Residence fires burning: Gord Bamford celebrates household, drinkin’ and Alberta house with eleventh studio album, Hearth It Up


Roughly 5 years in the past, Gord Bamford determined to return house together with his household after spending almost 4 years in Nashville.

Born in Australia, house has at all times been Alberta for the nation singer. After his mother and father’ divorce, he arrived in Lacombe on the age of 5. He and his household now stay on a rural property close to a lake in Bashaw. On Canadian Filth, the opening monitor of his eleventh studio album, Hearth It Up, he determined to pay homage to his environment. It was one of many first songs he co-wrote over Zoom through the pandemic, teaming up with Nashville-based Canadian expat Phill O’Donnell. It mixes patriotic delight with wistful nostalgia, which have lengthy been go-to sentiments in Nashville and amongst mainstream American nation artists normally.

“I used to be reflecting on the place I used to be at that time in my life, out on the lake right here in Alberta,” says Bamford in an interview with Postmedia. “I used to be feeling actually fortunate to considerably be remoted in these occasions the place I might considerably be regular. If I had lived within the metropolis …  I imply sooner or later we weren’t allowed to go away our homes. So I’m up right here in a position to do my very own factor throughout these occasions. I simply actually appreciated the land I lived on, the place I name house. We had been in search of a extremely cool Canadian theme track that we might put out.”

“I lived in Nashville for a very long time and there are lots of patriotic American songs,” he provides. “I really feel like we don’t discuss our nation sufficient. That is extra a testomony to the Canadian panorama the place I grew up and the place I feel is the most effective place to stay and lift a household. It touched on all that stuff. It felt actually good when it was performed and, hopefully, it can grow to be a staple track in Canada for positive.”

It’s not solely the opening monitor of Hearth It Up however can even be a single and is the identify of the tour Bamford is presently on in western Canada. It’s not that the nation singer has given up on America or Nashville. He was already a longtime artist in Canada when he moved to Music Metropolis after touchdown a publishing deal.

“We beloved Nashville,” he says. “It wasn’t new to me. I had been going to Nashville for 15 years earlier than that and being inventive and dealing there. Our children had been younger on the time, however we beloved it down there and we positively return there for lengthy durations of time. It’s received every little thing you need, from sports activities to music to something you possibly can think about. On the finish of the day, I discovered myself enjoying right here extra, truthfully, and it’s the place I had a great, strong profession and our youngsters actually wished to be again house. It felt higher to go house and lift our household right here in Alberta and concentrate on the Canadian market.”

So it’s no shock that the songs on Hearth It Up have a major sense of place to them, even when most aren’t fairly as on-the-nose as Canadian Filth. A few of the songs on the file have been kicking round for years. When Bamford was recording songs for his 2021 album, Diamonds in a Whisky Glass, he discovered himself with an over-abundance of fabric. He had amassed one thing like 35 songs. Roughly half the brand new album is made up of songs from that interval and, in some circumstances, had already been set to tape years earlier. So prepping Hearth It Up included sprucing or tweaking these tracks at Calgary’s MCC Recording Studios.

“It’s not that they’re dated by any means, however issues change from 12 months to 12 months,” he says. “It’s not simply the songs and the best way music (adjustments), however even what you wish to do in your thoughts. When you’ve gotten that a lot time to hearken to the music, you hearken to it over and over and listen to stuff you wish to change and make totally different. The luxurious that I’ve is that I do lots of work in Calgary at MCC Studios… To leap in my truck and head up there for a pair days to work within the studio is just not a giant deal. So we had been ready to do this and fine-tune it versus chopping a file in a few months and placing it collectively and out it is available in six months. We had nearly three years to sit down on these items and hearken to it.”

The ten songs on Hearth It Up are a mixture of mid-tempo rockers with fiery, hard-rock guitar riffs and anthemic choruses and heart-tugging ballads. There are songs about love and heartbreak, together with Date Her and the melancholy Haunted Hometown. There’s a track about baseball, Cooperstown, and loads of songs about ingesting equivalent to Leanin’ On the Bar, Sober in a Drinkin’ Tune and the raucous Hair of the Honky Tonk Canine. There’s even one track, Ballpark Beers, that’s about each baseball and ingesting.

“You’ll be able to’t make a rustic file with out a few ingesting songs,” he says.

Whereas Bamford says he thinks the brand new file could also be his finest but, he additionally shows some good outdated Canadian modesty in admitting he nonetheless feels a twinge of tension every time a brand new file comes out. Whereas he’s a prolific author, most albums have him selecting tunes from exterior writers as effectively. He’s an artist but additionally sees himself as an entrepreneur who wants to remain on prime of latest sounds and traits in nation music and the kind of sounds mainstream radio is in search of.

That mentioned, one of many first singles from the album and its closing monitor was the ballad One Heartbeat From Heaven, about caregiving and loss,  which has the narrator coming to phrases with the sickness of a beloved one. Bamford admits it to date hasn’t burned up the charts, nevertheless it appears to be resonating with loads of individuals.

“It was loopy the quantity of emails we received on that or posts, most likely greater than I’ve ever seen on a track,” he says. “It wasn’t a track that blew up the radio charts by any means nevertheless it positively reached out to individuals from totally different walks of life and might be one in all my favorite songs thus far… It was written by a pal of mine, Buddy Owens and Galen Griffin, who I had written lots of songs with and spent lots of time with in Nashville. Once they wrote that track, Galen’s spouse was going by most cancers and has since beat most cancers, which is nice, however that track got here proper from the center of somebody coping with it. It was positively a track that impacted individuals everywhere in the world.”

Hearth It Up is out on April 28.

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