As a sideman, Canadian guitarist, composer, and seven-time Juno Award-winning musician Steve Dawson mastered the art of playing in the background a long time ago, so to hear him front and center on his new album Gone, Long Gone is a sonic treat to fans new and old. His first of three collections of material born amidst Dawson’s forced time off—when the pandemic began Dawson was playing with his friends Matt Anderson or Birds of Chicago all while helming his acclaimed Music Makers and Soul Shakers podcast—Gone, Long Gone shows us that there is a bright side to our enforced isolation. But, it is not simply a record of the pandemic. These are songs with a life of their own that will resonate long after the memories of our current situation have faded. Fans can now purchase or stream Gone, Long Gone at this link, watch a studio video for “Bad Omen” here, and check out the official lyric video for “Gone, Long Gone” right here.
Like all of Dawson’s albums, Gone, Long Gone features brilliant instrumental performances from some of the finest players in roots music. Jeremy Holmes holds everything together on bass with drumming split between Gary Craig and Jay Bellerose (both drummers play together on “Six Skeletons”), while Kevin McKendree and Chris Gestrin laid down the piano, organ, and other keyboards. A virtual string quartet featuring Nashville’s Ben Plotnick and Kaitlyn Raitz graces Gone, Long Gone’s title track. Keri Latimer joins in on vocals on two songs, and Steve’s old ‘Birds of Chicago’ band-mate, Allison Russell joined in to sing on a few as did Steve’s daughter Casey Dawson. John Prine alumnus Fats Kaplin dropped in to add some sweet fiddle to “King Benny Had His Shit Together” (a nod to the wild life of Hawaiian street performer King Bennie Nawahi) with the swooping horns on “Dimes” from Malcolm Aiken, Jerry Cook, and Dominic Conway providing one of the album’s many highlights.
Gone, Long Gone Tracklist:
2. King Bennie Had His Shit Together
3. Bad Omen
4. Gone, Long Gone
5. I Just Get Lost
6. Kulaniapia Waltz
7. 6 Skeletons
8. Ooh La La
9. Cicada Sanctuary
10. Time Has Made A Fool Out Of Me