Elevate the Arts is presenting a special and intimate concert event on March 25 with acclaimed ensemble Tower of Song at the Cumberland Masonic Hall.
“I said to Hank Williams, how lonely does it get?
Hank Williams hasn’t answered yet.
But I hear him coughing all night long.
A hundred floors above me, in the Tower of Song.”
When Leonard Cohen sang these words, the Tower of Song was a metaphor for the inspiration that flows between songwriters, each toiling away on their own, but connected by their shared craft.
Moved by this concept, celebrated B.C. singer-songwriters Oliver Swain and Glenna Garramone collaborated to produce a project that is a dialogue through song and a tribute to the legendary songwriter. Re-imagining both rare and classic works of Cohen, the duo have crafted a sound that resonates with both longtime Cohen fans and a younger audience.
Tower of Song began as a one-off tribute night for a packed house at Vancouver’s The Media Club in 2011, and has since grown into an actively touring folk duo.
Produced by Garramone, she invited fellow Victoria musician Oliver Swain, and the show gave Swain and Garramone the chance to grow their musical chemistry. Together as Tower of Song the two have arranged some of Cohen’s timeless songs beautifully, for two voices, banjo, string bass, piano and guitar.
Tower of Song have played more than 90 concerts to thousands of people in theatres and folks clubs across Canada, touring in support of their debut album, In City and In Forest, produced by Juno Award winner Joby Baker.
In addition to re-imagining the works of Cohen, Tower of Song includes original songs as part of their live show and recordings. Performance highlights include packed houses at the West End Cultural Centre in Winnipeg, and The Rogue Folk Club in Vancouver, Hugh’s Room in Toronto, and receiving three standing ovation encores at the ArtsWells Festival.
Oliver Swain is a Juno & WCMA nominated Americana Folk Noir musician Oliver Swain spent a dozen years in some of North America’s most loved roots bands (Outlaw Social, The Duhks, The Bills).
A naturalist musician who was drawn to Louisiana and Appalachia several times to discover the roots of American music for himself, Oliver resides in Victoria, where frequent journeys into the rugged B.C. wilderness fuel his songwriting, singing and playing styles.
Glenna Garramone is inspired by the geography and spirit of the places she has lived, from Nunavut to Hawaii, Garramone harmonizes the experimental with the classical, and the unexpected with the organic.
Garramone’s talent and creativity have won her invitations to a wide variety of venues; Victoria’s Folk Fest, BC Festival of the Arts, and the Victoria Independent Music Awards.
When she’s not traveling, Garramone resides in Victoria, where she directs The Pandora Chours, an indie-pop-rock community choir. She is also the keyboard player of the band Shane Koyczan and the Short Story Long.
Tickets for Tower of Song are available through the Elevate website elevatethearts.com or at Bop City Records or Rare Bird Books.
Limited tickets are available so don’t wait to pick them up!
Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and the show starts at 8.