June 8: The Young Novelists to perform in Haliburton
By Vanessa Balintec
The Young Novelists will be performing at the Haliburton Curling Club on Saturday, June 8, a gig that according to duo Graydon James and Laura Spink, has been close to five years in the making.
After getting in contact with the Haliburton County Folk Society and spending a few years on a waiting list, they were finally called in for a show. According to James, songwriter and frontman of the band, it was with the organization’s support that everything could be arranged.
“It’s kinda key in this day and age to have people who are really helping get musicians in front of audiences,” said James.
After quitting their full-time jobs to perform across the U.S. and Canada, The Young Novelists have dedicated their time and work to their music. Three albums and numerous awards and nominations later, The Young Novelists have made a dent in the Canadian folk music scene since their inception in 2009.
Although part of a six-person band, James and Spink often take on duo projects and shows. Their latest album, in city & country, was created by the pair with help from several musicians, drawing inspiration from having lived in both cities and small towns.
The Young Novelists themselves are familiar with Haliburton. Spink, hailing from Peterborough, visited Haliburton growing up when travelling for her figure skating competitions. James visited Haliburton through travelling with friends, visiting cottages and recording music.
James said the show, which will feature songs from past albums but focus on their most recent album will help bring community together through music.
“These kind of shows, we find there’s really wonderful audiences,” said James, who plays the acoustic guitar during the duo’s shows and in city & country. “The exact kind of shows that as an artist you want to be playing. You have the space and time to get behind the songs. That’s sort of what folk music is about, right?”
On the topic of their folk music, however, James and Spink think it will be an emotional night.
“They’re kinda sad songs,” laughs James. “Sort of heartbreak, sad stories. For whatever reason, those songs are a little easier to write. But you don’t want to leave people feeling sad. The underlying theme of in city & country is about community, where people find community and what that looks like. A sense of community and communing with each other.”
“We talk about our relationship too,” said James.
“It’s something that can resonate with people,” said Spink.
After focusing their energy full-time on their music, Spink, the lead vocalist, says they get the occasional fan who calls their journey “inspiring.”
“You’re gonna come and feel some feelings,” said James about the upcoming show. “I feel like it’s important to sometimes push yourself to go out and do that thing that gets you in touch with your community, your neighbours, your friends, and like-minded folk. For whatever reason, joining your voices in music together is a wonderful experience, and that’s what I think would be the best part of coming out to a Young Novelists show.”
Tickets will be available in advance. Members will be charged $20, non-members $25, and $30 at the door. Albert Saxby and Carrie Cooper will open the event, which will start at 7 p.m. To preview the band’s music and learn more about the duo, visit theyoungnovelists.com.
Tickets can be purchased online at https://www.haliburtonfolk.com/ or by visiting Halco Electronics in Haliburton or On the Spot Variety in Minden.