History fueled music, wrapped in denim. It’s in the genes.
I release ‘The Minnikins’ Photo Album’ to my family, music lovers, writers, DJs, artists and concept builders.
The first inkling of The Photo Album was born back in twenty-ten, when I made the decision to initiate an ancestral archive of stories taken from photographs, letters and songs. For a year of Thursdays I visited with my Nana (her mother is on the album cover) and we reminisced and sang hymns at her piano.
Keeping with familiarity and tradition, I summonsed my brother Gabriel and sister Amy to share their talents alongside my closest friends and musical family (The Guthries, The Heavy Blinkers and The Echo Chamber).
Undeniably my heart was swollen as I wrote, but I daydream that my next bout of inspiration comes from love, salt water and the children I will teach on Jeju Island over the next year. Or, the waves on The East China Sea may swell into sounds of longing and heartache for Canada, the Atlantic Ocean and it’s folks (just like the time I moved to England). But that’s a different bio entirely.
‘The Minnikins’ Photo Album’, recorded and assembled, will magically appear just in time to mouth the words “goodbye for now”.
“With her slightly off-kilter delivery, soft vocals and minor key melodies, we’re never quite in the present. The feeling is more like looking at an old snapshot of mysterious people with a story we only get a bit of. But it’s compelling, fascinating, like these interrupted dreams you can’t quite remember, but wish so much you could.” Bob Mersereau, CBC
“Minnikin’s rustic lilt wraps itself around the songs like a beloved old afghan knit by your grandmother.” Stephen Cooke, The Chronicle Herald, NS
Depend on This’ (2010) uber-calculated conclusion spanned the Atlantic Ocean and united seventeen magical musicians, twenty-three integral instruments, a men’s vocal choir, three pop producers, one sound artist, and a handful of visual artists.
On her acclaimed 2006 release ‘Folk Art’, Ruth Minnikin stuck to the essentials. Contained in a hand-sewn, ink-stamped canvas case, the album’s packaging reflected the music within. Rootsy, bare and without pretension, ‘Folk Art’ offered eleven tracks from an artist with her focus set on the songs and the live-recording process.
Minnikin’s varied and accomplished musical history has surely helped hone this kind of concentration. Her first band, Booming Airplanes, was signed to EMI during the Halifax pop explosion of the ’90′s. Her chamber-pop side project, The Heavy Blinkers developed a cult following all over the world, and at the turn of the millennium, Ruth made two albums and toured the UK and the US with alt-country quintet, The Guthries.
A few press quotes for 'The Minnikins' Photo Album' (released Nov 13, 2012)
The Globe and Mail - 4/4 Stars - Disc of the Week/2012 Picks of the Year - "As gracious and inviting album as I have ever heard."
Herohill Music Blog - "Washed in sepia tones; images faded and cracked Ruth sings in the spirit of tradition and lineage"
New Canadian Music - Folk Album of the Week - "Superb effort here. There is a soft and pure quality to Minnikin's vocals."
Bob Mersereau CBC - "Compelling and fascinating, like those interrupted dreams you can't quite remember, but wish so much you could."
Now Magazine - NNNN - "On 'Letters For You', Minnikin delivers one of her most beautiful vocal performances yet."
Americana UK - 9/10 - "This is a pure, honest, no frills album that is both genuine and utterly beautiful."