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  • Writer's pictureThe Sound Cafe

Canadian Singer-Songwriter Brian S Green Releases New Album 'Happy Hour At The Red Flag'

Brian S Green is a singer-songwriter based on Gabriola Island, British Columbia, on Canada's west coast. He has just released a new album, Happy Hour at the Red Flag. This project is different from the folk/americana tradition of his previous releases, and comprises two parts - a set of 6 individual songs, and a suite (approximately 30 minutes long) that incorporates 5 of those songs.

Brian explains, "Happy Hour at the Red Flag is not traditional radio-fare. It is something different, a collection of pieces exploring themes of religion and political radicalism, rooted in my own personal experiences in and around communities of struggle in Central America and southern Africa in the 1980s. I don't expect it to be for everyone, but I do believe it has something special."

Brian Green writes songs. He performs occasionally on his own, with his partner, Megan, and with various collections of musicians, but primarily writes and records, as his greatest interest is bringing people together to transform words into music. The themes are varied, emerging from a childhood spent in communities of hope and struggle in Canada, Central America and southern Africa, a working life in the trade union movement, and a day to day world of open doors, long tables, and diverse voices.

After several years with the Vancouver-based band Lone Crow Jubilee, since relocating to a rural part of the coast Brian has turned more deliberately to the craft of songwriting and in particular the ability of lyrics to communicate complete stories and complex ideas in a few short lines. It is a work in progress, this song smithing, in which frustration is the norm, but every now and then a word, a phrase, a verse takes shape that captures a moment such that the specific becomes universal, the fiction rings with truth. That, in a nutshell, is what the search is for. Brian doesn’t pretend to have his fingers on it, but it is the quest. And when bits of song take flight as a group of friends gather to put strings to words on the page, that’s where life is at its finest.

It’s original music that feels traditional – sometimes what folks are calling “alt-country”, sometimes old-school folk, sometimes rootsy rock’n’roll. But always, more than anything, it is about the song, the people around the song, the land and history that make us all together.


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