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Desirée Dawson excited to “chill” on western Canadian tour with Serena Ryder

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Squamish musician Desirée Dawson is living the dream, opening for Juno Award winning musician Serena Ryder.

Desirée Dawson opens for Serena Ryder in Lethbridge, Oct. 1. Photo submitted

Their tour stops by Southminster United Church, Oct. 1 for a Geomatic Attic show.


“It’s been so much fun. There has been a lot of learning. It’s been amazing,” said Dawson from a tour stop in Kamloops. The tour began Oct. 14  in Mission and ends with two shows in St. Albert, Oct . 7 and 8.


“I met Serena at the Juno Awards. We were both nominated for adult alternative album of the year, and  she won,” said Dawson, whose mother is French-Canadian settler ancestry from Ontario and her father is of African descent from South Carolina.


 “I’ve been listening to Serena since I was really young. So it’s been a beautiful thing to get to know her before and after the show and to see her perform every night. It’s been amazing,” Dawson enthused.


“We don’t get to play together on stage, but that would be a dream come true,” Dawson enthused, noting her 30 minute set only includes one track, “ Mountain Tops” from her new CD “Meet You at the Light.” 


 Dawson is touring with  guitarist/ vocalist Matt Storm, cajón/ percussionist / videographer Sally Zori and  partner and tour manager Jules Tatone.


“I’ve been touring as a duo, as a trio and solo. For Lethbridge, I think it will be a duo. I want to present people with a show that  helps them to be joyful and connected,” said Dawson, who just released a well received album, “Meet You at the Light,” which has a lot of laid back pop influences, but is also reminiscent of Allison Russell’ folk stylings.


It is a sparse sounding album with multi-layered harmony vocals, subtle piano and cello. 

“ It has a lot of heart. The goal was never for these songs to be commercially successful. I just wanted to make a CD that people can chill and relax to,” she said, crediting  her team plus   producer/ mixer  Olivia Quan and producer Francis Avelo for assembling the team on the CD.


“It took a lot of dedication. I really just wanted it top sound chill,” she said, noting she spent a lot of time on the vocals.


 The video for the title track “Meet You At the Light,” won best music video at South By Southwest in Austin.

 “ I didn’t know you could win anything at  South by Southwest. I just thought it was a film festival. So when my team messaged me and said  we won, ’I said. ‘What?’ and flew down  to Austin the next day. It was up against a lot of people I idolize. it was so much fun,” she enthused.


“My grandfather died at the  beginning of Covid and I couldn’t make it down to South Carolina for the funeral, so I wrote the song as a gift to my family. I told that story to my team and they ran with it. It surpassed my expectations,” she said.


She is looking forward to the rest of the tour.


“ We have CDs and merch. We have bracelets and CDs. We did the beading ourselves.  We just want to see everybody at the show,” Dawson said.


 Serena Ryder and Desirée Dawson play the Southminster United Church for  this special Geomatic Attic Show,Saturday Oct. 1. Tickets range from $40 to $65. The show begins at 8 p.m.

— By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 28 September 2022 12:29 )  
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