Mike Plume is one of the most respected roots artists in Canada, and one of our country’s most prolific songwriters and story tellers. 2018 marks Mike’s 25th year as a recording and touring artist.
Plume made his initial mark on Canada’s vast musical landscape in the 90’s, routinely playing more than 200 shows a year for the better part of two decades. He’s toured every corner of North America, sharing the stage with the likes of Blue Rodeo, Corb Lund, Steve Earle, John Hiatt, and The Mavericks, and most recently with Lindi Ortega.
Like many of the best troubadours, Plume is inspired by the places he travels to, the people he meets and the experiences he encounters along the highways and byways of the lands in which he tours. None have inspired him to such a profound degree as his homeland of Canada.
His upcoming appearance at Toronto’s Hugh’s Room on Wednesday, October 3, is part of his cross-country tour, being dubbed the “From The East To The West We Roam” tour, and named after a lyric from Plume’s best known song 8:30 Newfoundland (This Is Our Home). Tickets are $25 in advance/$30 at the door.
“Why would I drive across the country by myself? Why not? When they asked the bank robber why he robbed the bank, he replied with ‘because that’s where the money is! ’ Ditto for this tour. Why would you drive coast to coast. Because that’s where the gigs are. Stompin’ Tom Connors said that you go south to warm your body, but you go east to west to warm your heart. And Townes Van Zandt said that there is no prettier sight than a town in your rear-view mirror. If you’ve never driven across the country, you should. It’s really something to see. Natural beauty is around every corner. ”
His most recent album, Born by the Radio, was released on June 29, 2018, and Plume is having a blast sharing this new music with fans from coast to coast.
Kicking off with My Old Friend, Plume looks back on the first half-century of his life and the friendships that survive distance and the inevitable passing of time, while Mama’s Rolling Stone, co-written with Canadian country star Tim Hicks, reflects on how years tend to accelerate past parents as their children rely upon them less and less.
“I think it’s a hit and I’d love to see it be a hit, ” Plume says, referring toMama’s Rolling Stone. “The same could be said for Waste A Kiss On Me, which I wrote with Trevor Rosen of [American country band] Old Dominion. ”
Another song Western Wind was nothing more than a title that Plume carried for the better part of 12 years before actually writing the song. “The song title came from when we were rehearsing at Levon Helm’s place in Woodstock, NY back in May of 2000. One day while on a break, I was outside smoking a cigarette and Levon came out of his house and sat down beside me and said, ‘I sure can hear that western wind in y’all’s music… ’ I almost fell over. I should have put that on a poster somewhere. ”
Clocking in at under 35 minutes, and with some of the strongest, most compelling material of his career, Born By The Radio is proof positive that Plume is only getting better with age. While some may question the viability of the album in a singles-driven market, this collection proves the album format, like Plume himself, is as relevant as ever.
You can listen to the first single My Old Friend here: