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L.A. Beat

Lethbridge gig a southern Albertan homecoming for Leslie Alexander

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B.C based folk musician Leslie Alexander is looking forward to spending a month touring Alberta and B.C. with Jenny Allen, but is almost looking forward to returning home to High River even more.
“I’ll be spending a monthLeslie Alexander and Jenny Allen  will be playing the Slice, April 9. in Alberta. My dad has a sheep farm near High River and it’s lambing season, so when I’m not playing my guitar, I’ll be up to my elbows in sheep goo,” said Leslie Alexander who can’t wait to begin her tour with fellow folk musician Jenny Allen at the Slice, April 9.
The two have known each other through mutual friends and the folk festival and club circuit, but have never toured together.
“I’ve been an admirer of her for years. When I was busking in Calgary, she already was touring and had a record out and I said ‘I want that,’” Alexander continued adding the nucleus of the tour began while Alexander was touring with Jane Siberry and Allen was on the same bill.
“Jane was recording her albums in the recording studio I was living in (in Ashcroft, B.C) and we’ve known each other for mutual friends for years and the next thing I knew I was touring  major American cities with her,” Alexander continued adding this tour is mostly small towns. She has played Lethbridge several times at the Wolf’s Den. Tongue N’ Groove and several other venues.
Her musical style has changed from a more rock influenced sound like Sheryl Crow and Shawn Colvin, then evolved into country once she realized how much  the music of Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn, which her parents were listening to, had sunk in her brain, not to mention how people like Steve Earle, Ryan Adams and Wilco were making country music outside of the realm of Top 40 radio. “Country music is a good storytelling medium. When I first started, girls like Shawn Colvin and Sheryl Crow were playing so that was my first album, then my producer looked at me and asked if I ever thought about being a country musician, and I said that’s what my parents listen to.The third one was more folky. And the new one I’m getting more familiar with my guitar both acoustic and on the electric and there’s more of a rock beat,” she said adding she is almost finished her fourth record which she expects will be out in September, just in time for another tour with Jenny Allen.
“I call her about publicity or something and she’ll say ‘I’ve already done that.’ “I love touring with her. It’s like there’s two of us. Of course that means we’ll have to split the millions we’ll make, but we’re not in this for the money,” she laughed.
Allen, who is engaged to a man in Toronto, is looking forward to returning to the west for this tour.
“It’s going to be great. I’m looking forward to starting on Alberta then spending a month in B.C,” she enthused adding most of the shows will just be the two of them, though they may hook up with local backing bands along the way to flush out their sound. She plays guitar and will be playing quite a bit of washboard. She has played Lethbridge several times as a solo artist at the Tongue N’ Groove and at the Dragon Boat Festival, but never with Alexander.
“It’ll be our own unique brand of folk and roots,” she said adding she also plays with a popular roots band called the Fates.
“We always had the idea of being a female version of Blackie and the Rodeo Kings. But we don’t have Willie P Bennett. I’ll be  playing some of my portion of those songs as well,” she said.
— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 06 April 2010 15:50 )  
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