Welcome to my blog about traditional music, with more than a slight (and unapologetic!) leaning towards the music of French Canada!

Traditional music is addictive. It’s timeless, dance-able and once you start playing tunes yourself, you never want to stop. But traditional music would be relegated to dusty archives if it wasn’t for the contemporary players of each generation who bring new musical elements and new compositions. This blog is to honour these tradition bearers, and to bring them to your attention.

Et c’est parti …Enjoy the ride!

Judy

Kate Burke

"From a composition point of view, we need to think who we want to speak to... It’s not so much about hard and fast rules, but just having an understanding with others, a common language to speak." Kate Burke Kate Burke , based in country NSW,...

read more

Music Podcasts That Tell a Story

Overnight success… does it actually exist?Usually it’s anything but. There’s an element of mystique to an artist’s extraordinary talent and on-stage charisma, and who hasn’t fallen for the idea that musicians have been born into a different world to the...

read more

Introducing… Contradance!

“What I love about social dance is seeing a roomful of people in sync, the dancers and the musicians. There’s just nothing better, that buzz of live music and everyone responding to it”Judy Oleinikov, QuasiTrad contradance organiser.Here’s an excerpt from...

read more

Le Vent du Nord

If you've ever wanted to learn the secret Brunet Family recipe for le pouding chômeur (Poor Man's Pudding), here's your chance! Brothers André and Réjean, along with their bandmates, Simon, Nicolas and Olivier, were in Australia recently for the world music festival,...

read more

David Boulanger

"At around 16 years old… I was listening to a CD at a music store… that is the moment where I felt like I entered a world that I didn’t know anything about but that was pulling me towards itself." If tradition is defined as “knowledge,...

read more

Simon Marion

Multi-instrumentalist, producer, arranger, multi-award winner, new father and … pilot!It’s a great pleasure to introduce our first guest artist for the 2017 Quebec Fiddle Weekend, Simon Marion. Simon’s many different music skills are in demand all over...

read more

Les Frères Bélanger / The Belanger Brothers.

Having a brother who shares your taste in music is fortunate. And having a brother to actually make that music with is even better! The Belanger Brothers both started playing classical violin at the age of 6, and then both became devotees of traditional...

read more

Catherine Planet and La Chasse-Balcon

"Pride in our traditional music compels us to “go out on the balcony”,… a place where you have to accept being seen, where you can no longer be private… and to start connecting with others."(Catherine Planet) Catherine Planet spent four years...

read more

Yann Falquet and Pascal Gemme

Melbourne is in the grip of Spring Fever. The return of warm weather – far too slowly this year! – the Aussie Rules Football Grand Final, the horse-racing carnival season… and the Quebec Fiddle Weekend! Now is the perfect time to introduce you to this...

read more

Mario Loiselle

Folklore survives when it’s multi-generational. Folklore dies when it ignores the young. And it’s impossible to have a living tradition without the presence of the older generation!These are the words of Mario Loiselle, who has been part of the traditional...

read more

Guillaume Morin

A photograph that can capture the energy, emotion and personality of a musician is a work of art as great as the music itself. To do this the photographer needs excellent technical skills, confidence to be creative and an understanding of the musician’s...

read more

Laura Risk

Music is something that can hold a community together… an effective, strong, meaningful way of building and maintaining community. And if we don’t have community in our life, then we don’t have very much, do we? (Laura Risk in the documentary “Keeping the...

read more

Olivier Demers and Nicolas Boulerice

Lennon and McCartney, Simon and Garfunkel,  Boulerice and Demers. Great musical partnerships create amazing synergy. Olivier Demers and Nicolas Boulerice are most famously known for establishing the band, Le Vent du Nord. In fact their musical...

read more

La Chasse-Balcon (Balcony Hunt!)

You might find yourself in Montreal one Friday after the long winter has ended, wandering along the neighbourhood streets, enjoying the energy and buzz of the city. And you might happen to see a large crowd gathered in front of someone’s house, dancing,...

read more

Nicolas Pellerin

Once upon a time in rural Quebec was a tiny town called St-Elie-de-Caxton, where elves and fairies lived and trees grew peppermints. At least, according to the stories of Nicolas Pellerin’s brother, Fred, a famous teller of tales in Quebec. Nicolas grew up...

read more

Liette Remon

Liette Remon is a name I’d heard many times, associated with many different cultural and music projects in Quebec. And when I looked at her website, I realised I only knew the very tip of what she does! I first heard her on another favourite radio...

read more

Tradosphère Radio Programme

Bonsoir, tout le monde, et bienvenue à cette édition de Tradosphère. Marc Bolduc au microphone, accompagné de la charmante, pétillante, semillante Christiane Campagna  This is the customary opening phrase to a favourite radio programme of mine,...

read more

Commando Trad

“Tradition” is often at a crossroad of being preserved or being left behind in favour of something new. A group of dedicated trad music lovers in Montreal had no such doubts. They took the timeless tunes, songs and dances of their heritage and combined...

read more

Gaston Nolet

It would be an injustice to talk about Québécois culture without mentioning – maple syrup!  And the best place to discover everything there is to know about maple syrup is at a sugar shack or cabane à sucre.  You will also discover some very fine...

read more

Jean François Berthiaume

Jean François Berthiaume is a larger-than-life character, full of colour and creativity. Musician and band member of  Reveillons! (Let’s Party!), Galant Tu Perds Ton Temps (something like Sweetheart, You’re Wasting You’re Time) and Les Fréres...

read more

Les Poules à Colin (Colin’s Chickens)

Everyone  has the choice of accepting or rejecting the environment they grew up in.Luckily for us, the 5 members of Les Poules à Colin, embraced the atmosphere around them. They are a sort-of second (or more) generation supergroup. Their music is a...

read more