Opening for the season
Tara MacLean & Dennis Ellsworth | May 3
Tara MacLean is a singer, songwriter, and award winning recording and touring artist. From break-out pop hits (“If I Fall”) to country-crossover (“Happy Baby”) her style is reflective of her deep roots in Gospel and the Folk Music of her East Coast Canadian upbringing. She has been signed with Nettwerk, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Capitol Records and EMI Canada (with her band Shaye). Her three solo albums were released to high acclaim, garnering extensive film and television placements, as well international touring and radio play. Though Tara MacLean resides part time in British Columbia, this Prince Edward Island native has chosen to spend summers here at home, presenting a hit show at The Guild called Atlantic Blue, where she sings the songs and tells the stories of the East Coast's most legendary songwriters.
Don't miss this rare chance to see her live performing original music with one of her favourite singing/songwriting partners, Dennis Ellsworth. Dennis Ellsworth writes songs in a variety of styles. In 2014 he was named one of Canada’s top 10 new artists by the CBC Searchlight Contest.
J.P. Cormier | May 4 & 5
J.P. Cormier is a man with many musical talents. He is a skilled songwriter, a gifted singer, and an extraordinary musician who has accomplished success with more than one instrument. During his long career, he has won many competitions, including the Canadian Open Guitar Championship, the Southern U.S. Fiddle Championship, and the Southern U.S. Banjo Championship. He has also worked with a number of big-name artists and appeared on the ever-popular Grand Ol' Opry over two dozen times. His debut album, Out of the Blue, was released when he was only 16 years old. His latest albums are The Chance (JUNO-nominated) and a collaboration with Dave Gunning, Gunning + Cormier Two.
Patrick Ledwell & Mark Haines | May 6
Circle May 6th on your calendar! Patrick Ledwell and Mark Haines are returning to Trailside Café with a show that’s been described as, “Now that’s something you don’t see everyday!” Steve Paterson, host of CBC’s The Debaters says, “Patrick is one of the funniest people in Canada period,” and Lenny MacPherson described Mark as, “The Swiss Army Knife of musicians.” Patrick’s Island based humour befriends you and pokes fun at you all in the same sentence while Mark takes you on a tuneful travelogue through time and idiom. Happy to be back at The Trailside, their evening promises to be a great smorgasbord of food and drink served with comedic and musical delights.
Steve Poltz | May 9
To suggest that Steve Poltz isn’t normal is about as safe a statement as one could make. You would basically require the powers of the Hubble space telescope to locate Steve Poltz from any region of normalcy. For music fans on both sides of the equator, this is a very good thing.
Rose Cousins | May 10 & 11
Award winning Islander Rose Cousins is nominated for Songwriter of the Year at the 2018 JUNO Awards. Her latest record, Natural Conclusion, was nominated for a 2018 GRAMMY award and is up for eight East Coast Music Awards. Fueled by collaboration, she deeply values being part of multiple music communities and is most proud to come home to PEI, where it all started, at the Trailside Café.
Amanda Jackson Band | May 12 & 13
Amanda Jackson Band’s latest album is Fire in the Blue. Join Islanders Amanda and her band (Todd MacLean, Dale McKie, Jon Rehder, Reg Ballagh) for a night of original songs.
Matthew Barber + Brielle Ansems | May 15
Since debuting in 1999, Canadian singer/songwriter Matthew Barber has built a sturdy reputation as a consummate source for literate rock, folk, and Americana.
Based in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Brielle has spent the past few years gaining experience as a performer and songwriter.
Jerry Leger & Graham Nicholas + Jordan Cameron | May 18
There’s always been something special about Jerry Leger’s songs that few can match. It bears repeating, and is hardly an understatement, that he manages to channel the youthful vigor of Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Neil Young and Rick Danko, sometimes all within the same song.
Jordan Cameron has been a regular on the Island music scene for almost 10 years. His blend of folky-alternative, story driven songs will stick with you long after the show. He has released 4 studio albums, and has been nominated for an ECMA and 6 Music PEI awards. He's trying to make the ukulele cool, but he's not sure if it's working.
Meaghan Blanchard | May 19
An Island favourite, Meaghan won her second East Coast Music Award for her third album She’s Gonna Fly. Meaghan is also one third of The Eastern Belles (with Catherine MacLellan and Ashley Condon).
(Triple CD launch) Fluffy Little Cowboys + Keelin Wedge + Ali McCormick | May 20 (afternoon matinee)
The women in Fluffy Little Cowboys are no angels. They are a fiery, focused trio with an eclectic sound that’s incredibly compelling but almost impossible to categorize.
Keelin is not just an important member of the Fluffy Little Cowboys family but is also a highly sought after musician in the traditional music scene on PEI. Keelin has just released her second album, The Traditional Files, and she will be playing some tunes from it at this show.
A mechanic of the heart, Ali twists all its nuts and bolts, shifting gears melodically and rhythmically through her fine-tuned collection of songs.
Richard Wood & Gordon Belsher | May 20 (evening show)
PEI fiddler Richard Wood has entertained audiences across Canada, in the US, Europe, Japan and Australia including at Carnegie Hall with The Chieftains. Guitarist and singer Gordon Belsher is Richard’s long-time musical mate.
Jenn Grant | May 21 & 22
While PEI’s Jenn Grant’s 2014 JUNO-nominated Compostela focused on her own personal experience of loss, this time Grant points the compass towards the epic and intimate, and explores a new depth of sound in Paradise.
Andrew Waite and The Firm | May 25
This Island group delivers rich harmonies and explorative soundscapes featuring Andrew’s original songs. Their debut EP is Burning Through the Night.
Villages | May 26
Villages are a folk group from Cape Breton, NS whose original songs feature poetic storytelling over modern yet traditional sounds. Their latest CD is Hymn After Hymn. Jon McKiel is a singer songwriter from Halifax, Nova Scotia.
The Atlantic String Machine + Jenni & The Hummingbird | May 27
The Atlantic String Machine is made up of 5 professional string musicians with considerable professional experience in a number of musical genres. They present a wide range of music—classical to jazz, pop, world music and their own compositions.
Inspired by the simple melodies and cinematic soundscapes of Italian pianist Ludovico Einaudi and enchanting music of Norwegian artist Aurora, Jenni pulls from her influences to create sounds that resonate from the heart and include all nuances of the emotions experienced in life.
Trailside Music Café & Inn is at 109 Main Street in Mount Stewart. Doors open 6:30 pm with music at 8 pm. Tickets available at www.trailside.ca, Back Alley Music or call 902-394-3626 for reservations.