The Hoodoos have been a sentinel that have surpassed the tests of time and weather, and now they will be forever preserved in song.
Through listener votes, the CBC has named the Hoodoos/ Badlands as one of 13 places to be immortalized in song by 13 Canadian artists.
The premise for the contest was simple. Everyone knows if you make it anywhere you can make it in New York, thanks to the song. Corb Lund’s Hurtin’ Albertan also summed up the province in a time of boom. The contest answers the question, what other places, especially in Canada can be preserved through song?
Earlier this fall CBC Radio 2 asked listeners to nominate what locations in Canada they would like to see celebrated in song, and then further, which 13 artists whom should be commissioned to write about those places. One for every province.
The Alberta nomination came in as the Hoodoos’/ badlands. It beat out Calgary, Edmonton, Banff and Drumheller as locations to write a song about.
The artists nominated to write the Alberta song included Chloe Albert, Colleen Brown, Dragon Fli Empire and Woodpigeon. The winner was Jay Sparrow.
Sparrow is originally from Thunder Bay, but grew up in New Sarepta. He was the lead singer for the band Murder City Sparrows which recorded an album, produced by Gordie Johnson of Big Sugar and Grady. He has since split with the band and is working solo.
Described in his official bio as a “punk and a poet who wears his tattooed heart on his sleeve,” comparisons range from Steve Earle to Johnny Cash. Shades of Wilco come out as he mixes folk, country and rock and various measures in each, while maintaining a stance that is all punk.
He has released two solo efforts the first called the Running in 2008, and most recently Good Days Gone By.
Now listeners are in a holding pattern waiting to hear the songs.
On October 26 the 13
artists and locations were announced. Come November 23 the songs will be revealed.
“What better way to share our collective passion for Canadian music than to hear directly from Canadian communities on what places and artists mean most to them?” said Mark Steinmetz, director of music programming, CBC Radio. “The Great Canadian Song Quest is an incredible way to discover and bring together the places, artists and music that make the Canadian musical landscape unique.”