Madison Violet

10th Annual Folk/Singer-Songwriter Album Nominee
10th Annual Folk/Singer-Songwriter Song Winner

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Record Label: True North Records

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Home Base: Toronto, ON

Genre: Singer-Songwriter/ Americana

Categories Entered: Folk/ Singer-Songwriter Album, Folk/ Singer-Songwriter Song

Work Submitted: No Fool for Trying, “The Ransom & Small of my Heart”

Artists Featured: We were fortunate to have the company of some amazing musicians play on the album. Joel Stouffer (Dragonette) on Drums, Paul Mathew (Hidden Cameras, Sarah Harmer) on upright bass, Chis Coole on banjo, Treasa Levasseur on Accordian, Adrian Lawryshyn (Andy Stochansky) on Electric Bass, Cindy Fairbank on Piano, and of course our producer, Les Cooper playing Electric Guitar & Mandolin.

Label: True North Records


What’s the meaning of your band name? We started out as more of a pop band, and went by the moniker Madviolet for 8 years, which came from an outer body experience we both had simultaneously in a hotspring, on a songwriting trip in New Mexico. Violet was the woman who had checked us in and it was an absolutely ‘mad’ experience that left quite an impression on us both. As years went on, and our music progressively got rootsier, we felt that our band name needed to be more representative of our sound… thus ‘Mad’ became Madison and the band was reborn.
Other name contenders: We toyed with Girl, and Missishippie. No go.

Describe your nominated work: “The Ransom” is a song about life on the road as a musician, feeling road weary and missing home.

Why did you choose to submit this work to The 10th IMA’s? Although we are proud of all the works we’ve released along the years, when we recorded No Fool For Trying, we knew that we hit the mark we were aiming for. It’s an emotional album. Lyrically it can be quite melancholic, but has been produced in more of a bluegrass tradition. The album was written mainly in a grieving state of mind, dealing with a family tragedy (Brenley’s brother’s life was taken from him). It’s a simplistic approach to recording. Sparse drums (when there are any). And mainly an acoustic stringed instrument lineup.

Were there any happy accidents while in the studio, or did everything go as planned? No accidents really ..

Did fans help you fund this project? No .. We funded it ourselves.

Who’s sitting in your audience? Music lovers of all kinds… like green alligators and long-necked geese, some humpty backed camels and some chimpanzees, cats and rats and elephants and the loveliest of all the unicorn.

Are there any songs you wish you wrote? Hmm, just about every Townes Van Zandt song, every Paul Simon tune, all of Harvest, Blue.. there are a lot of songs we wished we’d written.

What artists are you listening to that would surprise your fans? I think with music there should be no surprises. Regardless of the genre, the artist or the musicality, music is music and sometimes a catchy pop song can find you in the right moment and become your flavour of the week. I can’t get Babybabybaby by Justin Bieber out of my head.

What is your dream show lineup? Gillian Welch, Nick Lowe, Neil Young, and Phoebe Snow and damn- It even rhymes!

What are your guilty pleasures on the road? If it’s bringing us pleasure than there is no room for guilt. ;o)