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The Province - Newspaper


Something to Crow about

Movie with two of her songs promises career boost


Adrian Chamberlain, Canwest News Service

Published: Sunday, December 14, 2008

Allison Crowe believes she's poised to get one of the biggest breaks of her career.

The problem is, she can't talk about it. Well, not much.

Two of Crowe's recorded songs, "Me and Bobby McGee" and "Hallelujah", will be included in "a major motion picture coming out in early 2009," the Nanaimo-raised singer-songwriter said. All she can say is that it's a star-studded movie and will be a huge career boost for her. But beyond that, Crowe is sworn to secrecy.

"I can't wait to talk about it, personally," she said. "And the really cool part about it is I'm an independent artist, so the fact I'm even considered is pretty amazing."

Allison Crowe - photo by Billie Woods

Allison Crowe's had no big label support but the internet's been a powerful ally

It's true that Crowe isn't signed to a big label, but the 27-year-old has had tangible success on her own, using the Internet as a powerful ally.

For instance, her performance of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" has had more than 2.6 million hits on YouTube. Total viewership for her various YouTube clips is approaching four million.

That web popularity led to Crowe's inclusion on a compilation CD featured in the December edition of MOJO, the international music magazine. Her version of "Joan of Arc", also written by Cohen, joins a collection of Cohen covers sung by such artists as Nick Cave, Martha Wainwright and Judy Collins. She recorded "Joan of Arc" in the living room of her parents' Nanaimo home in 2004.

Crowe -- now based in Corner Brook, N.L. -- was in New York City this week to record an instrumental, also to be included on the top-secret movie soundtrack.

And this past Sunday, she performed at Manhattan's Laurie Beechman Theatre.

Her upcoming Tidings concerts are an annual event on Vancouver Island. She'll play carols, cover tunes and her original compositions, including a new piece, "Dearly". Although primarily a singer-pianist, Crowe will perform some songs on the guitar.

This has been a busy year for Crowe. She's spent half her time touring, hitting Beatles Week 2008 in Liverpool, and performing in France, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Scotland. Her manager, Adrian du Plessis, said Crowe is building a "growing and devoted audience" in Paris, Frankfurt and Vienna.

While she was in Liverpool, BBC Radio 2 recorded Crowe's "Hallelujah" and interviewed her for a documentary on the song that aired Nov. 1. Crowe said more tours of Canada and the U.S. are in store for 2009.

"It's good, but it's crazy," she said with a laugh. "By the time I'm done touring, I'm ready to go home. And by the time I've been home for a while, I'm ready to tour."

(article originally published December 11, 2008 in the Times Colonist newspaper under the title "Film soundtrack could be Crowe's big break")


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