News  Notes from Alley


" Presents: Allison Crowe" - October 7


In 1999 a teen-aged Allison Crowe was already building her legend as a musician – radiating from her birthplace of Nanaimo, BC to perform in nightclubs and bars up and down Vancouver Island on Canada’s Pacific coast.


That same year, across the continent in the USA, a West Virginia-based poet and cultural commentator was launching one of the first, and now longest-running, legal-mp3 music websites. Under the banner of “Murúch”, the Irish word for “mermaid”, pioneering Editor/Head Writer Vic and her team of writers and photographers still plumb the currents of music, books, film and other arts.


Murúch’s RSS feed is syndicated on Hype Machine,, Livejournal, Facebook and Twitter… The site has been featured on VH1’s Best Week Ever Blog, The Woodstock Film Festival website, MSN’s Money Central Blog, Technorati’s Top 100 Music Blogs and The Guardian’s website.” Rolling Stone has reposted the site’s content, and its reviews are quoted “in countless press releases, Amazon and Wikipedia pages and even album liner notes”. Cited, as well, by the University of Maryland as an example of excellent critical writing – the fuller story of Murúch can be found @ and


Along their courses, sometime before Allison Crowe migrated to Canada’s Atlantic shores, making her home in Corner Brook, Newfoundland a decade ago, “Murúch” discovered Allison and has been a steadfast champion of her music ever since.


Mutual admiration and respect has grown through the years such that Allison’s honoured to be described these days as Murúch’s “musical mascot”. Presents: Allison Crowe - album cover 600px Presents: Allison Crowe” is a digital album, coming very soon, comprising the blog’s personal favourites from Allison’s recorded repertoire. Curated by Murúch, it’s a 21-song playlist that’s, both, passionately individual and universal.


Cover art is also by – pictured here on the album’s front is the entrance to Newgrange, the great national monument of Ireland that predates Stonehenge and the pyramids of Egypt. Photographed this Summer in County Meath, the triskele symbols on the giant stone carry forward from pre-Celtic and Celtic times to our age (even giving design to the centre-piece adapters for vinyl “45” RPM recordings).


It’s apt entry point for the intersection of 15+ years rocking and rolling by Allison Crowe and



Allison Crowe Music Notes



"Allison Crowe says so long to solo" + hello to pink hair - September 23



“Allison Crowe says so long to solo”: Laura Lavin, Editor of Monday magazine, in Victoria, BC, Canada, puts a fine focus on the musical family formed around Allison Crowe – a group ready for artistic revolution and fun:


Starting next month – Billie Woods (guitar, vox), Celine Greb (cello, vox), and Dave Baird (bass) join Allison (vocals, piano, guitar, bodhran+) on stage and in the recording studio. Early in the New Year, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Sarah White unites with the band.


Long a supreme solo artist, Allison Crowe and bandmates are set to share with the whole world, via concerts, recordings, videos and more, "Soulful. Alive. Joyous. Grievous. Real, true, music."


Allison Crowe - pink hair - September 23, 2015


"Decided to go back to my natural bubblegum pink hair... ;)" tweets @Allison_Crowe



Allison Crowe Music Notes



A Brush of Hope 2015 - September 14


In 2006, The Kidney Foundation of Canada, through Tim Fox and the team then at the Western Ontario Chapter, launched “A Brush of Hope” – a creative fundraiser with all proceeds going toward kidney research in Canada.


Each Summer, compact painting kits and canvases are distributed across the land to a range of community figures – musicians, athletes, tv personalities, politicians and more. The resulting gallery of paintings are then auctioned on eBay come the Fall. The auction runs October 31 – November 9, 2015.


A Brush of Hope 2015 - Kidney Foundation of Canada - Allison Crowe painting readied


Allison Crowe’s participated from the start of this artful campaign – and her paintings are now in several private collections. The paint has yet to dry on her pictorial representation of Summer in Cow Head, Newfoundland (above) – which is off now to the Kidney Foundation.


We’ll post word on this year’s auction and others involved – once the event organizers are ready to hang “A Brush of Hope” 2015!



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Takin' it to the street - September 7



The rock and roll circus comes to town - Allison Crowe with bandmates Billie Woods Music, Celine Greb aka Lin Lin and Dave Baird resume their musical flight!


Allison Crowe Band concert poster - Vancouver street 2015


Details of upcoming concert locations, ticket outlets and all, can be found on the Tour page.



Allison Crowe Music Notes


Some Diurnal Aural Awe on Spiral - September 4



It feels entirely fitting, as Allison Crowe and bandmates ready for recording sessions, the first non-solo tracks for Crowe since her album “Spiral”, a lovely review of that 2010 song collection appears now in “Some Diurnal Aural Awe”:



Honest and Heartfelt, Both of Them” subtitles Some Awe - a writer, poet, and retired English teacher whose deep love and appreciation of music is woven into blog form.


And here’s the music from “Spiral” – produced wonderfully by Kayla Schmah:




Allison Crowe Music Notes



Allison Crowe Band Rolls Ahead - August 30



Multi-instrumentalist Allison Crowe’s “supernaturally agile and exquisite voice” is complemented ideally by the sublime harmonies and stellar musicianship of her international touring band: Billie Woods (guitar, vox); Celine Greb (cello, vox); and Dave Baird (bass).


Allison Crowe Band - banner - 500 x 200


Bringing beauty and joy to the live stage as well as the recording studio this Fall – a trio of concerts are now set for Canada’s Pacific coast:


Friday, October 23, 2015 - Charlie White Theatre, Sidney/Victoria – Concert tickets go on sale this week in the Mary Winspear Centre Box Office – Telephone 250-656-0275 -


Friday, October 30, 2015 - The Port Theatre, Nanaimo – Concert tickets on sale starting this Wednesday, September 2 in the Port Theatre Box Office – Telephone 250-754-8850 -


Friday, November 13, 2015 - St. James Hall, Vancouver - Tickets now available at BrownPaperTickets, the fair-trade ticketing company – – and in Allison Crowe’s Box Office online -  Concert tickets coming this week to: Highlife Records (1317 Commercial Drive), Red Cat Records (4332 Main Street), & Zulu Records (1972 West 4th).


Fuller details of all concerts and recording activities will be posted here on Allison's home website.


Allison Crowe Music Notes



"The Pardon" Digital and DVD release - August 26



monterey media, an uniquely independent film studio since 1979, announces the release of “The Pardon” in Digital (incl. iTunes). and DVD formats. The movie is now available for rent and purchase at Vimeo on Demand:



“A very thought provoking,true crime drama that examines the muddy-grey areas where victims, justice and love reside” says Amy Handler, Film International. “Jaime King lights up the screen… compelling,” – Kam Williams, Baret News Syndicate. “Oscar nominee John Hawkes is riveting” – The Hollywood Reporter.


The Pardon” trailer makes wonderful use of Allison Crowe’s version of “Hallelujah”, the Leonard Cohen masterwork. The film’s creators and distributors also have a presence on facebook - @ and



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Come Fly With Me Behind-the-Scene - August 13



In Hollywood, not too long ago, movie director Zack Snyder was putting together the soundtrack for his cinematic take on the Alan Moore-penned comic series “Watchmen”.


One particularly noteworthy scene played out to the sound of Allison Crowe’s much-loved recording of Hallelujah – the Leonard Cohen classic that’s been expressed in most ways imaginable. (This artistic association ultimately led to the director flying Crowe across the continent to cameo in his reboot of the Superman movie series, "Man of Steel".)


Considering the "Watchmen" scene was meant to be awkward and ironic, Snyder drew another breath and concluded Crowe’s performance was “too beautiful”, “too romantic” and “too sexy” for the film – replacing her version with Cohen’s original.


Allan Showalter, the ever-mysterious-and-curious eminence grise behind Cohencentric: Leonard Cohen Considered" revisits that movie moment as only he can:


Night-owl-Spectre - Watchmen - Hallelujah - Allison Crowe Leonard Cohen




Allison Crowe Music Notes



Allison Crowe Band On-Stage - August 8



Canada’s Allison Crowe has emerged this century as one of the great popular songwriters and performers of the recording era. Amazing, fun, and exciting – her peerless catalogue and live shows are the stuff of legend.


"Soulful. Alive. Joyous. Grievous. Real, true, music is what I want to make”, she explains.


Now, the Allison Crowe Band create joy and beauty anew each time they perform. Allison (vocals, piano, guitar, bodhran+) is joined by: Billie Woods (guitar, vocals); Celine Greb (cello, vocals); and Dave Baird (acoustic & electric bass).


For some upcoming European concert dates the quartet will include multi-instrumentalist Sarah White (in place of Billie Woods, who is oft-traveling on photographic assignments). There’ll be times, too, when the group performs as a trio and a quintet!


It’s early days, with band fotos and recordings still to come. To introduce the line-up readying for shows and sessions at present, here’s a composite image of Allison, Billie, Celine and Dave in their respective positions on-stage.


Allison Crowe Band - Celine Greb, Allison Crowe, Billie Woods, Dave Baird


Click on the foto above to view the band image in full-size



Allison Crowe Music Notes



" for RAINN" Benefit Album Features Three Allison Crowe Songs - July 30



Culture site Muruch, one of the web’s longest-serving supporters of music, this month launched its dream-project into the world – a benefit album for the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network organization and helpline (originally created by Tori Amos): for RAINN moves from the horror of sexual trauma to the incredible courage of survival, benefits the most worthy cause and is a magnificent, genre-crossing collection of music, poetry and art.”


Muruch’s musical mascot Allison Crowe (she sang ‘Ring of Fire’ in Man of Steel) donated not 1 but 3 songs to our for RAINN benefit album. You can hear the first, ‘Words,’ below and get it along with 24 other mp3s by donating $10 (or more) directly to RAINN through Muruch’s fundraising page.


“The album also features music and poetry by Concrete Blonde’s Johnette Napolitano, American Gods/Coraline author Neil Gaiman, My Brightest Diamond, Amanda Palmer, The Voice‘s Kat Robichaud, Midlake, Flogging Molly, Poe, The Mynabirds, Allison Crowe, Crystal Good, Kevin Kantor and many more.”


The first song from Allison featured is “Words” - – described this way by Muruch when it capped the blog’s list of Top 50 Songs of 2013:



“Though Allison apparently only took up the fiddle for the recording of this album, she already sounds like a folk fiddle pro in the standout track ‘Words’. What a lush piece of work that song is! There’s a touch of Celtic folk in the instrumentation, haunting backing vocals and a slow building, seething tension until Allison unleashes her wail toward the end of the song.”


Scared”, is second in the trilogy of songs Muruch presents on its benefit album  Of this track, released on Allison’s debut disc, “Six Songs”, the musician says:


This song is about not being afraid to stand up for yourself and what you believe in, to speak out even in the most adverse of circumstances.”



Phoenix” is the third song Muruch includes from Allison’s on the benefit album - a song recording from “Sylvan Hour - Allison Crowe’s album released this Spring -



Enjoy the music – in audio and video – and, please, support the for RAINN project and cause :) Thank you!




Allison Crowe Music Notes



Glow of the Kerosene Light - higher fidelity shines - July 26



Allison Crowe, Billie Woods and Celine Greb perform Wince Coles' “By the Glow of the Kerosene Light” in their second-ever concert together. This higher-fidelity audio comes from Pender Island, Canada – and the Allison Crowe Band’s concert on Canada Day this year.



More concerts, and ever brighter musical fidelity from the group - which also features Dave Baird and Sarah White - is on its way.


And, to hear this great tune and more Newfoundland song treasures catch “Newfoundland Vinyl” at the Gros Morne Theatre Festival – on-stage through August 28, 2015. Take a spin through Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador’s website for word on this show, and all the terrific productions, at GMTF



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Words - Allison Crowe Band - 30.06.2015 bootleg #5 - July 25



Words”, (the song’s end), wraps the video bootleg series documenting the birth of a band. Altogether, here’s Allison Crowe with l-r: Celine Greb (cello); Billie Woods (guitar); and Dave Baird (bass).



The group’s sensational debut means more concert bookings for Canada’s Pacific coast (Sidney/Victoria, Nanaimo and Vancouver are on the calendar for October/November 2015). At the same time, they’ll visit the newly re-opened Turtle Recording Studios of Larry Anschell and team to capture some of their musical magic in high-fidelity.


And, before long, Allison and the band bring it all to the world :)


Thanks, again, to Leslie Colly of Salt Spring Island, BC, for the historic boots!



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Glow of the Kerosene Light - Allison Crowe Band - 30.06.2015 bootleg #4 - July 24


Gorgeous harmonies are a feature of performances by Allison Crowe and bandmates Celine Greb (cellist) and Billie Woods (guitarist) - here “By the Glow of the Kerosene Light”.



This poignant song from the prodigious pen of Wince Coles was popularized by Newfoundland trio Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers. It’s performed this Summer by cast-members of “Newfoundland Vinyl” at the Gros Morne Theatre Festival (the hit TNL show runs to August 28, 2015). Coles and his songwriting brother, Ellis, hail from Carmanville in Hamilton Sound, NL. The invaluable website, “GEST Songs of Newfoundland and Labrador” details the bros’ full repertoire @


The tuneful glow of the Allison Crowe Band is reflected in this bootleg concert video by Leslie Colly of Salt Spring Island, Canada.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Arthur - Allison Crowe Band - 30.06.2015 bootleg #3 - July 23



"Arthur", third song in the bootleg video collection of Leslie Colly, brings together Arthurian notions with ruminations on aging and the bonds of love.


Allison Crowe (vocals, piano) is joined by bandmates Billie Woods (guitar), Celine Greb (cello) and Dave Baird (bass) – live from All Saints by-the-Sea, in the musical hot-house of Salt Spring Island, BC.




Allison Crowe Music Notes



Between Two Trees - Allison Crowe Band - 30.06.2015 bootleg #2 - July 22



Bootleg video of the Allison Crowe Band captured recently on Salt Spring Island, Canada by Leslie Colley - “Between Two Trees” flows three-part harmonies of Allison Crowe accompanied by Celine Greb (cellist) and Billie Woods (guitarist). The band’s Dave Baird lays down the bass for this song penned by Charlie McKinnon of New Brunswick, Canada.



The tune was a hit for one of Newfoundland’s favourite music-makers, Harry Hibbs, in the 1970s. As Musical Director of “Newfoundland Vinyl”, a perennial favourite at Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador’s Gros Morne Theatre Festival, Allison Crowe curates and arranges songs for TNL's wonderfully talented and spirited cast and crew.


The melodies are so rich and universal they’re loved across Canada and internationally – where e’er Allison and, now, her band tour. “She has renewed with stylish vigor traditional songs that deserve new life and interpretations,” says East Coast Kitchen Party.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Crayon and Ink - Allison Crowe Band - 30.06.2015 bootleg - July 21



"Crayon and Ink” – the first-ever public performance by Allison Crowe's new band! Thanks to Leslie Colley of Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada - enjoy this concert bootleg from the sold-out show at All Saints by-the Sea, SSI.


It’s a season of record-breaking heat on Canada’s Pacific coast - with temperatures around 30 degrees Celsius on some dates. In this crucible Allison Crowe’s formed a band.


Allison (vocals, piano, guitar, bodhran) is joined by: guitarist-vocalist Billie Woods (born in Humboldt, Saskatchewan and home most of her life on Salt Spring); cellist-vocalist Celine Greb (originally from Pforzheim, in Germany’s Black Forest, and settling now in Canada); & upright/acoustic + electric bassist Dave Baird (dual-Canadian/UK citizen – w. grandparents from Scotland and parents from England and Malaysia).


Four Summers in a row, Allison’s been Musical Director of “Newfoundland Vinyl” - an hit show produced by Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador at the Gros Morne Theatre Festival (and conceived by TNL’s Artistic Director, Jeff Pitcher).


Making the most of a three-week hiatus in her Atlantic shores schedule this year, Allison, home in lovely Corner Brook, NL for a decade, flew to her beautiful birth-province of British Columbia for June/July 2015 sessions with the transnational/international combo.



The group debuted with a trio of radiant concerts on Salt Spring Island (with set decoration and catering by Lou Ellis of Coco Loco and her bonita brujas!), Pender Island, and Ladysmith, Vancouver Island.


Future dates include Deer Lake, NL-born Sarah White, a fellow Corner Brooker & TNLer, in the musical complement - harmonizing, and playing one of her many instruments: guitar, mandolin, guitar-banjo, tenor ukulele and bouzouki.


Concert news - and plenty more excitement - on its way.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Muruch's RAINN benefit album launch! - July 14



While Allison Crowe’s been on the road this past month, debuting an amazing band (about and from which much, much more is coming), there’s been a truly marvellous creation released by the blog Muruch – among the web’s longest-running supporters of independent music and music, overall, and, of Allison’s music, particularly.


We’ll have more word soon on this project and Allison’s musical contribution thereto – right now, here’s the big announcement from Muruch itself:’s RAINN benefit album & fundraising campaign officially launches this month! Donate $10 (or more) at’s fundraising page to receive your free digital album of for RAINN. This magnificent 25-mp3 album features:


Concrete Blonde’s Johnette Napolitano, Sandman author Neil Gaiman, Midlake, Flogging Molly, Poe, My Brightest Diamond, The Mynabirds, The Voice‘s Kat Robichaud, The Dresden Dolls’ Amanda Palmer, Man of Steel‘s Allison Crowe, Nashville songwriter Trent Dabbs, Meursault, Elysian Fields, Pamela Means, Fisher, Catie Curtis, Anielle Reid, Heidi Saperstein, Hannah Fury and poets Crystal Good, Kevin Kantor, V. C. McCabe and Clementine von Radics.


The album also includes a beautifully illustrated 40-page PDF liner notes booklet featuring the striking visual art of Sandman illustrator Dave McKean, Kate Zambrano, Mandy Tsung, Amber Ortalano, Mark Demsteader and Anna Dittman.


Great music and art for the greatest cause! You can read more about the songs and poems in the Press Release and’s RAINN fundraising page.”





Allison Crowe Music Notes



Set Sail with Rob Carnell's "Salt Water Music" on CFRC+ - July 12



Rob Carnell - - is behind the mic each week since May 2007 for “Salt Water Music” – broadcasting on air and online on CFRC 101.9 FM in Kingston, Ontario. Born in Placentia, Newfoundland – Rob’s an enthusiastic and enduring champion of East Coast Canadian music. He’s a wonderful supporter and friend to Allison Crowe and the diverse community of musicians in our Atlantic region. Worthy of weekly salute from us all!!


Rob’s show airs on Fridays – indeed, that includes tonight - from 6 - 8pm EST. Music-lovers around the world can listen live @ “Salt Water Music” is also heard aboard East Coast Kitchen Party - Thursdays at 6m AST – visit


Salt Water Music - Rob Carnell - CFRC + East Coast Kitchen Party


Sea and be Scene” producer Stephanie Beaumont chatted with Rob for a profile feature @ And, for a rare glimpse of the radio studio – from the Producer/Host’s side of the mic – check out 


And, be sure to set sail with Rob Carnell on “Salt Water Music” expeditions – and savour the riches of Canada’s east coast song-makers!



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 Allison Crowe's Diamond Jubilation at GMTF ~ July 8



Her eyes they shine like a diamond and her voice, piano and guitar-playing be just as crystalline pure in beauty. Musician Allison Crowe is a colleen welcoming all to delight, (not to beware), when she takes the stage this Monday, July 13 as part of this Summer’s “Who’s Darkening Our Door” concert series at the Gros Morne Theatre Festival.


Allison’s back home in Newfoundland following a triumphal concert series on Canada’s Pacific coast. Her performances – online and onstage - bring joy to millions of people. From her Corner Brook nest on this lovely isle she’s toured with Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet, appears in the newest Hollywood Superman movie blockbuster, and, each Summer, she returns to GMTF as Musical Director of “Newfoundland Vinyl” - the hit show conceived by Jeff Pitcher, Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador’s Artistic Director.


Join Allison for a rousing concert of favourites from Joan Morrissey, Ryan’s Fancy, Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers, alongside modern classics by troubadours Gary O’Driscoll and Ron Hynes, her own internationally-acclaimed original songs and covers of the Beatles, Leonard Cohen and more.


Allison Crowe taps a vein of song that’s deep and wide as it is rich. Here’s one of the near 200 recordings she’s made – her take on the traditional “Black Velvet Band”: It’s a lively song popularly recorded on both sides of the Atlantic, including a version by the legendary 'His Nibs' Harry Hibbs - born on Bell Island.



This recording is from Allison's "Newfoundland Vinyl" LP, the 11th release (of 17 albums now) on Rubenesque Records Ltd. - 


West Virginia-based folk+ music afficionado, Muruch, comments on an ever-present facet - whether it's rock, jazz, classical, Celtic, blues, folk or other genres Allison’s soul-mining: "What a voice, what a voice, what a voice!"


Hear Allison Crowe in full glory – 8:30 pm, Monday, July 13 - The Ethie Room, Shallow Bay Motel and Cabins, 193 Main Street, Cow Head, NL. For concert tickets please visit or phone GMTF/TNL toll-free 1-877-243-2899.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Voyaging a Musical Galaxy ~ July 3



This inaugural music expedition is on the move! Allison Crowe and bandmates sail now from stellar concerts on Salt Spring Island and Pender Islands to slide gracefully into dock this evening in lovely Ladysmith, BC – “No Matter the Battle”:



Ryan McMahon, celebrating with his newest album, “Put Me Back Together”, is aboard for this 8pm show at Ladysmith First United Church – full details @  



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Bringing it to the Stage! ~ July 2



New band's hatched this week! Here's a pic from soundcheck:


Allison Crowe, Billie Woods, Celine Greb, Dave Baird - Summer 2015 soundcheck


l - r Celine Greb (cello, harmonies); Allison Crowe (vox, piano, guitar, bodhran+); Billie Woods (guitar, harmonies); and Dave Baird (bass - acoustic and electric).



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Rockin' the House ~ June 24



"Band practice!! Dave spinning his bass mid solo. Yup this is going to be an epic set of shows. So excited!!" says musician/photographer Billie Woods in posting this pic.


Allison Crowe Quartet - rehearsing, Salt Spring Island, Canada 2015 - Billie Woods photo


Billie Woods (guitar, harmonies) captures the band in mid-flight of rocking rehearsals on Salt Spring Island, Canada. l-r: Celine Greb (cello, harmonies); Allison Crowe (vox, piano, guitar, bodhran+); & Dave Baird (bass).


Concerts with the combo are upcoming on Salt Spring (June 30), Pender Island (July 1) and in Ladysmith (July 3). Visit the Tour section for details.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Going Home These Nights ~ June 23



Allison Crowe and band create beautiful music anew when they launch a coastal concert celebration here next week in BC. The amazing vocalist/pianist/guitarist+ is joined on-stage by stellar company: Billie Woods (guitar, harmonies); Celine Greb (cello, harmonies); & Dave Baird (bass).


In tune with an artist discovered widely by audiences via the internet, Crowe’s box office online is abuzz – islanders will welcome music-lovers from Calgary, California, and as far afield as New Zealand to share  this special time together.


Opening night, Tuesday, June 30 in Ganges on Salt Spring Island, is on steady course to be a sold-out show at All Saints by-the-Sea.


On Canada Day, Wednesday, July 1, Allison and her musical mates sail into Otter Bay on Pender Island - for a show in the Pender Islands Community Hall.


Canada Day week festivities dock Friday, July 3 on the big island as Allison and crew join true-grit troubador Ryan McMahon in performance at Ladysmith First United Church.



Here’s video of folks preparing for exciting musical discovery ahead!


"Wow! Just Beautiful!! Shoot for the Moon and you'll land among the Stars!" recommend those aboard the good ship Salt Spring Mercantile (harboured in SSI's Fulford village).


To plot the way with Allison Crowe and friends - visit  and


Allison Crowe Music Notes



Summer, swims and friends ~ June 22



Summer, swims, and friends - Allison Crowe photo


Summer, swims, and friends - Allison Crowe photo


Allison Crowe Music Notes



"Circular Reasoning" Comes 'round Again ~ June 21



Circular Reasoning” spins here with a 1933 and 1/3 Betty Boop classic from Fleischer Studios.


Musical time starts counting again with Allison Crowe’s “Sylvan Hour” wonderland:



Sylvan Hour is truly a masterpiece” says pioneering culture blog Muruch. (



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 "Now" ~ June 20





Allison Crowe from "Sylvan Hour" + the closing scene from "A Farewell to Arms" (1932).



Dedicated to the brave, amazing, inspiring Sara...h McDonald – with love, in peace.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 "Silence" + “Ménilmontant” ~ June 18



Silence”- Allison Crowe from the sylvan castle on Salt Spring Island, Canada:


Crowe’s musical performance is paired with an excerpt from “Ménilmontant”, the 1925 silent film from auteur, director, Dimitri Kirsanoff and starring his collaborator Nadia Sibirskaia and Yolande Beaulieu as sisters.



A treasure of cinema’s avant-garde, you can find the full (38 minute) movie in the Internet Archive @ with commentary by David Badagnani, who notes:


“Its story is told entirely in images, without the use of explanatory intertitles; Kirsanoff was among the very rare filmmakers of the silent era to attempt this. The film makes use of techniques such as montage, hand-held camera, ultra-rapid montage, and superposition to achieve the elusive, transcendent quality of ‘photogenie’ so sought after by the French impressionist film directors of the era. Ménilmontant, thus, comes closer to poetry than to narrative prose.”


Sylvan Hour is truly a masterpiece” says pioneering culture blog Muruch. (



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 "Newfoundland Vinyl" Opens! ~ June 13



The curtain rises tonight for the opening of “Newfoundland Vinyl”. The show’s sold-out and there’s a waiting list for folks to enjoy this pressing of a perennial favourite at Newfoundland’s fabulous Gros Morne Theatre Festival!


The GMTF’s 20th anniversary season is underway – and it’s real celebration of the creative family that is Theatre Newfoundland and Labrador (the Atlantic Canadian professional theatre company founded in 1979).


Conceived by TNL’s Artistic Director, Jeff Pitcher, the hit-stage show “Newfoundland Vinyl” is under the Musical Direction of Allison Crowe who’s been with the production from its launch in 2012.


Newfoundland Vinyl - logo by Ed Hollet


TNL describes the show opening tonight: “Hits of the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s by Newfoundland’s biggest recording stars come to life! For your toe-tapping, tear-jerking enjoyment the music and songs of Ryan’s Fancy, Harry Hibbs, Gary O’Driscoll, Dick Nolan, Joan Morrissey, Bob Porter and more! A magical evening of music and madness with the hilarious Ed and Edna (Ed’s long-lost 3rd cousin twice removed) as show hosts!”


The wonderfully-talented cast bringing music and vitality to stage for Summer 2015 are:

Adam Brake, Craig Haley, Claire Hewlett, Stephanie Payne, Keelan Purchase, and Marquita Walsh. The production team is: Musical Director, Allison Crowe; Stage Manager, Stefanie Power; Sound Design, Max Simms; Set Design, Derek Butt; Set Coordination, Lisa Lahue; Costume Coordination, Lindsay Code; Original Lighting Design, Johnny Cann; and Lighting Coordination, Andrew Scriver.


“I have had such a wonderful time learning this year's crop of songs for Newfoundland Vinyl - from waltzes and parlour songs, to torch songs, to songs with the same spirit as 1960s protest anthems and beyond - simply great music from throughout the decades,” notes Allison. “The silly, the sentimental, the sad, and serene all converge in this GMTF show. I'm so happy that you're here to experience our talented cast performing for you with their hearts and souls. And what a gorgeous location for it! So, please, enjoy and do sing along!”


Newfoundland Vinyl” runs June 13 - August 28, 2015 – with performances each Tuesday and Friday in the Ethie Room, Shallow Bay Motel and Cabins. For complete schedule and show-times visit and take in the full program of shows GMTF presents in Cow Head, NL – set in gorgeous Gros Morne National Park. Ticket details are @ and by phone (709) 639-7238 or toll-free 1-877-243-2899


Newfoundland Vinyl” logo design by Ed Hollet.


Allison Crowe Music Notes



 I Never Loved a Man... ~ June 7



Tides of relationships toss things adrift in this Fleischer Studios 1933 animated short, “Is My Palm Read”, starring Betty Boop and pals, Bimbo the Dog and Koko the Clown.


The song “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” was composed by Ronnie Shannon - specifically for Aretha Franklin for whom it became a breakout hit in 1967. He also wrote “Baby I Love You”, Aretha’s second gold song – released later in ’67 – as well as penning “Do Your Duty” for Bettye LaVette and other classics.



Allison’s Crowe's recording of “I Never Loved a Man” – now on "Sylvan Hour" - is captured live-off-the-floor, by engineer/producer Ryan Adams, in the log-home, “sylvan castle”, of friends on Salt Spring Island, Canada.


 “Hello all, the young lady did a jam up job on the song, Ronnie Shannon would have loved it," says the songwriter's friend, LaJay Alexander, with respect to Allison's performance.


Alexander and Shannon performed together in the Detroit soul combo “Ron and LaJay and the Fifth Proposition” and LaJay recorded the international hit, “Say So” for Shannon's r’n’b, soul, funk+ label, Black Gold, in the 1970s. Alexander notes that Shannon “is no longer with us, he passed away 2/9/09 in his home town Atlanta, Georgia.”



Allison Crowe Music Notes



These Words ~ June 6



Sometime the 'invisible monster' is within ourselves, sometimes it's outside, trying to break in... and there are times when it's both internal and external. "These Words" from Allison Crowe's "Sylvan Hour" explores such chambers. Visually carrying us into the psychic underworld is cinema's original "Phantom of the Opera" - Lon Chaney so darkly brilliant in the 1925 film version of Gaston Leroux’s gothic novel.



Sylvan Hour is truly a masterpiece” says pioneering culture blog Muruch. (



Allison Crowe Music Notes


Best Buds ~ June 5



Allison Crowe and Link - best buds



Snuggles with the best bud yesterday post- rehearsal. :)


Allison Crowe photo - with Link



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Skeletons and Spirits ~ June 5



Clock strikes 12 for the second time in a “Sylvan Hour” selection – awakening Allison Crowe’s “Skeletons and Spirits” in this recording from Salt Spring Island’s sylvan castle:



In 1933 Ladislas Starewitch and his daughter, Irene, produced and directed "Fetiche Mascotte" – in English “The Mascot” – and it’s an excerpt from this classic film seen here with Allison’s musical performance.


Stop-motion animation pioneer and imaginative genius Władysław Starewicz was born in 1882 in Moscow, Russia to Polish parents. Following the October Revolution of 1917, he resettled in France –adopting the name Ladislas Starewitch (or Starevitch). Creator of the first puppet-animated film, he’s legendary for his use of insects and other animals as film protagonists and for his fantastic, inventive, techniques.


Starewitch died in 1965 while working on “Comme chien et chat” (“Like Dog and Cat”). Since 1991, his granddaughter, Léona Béatrice, together with her husband, François Martin, has been restoring and bringing to the world his wonderfully artful films:



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 This Little Bird ~ May 31



Chiming from “Sylvan Hour”, Allison Crowe’s newest, classic, release is “This Little Bird”. Born on the Pacific, in the Harbour City of Nanaimo, BC, Canada – Crowe migrated to lovely Corner Brook, Newfoundland, on Atlantic shores right after recording this batch of songs. The bi-coastal musician’s creative flight shows she’s made good on her promise: “This little bird’s gonna see the good life has to offer / and how you can give your heart and still feel free”.



Accompanying Allison Crowe’s music on this video journey are scenes from “The Song of the Birds” – 1935 entry in the ‘Color Classics’ animation series of Fleischer Studios.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Dreams Coming True ~ May 25



Sweet dreams, indeed, are those we realize when awake! Muruch, a culture blog in the vanguard of music discovery and sharing, soon celebrates its 15th anniversary.


Earlier this month, Muruch put out a call for submissions to its dream project – an album of music, spoken word poetry, and visual art to benefit RAINN. The clarion sounded and artists have responded with the full-hearted spirit that Muruch’s shown for creators throughout this century.


Allison Crowe has received such profound support and appreciation from Muruch over the years – she’s among those musicians, poets, painters, photographers, illustrators and more – grateful for this opportunity to be part of it all!


Here’s the scoop so far from Muruch - NB you can still contribute to this great album and cause:





Call for Music, Poetry & Art Submissions for RAINN Benefit Album


Muruch is curating a nonprofit, digital album of music, spoken word poetry and art to benefit RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network organization and National Sexual Assault helpline founded by singer Tori Amos.


Muruch Presents: A Benefit Album for RAINN will feature…



Dave McKean
Amber Ortolano
Mark Demsteader
Jen “Coble” Hopper
Mandy Tsung
Kate Zambrano


Music by:

Allison Crowe
The Dresden Dolls’ Amanda Palmer
Concrete Blonde’s Johnette Napolitano
Pamela Means
Elysian Fields
Hannah Fury
Caroline Lavelle
Heidi Saperstein
Anielle Ried
Catie Curtis
The Frozen North


Poetry by:

Neil Gaiman
WV Poet/Ted Talker Crystal Good
V.C. McCabe
Kevin Kantor
Clementine von Radics


Anyone interested in contributing music, spoken word poetry and/or art to the benefit album can email with the subject “Muruch RAINN Submission” and a high/CD quality mp3 (320 Kbps) or a download link (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.) of your recording or images of your artwork along with any credits or links for the PDF liner notes.


We welcome submissions by artists and poets of all levels, backgrounds, gender and age, including amateurs and especially indies. Submissions should be topically appropriate for the charity — anti-rape, anti-abuse, anti-domestic violence, PTSD, survival, strength, healing, etc. Instrumentals are also accepted.


The submitter must own the copyright and all licensing rights for their recording or artwork, whether it is an original composition or a cover (unless it’s public domain). Previously published work and simultaneous submissions are accepted, but notify us immediately if the work is accepted elsewhere. Submitters will retain their copyright and any other rights to their work, we only ask permission to include the work on the digital album to benefit RAINN.


No one featured on the album, including me, will receive any monetary compensation — 100% of the proceeds will be donated directly to RAINN through Muruch’s RAINN Fundraising Page. But all involved will receive a lot of free, positive publicity and help a very worthy cause.


The digital album and accompanying artwork will only be available in exchange for a $10 or more direct donation to RAINN through Muruch’s RAINN Fundraising Page. Once a donation is made, the donor will receive a donation receipt and an email with a private album download link and password.

We hope to kick off the benefit album and donation campaign in July to coincide with Muruch’s 15th anniversary, but this is very much a work in progress in its early planning stages. I’ll gladly accept assistance and input from collaborators, but I want to make sure all of the album’s proceeds are a pure, simple donation to RAINN.


Anyone who would like to donate directly to RAINN without contributing or purchasing the album can do so at Muruch’s RAINN Fundraising Page.


Anyone who has suffered from or is in danger of rape, abuse or domestic violence please visit RAINN or call the National Sexual Assault Hotline 800.656.HOPE. You are not alone or hopeless, you can survive and RAINN will help you. Everyone deserves a happy, healthy, safe life. Don’t ever give up.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Sweet Dreams ~ May 24



Music is, of course, steeped in lore.


Allan Showalter, entertaining and illuminating chronicler of life, love, lust and all @ “Cohencentric: Leonard Cohen Considered” has noted that the “Suzanne” of song, who “feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China” – is the muse Suzanne Verdal, pouring into 1960s life along Montreal’s St. Lawrence, filling Cohen’s cups with Bigelow’s “Constant Comment” blend.


This Sunday, Berkeley Place blog serves up a fresh pot of its “Greatest of All Tunes” feature – starting with Allison Crowe’s elemental reading of “Sweet Dreams” – originally a new wave smash for Eurythmics (the duo of Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart) in 1983.


Berkeley Place - Greatest of All Tunes - Sweet Dreams - Allison Crowe


Crowe’s acoustic performance was distilled during creative discussions with Hollywood movie producer Zack Snyder (amidst the production of his 2011 film “Sucker Punch”).


Bigelow’s own “Sweet Dreams” is a blend of chamomile and mint it promises “will calm your nerves and sooth your soul.”


Inviting you now to enjoy Allison’s take, along with sonic servings from AlbertOne, Thought Coalition and Tujamo, Berkeley Place says:


“Brew am I to disagree.”



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Phoenix ~ May 19



Phoenix” rises next from Allison Crowe’s “Sylvan Hour”. Snow fell on Newfoundland, Canada this week – and, even in the cold and dark, we’re witness to irrepressible spirit and positive strength. Inspiration!



It’s said that “Meet John Doe” represents an attempt by Frank Capra, the great Italian-born American film director, (known for more care-free populist classics - “It Happened One Night”, “It’s a Wonderful Life” and others), to “work out his own fears and questions” about the future of the people. Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Story, this 1941 movie stars Barbara Stanwyck, Gary Cooper, Edward Arnold and, as “The Colonel”, Walter Brennan (who rails against “the heelots” – the “greedy-guts’’ in our society, as Buffy Sainte-Marie calls them.)



Allison Crowe Music Notes



There Is ~ May 15



There Is” – time for the next revolution of Allison Crowe’s “Sylvan Hour”. For visuals we cut once more to “The Chase”. Michèle Morgan and Robert Cummings seek a way out in this 1940s film noir.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



 A Case of You ~ May 12




Allison Crowe uncorks vintage “A Case of You” – off her “Sylvan Hour” album – with passion and artistry recognizing two great Canadian musical inspirations intertwined in the song – its writer, Joni Mitchell, and muse, Leonard Cohen. Cinematically, Frank Borzage directs the adaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s “A Farewell to Arms” –scenes hear featuring the film’s leading stars Helen Hayes, Gary Cooper and Adolphe Menjou.


Allison Crowe Music Notes



 Effortless ~ May 11




Effortless” sailing from Allison Crowe's "Sylvan Hour" into scenes from “The Chase”, a 1946 film noir – screenplay by Philip Yordan based on Cornell Woolrich's novel, “The Black Path of Fear”. Directed by Arthur D. Ripley, produced by Seymour Nebenzal, the movie’s stars appearing here are French actress Michèle Morgan and American Robert Cummings.



Allison Crowe Music Notes



"Sylvan Hour is truly a masterpiece" ~ May 9



Sylvan Hour is truly a masterpiece” says pioneering culture blog Muruch.



“Allison Crowe’s new album… may be her best yet.”


Read the full review – and experience the music @



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Sylvan Hour Chimes Darling Be Home Soon ~ May 5



This beautiful solo performance of "Darling Be Home Soon", penned by the great American songsmith and musician John Sebastian - a hit for The Lovin' Spoonful in 1967 - leads off Allison Crowe's Sylvan Hour. The video features scenes from the 1932 film adaptation of  Ernest Hemingway's "A Farewell to Arms" - directed by Frank Borzage and featuring here the wonderful Helen Hayes. 



"Sylvan Hour" is now! Simply gorgeous. Gorgeously simple.


Allison Crowe music from the "sylvan castle" is available via:

 Bandcamp @

+ CDBaby @

+ Amazon @

+ iTunes @

+ Spotify @ and more.


Soon, everywhere :)



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Muruch Seeks Music & Poetry for RAINN Benefit Album ~ May 3



Believing in one’s dreams and making them real – to help make the world a better place - is what Muruch, the culture blog, is doing now – “assembling an album of music and spoken word poetry solely to benefit RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network organization and helpline originally created by Tori Amos.


Muruch Presents: A Benefit Album for RAINN will feature music by Allison Crowe and Pamela Means, poetry by Muruch’s Editor Victoria and WV Poet/TED Talker Crystal Good with other contributions by artists and writers to be announced…”


Get  involved with this soulful project via Muruch’s website @ and on Muruch’s RAINN Fundraising Page @


Muruch - blog - Jen Hopper - RAINN benefit album



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Muruch Intros Subscription Service ~ May 1



Discerning culture blog Muruch, which has been illuminating the riches of music and other popular culture online for near 15 years now, very, very kindly introduces people today to Allison Crowe’s new Artist Subscription on Bandcamp - saying, "no other artist has such a flawless record of artistic authenticity as Allison Crowe".


Allison Crowe - Bandcamp subscription - Allison & Link 3


(And, for folks watching the calendar, we’ve been so overwhelmed with such kindness this week the album release of Allison’s “Sylvan Hour” will be this coming Tuesday, May 5 - to enable some more fun things to come together…)



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Artist Subscription Launches ~ April 29



Allison Crowe’s artist “subscription” launches!


It’s a new way forward for independent music-makers and music-lovers on Bandcamp – which has hosted Allison’s music for years.



An artist can now share their own creative flow individually and directly (as well as being part of such global music-streaming subscription services as Spotify, Tidal and all).


This subscription, for $40 USD per year, gives you all the new music Allison Crowe creates – delivered instantly to you via the Bandcamp app for iOS and Android. The music is available for continual streaming, and for permanent download (in your choice of digital audio formats).


By subscribing you also receive – as downloads and for streaming – all the music recordings from Rubenesque Records, Allison’s label: “Lisa’s Song + 6 Songs”; “secrets”; “Tidings”; “Live at Wood Hall”; “This Little Bird”; “Little Light”; “Spiral”; “Arthur/Up to the Mountain”; “Tidings Concert”; "Newfoundland Vinyl"; "Heavy Graces"; "Tarry Trousers"; "Souling"; "Newfoundland Vinyl II"; “Crowe: Covers, Live + Rare”; and "Songbook".


The universe as it unfolds also includes access to the Allison Crowe fan community, and a 15% discount on all physical merchandise eg. CDs, LPs (and things Allison’s yet to conceive or create).


The doors of perception are opening wider – Allison and Link, Rubenesque’s top dog, welcome you @



Allison Crowe Music Notes



Sylvan Hour Nears ~ April 27



Sylvan Hour” arrives this Friday - May 1. Here’s the album’s front and back covers - and some word on a classic song collection:


Sylvan Hour - Allison Crowe - album front 500px


Discover this music from a remarkable artist at a personal and creative crossroads in her life. “Sylvan Hour” is an album of songs bridging west and east, piano and guitar, then and now…


For fans of Allison Crowe at her purest, this is voice, one accompanying instrument – one take. Real-time performances in the sequence they’re played and sung by Allison in a log-home on Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada.


That afternoon the musician was in the midst of migrating from her birthplace of Nanaimo, BC, on Canada’s Pacific, to a new nest in Corner Brook, NL, on the Atlantic coast. Soon to fly east, Crowe bade farewell to those near and dear on western shores – including compatriot Kayla Schmah on Salt Spring, neighbouring Vancouver Island.


Decades earlier Schmah’s parents had made an epic trek to the Pacific Northwest from Central Canada – in a repurposed donut truck. Planting themselves in the Gulf Islands archipelago, they lived at first in a converted parachute in the woods. From the ground up the home-steaders then built a family dwelling out of Douglas Fir – their “sylvan castle”.


Allison and Kayla, as musicians had shared stages together from their teens onward (and, years later, becoming a film-scorer in Hollywood, Schmah brilliantly orchestrated and produced Crowe’s album “Spiral”.) Among the friends together on SSI this day was Ryan Adams (who, like Schmah was a recent graduate of Berklee College of Music and was en route to becoming an in-demand tv/film audio engineer in Los Angeles).


With mics and a laptop set-up in the living-room, Adams captured this set of the newest songs in Allison’s repertoire – originals including “Skeletons and Spirits”, “Running”, and “Silence” as well as a trio of covers (interpreting songs famously by Joni Mitchell, The Lovin' Spoonful and Aretha Franklin).


Also gorgeous, but differently so, essentially group versions of most of these songs were released near the end of that same year (2006) on Allison Crowe’s album “This Little Bird” (the title track a celebration of her migration). “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” is the sole sylvan session recording released before – it’s presented now within the full hour of music for all time.


Enjoy this most natural of talents – in this most natural of settings.


Sylvan Hour - Allison Crowe - album back 500px



Allison Crowe Music Notes




Press Quotes - A Collection (click here)



Click a date/line for other 2015 and earlier news:



04/24 ~ Unstable

04/22 ~ Crayon and Ink - Allison's National TV Debut

04/19 ~ Running

04/11 ~ Celebrating Al Pittman

04/08 ~ Minus 15...

04/08 ~ Hallelujah Considered

04/06 ~ Home Studio Hazards

04/05 ~ Circular Reasoning

04/04 ~ Newfoundland Vinyl in the MOCM

04/03 ~ The Caravan is Returning

03/27 ~ Sea of a Million Faces

03/25 ~ Northern Lights

03/20 ~ Montreal

03/17 ~ Black Velvet Band

03/13 ~ Tonight Will Be Fine on Cohencentric

03/11 ~ I Don't Know + The Phantom of the Opera

03/04 ~ Still Snowing

03/03 ~ I'm Alright

02/25 ~ Lyin' in Winter

02/14 ~ Bird on a Wire

02/13 ~ Oceans

02/11 ~ Chelsea Hotel No.2

02/10 ~ Choose to Be (Happy)

02/09 ~ I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)

02/08 ~ Dearly

02/05 ~ "The Pardon" - Coming Soon

01/19 ~ Up to the Mountain

01/18 ~ Time After Time

01/08 ~ King's in the Kitty



+ 2014 news - here

+ 2013 news - here

+ 2012 news - here

+ 2011 news - here

+ 2010 news - here

+ 2009 news - here

  + 2008 news - here  

  + 2007 news - here  

+ 2006 news - here

+ 2005 news - here

+ 2004 news - here

+ 2003 news - here



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