ANN VRIEND WINS COBALT PRIZE AT 2017 MAPLE BLUES AWARDS!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Aporia Records Logo imageAporia Records Logo

ANN VRIEND

WINS COBALT PRIZE

AT 2017 MAPLE BLUES AWARDS

Ann Vriend Cobalt Prize


TORONTO – TUESDAY, JANUARY 24, 2017 –
Big Win for Ann Vriend! Following on the heels of her powerful and well-received Blues Summit Eight showcase with Rooster Davis Group (also her backing band), Ann Vriend is more than thrilled that she has won the Toronto Blues Society’s COBALT PRIZE at last night’s Maple Blues Awards. The event took place at Toronto’s Koerner Hall where Vriend was handed the award for Contemporary Blues Composition/Songwriting for her song “All That I Can” (Aporia Records), a soulful gospel tune. For more information please visit: www.annvriend.com / www.aporia-records.com.

The Toronto Blues Society’s annual Cobalt Prize is judged on a song’s ability to creatively utilize blues traditions within the broad contemporary musical landscape. With a focus on melody, song structure, lyric etc. they also choose the song that “will refresh and enrich blues as an art form.”

The Cobalt Prize judges decided that Edmonton-based Ann Vriend’s “All That I Can” achieved just that, and selected it as first place winner among 75 entries from across Canada. Shocked and ecstatic from the win, Vriend gave a speech noting the inspiration from the African-American community, reminding the audience that they were all there because of a music that came out of great hardship, slavery, and abuse of the African-American people – and yet blues music has had the most profound influence on almost all genres of music world-wide than any other genre.

“All That I Can” is a new track from AV’s upcoming EP release via Aporia Records. It will also be released in Australia next month, alongside four other original tracks, in an EP entitled Anybody’s Different, licensed by David Hand Productions from Aporia Records. With the vocals recorded in primarily one take, the song has a live-off-the-floor feeling and falls into the category of gospel blues with its 6/8 time signature. The music is very traditional gospel, but the lyrics are secular. The Hammond organ combined with upright piano and AV’s soul vocals are reminiscent of early gospel and soul recordings in the era of Sam Cooke. However, there is also a contemporary twist in the sound too – since the drums used on this track are sampled in the style of retro hip hop, and eq’ed to give the song a rough low-fi edge, in contrast with Vriend’s smooth and sweet (though powerful) vocals.

The lyrics of the song are an earnest promise to a lover to do “all that I can” if the lover is willing to “take me just as I am” – a plea to be a true friend and companion in a world where “sometimes I think they wanna break me, just to see if they can.” Though Vriend points out: “but they mistake me as a weak and silly woman,” which could be taken as a slight jab at the misogyny that is sadly, still so prevalent in the world.

Following this very fruitful weekend in Toronto, is a showcase tonight at Aporia Record Label, 714 Gerrard Street East, Toronto, at 6:30 pm. Then Vriend will tour Australia with the Rooster Davis Group next month for a five-week tour, to support the Anybody’s Different EP followed by a European Tour from May 13-29, 2017.

More on “All That I Can”

Composer: Ann Vriend
Producer: Tino Zolfo
Mixing engineer: Brandon Unis, Cylinder Sound
Film mastering engineer: Peter Letros, Wreckhouse Mastering
Label: Aporia Records 

Musicians

Vocals and Piano: Ann Vriend
Organ: Rooster Davis (David Aide)
Programming: Tino Zolfo

Upcoming Dates

February 9 – March 12 – Australia EP Release Tour

Artist Links

Soundcloud:

https://soundcloud.com/annvriend/all-that-i-canwav

https://soundcloud.com/aporia-records/ann-vriend-will-you-be-there

https://soundcloud.com/aporia-records/ann-vriend-anybodys-different/s-dEJII

Spotify: https://play.spotify.com/artist/3vjHMysd98leqhwDotu9fZ

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/AnnVriend

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnVriend

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AnnVriend #WillYouBeThere #AllThatICan

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/annvriend  

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For more information, photos, mp3s, WAV files, interviews, please contact:

MEDIA CONTACT:

Beverly Kreller, Publicist | SPEAK Music
bev@speak-music.com | 416-922-3620
Twitter: @SPEAKMusicPR
Facebook: www.facebook.com/beverly.kreller

 

 

Ann Vriend New Video & Single “Will You Be There?” on Aporia Records Out Now

ANN VRIEND
NEW VIDEO
WILL YOU BE THERE?
OUT DECEMBER 9TH!

“Don’t miss her.” ~ Toronto Star
“Holy wow! What a voice!” ~ The AU Review in Australia
“Vriend’s voice is unmistakable, catching and powerful,” ~ The Calgary Sun

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TORONTO – 2016 – The captivating and powerhouse vocalist Ann Vriend (AV) releases new single and video “Will You Be There,” (Aporia Records), a compelling song propelled by an irresistible dance beat, a catchy horn sample, and Vriend’s invincible vocal prowess. The single’s out now on iTunes, Spotify and all regular digital distribution channels. For more info please visit: www.annvriend.com /www.aporia-records.com.

One listen to “Will You Be There?” and you’ll know how great a singer, songwriter, and musician Ann Vriend (AV) is; witness one live performance, and you’ll fall in love with her. Of all the things she is, AV is definitely the real deal.

The Edmonton-based singer-songwriter has spent considerable time with her backing band in New Orleans, studying the convergence of gospel, blues, funk, soul, Caribbean beats, and jazz – and staying up late trying to experience as much of it as possible. All those elements are combined in “Will You Be There?” as the ever-evolving and revolving door of sounds and culture from Crescent City continues to inspire and influence the world of pop and R&B – even as far north as Edmonton, Alberta.

Produced by Tino Zolfo – a soul bassist himself back in the day – “Will You Be There?” is an intense New Orleans funk/dance R&B song about how easy it is to “be around” for the good times, the party, the nightclub fun. But then it asks “will you be there for the other part?” Whether asking that of a lover, of friends, of fans, or of the world at large, it’s left open-ended for the listener to decide.

The song is musically very upbeat and danceable, but also has a darker vibe and is a cautionary tale about the night life and being careful when you cross the line. It continues in AV’s ‘70s soul direction, but would sit quite comfortably on any playlist alongside the contemporary voices of Bruno Mars, Pharrell Williams, Amy Winehouse, Meghan Trainor, and Adele.

More about AV

AV recently signed with Toronto-based record label Aporia. She has appeared on CBC’s “Vinyl Café” with Stuart McLean, ABC TV’s prime time music comedy trivia show “Spicks and Specks,” ABC Radio’s “The Inner Sleeve” plus Sydney Mornings with Wendy Harmer, and Germany’s “Arte TV.” She has been featured in Elle Magazine and performed at Koerner Hall via the Songwriters’ Association of Canada, alongside Dan Hill, Marc Jordan, Melanie Doane, and others.

Musicians on the Recording:

Ann Vriend: vocals, keys, background vocals
Tino Zolfo: bass, programming

Upcoming Dates

January 7 – The Rec Room, Edmonton, AB
January 21 – Toronto Blues Summit as part of Rooster Davis Group, Toronto, ON
February 9 – March 12 – Australia EP Release Tour

Artist Links:

Soundcloud:

https://soundcloud.com/aporia-records/ann-vriend-will-you-be-there

https://soundcloud.com/aporia-records/ann-vriend-anybodys-different/s-dEJII

Spotify: https://play.spotify.com/artist/3vjHMysd98leqhwDotu9fZ

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/AnnVriend

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnVriend

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AnnVriend #WillYouBeThere

Intagram: https://www.instagram.com/annvriend  

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For more information, photos, mp3s, WAV files, interviews, please contact:

MEDIA CONTACT:

Beverly Kreller, Publicist | SPEAK Music
bev@speak-music.com | 416-922-3620
Twitter: @SPEAKMusicPR
Facebook: www.facebook.com/beverly.kreller

 

 

Ann Vriend New Single “Anybody’s Different” out September 16 on Aporia Records

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Ann Vriend Anybody's Different

“Don’t miss her.” ~ Toronto Star

“A delightful stage presence – she has an engaging, down-to-earth manner, and the audience loved her…do yourself a favour; go and see her!” ~ Scenestr Magazine (Australia)

 

TORONTO – THURSDAY, AUGUST 25TH, 2016 – The always assiduous and enchanting artist Ann Vriend (AV) is set to release her new single “Anybody’s Different,” (Aporia Records), on September 16th and will be out on iTunes, Spotify and all regular digital distribution channels. This release marks the first of a series that will culminate in a full album. Fans can also use the hashtag #anybodysdifferent to follow AV’s “post an image a day” campaign leading up to the single as well as an accompanying video release.https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/anybodysdifferent/

For more info please visit:

www.annvriend.com / www.aporia-records.com.

“Anybody’s Different” is a powerful, epic, minor key soul/pop song, sonically reminiscent of Adele’s “Skyfall,” though faster-paced. Lyrically, it addresses current, globally relevant news regarding political division, the refugee crisis, gun violence, and religious extremism. All this is achieved within a three-minute song, making strong use of rhyme, repetition, and simple, image-invoking words.

AV, as she prefers to be called these days, says she wrote the song “About as fast as it took to play it from start to finish.” She found it a challenge, though, to write about something so topical and politically charged without sounding “preachy, judgemental, or overly simplistic.”

She decided to base the song on her own observations as a world traveller, and her personal experiences with so many people from different cultures, races, religions, sexual orientations, etc. The song – which features AV’s high, ringing, Dolly Parton-esque voice and passionate delivery – moves from a simple piano-and-voice intro to 21st Century beats and sounds, but with a strong melody anchored in classic pop, culminating in a rousing, Gospel-style, call-and-response chorus. It begins by first questioning if there ever has been an age of innocence on this earth, and ends up giving voice to the struggle and predicament of the human condition that “everybody” faces.

It will be the first of many soul/pop songs that will lead to an EP release in February, 2017 followed by a full album release.

AV recently signed with Toronto-based record label Aporia, and has independently sold more than 16,000 albums off the stage over the course of her vigorous career. She has appeared on CBC’s “Vinyl Café” with Stuart McLean, ABC TV’s prime time music comedy trivia show “Spicks and Specks,” ABC Radio’s “The Inner Sleeve” plus Sydney Mornings with Wendy Harmer, and Germany’s “Arte TV.” She has been featured in Elle Magazine and performed at Koerner Hall via the Songwriters’ Association of Canada, alongside Dan Hill, Marc Jordan, Melanie Doane, and others.

Following their successful 2016 tours of Europe, Australia, and becoming semi-finalists at the Blues Challenge in Memphis, AV and her band “The Rooster Davis Group” have spent the summer playing prestigious Canadian blues and pop festivals.

Musicians on the Recording:

Ann Vriend: vocals, piano, background vocals
Tino Zolfo: bass, programming, background vocals
Brandon Unis: background vocals

Upcoming Tour Dates

September 16, 2016 – The Needle Vinyl Tavern, Edmonton 

For tickets: http://w.yeglive.ca/events/ann-vriend/sep-16-2016/the-needle

September 17, 2016 – Royal Canadian Legion, Calgary

For tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2596310

October 7, 2016 – Lee’s Palace, Toronto (opening for Julian Taylor)

For tickets: http://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1239105?utm_source=fbTfly&utm_medium=ampOfficialEvent

October 9, 2016 – Rainbow Bistro, Ottawa

For tickets: http://therainbow.ca/page8/

 

Artist Links:

Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/aporia-records/ann-vriend-anybodys-different/s-dEJII

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/AnnVriend

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnVriend

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AnnVriend #anybodysdifferent

Intagram: https://www.instagram.com/annvriend  

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 For more information, photos, mp3s, WAV files, interviews, please contact:

MEDIA CONTACT:

Beverly Kreller, Publicist | SPEAK Music
bev@speak-music.com | 416-922-3620
Twitter: @SPEAKMusicPR
Facebook: www.facebook.com/beverly.kreller