True North Records Releases “Concert for St. Stephens” on September 11, 2012

We didn’t wait for a miracle. We made one.
True North Records Releases “Concert for St. Stephens” on September 11, 2012

The benefit CD features Bruce Cockburn, Daniel Lanois, Jane Siberry, Molly Johnson & more!

“What a great night! What a great congregation! That’s what this place is, a place of congregation for the community. It serves the community. It wants to know the community…and needs to be supported!” – Daniel Lanois, speaking from stage on September 18, 2005 at the Concert for St. Stephen’s”

Listening Event at St. Stephen’s – Toronto September 15th

Toronto, ON – August 21, 2012 – Bruce Cockburn, in the back corner, is tweaking his guitar. Molly Johnson is up front chatting with Daniel Lanois and his crew — Lori Anna Reid and Big Russ Wilson. Kurt Swinghammer is talking with the neighbourhood politicos: Rosario Marchese, Olivia Chow, and Jack Layton. Jane Siberry is keeping to herself in one of the offices. Michael Ondaatje is listening as concert co-producer Stuart Clarfield gives the final marks and timing. This remarkable murmuration of talent was brought here by the Friends of St. Stephen’s, a group of volunteers from the surrounding neighbourhoods, who rallied in support when financial difficulties threatened closure of the local Anglican church.
Now True North Records is releasing the commemorative album, Concert For St. Stephens,with net proceeds from the sale of the albums to benefit St. Stephen’s church. The album will be available digitally and in stores on September 11, 2012. To celebrate the release, there will be a listening event at St. Stephen’s (103 Bellevue Ave.) in Toronto on September 15th. Stop by and hear the album from 1-4pm.

“It’s (St. Stephen’s is) an incubator for the best ideas for community-based solutions.”
– Jack Layton

In the summer of 2005 Saint Stephen-In-The-Fields, located in Toronto’s Kensington Market, faced financial crisis. After 147 years of continuous service, it looked liked the church would have to close its doors to the community. On the night of September 18, 2005, the music community cametogether for a concert that was one of the most remarkable events in Toronto’s artistic history. Hours before the show, hundreds of fans and supporters started lining up. It was a success beyond the organizers’ imaginations. The album is a wonderful culmination of Toronto’s music community. It includes live tracks form the concert’s veritable who’s who of musical community supporters including Bruce Cockburn, Molly Johnson, Daniel Lanois, Jane Siberry, Kurt Swinghammer, and more, with emcee, Sook-Yin Lee.

Michael Heydon, executive producer of the album and concert co-producer said, “The concert worked, the church was allowed to stay and we went on with our lives. A few years later, we realized we had a professional multi-track recording of an incredible moment in time. I got to work on making an album, but had a lot to learn about everything that would need to be done.”

The lights come up. Sook-Yin Lee addresses the audience. “Welcome to the celebration of St. Stephen-in-the-Fields and the effort to keep this place going for another 147 years!” With this CD, you will join the audience from this moment. It is all of the music, as performed and recorded. The exceptional quality of the sound comes from the acoustics of the church — no added effects. Sit back and crank it up. The 3D soundscape is just like being there.

The concert ends with Bruce Cockburn’s sign-off, “Let’s hope this works.” It did. The parish of St. Stephen-in-the-Field remains in its historic home. The profits from the sale of these performances will go to the parish, to help ensure that they can continue their work foranother — well, it’s 154 years now.
St. Stephen-in-the-Fields is a remarkable parish. Thomas Fuller, architect of Canada’s first Parliament buildings, designed the building. The parish has a long-standing tradition of service to the community and support for the arts. Saint Stephen’s created Georgina House, Toronto’s first women’s shelter in 1909, St. Stephen’s Community House — now one of the city’s largest social service providers, and the STOP food program. It continues to feed the hungry in the building –10,000 breakfasts a year. The church has hosted plays by Earle Grey and Dora Mavor Moore, and more recently housed Theatre Gargantua. For the full story visit: www.saintstephens.ca

Music Track list:
Molly Johnson – God Bless the Child
Jane Siberry – Walk on Water
Jane Siberry – Anytime
Daniel & Valentina Saavedra – Generacions
Theatre Gargantua – medley
Kurt Swinghammer (with Lori Cullen) – The Rose of Montrose
Kurt Swinghammer – Kensington Market
Beryl Morrison – God Will Take Care of Us
Lori Anna Reid – I Come to the Garden
Daniel Lanois with Lori Anna Reid and Russ Wilson – Thank You
Daniel Lanois with Lori Anna Reid and Russ Wilson – The Maker
Daniel Lanois with Lori Anna Reid and Russ Wilson – The Messenger
Bruce Cockburn – Going to the Country
Bruce Cockburn – King Kong Goes to Tallahassee
Bruce Cockburn – Tried and Tested