Up and Adam

Chris McCluskey listens for the big picture.

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When folk/roots troubadour Adam Puddington was last in Halifax during Juno weekend, it was for a pair of shows in support of his friends Matt Mays & El Torpedo. Months have passed and the Almonte, Ontario, native has returned to headline shows on his own, equipped with his sophomore album’s updated artwork.

“We have distribution from Outside now, so just something a little more representative of the genre,” he says of the new-look For the Meantime, released earlier this year. “Just so people can judge a book by the cover.”

Puddington hopes the new design makes the album more accessible to those who will enjoy his increasingly acclaimed brand of Tom Waits-ish folk.

“The first one, I like it a lot, but some people thought it was an ‘80s new-wave record or something,” says Puddington. Before leaving the east coast, Puddington will also participate in Canadian Country Music Awards festivities in Saint John. When asked specifics surrounding what his game plan will be, Puddington’s answer matched his good-nature and affable sense of humour—in sharp contrast to the deeper connotations of his music.

“I’m really looking forward to trying to meet Paul Brandt, he’s really one of my idols,” he says. “I try to model my career after him.”

Adam Puddington performs at Ginger’s on August 18 with support from Gabe and Ruth Minnikin.

Above and Beloved

There comes a time in the career of a musician when he needs to have his voice heard. Following years of touring with rock bands Change of Heart, Doctor and Our Lady Peace, bassist Rob Higgins found himself prepared to front his own band. Dearly Beloved is described as being an eclectic blend of indie rock mirroring Detroit rock 'n’ roll with a touch of Velvet Underground. You are the Jaguar, its debut album, is attracting an impressive amount of buzz which is catching Higgins off guard.

“When I made this album, it was for me to get through this shit I was going through,” he says of the material inspired by his father’s death. “Obviously now I hope people find some value in it, but any appreciation I hear about for it really surprises me. It’s a personal record, it’s the first time I took the time and energy to make an album I wanted to make.”

Higgins has assembled an accomplished group of like-minded musicians familiar with the Canadian touring machine, important for a 45-date Canadian tour including what has to be a record 10 stops in Newfoundland. Dearly Beloved is rounded out by vocalist Niva Chow, guitarist Damon Richardson (Change of Heart, Danko Jones), drummer Alex O’Reilly (Doctor) and guitarist John Pogue.

“What can I say, everyone that’s involved are people I’ve worked with before in some capacity,” says Higgins. “It’s more than just a band. Joe from Aide-de-Camp, the band we’re touring with, he’s been comparing us to a weirdo family cult.”

Catch Dearly Beloved on August 18 at the Attic and August 19 at One World Café.

They just want you to know who they are

Just when you were starting to get over how awesome Live was at the Metro Centre last month, their mid-1990s contemporaries (turned cover band) Goo Goo Dolls will perform in Halifax on November 21.

Goo goo going? scene@thecoast.ca

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