A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

[MUSIC] “Songs from the Lowdown brings together music from Toronto’s street performers”

The Toronto Star‘s Emily Mathieu tells a story of some of Toronto’s street musicians who, together, have released a CD. I’m more than curious to hear it.

Wendell Cormier is most of the way through Don Williams’s heartbreaking classic “I Believe in You”, when one of the many freight trains that travel through his west end neighbourhood goes rolling by.

Cormier, sometimes known by his stage name Woody, grins and turns his body and acoustic Fender toward the single window in his bachelor apartment to draw attention to the clatter, but the self-taught, seasoned performer doesn’t skip a beat.

[. . .]

Cormier is one of six musicians featured on a newly released soundtrack, Songs from the Lowdown. Their stories and talents were featured in the 2015 documentary film Lowdown Tracks.

The styles of music range from country and Americana to blues, and what the filmmakers describe as punk hobo. The original songs on the CD are inspired by the complicated and difficult lives of the artists who wrote and play them. Most of the artists currently play in Toronto, either busking on the street, at shelters or during the occasional paying gig at a bar.

Through conversations with activist and singer Lorraine Segato viewers are guided through their stories, including Katt Budd, whose mother died in a car crash when she was a baby. Budd was in the car.


Written by Randy McDonald

January 5, 2017 at 9:00 pm

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