"We make music about place, spirit, culture and laws, wrapped in stunning guitar, sax and flute, expressed in the ancient Haida language."
Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson, Bill Henderson and Claire Lawrence find excitement in blending their diverse musical backgrounds. Terri-Lynn and her legacy work in Haida musical traditions and culture; Bill and Claire with their legendary contributions to Canadian music, beginning with founding the Collectors and the Canadian rock band Chilliwack. Building upon aspects of Haida culture, language and oral traditions, and drawing influence from jazz, blues, folk, and rock, their music calls attention to a greater purpose: the need for all of us to work together over ethnic and cultural divides with deep love and creativity. Their timely and unique album, “Grizzly Bear Town”, was released on August 10-11 in Haida Gwaii (and iTunes) and August 27 in Vancouver.
The trio first began working together for a MusicBC fundraising concert to purchase instruments for schools in Haida Gwaii in December, 2012. They came together again in 2016 to embark on the latest album, "Grizzly Bear Town".
Terri-Lynn represents a unique artistic voice for west coast indigenous culture. She is a Haida musician, artist, and lawyer, well known for her work in aboriginal-environmental law and as a recognized keeper of traditions for Haida music. Born and raised in Haida Gwaii, Terri-Lynn has dedicated herself to the continuation of Haida culture. At the age of 13 she was drawn to the songs her centenarian great-grandmother sang. She subsequently helped rescue a legacy of Haida music from obscurity through her work with the Haida Gwaii Singers Society, preserving songs that might otherwise have been lost.
Her second album ‘New Journeys’ garnered a ‘Best Female Artist’ Canadian Aboriginal Music Award (“CAMA”) and numerous nominations, and stayed on the National Aboriginal Music Countdown for almost 40 weeks. Her first album ‘Lalaxaaygans: Beautiful Sound’ received a ‘Best Female/Traditional Cultural Roots’ CAMA.
The Grizzly Bear Town album shares roots with Terri-Lynn’s art exhibition entitled “Out of Concealment” featured at the nationally acclaimed Haida Gwaii Museum from June 16-December 31, 2017. It is a three-dimensional storytelling installation that features images, music and video about Haida female supernatural beings. “Out of Concealment” was published by Heritage House Publishing in 2017.
Bill Henderson is a singer/songwriter, lead vocalist and guitarist with the legendary Canadian rock band Chilliwack. He has also produced numerous recordings, winning a Juno Award for "Producer of the Year" and a Genie Award for best original song in a movie. He was the sound engineer for the Haida Gwaii Singers contemporary box set and was musical director for the Canadian edition of Sesame Street. Bill has also advocated for musicians and songwriters on the industry side, as Director of the Canadian Association of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS), and as Director and President of the Songwriters Association of Canada (SAC) and SOCAN. Bill is part of the folk music supergroup “UHF.” In 2015 Bill was honoured with an Order of Canada, one of the country’s highest civilian honours.
“We enjoy being utterly flexible, stepping boldly off musical cliffs, and creating new ground together out of nothing but sound,” says Bill of his musical relationship with long time band mate Claire Lawrence.
Claire Lawrence was a founding member of The Collectors and Chilliwack. A talented multi-instrumentalist, he plays saxophone, flutes, and keyboards. He left the group in 1971 to produce a number of prominent and award-winning Canadian artists and groups including Susan Jacks, Valdy, Shari Ulrich, Roy Forbes, UHF and Connie Kaldor. In 1977 he formed the “Hometown Band” which was awarded the Juno for best new group in 1978. He has scored music for television including Northwood, Cold Squad and the long running Canadian TV series, and The Beachcombers. He also produced Jazz Beat for CBC Radio, along with jazz recordings for artists including Cam Ryga and Rene Rosnes, Laila Biali and Don Thompson, the latter winning a Juno for best jazz album.
"Our concerts are an invitation to come explore new territories, a place the audience didn't know existed, and a sound to summon feelings and images that flow from the Supernatural Beings. We like to help bridge cultures to help connect people of different backgrounds in the spirit of true reconciliation and, to have some fun on the way."
Music: "Grizzly Bear Town" (2017)
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