Origin: St. Stephen, New Brunswick - McAdam, New Brunswick - Fredericton, New Brunswick - Halifax, Nova Scotia
A gifted musician and songwriter, Thom Swift is able to draw upon a lifetime of experience to offer up lessons on living, loving & laughter. With two solo albums now released, Swift drew on the experience of many years of touring & performing with the veteran jazz-blues band, Hot Toddy.
The New Brunswick born/Halifax based performer took a chance with his music and branched out into areas where he hadn’t previously been known. One track off his bold, new album has even been making the rounds of the rock stations (Killer). blue sky day, produced by Charlie Austin (Buck65/Joel Plaskett) is a collection of Swift’s sophisticated playing balanced with the earthy intensity of his lyrics. This passion is further enhanced by the group of friends he chose to play with, including starring roles from DRMF favourites Matt Anderson and J.P. Cormier.
The multi-award winner Swift (ECMA, Maple Blues and Galaxie Rising Star awards) has some deep insights to offer from the life he’s led; what he’s seen, what he’s felt and the lessons learned inbetween. With raw emotions and a big sound, Swift reflects on the stories he’s carved out of this life, from leaving home, to battling demons, to finding love & hope & the joys of family.
“Swift dives into the project with dark, brooding, pop-inflected tunes that sit atop rich, multi-textured arrangements, elevating each composition beyond anything seen as fleeting”, enthused Blues Revue, an American magazine. “I don’t know any other way,” says Swift. “I write about how the world comes into my world, what I see with my eyes and hear with my ears. There’s no smoke and mirrors, it’s pretty straight up.”
Hometown: McAdam, NB (until I graduated from high school). Then on to Fredericton, NB - the province's capital is a beautiful city, known for its stately elm trees. I attended post-secondary school in Saint John, NB, a loyalist city and a port city with great architecture. From there, I moved to St. Andrews, NB: a seaside resort town with a thriving arts scene.
I moved to the small fishing community of Hackett's Cove, on the south shore of Nova Scotia, to write music. And I now hang my hat in Halifax, NS - the largest city on the east coast, which has a thriving music scene.
Thom Swift is currently nominated for a 2008 Canadian Maple Blues Award for New Artist/Group for Into The Dirt. For more info, visit www.mapleblues.ca
With his well-traveled guitars, rich and soulful voice, insightful writing and casual wit, Thom Swift warms audiences everywhere he performs.
Swift is a member of the 2007 Canadian Maple Blues Award-winning and East Coast Music Award-winning trio Hot Toddy. With six albums to their credit and a career that spans over 12 years, the group is a regular on festival scenes. They have played the prestigious Newport Folk Festival in the United States, the Blue Balls Festival in Switzerland, the Vienna Jazz Festival in Austria, along with many Canadian jazz, blues and folk festivals.
This past spring, Swift teamed up with producer/engineer Charles Austin (Buck 65, Joel Plaskett, Matt Mays) to record ten original songs at Halifax, Nova Scotia’s Echo Chamber Studio.
Released in stores nationally on August 28 by Festival Distribution, Swift’s much-anticipated solo debut Into The Dirt features some of Canada’s top musical artists. Swift, who plays acoustic guitars, resonator guitars, banjo and mandolin on the recording, is joined by six talented friends, including 2007 Canadian Maple Blues Award-winning drummer/ percussionist Geoff Arsenault (Ray Bonneville, Mary Jane Lamond), Brian Bourne electric bass and chapman stick (Rawlins Cross, DRUM!), Chris Corrigan electric guitar (Rita MacNeil, Mary Jane Lamond), PEI songstress Rose Cousins vocals, New York blues artist Guy Davis on didgeridoo and harmonica and B3/piano legend Bill Stevenson.
"The album is something I’ve wanted to do for some time," says Halifax-based Swift. "It was amazing how things came together when the time was right."
Drawing inspiration from finger-style master Mississippi John Hurt, the essential songwriting of Tom Waits and Emmy Lou Harris, the melodies of jazz great Charlie Haden, and his father’s operatic voice, Swift delivers a distinctive blend of folk, blues, country and rag style.
From the brawny groove of the title track "Into the Dirt", which takes a dark look at the inevitable cycle of life, to the infectious ragtime-inspired guitar work showcased on "Hackett’s Cove Rag", to the country-roots feel and dobro highlights of "Crying Shame" to the uplifting stride piano piece "My Sweet Baby You", this is an album that will engage all who listen.
“This album is about change and awakening. That’s just life. When something changes, something new begins,” reflects Swift.
Don’t miss Swift this fall and winter as he takes Into the Dirt on the road, performing a series of intimate concerts throughout the East Coast and Canada.