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With 2009’s Broken Hearted Beat, audiences were introduced to a golden-voiced young performer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist with a mosaic-like approach to writing music named Tim Chaisson. The album – Chaisson’s fourth, but first to hit the national landscape – borrowed from a wide range of influences and featured healthy amounts of rock, pop, and country at its core; however, with his newest album, The Other Side, the pride of PEI is quite literally going back to his roots.
A humble and soft-spoken musician, Chaisson began performing publically during primary school in a family Celtic ensemble before embracing his inner songwriter as a teenager and self-releasing four albums. The latest of those was Broken Hearted Beat, which had a lot of attentive ears turning eastward.
Since its release, Chaisson has been added to the roster of Bumstead Productions, ventured across Australia on two successful solo tours, hit #1 on the MuchMoreMusic Countdown, and performed to ever-expanding audiences across Canada from club and festival stages alike. He’s also amassed his share of awards and accolades, includingCOCA Emerging Artist of the Year and Music PEI Touring Artist of the Year in 2012, on top of being chosen as Musical Director for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s highly-publicized Royal Visit to PEI in 2011.
The Other Side, recorded at Woodshed Studio with producer Colin Linden (Bruce Cockburn, Blackie & The Rodeo Kings), offers a stripped-down and intimate taste of Chaisson’s honest and heartfelt writing. The album takes on a tinge of Maritime roots and folk, incorporating an array of acoustic instruments and a warm, transparent production style. The arrangements are lush but subdued, keeping Chaisson’s vocals and guitar at the heart of the 11 tracks.
“Having all of these talented musicians in the same room and letting the tape roll was pretty magical,” Chaisson says. “This record is a result of us capturing the raw energy that is very hard to describe.”
Songs like “Bail You Out” feature an upbeat, vibrant energy rooted in rock and full of memorable vocal melodies while others like “Til The Sun Comes Up,” featuring Chaisson on the fiddle, carry an influence of classic country. “The Healing” showcases the artist in perhaps his purest form – a stripped acoustic number with delicate vocals ranging from lower-register whispers to sultry falsettos, his signature silky-smooth delivery paving the way. The culmination of what Chaisson offers is heard in the album’s lead single, “Beat This Heart,” a duet with critically-heralded songstress Serena Ryder featuring simple-but-stunning vocal harmonies atop hints of pop, folk, country, and everything else this impressive young songwriter has to offer.
Lyrically, The Other Side explores Chaisson’s expanding breadth of life experience, both from an intimate and personal perspective through to a more universal take on subjects including love and loss, friendship and loneliness, isolation and fulfillment. “These lyrics are very close to me,” he notes, and that’s more than apparent in his delivery throughout the album.
An extremely gifted performer, Chaisson has always shone brightest from the stage. Fortunately for music fans, he’ll be touring extensively in support of his latest well into 2013, including another trek to Australia. And regardless of whether he’s joined onstage by a full band or simply his guitar, mandolin, and fiddle, Chaisson makes his craft look absolutely effortless – the mark of a true artist.
Tim Chaisson’s profile has already expanded well beyond the Maritimes and into new international markets thanks to the Cinderella-like success of Broken Hearted Beat and a steady streak of touring. Now, with The Other Side, Chaisson is poised to reach a new plateau in his burgeoning career and it won’t be long before one of the country’s most promising young talents is far more than Atlantic Canada’s best-kept secret.