‘One of Canada's premiere songwriters. With a voice like a clarion call she's one of our premiere singers, too.’—Judith Lynch, CBC’s First Play
On March 13, 2020, Colleen Brown was on tour playing guitar, bass and keys, backing up two of her longtime musical inspirations: Sarah Slean and Hawksley Workman. The tour was cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic (but not before driving from Toronto to Ottawa and then turning back around). Reflexively, Brown redirected her enthusiasm and restlessness towards writing and producing demos from home, through a weekly online songwriting challenge among fellow songwriters. The collection of original, pandemic-inspired songs and videos that came out of that process are what together make up her new album Isolation Songs.
These songs reflect on living life in isolation during these precarious and unprecedented times, not just as an artist, but as a human being. Ranging from the romantic but wry “It’s The End Of The World (Again)”, to the heartfelt and frank “Good Life”, the album even ends with a Christmas tune to lead us into this winter season.
With versatile songs and a voice akin to Joni Mitchell, Brown effortlessly weaves elements of folk, roots, Americana and pop into a sublime, striking blend. Her previous, full-length solo album ‘Direction’ - co-produced by Joel Plaskett - saw Brown topping Canadian college radio charts, achieving rotation on CBC in Canada and touring at home and in Germany and the UK. In 2018 she released a collaboration with fellow Alberta rockers Scenic Route To Alaska under the moniker Major Love, which garnered two singles in the CBC Radio Top 20 and 13 weeks in the earshot! Top 50. Her song ‘I Can’t Wrap My Heart Around It’ was placed in CBC’s Burden Of Truth, the song ‘Motherland’ won a province wide songwriting contest in 2015 in Alberta, and the powerful ballad ‘I Love All Of You’ was a finalist in the Unsigned Only International Songwriting Competition in 2017.
Colleen continues to be a beloved live performer, having won over audiences opening for Randy Newman, Jim Cuddy, Rufus Wainwright, Crash Test Dummies, Whitehorse, Frank Black, Kathleen Edwards and Sarah Harmer. She has performed at festivals across Canada including Grande Prairie’s inaugural Bear Creek Folk Festival, Winnipeg’s Interstellar Rodeo, Kingston’s Skeleton Park Arts Festival, Salmon Arm Roots & Blues, and Edmonton Folk Music Festival.
'The talents of this Edmonton-based vocalist shine like a beacon. Her boldly written originals...have the good bones and great melodic rhythm of classic big-screen pop songs" -Robert Everett-Green, The Globe & Mail
- Isolation Songs (Nov 2020) on Flatcar Records (Fontana North)
- MAJOR LOVE - Self titled (Aug 24, 2018) on Latent Recordings (Warner Distro)
- Seasons Are Circling EP (Nov 2016) independent limited release
- Direction (March 2015) independent release
- Direction 1: Major Love EP (Feb 2014) independent release
- Colleen Brown’s DIRT (2012) independent release
- Foot In Heart (2010) re-issue on Dead Daisy Records/Outside Music Distro
- Foot In Heart (2008) original, independent release
- A Peculiar Thing (2004) independent release