8 February 2012 - SYDNEY ó Travel is a necessity of making it in the music industry.
Luckily for Bruce Cockburn, hitting the open road has always been one of his favourite parts of the job.
"Itís a bit of a drug for me I guess in the sense that itís a way to evade the day-to-day reality that most of us have to deal with when weíre sitting in one place," he said. "And of course the world of touring is even more like that. It becomes totally unrealistic, except with respect to the shows themselves, and that of course, is what itís all about."
After taking a break from the road since September, Cockburn is set to head out on tour once again. The renowned singer-songwriter had to cancel an East Coast tour in 2010 when he developed pneumonia, but heís now making up those dates, which will include a stop at the Membertou Trade and Convention Centre, Feb. 23.
"Iím very happy to be able to be doing this tour. It was a big disappointment to have to cancel it the first time around," said Cockburn.
Itís a solo show and one where audiences should expect to hear a mix of older material, and newer songs from his latest album, "Small Source of Comfort," released last year.
"The material will range from stuff from the recent album and just a cross-section of older stuff," he said. "The obvious ones will be in there. "Wondering Where the Lions Are" pretty much ends up in every show, and "Lovers in a Dangerous Time," things like that."
Cockburnís travels have also contributed to much of his musical catalogue, as visiting new places, meeting new people, and experiencing new things have served as inspiration for his songwriting.
"To oversimplify itís kind of the shock factor. When you encounter anything that really moves you for the first time, think of the first time you fell in love or the first time you engaged in a sport that youíd never tried and found that you loved it, that kind of thing, it leaves a big impression," he explained.
Cockburn said when it comes to songwriting the lyrics typically come first, in a notebook he carries with him, and then he adds music to the words.
"Iíve never been good at deciding to write a song about a particular topic. A case in point on this album actually thatís kind of in that very dramatic experience category is "Each One Lost," which was the result of being at a ramp ceremony at Camp Mirage in Dubai. The whole thing was so incredibly touching and deeply moving that it stuck with me and the day I got back from Afghanistan I wrote that song."
On "Small Source of Comfort," Cockburn also branched into the world of co-writing with Annabelle Chvostek, on the songs "Driving Away," and "Boundless.Ē
ďThat is something I havenít done very much of, the co-writing thing, and it was fun,Ē he said.
2011 was a big year for Cockburn, professionally and personally. He released "Small Source of Comfort," his 31st album, took home two Canadian Folk Music Awards, and his second daughter, Iona Cockburn, with his longtime girlfriend, was born in late November.
For 2012, Cockburn said he plans to do more touring and is always working on new material, but is particularly looking forward to spending time with his family.
Cockburn is an Officer of the Order of Canada, and an 11-time Juno Award winner. He was nominated once again earlier this week in the solo roots and traditional album of the year category.
~ Cape Brenton Post by Laura Jean Grant.