Language of Lamond

By Mike Bell – Calgary Sun

In this day and age of highly portable telecommunication, you never know where someone will be when they choose to call.

They could be stuck in traffic or at the gym. You could even hear the tell-tale porcelain echo of someone who’s talking while tinkling.

Or, there’s East Coast artist Mary Jane Lamond, who chooses to dial while sitting with a shopping cart full of possible purchases at a Halifax Winners.

“I can either stand around and wait to try on my clothes,” Lamond says laughing, “or I could call while I was trying on my clothes, and I didn’t feel comfortable doing that.”

No, certainly not — we’re not yet ready to take that step.

Maybe after a few initial interviews from a coffee shop, or while she’s at the movies.

And until we get to that point, there’s a lot to talk about, a great deal to catch up on.

The vocalist has been out of the national spotlight for much of the past two years, after the release of her fourth recording of traditional Gaelic music, Orain Ghaidhlig (Gaelic Songs of Cape Breton).

Some of that time has been spent touring the U.S. And the past year and a half, she says, has been spent working on “Drum, a multi-cultural musical variety show that’s going to be on CBC in the New Year.

“I was co-arranging the music which combines Acadian … Gaelic and African-Nova Scotian music together — that’s been kind of keeping me busy.”

There will also be a disc of the project released in 2004, which she co-produced.

As for her own music, Lamond, who performs tonight at Brew Brothers, is just getting to work on another album.

“It’s just in the baby stages,” she says. “I’m very slow to get started on these things. I have to ruminate on it a lot before I make any moves. I think and think.”

That doesn’t mean those attending her show tonight won’t hear anything fresh from the artist.

Her and her band have been working on some seasonal material to mix in with the rest of her songs.

“It’s not going to be familiar because it’s Gaelic songs,” she says before laughing.

“I’m actually just going to do a bunch of songs and tell people they’re Christmas songs.”