There’s a new folksinger passing through the Yukon … and he’s prepared.
He may never have been North before, but Cort Delano’s “got my tin pan and gunny sack.”
This Albertan roots musician, like many who make their first journey north, has a friend he grew up with, Darren Van Langen, a friend who has been campaigning to get him up here for a while.
“He really encouraged and helped me out in terms of tour planning and help with accommodation and that,” he says.
But that isn’t the only reason Delano is coming North. “It’s the Yukon and there’s all this Robert Service type nostalgia, the wild big space, the Midnight Sun.
“So that was another major plan, to do my tour in conjunction with Solstice, to experience that sort of environment and ambiance.”
In turn, he’ll share his brand of roots music with Yukoners.
Born in Claresholm, Southern Alberta, and now based out of Calgary, Delano creates and performs a style of roots music that, as Delano explains, “would be sort of the Americana style, North American roots, the influences would be country, folk and blues, the primary colours of the rainbow.
“They seem to be the primary style of music in North America I draw my influences from. I’m really interested in older music, more so than any modern-type music that has come out lately, for me it seems the older the stuff the more interesting it is.”
And the roots extend even deeper for Delano: “It’s a roots performance as well, solo acoustic, nothing to lean on, no band. It’s me sort of like a Ramblin’ Jack, trying to be real onstage, staying connected to myself, where I am and where I come from.”Geographically, he’s also grass-rooted, the networks under the surface extending far and wide. “I go around from person to person, introducing them to my music, from small town to small town.”
Listening to Delano’s songs is an experience akin to watching a small sliver of a stream as it tumbles and winds down a mountain, gaining strength, volume and briskness, fresh to the taste.
But rhythm and melody isn’t the only appeal. Storytelling is wound into his musical lyrics: “I am really interested in the writing aspect of music. I read a lot. I try to learn through other artists, their intent, what they wrote about, how they got their message across, what they were saying and feeling.”
Heartfelt, Delano tries to “put my all in the songs. It comes from the heart, I just really kind of take everything away and try to get at the heart of the song. There’s your brain, which is a thought process, but also your heart and your gut has a thought process and all your cells are intelligent. So I try to incorporate them all and listen to different parts of the information in the music.”
Cort Delano will be playing five venues on his Yukon tour: The Fireweed Cabin June 19, at 6:30 p.m., Sunstroke Festival June 20 and JR’s Pub (The Casa Loma) 8 p.m. June 20.
He then plays at Bombay Peggy’s June 28 at 8:30 p.m. in Dawson City, back to Whitehorse June 30 for Arts in the Park, noon.
To hear his music, go to www.sonicbids.com/cortdelano.