Quotes

“Truly, Dave Gunning’s great track record remains unbroken and unsullied with this recording. It’s a great collection from a musician who continues to grow and thrive”.

We’re All Leaving

“Dave Gunning delivers a winner….We’re All Leaving is a memorable almost thematic collection of songs, one that will undoubtedly see Gunning reap further Canadian folk music awards”.

Penguin Eggs

“It is that sense of intimacy through his writing, and his performances that makes Gunning an absolutely intriguing performer to watch and listen to”.

UK Country Music People ****

“The Galaxie Folk/Roots Channel’s most-played, high-rotation album releases for December 2009 – January 2010 “We’re All Leaving”

The Newfoundland Herald

“Dave is one of Canada’s finest songwriter’s: the way his eye sees things upon the land, the way his ear hears the voices of his people, his respect for those who have gone before, and his love of life in the land he loves, is beautifully portrayed in gentle verse and rhyme. He is not a man you meet everyday, he cares, and it shows in his music, both poetic and pointed”.

Galaxie, The Continuous Music Network

“There was something about those original songs that led me to believe this somewhat shy, unassuming young man with the easy-rolling baritone voice had some very real talent. There was an honesty and a beautiful simplicity to those early songs. Inspired by people and places in his life that had special meaning to him, they were heartfelt and moving. It’s encouraging, all these years later, to see those qualities that first impressed me and many others are still present in Gunning’s latest work, We’re All Leaving.

CFCY, the Eric MacEwen Show

“It’s a star-studded affair, but at the centre of it all is Gunning with his sparse folk sound and crystal clear lyrics that have made him a popular name along the east coast and into the U.S. and Europe over the last few years”.

The Guardian ****

“This incredible album contains 11 songs, all of which he wrote with several co-writers. His ability to tell a story in his songs has resulted in six Music Nova Scotia awards and three East Coast Music Awards in the past, and now with this new CD, there will be no exceptions. A number of Canada’s finest composers helped Dave to write all the songs and include; Jamie Robinson, John Meir, James Keelaghan, David Francey, Rose Cousins and Karine Polwart”.

eastcoastnoise.com

About Dave Gunning

“Dave Gunning is the next big thing in the True North of Song, an artist as compelling, as assured and attentive to every nuance of the writing process as Lightfoot, Coburn and Stan Rogers before him.” -- Greg Quill, The Toronto Star

There are stories that wash over you like a tide, and then there are stories that grab you by the heart. Dave Gunning has made a point of finding the latter and wrapping them up in song since he broke upon the East Coast music scene in Canada back in 1997. The Pictou County, Nova Scotia born and bred singer-songwriter and working class hero has built up from humble beginnings to a point where his name is regularly included in conversation with artists such as David Francey, James Keelaghan, Ron Hynes, Stan Rogers, Bruce Cockburn and Gordon Lightfoot. Writing from a sonic menu that includes flavors of Irish, Scottish, French Acadian, folk and country musical styles, Dave Gunning transcends genre with songs that fill your senses and touch your soul.

Dave Gunning was a painfully shy teenager who might never have gotten on stage if it weren’t for his junior high best friend JD Fortune (INXS). Fortune signed the two up for a variety concert where the sound man was none other than country singer/songwriter George Canyon (Nashville Star 2). Gunning backed Fortune on guitar for “La Bamba” before taking the mic for a Buddy Holly cover. Little did anyone know that in that room in a small East Coast school were three future stars. Fortune has shone brightest thus far, and Canyon isn’t far behind. But thirty years from now it seems likely that Dave Gunning will outshine them all.

While names like Francey, Keelaghan, Hynes and even Rogers may not mean a great deal to American audiences, together with Gordon Lightfoot and Bruce Cockburn they are iconic across Canada. Parallels in the United States might include James Taylor, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Randy Newman or Lyle Lovett. Dave Gunning is that sort of songwriter; one who creates images and moments in song that are palpable. Quiet and reserved otherwise, Gunning takes on an almost Garrison Keillor-type storyteller persona on stage, injecting stories between songs that run the range from sweet and touching to uproariously funny. If you’re lucky enough to catch a Dave Gunning show, perhaps he’ll tell you the one about getting beaten up by a dentist as a toddler. You can’t make stuff like this up.

Dave Gunning paid his dues supporting other artists over the years, touring with the likes of Stompin’ Tom Connors, JP Cormier, John Allan Cameron, Ron Hynes and Stephen Fearing. Since heading out on his own, Gunning has continually stood out in the crowd. Through 2010, Gunning has won four East Coast Music Awards out of twelve nominations since 2003. He’s been nominated for an additional five ECMA awards for 2011 for We’re All Leaving and A Tribute To John Allan Cameron. Gunning has also been a finalist in the Great American Song Contest, the USA Songwriting Competition, the John Lennon Songwriting Contest and the International Songwriting Contest. All of the hardware and certificates aside, however, it is the personal connection that Gunning’s music engenders that is the greatest testament to his craft.

Perhaps the most intriguing thing about Gunning as an artist is his willingness to just accept what the muse might bring. Unlike many artists, Gunning is almost superstitious about not trying to understand his songwriting process, indicating a fear that if he finally comes to understand it the music will stop. This is the anxiety of a man who has always wanted music as a part of his life and simply wouldn’t know what to do without it. Gunning is a family man, with a wife and three sons to sustain him and hold down the fort at home. But if they are his life’s blood, then music is the air that he breathes.

It’s rare in any realm of popular music (folk included) to find an artist so wholly cut from the land he grew up on. Dave Gunning’s humility and talent are both born of a farmer’s acceptance of the world around him. Gunning doesn’t sit down to try to create grand music. He views the world around him for the seeds of something to grow, and cultivates what he sees into life as stories and songs that will touch your heart; he’ll make you think, laugh and cry with classic story songs of underdogs and a world that’s perhaps not quite level but well worth the climb. Like Gunning himself is fond of saying, “There’s a song in there somewhere.”

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