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December 2007

From Newfoundland to Nanaimo, Allison’s Coming Home

Former wacky Nanaimo teen turned acclaimed songstress brings her art home to raise holiday cheer and funds for local youth

By Greta Negrave

 As a teen growing up in Nanaimo, acclaimed singer/songwriter Allison Crowe was “a bit wacky”. She wavered between extremes, from being quiet and imaginative in her younger years to flying to the other end of the spectrum as a loud and lively character. IN spite of her bubbly appearance, however, there’s always been a darker side as well. She was “simultaneously hyperactive and morose”, and she managed to immerse herself in the dark suspense of Stephen King while still being able to appreciate the nonsensical humour of Monty Python.

For Allison, currently living in Newfoundland, Nanaimo holds memories of fishing, band concerts, getting tea leaves read, walking on the sea wall, doing nothing with her best friends, and “laughing until it hurt” all hours into the night. School and life at Woodlands Secondary revolved around music with band, band trips, choir, and musical theatre. She had great friends in Nanaimo and found school a lot of fun. Despite enjoying school for the most part, she still had the same anxieties and problems as every other teen trying to fit in and find their place.

Since then, Allison says she hasn’t changed much. She’s still the same quirky individual; she’s just learnt to enjoy life more. One thing about life she’s really learned to appreciate is that she’s always be learning, and that it doesn’t matter how much she knows, there will always be more to learn. Her eagerness to learn, as well as the amazing teachers she’s had and people she’s played with, has really helped develop her music and gain the success she enjoys today. 

Allison has made her mark in the music world, having launched her own record label, Rubenesque Records Ltd., as well as releasing six albums. Her most recent success was performing at the John Lennon Northern Lights Festival in Durness, Scotland, which was “one of the most amazing experiences” in her musical career. The beauty of Scotland and the amazing people she met made the festival a memorable experience, where she was a huge hit and as result, has been invited to perform at future festivals.

Her music has given Allison the opportunity to commit to a variety of charities, including participating in the “A Brush of Hope” campaign for the past two years in support of The Kidney Foundation of Canada. She joined many other Canadian celebrities in creating original pieces of artwork to be auctioned off to raise money for kidney research. She is also currently on tour performing a series of “Tidings” concerts in support of a variety of organizations, including food banks, the SPCA, and a program in support of autistic chidren.

 This generous musician will bring “Tidings” to Nanaimo on December 15 at St. Andrew’s Church, 311 Fitzwilliam Street at 8 pm. The concert will be in support of the Woodlands Secondary School band and basketball programs and The Mind’s Eye Youth newspaper. Tickets are available at Nanaimo Youth Services Association, Lobelia’s Lair, Thrifty Foods, Woodlands Secondary, and Andrea Bertram Studio. Advance: $20 general/ $15 students and seniors. Door: $22/$17.



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