ALAN FREW

Musician. Author. Speaker.

Dear Canada Blog#10 March 5th 2018

Up at 6:45 a.m. for a 7:30 lobby call. Still fighting the fight with this cough but dare I say it’s a little better?

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Met Sam and Sean in the lobby and we had enough time to grab a quick tea before jumping a cab and heading over to CTV for a live morning interview. 

We were greeted by the Warner’s Music rep in the lobby of Bell Media building.

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The interview was straightforward and uneventful. Usual stuff. In and out and onward to a bit of breakfast back at our hotel.

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Gave ourselves an 11:30a.m. lobby call to set off on our drive to Kamloops.

 My goodness you are beautiful Dear Canada❤️ 

My goodness you are beautiful Dear Canada❤️ 

Our song Wae Yer Family is really hitting a “home run” each night with the Johnny Reid crowd. And it’s getting a little traction in downloads and streaming;

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Ironically, it wasn’t meant to be for Glass Tiger. Let me explain; Sam Reid was working on some Celtic style songs with an Irish friend of ours, Dave Lawlor, for a duo thing they were thinking of putting together.

The music for one particular song was catching their attention, causing Sam to suggest to Dave that I be brought in to work on it. Sam asked me if I would and I said sure and invited him down to my studio.

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While Sam and my assistant Sean sat by quietly I went on a roll. That happens sometimes. A song can take days or weeks to labour over or for some reason it can take minutes. In this particular case the latter was true and it was flowing out of me in minutes ;

WHEN I WAS A BOY

ALL PISS ‘N’ VINEGAR

LIFE SPOKE OF SIMPLE THINGS

A STICK OR A STONE

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AN OLD FOOTBALL

A SHOE LACED UP WITH STRING

IN A SECOND-HAND-WORLD

OF JOY

WAE YER OWN ONES THROUGH THE NOISE

IN A WEE HOUSE FILLED WITH KITH & KIN

HOW WE WOULD LAUGH HOW WE WOULD SING


Without exaggeration the song was written completely in about an hour and I handed it back to Sam thinking nothing regarding it being for GT.

A week or so later Sam said Dave was going to record it and I told him that I couldn’t be there to work with Dave on his vocal, so perhaps I should do a quick vocal pass for him for reference. That ( unbeknownst at the time), would be a pivotal moment. I am not sure how far they ever got with the song but it sat on the shelf waiting to find a home;

THAT’S THE WAY LIFE SHOULD BE

WAE YER FAMILY

So cut to the chase and we are in Nashville working on 31 with Johnny, when either I or Sam, I am not sure who, but one of us listens to the old demo of me singing it and suddenly it all came to light. This was the little song that would tie it all together beautifully and bring the sentiment of the rest of the album to light; love, kindness, caring, sharing & of course family.

HERE WE ARE NOW

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IN THE DAYS OF OUR LIVES

THREE STEPS AHEAD OF GO

FORGETTING HOW TO TAKE A MOMENT

TO BREATHE THE AIR OF SLOW

I DON’T CALL YOU ‘CAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE TIME

IT’S A HILL THAT WE STILL HAVE TO CLIMB

BUT IF WE BELIEVE IN OUR HEART OF HEARTS

WHEN LOVE COMES FIRST YOU’RE SURE TO FIND

And bingo! We had a sure fire Glass Tiger song in the same vain as My Town, My Song, Thin Red Line etc

 Working on Wae Yer Family in Nashville.  

Working on Wae Yer Family in Nashville.  

I rested pre-show, took a warm soak and again went through the ritual of remedies to try and get my voice back in time.


7:30pm we headed over to the arena. Al warmed up by playing some acoustic which we then got into some early Crosby, Stills and Nash; Suite Judy Blue Eyes, Helplessly Hoping, Déjà vu etc killer songs.

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I grew up on this music. The diversity of those harmonies. The tone of those acoustics and the depth of lyrics. Man it takes me back to being 16 all over again. 

I had the pleasure of meeting Crosby, Stills and Nash after a Toronto show, and David Crosby again when I was recording HOLD ON in L.A. back in 1994. What a thrill. Seriously, to grow up on those you admire so much and then to meet them as fellow musicians one day? Enuff said.  

We hit the stage with Johnny at usual time and once again my voice came back for me. I know if I was on a full-blown Glass Tiger tour doing 2 hr sets each night,  I couldn’t do it, not like this, but pushing for this short burst with Johnny I can just go for it. I will be so happy to see the back of this chest flu and cough. 

Crowd loved it and again WAE YER FAMILY knocked it outta the park.

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Back at hotel we had a beer together and a nibble.


Off to bed now Dear Canada.

Until tomorrow ❤️


WE ARE THE ONES

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WHO MAKE THE CLIMB

WE ARE THE ONES

WHO LIVE TO SHINE

WE ARE THE ONES

WHO WALK IN SHADOWS

OF THOSE WHO CAME BEFORE

AND NOW WE SHARE

THIS LOVE AND MOMENT

LET’S RAISE A GLASS TO

THOSE WE LOVE

DO HERE’S TO YOU AND YOURS

AND MY MAD MOB

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FOR THEY ARE MINE

AND ALL THAT I HAVE GOT


~Alan