Toronto Luminato line-up named
Bruce Cockburn, Béla Fleck, Bassekou Kouyate, and John Malkovich

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11 March 2010 - TORONTO - by Jane Stevenson, QMI Agency

Canadian folk singer-songwriter Bruce Cockburn, Montreal's Rufus Wainwright, banjo player Bela Fleck, and actor John Malkovich will be among the music performers at the Luminato Festival in Toronto from June 11 to 20.

Cockburn, 64, will celebrate his 40-year catalogue with a tribute that will include fellow musicians Hawksley Workman, The Cowboy Junkies' Margo Timmins, Toronto-based jazz guitarist Michael Occhipinti, Quebec's Michel Rivard, and guitarist Colin Linden performing his tunes at this year's Canadian Songbook night at Massey Hall on June 16 (tickets $55-$85).

"I thought, 'Yeah, 40 years feels like a milestone, let's do it,'" said Cockburn following Tuesday's unveiling of the Luminato music lineup.

"And I'm happy to be part of it, but the really exciting part of it is having all these other people being in on it and hearing their takes on my songs and me being able to participate with them. That's the most fun part of it for me. I'll be on stage a fair amount during the evening, I think."

Cockburn's hits have included Wondering Where the Lions Are, Coldest Night of the Year, Lovers in a Dangerous Time, If I Had a Rocket Launcher, and Waiting for a Miracle and everyone from Barenaked Ladies to Jerry Garcia to Jimmy Buffett have covered his songs.

The Ottawa-born Cockburn, who left Toronto for Montreal in 2000 and now calls Kingston home, said the Canadian songbook idea was mentioned to him about a year ago by his manager Bernie Finkelstein who was in discussions with Luminato.

"It kind of feels like my 50th birthday," said Cockburn. "Forty years just seems like a milestone. Thirty years didn't. I don't what the difference is other than 10 years. Forty feels like, 'Yeah that means something,' to have been around that long and to be continuing to put out new stuff through that period." Cockburn's last studio album was 2006's Life's Short, Call Now, but said he'll go into the studio in June with Colin Linden producing and violinist Jenny Scheinman (Bill Frissell, Ani DiFranco, Lucinda Williams) on board with plans to release the new disc in 2011.

The theme of this year's music program is the celebration of the Diva, East/West, and works that express human and artistic rights. Luminato tickets go on sale April 15 at Ticketmaster outlets, by phone at 416-872-1111 or online at Check for the full schedule.

~ from The Peterborough Examiner by Jane Stevenson, QMI Agency, 11 March 2010.

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This page is part of The Cockburn Project, a unique website that exists to document the work of Canadian singer-songwriter and musician Bruce Cockburn. The Project archives self-commentary by Cockburn on his songs and music, and supplements this core part of the website with news, tour dates, and other current information.