Ryan Donn Review: Adrienne Pierce


It’s been too many years since Adrienne Pierce performed in Kelowna. We performed together in Kelowna a number of years ago while I was still hosting the “Songwriters in the Round” series. It’s always impressive to see folks spend their life building and perfecting their craft.

On March 29th she is performing at the Minstrel Cafe with her husband Ari Shine. Cover is $5.

Here’s our interview:

Ryan Donn: Your music is very much about storytelling. Are you a storyteller in your daily life as well or do you save that for your music?

Adrienne Pierce: I do tend to make everything into a story in my daily life and I know it can sometimes drive people a bit crazy. I tend to give long answers (see above).

RD: The list of artists you’ve had work on your albums is impressive, and your work has played alongside some big names, is there someone you’re really hoping to collaborate with?

AP:I recently sang a duet with Ken Stringfellow when I opened for him in Montreal. His new album is really incredible. I would love to write with him or have him produce my songs. I would also love to work with T-Bone Burnett someday.

RD: If you were to write a letter and throw it in the fire today, as you sing about in Let It Go on your new album My Heavens (released Feb. 19, 2013), what would be in it? What inspired this song?

AP:At this point I would probably write a letter to myself. “Let It Go” was originally called “Note To Self”. It is timely that you ask this because I had dinner at my parents house tonight and my Mom showed me a little tile with The Prayer Of St. Francis on it. It seems to sum up (better than I could) what my song is about. It says”
“grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,”

RD: On the album cover, you have some intriguing historic photos, did you do the collection or work with the designer?

AP:The artwork on both the front and back covers is by Tricia Scott and she collected those photos. She is very talented and wonderful to work with.

RD: How did you and your husband, Ari Shine, meet?

AP:We met at a studio in North Hollywood. Ari was there writing with some friends and I was there to record drums with one of his co-writers Victor Indrizzo. We talked a little about Canadian bands and became Myspace friends but did not really stay in touch. Two years later we went on a tour together. Shortly after that we got married.

RD: There’s a clarity to your voice that I’m sure any musician would aspire to and your music makes one want to sing along. Clearly, you have an inborn talent but how did you develop it?

AP:That is very kind of you to say and it will possibly help with the doubt that I experience daily. I work harder now than I ever have before on my songs and my voice. I feel like I am just sort of starting to get the hang of this whole thing.

RD: What’s the best decision you’ve made in your career thus far?

AP:I think the best decision I have made is to follow my instincts. Well meaning people can be very free with advice and things can get confusing. I have tried to go with my gut and not get swayed too much by what other people think I should do or not do.

RD: If you were to venture completely outside your own style, what genre would you love to work in (realistic or unrealistic)?

AP:I would love to do an old fashioned Jazz album someday.

RD: You have your own Christmas CD. Holiday music is something almost everyone has memories attached to. Do you have a favourite Christmas song and why the affinity?

AP:My sister and I really loved the Boney M Christmas album when we were young. It was not Christmas unless we played that record. I love a lot of Christmas music. I listen to everything from Elvis and Bing Crosby to A Fine Frenzy’s “Red Ribbon Foxes” and Sufjan Stevens when Christmas comes around.

RD: Music aside, you have a personal style that’s very eclectic and, yet, quite consistent. Do you have style icons you emulate?

AP:Sometime I feel like I am a little like Lenny Kravitz because he says he wears whatever is clean but I am a big fan of Audrey Hepburn.

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