Three-time Juno award winner Ron Sexsmith has revealed details about his new album, The Last Rider. Ron’s thirteenth studio recording was co-produced at The Bathouse Studios in Kingston, Ontario by longtime drummer and collaborator Don Kerr and Sexsmith. The album is his first to include Ron’s touring band.
Since making his major-label debut in 1995, Ron Sexsmith has become recognized worldwide as one of Canada’s most reknowned songwriters. He counts among his fans no less than Elvis Costello, Elton John and Paul McCartney and has amassed no less than eight Juno Award nominations as Songwriter of the Year.
“At this point, it’s just second nature for me to write short, melodic songs that say everything I want to say,” says Sexsmith. “But having my band totally involved on this album maybe brought out more in the songs than on other recent albums. It felt special, anyway.”
On the album’s most poignant moments, such as ‘Man At The Gate (1913)’, there certainly is a sense—as with all of Sexsmith’s best songs—that life is often richer than we make it out be, and we should embrace that. In this case, the point is made through a photograph taken a century ago in front of Toronto’s Trinity-Bellwoods park, conveying the message that although styles and attitudes change, we all remain connected through our shared humanity. It all sprang from Sexsmith simply buying a postcard at a shop near his house one day.
“In the photograph, there’s a man walking by the gates of the park, and you can barely see him, but that’s the kind of thing I easily get obsessed about,” he says. “I couldn’t stop thinking that that guy could be me 100 years later, and really could be all of us. We’re here for a certain period of time, and we leave behind these traces of who we were that have the potential to inspire people who come along after we’re gone. To me, that’s really beautiful.”
Although Ron Sexsmith has more music to come that is sure to inspire us, for now The Last Rider is the latest addition to a body of work as impressive as any produced in the past quarter-century. Through truth and simplicity, Sexsmith’s songs help us get closer to the things that make us better people, meaning that an album like The Last Rider is as necessary now as anything he has ever done.
The Last Rider will be released April 21st, 2017 on Compass Records.
Artist’s website: http://www.ronsexsmith.com/
Songs from The Last Rider: