Photo by: Mark Maryanovich
Canadian singer/songwriter JIMMY RANKIN is gearing up to release his 6th solo LP Back Road Paradise on Song Dog Music/Fontana North, April 1, 2014. Back Road Paradise features 12 brand-new Rankin compositions, including lead-off single “Cool Car” and duets with Grammy winner and bluegrass icon Allison Krauss, as well as Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy.
Twenty-five years into a career that has seen him embraced as one of Canada’s most beloved singer-songwriters and hit makers, with Platinum albums and pretty much every award the nation hands out, Rankin has decided now’s the time: on his new Back Road Paradise, you’ll hear him like never before – full-on country. “For me, going country is a natural progression and that’s where I am right now”. The result is the catchiest batch of tunes Rankin’s ever written, with all the hallmarks of what he does: smart lyrics, great vocals, perfectly crafted songwriter material, couched in a bigger, modern country sound. Above all, it is still Jimmy, that familiar voice, homespun and heartfelt, capable of taking you to the deepest emotions, or the best party. Country is what he’s after, but the genre is Jimmy Rankin.
The lead-off single “Cool Car” which just hit radio airwaves, is a perfect example of the sound Rankin was going for – an instant classic, filled with big hooks, a killer chorus, and sweetened with ringing pedal steel. The video was shot in Big Sur, California by award-winning director Margaret Malandruccolo and will be released later this week.
…But it all comes back to one thing for Rankin, songwriting. Rankin strives for honesty, and making a direct connection to his listeners. He has the common touch. His songs resonate with everyone because he sings about life the way we all know it, whether it’s falling in love, building a family, or just wanting to have a party with friends on a Friday. His magic is to put what we’re thinking and wondering and worrying about into a song, as catchy as can be.
Well paced with ballads and up-tempo songs, Back Road Paradise takes us on a journey through life’s ups and downs in what could be the quintessential sound track of our lives. Grammy winning bluegrass virtuoso Allison Krauss lends her inimitable vocals to the Jimmy Rankin-noire ballad “Flames”. While the full-on duet with Canadian great Jim Cuddy, “Never Gonna Leave”, rips out of the gate with the pair in perfect, driving harmony – a dream meeting of two voices that have dominated the Canadian airwaves for a quarter century. “It’s a fun dance song – think Everly Brothers but with a modern twist.”
Confident and excited, Jimmy Rankin is as proud of Back Road Paradise as any of the work in his long and hit-filled career. Plus, he feels like he’s just hitting his stride. The great leap into a full country sound has allowed him to turn up the wattage, cut to the chase and make the songs that will hit home with everyone.
Jimmy Rankin, who cut his teeth on stages in and around his Cape Breton Island home, has established himself as one of the most hard-working and respected Canadian artists in the recording industry. Rankin’s career boasts multi-platinum sales and numerous industry awards for his work with The Rankin Family, as well as his five critically acclaimed solo records: 5 JUNOs, (including prestigious Entertainer of the Year), 27 East Coast Music Awards (ECMAs), 9 SOCAN Top Radio Play awards, 2 Music NS Awards, 2 Canadian Radio Music Awards (CRMAs) including Best New Solo Artist – Adult Contemporary, and 7 Canadian Country Music Awards (CCMAs), including 2011 & 2012 Roots Artist of the Year.
Jimmy will embark on an 18 date cross-Canada tour running from March 28 and wrapping up on June 7 at Enwave Theatre in Toronto (dates below). With oodles of raw vocal talent, great stage energy, and a knack for story telling, Jimmy Rankin puts on a stellar live show, not to be missed.
01. Cool Car
02. Falling So Hard
04. I’ve Got a Feeling
05. Back Road Paradise
06. Paris or Rome
07. Never Gonna Leave
09. Blame It All On You
10. Pull Out Your Picture
11. Build This House
12. Whiskey When the Sun Goes Down
13. Back Road Reprise
SPRING 2014 CANADIAN TOUR DATES:
03.28 – Halifax, NS @ Rebecca Cohn Auditorium
04.04 – Charlottetown, PE @ Country/Americana Stage (ECMA)
04.05 – Charlottetown, PE @ Music Nova Scotia Stage (ECMA)
04.06 – Charlottetown, PE @ SOCAN Songwriters’ Circle (ECMA)
04.06 – Charlottetown, PE @ The Eastlink East Coast Music Awards Gala
04.07 – Fort McMurray, AB @ Keyano Theatre
04.08 – Banff, AB @ The Club at Banff Centre
04.11 – Sundre, AB @ Sundre Performing Arts Centre
04.12 – Leduc, AB @ MacLab Theatre
04.14 – Prince Albert, SK @ Rawlinson Centre
04.15 – Saskatoon, SK @ Broadway Theatre
04.16 – Regina, SK @ The Artful Dodger
04.17 – Dauphin, SK @ Watson Arts Centre
04.19 – Winnipeg, MB @ West End Cultural Centre
04.22 – Prince George, BC @ Books and Company
04.23 – Valemount, BC @ Valemount Community Theatre
04.25 – Burnaby, BC @ Shadbolt Centre For The Arts
04.26 – Sidney, BC @ Mary Winspear Centre
06.04 – Belleville, ON @ Empire Theatre
06.05 – Parry Sound, ON @ Stockey Centre
06.06 – Hamilton, ON @ Hamilton Place
06.07 – Toronto, ON @ Enwave Theatre
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