocal range and a style that's been compared to Rosemary Clooney, Ella Fitzgerald and Susannah McCorkle, SUE DOMAN will definitely capture your interest! Combined with these classic big band arrangements, this disc is a sure-fire winner!!

Sue Klassen
Follow A Star

Sue Klassen's long-awaited debut CD, Follow A Star, is an all-new celebration of love and the spirit of Christmas! Released in November of 2000, Follow A Star features the original music of Milton Carman with lyrics by Garnett Betts and
Alex Barris. Performed in Sue Klassen's unmistakable vocal style backed by a solid combo and top-notch soloists, these uniquely jazzy, sophisticated tunes run the gamut from earthy to ethereal, making all the stops along the way

Robert Moyes, Monday Magazine, December 14-20, 2000:

  • "... And ending on a happy -- and local! -- note, we have a fine album by Victoria singer Sue Klassen, Follow A Star (MAPL). With a subtitle like Songs Of Love And Christmas-Time, you know it's not a purely Xmas record, but you'd have to be a grinch not to embrace this charming mood-brightener. The opera-trained Klassen sings here in a cabaret manner reminiscent of Rosemary Clooney or Susannah McCorkle, her confident voice framed by a supple jazz trio sometimes augmented by Spanish guitar, violin or flugelhorn. The songs, all composed by Milton Carman, are witty and sophisticated."

Susan Jean Repath
The Parting

Singer/Songwriter, Harpist, Guitarist, Celtic & Contemporary Songs







Susan Jean Repath was born in Southern Ontario and raised in a household where singing was an everday event. As a singer and guitar player Susan began performing folk music in the fertile coffee house scene of southern Ontario.

"My earliest memories are of my sister and I singing while we did our chores. It made the work go faster. We sang rounds, kid's songs, folk songs and popular songs. My father also sang and had the greatest voice for telling stories". Another strong family influence for Susan was her great grandfather who emmigrated from Scotland in 1916 to Canada where he felt he could make a better life for his family. He was a professional singer and a great story teller. Susan tells stories of how even well into his nineties he would walk for miles to come and visit and tell tales and sing songs.

While studying nursing she performed in church basements, bistros and folk clubs in the Niagara triangle from the Niagara Region to Toronto. After a few years there she put music on the backburner for family commitments and to pursue another love sailing and in the late 1980's moved to B.C. for the great cruising grounds.

In the 1990's the resurgence of traditional music brought the guitar out of the closet and the celtic harp to her attention. She began to revisit the music of her family and in particular her great grandfather. She built her first harp several years ago as a "camping" harp but was so delighted with it's sound she currently uses it for many of her performances and is in the process of building a larger version.

Currently A resident of the Cowichan Valley on Vancouver Island Susan is an active Cowichan Folk Guild member and one of the founders of the Mill Bay Coffeehouse. She has been performing in coffeehouses and Festivals on Vancouver and The Gulf Islands including the Islands Folk Festival and the Hornby Island Celtic Festival. Susan has begun to perform original work as well as traditional and following in the family tradition has begun to add a few "tales" accompanying herself on celtic harp, guitar, bodhran and occasionally fiddle. She is sometimes joined by other musicians such as Wendy Robb, on fiddle, Jane Way on flute or Irish whistle and Allie Evans with voice or flute.

Susan's debut album was realeased in March 2002

"The Parting"

It is a compilation of Traditional, Celtic and original tunes.

Susan Repath: Voice, Celtic Harp, Bodhran. Guitar

David K. Guitar, Bass, Irish Bazouki, BU vocals

Wendy Robb Violin on #4 & #12

Jane Way Flute & Whistle

Keith Malcolm violin #1

Allie Evans Back up Vocals

Sweatshop Union
Natural Progression

Original Release Date October 7, 2003
Label:Battle Axe
Sweatshop Union is truly inspirational. They rap about topics that matter to them and they make you step back and take a look at things from a different perspective. 7 guys come together to form the Sweatshop Union and each one of them is intelligent and raps with a style that is most interesting. The production is killer and the quality is consistent.
These cats are definitely one of the highlights of the Swollen Members' BattleAxe label. They are true to their music. If you like intelligent hiphop then this is a selection for you. If you like hiphop that gets your head movin' then this is also a selection for you. This CD has quality written all over it.
Reviewer: Barrie, Ontario

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

Michael Fraser, Fiddle
Don Fraser, Guitar

Swingamajig is a father-son jazzy musical duo based in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

The Fiddler:
Sixteen-year-old Michael Fraser has been fiddling up a storm since he was four. In 1998 he won the Southwestern Ontario Fiddle Championship in the 9-and-under category. Lately Michael has been immersing himself in Gypsy jazz and Swing jazz standards. His favorite jazz fiddler is Stuff Smith and one can sense Stuff’s hard-swinging influence in Michael’s improvisations. In 2001 Michael was the recipient of a B.C. Hall of Fame Scholarship in recognition of his "demonstrated talent, dedication and future potential in the field of music." When Michael isn’t fiddling, he spends his time skateboarding, turntabling and playing with his dog Django.

The Guitarist:
Don Fraser has played various styles of music including Bluegrass, Swing and Musette. In 1996 he won the Western Canadian Bluegrass Guitar Championship. Equally at home playing lead as he is playing rhythm guitar, Don doesn’t mind taking the backseat and letting his son Michael bask in the spotlight.

Michael Fraser,
jazz violin
Don Fraser, guitar
Miles Black, piano
Tom Keenlyside, tenor saxophone & clarinet
René Worst, bass

Swollen Members

This includes a bonus DVD disc. Swollen Members: Prevail, Mad Child, Moka Only, Rob The Viking. Additional personnel: Abstract Rude. Producers include: Rob The Viking, Nucleus, Evidence, Moka Only, The Edgecrusher. Principally recorded at Battle Axe, Vancouver, Canada and The Sound Castle, Los Angeles, California.

Talisman Various Artists

Interchill Records
Official release information:
Review by Lloyd Barde, Backroads Music, home of the Heartbeats catalog Dub reggae has always been a strong musical influence for Canada's Interchill label. It permeates even their most floaty, space tracks, and serves as the undercurrent for the more upbeat cruisers. This sound has been part of most of their excellent compilations, from "Earth Octave Lounge" to "Infinessence" and "Magnetic Blue". If you used to like roots Reggae; if you like killer backbeats; if you think Jah Live and Jah Rule... this is the CD for you. It is All Killer, No Filler. These down and dirty positive vibrations are courtesy of Interchill acts like Neil Sparkes & the Last Tribe, and Dubsoniq (w/Adham Shaikh), as well as Suns of Arqa, Stress Assassin, Eat Static, Manasseh, Ott, Kumba Mela Experiment, and Jah Wobble & Bill Laswell, among others. Here is your Interchill dub album, likely the very best of its kind so far, tracing the modern dub-olution from psy-dub to roots
reggae -- may it encourage positive vibes & good times for all that hear it. In stock
now; order & soon come.

Interchill releases are always worth checking out. This Canadian chill out label has gotten pretty good reputation by the years. They usually have a theme in their compilations. We have for example been through floating ambient in Floatation (Interchill 2001) and more earthy lounge chill in their last compilation called Earth Octave Lounge (Interchill 2002). Now they are out with their fifteenth release called Talisman. In the cover art you can read about what a Talisman is, and the musical theme this time is dub. Andrew Ross Collins has compiled it. I think this compilation was supposed to be released at the end of 2002, but it is finally out now.

First out is a group from UK I haven`t heard about. They give us a very reggae influenced track. Slow dubby reggae rhythms and reggae vocals with a lot of echo effects. Relaxing and not too much annoying vocals. Track 2 sounds a bit like Ott, with a bit of mouth organ alike melodies. A very happy summer chilled dub track. A lot of you have probably heard about Neil Sparkes already. He has made the track together with a guy called Rick Mulhall. Track 3 is my favourite track on this compilation. It is actually made by Merv Pepler (Eat Static). Again he proves that he can handle a ton of different music styles. After many, many years of releasing electronic music, he is this year releasing psytrance on major trance labels as TIP.World and Solstice Music, and now he suddenly gives us a beautiful dub track on this compilation. I find this track sort of trippy, with a psychedelic vibe. It reminds me a bit of the beautiful Hallucinogen In Dub album because of the melodies etc. Way to go Merv!

After some trippy dub from Eat Static, we get a slower more instrumental track from a group from France called Jumbo Layer. Relaxing lounge dub with some female vocals, flute and guitar. Jah Wobble is producing a lot of oriental dub these days. Here we get a track he has made with a singer. Very ethnic chill with a lot of vocals. I have lost count of how many albums Suns Of Arqa have released, but I think they are up around twenty albums soon!! Here we get a new track from them. Easy listening dub with beautiful flute and sitar. Ethnic as always from these people. They have also added some weird sounds. Gargoyles is sort of the new super group on the chill out market these days. A very interesting collaboration between mainly Ott and Simon Posford, but they have also been working with Andrew (Interchill). They also released a track on the Backroom Beats 2 compilation earlier this year. This track sounds mostly like an Ott track, with very reggae dub style without the vocals, but you can here Mr Posford has added his beautiful weird sounds etc. I have actually heard Posford play this track in his dj set at the chill out stage at Samothraki Dance Festival last year!

Ott released his debut solo album on Twisted Records this spring. A talented mystical man releasing mostly very dub oriented chill. The track we get here is not on the album. A beautiful track, with some trippy melodies and the usual reggae influenced dubby Ott style. Bill Laswell and Jah Wobble make a lot of music together. They have also released music on Dragonflys side label Liquid Sound Design (LSD). Here we get a deep jazzy dub track, with trumpet, a lot of bass and organic instruments. Then we get a track from Henrik Jonsson from Sweden. This track was first released on his album Within The Office Of Eye And Ear (Spiral Trax Records spring 2002). I have to admit that I`m not a fan of his music. Very slow, sort of minimal dub. Track 11 is in my opinion one of the best tracks on this album. A track from the latest album of Adham Shaikh, Essence, released on his own label Sonicturtle Music at the end of 2002. A great album that was released as a limited edition release. Beautiful organic chill with relaxing flute. The last track on this compilation is a taste of the beautiful album East Of the River Ganges made by Youth and friends (The Kumba Mela Experiment). A nice happy finish for a high quality dub compilation.

Dubby chill out music is for sure getting a good reputation these days. If you like artists like Ott, releases on Liquid Sound Design and Backroom Beats, be sure to check this out!

Review by PK

Tania Elizabeth
This Side Up

Released: 1999
Produced by: Tania Elizabeth & Paul Brosseau
Recorded at Nomad Music, Salt Spring Island, Canada

How many 18-year-olds can boast that they have produced two solo albums, released those albums on their own independent record label, and have toured internationally to promote them? Only Tania Elizabeth. Tania was born December 22nd, 1983 in Melbourne, Australia, and before she was three and a half, she was playing songs on a tiny violin. By age nine, she knew that she wanted to pursue a career as a fiddle player - and pursue she did.

By age 10, Tania was playing in the prestigious Calgary Fiddlers and had recorded on their most recent album - "Imprint". In the following year, Tania recorded with Calvin Vollrath and became familiar with the styles of the Metis. In mid 1998, she released her first solo album - "Something, the CD before the next one". 1998 was a year that was marked with more than amazing record sales and exciting new creative ventures for the young, rising star. It also marked her biggest accomplishment thus far - the birth of her record company and label, SwanSisters Records.

In December 1999, Tania Elizabeth released a second CD, "This Side Up" which featured her high-energy Celtic-based sound. Known and respected for her ability to improvise, Tania Elizabeth shines on this album, which she co-produced with Gemini-Award winner Paul Brosseau of Nomad Studios. During the days preceding the CD release concert and the concert itself, YTV filmed what would later be one-half of an episode called "YTV To the M@x"

Everyone had something to say about this young woman, but the highest compliment came from one of her all-time heroes, Mark O'Connor - "Tania - your CD is very good and a great production too. Nice arrangements and Forrest (his son) liked it a lot too."
Another new development that year was the beginning of what will be a long relationship with Save The Children Canada. Tania has committed her name and $1.00 from the sale of This Side Up to Save the Children Canada's "Out from the Shadows and Into the Light" Program. The Program is aimed at alleviating what Tania calls, "One of the world's worst crimes; the sexual exploitation of children." Tania also acts as an advocate on behalf of the cause.

A grueling month and a half tour across Canada in the summer of 2000 brought her from her home in Victoria, BC, all the way to PEI and back. If you didn't see her in concert, you may have caught her on CBC Radio and Television, Canada AM, CityTV, and many local television and radio stations, as well as local newspaper and magazines.

Tania spent February 2001 through April in Australia, opening for the Furey Brothers and headlining at major festivals, as well as playing several blissful gigs with Ember Swift and Lyndell Montgomery. May, June, and July saw Tania playing at Disney World (with the band Fiddlestix), the Butchart Gardens, and teaching at the Mark O'Connor Fiddle Camp in Nashville, TN (as the Celtic instructor). August was spent in rehearsals with the Martin Mayer Band, and September to November, touring with them across China.

In late November, Leonard Podolak, the leader of Winnipeg-based band Scrüj MacDuhk, contacted Tania and asked her to join what James O'Connor of the Winnipeg Sun called "An innovative new Celtic band that's blowing the town apart."

Founded in 1995, Scrüj MacDuhk (nominated in 2000 for a Juno Award in the Roots-Music category) has played everywhere from the smallest pubs to the largest music festivals around the world. Manfued Jaeger of the Winnipeg Free Press calls Scrüj ".Among the best in the business. The players rip you out of your seat and get you toe tapping with Jigs and Shanties, delivered with volume, conviction, and split second timing" Tania is currently touring and preparing to record with Scrüj on their upcoming album.

Her new album, This Side Up, was recorded in September 1999 at Nomad Studios on Salt Spring Island. It is an innovative recording that reflects the new path she is exploring. She worked with co-producer Paul Brosseau and co-arranged the album with her fellow band members. The results are outstanding and the reviews are magnificent.

Tegan and Sara If it was you

Released: August.20.2002
Superclose Music - 7697422282 (Canada)
Vapor Records/Sanctuary - 06076-89400-2 (USA)
Compact Disc, Vinyl
Produced by: John Collins and David Carswell
All songs written by Tegan Quin and Sara Quin
TEGAN AND SARA charm everyone they reach. They're funny. They're full of attitude. They're twins. They're confident. BUT MAKE NO MISTAKE. The real reason their popularity continues to grow is because they write great songs. Their second U.S. album, If It Was You, was produced by John Collins and Dave Carswell of The New Pornographers and The Smugglers. It showcases the girls' penchant for writing diverse music and incredibly melodic tunes, with lyrics that range from open heart surgery-style intimacy to coy cleverness. T&S have hit their stride as songwriters, and they will not be ignored.