Bruce Cockburn will draw from his massive body of work and perform a new Victoria-related song when he hits the stage at the Royal Theatre on Friday, Nov. 8.
The iconic Canadian singer-songwriter arrives hot on the heels of the release of his 33rd album, Bone on Bone, the latest offering from a career that stretches back nearly 50 years.
At the age of 74, Cockburn is back with new music and a new tour after something of a hiatus surrounding the birth of his daughter, Iona, in 2011 and the writing and publication in 2014 of his memoirs, Rumours of Glory. Now, with 11 new songs at the ready, he is ready once again to charm and challenge audiences with his political and personal lyrics, couched in his unique brand of folk and jazz influenced rock.
One of the new songs, “False River,” comes with a Victoria connection. Cockburn wrote the song at the invitation of Yvonne Blomer, who at the time was the City’s poet laureate. Blomer requested a poem about the Trans Mountain Pipeline project and Cockburn, no stranger to tackling controversial issues in his songs, took up the challenge.
“I started writing what was meant to be a spoken-word piece with a rhythm to it,” said Cockburn in a press release. “But it evolved very quickly into a song.”
The lyrics to the song, which include the line “there’s the carcass of a tanker in the centre of stain and the waves of dead sea things slide slick on to the stones,” reflect Cockburn’s uniquely descriptive and poetic style. They are include in Blomer’s book, Refugium: Poems for the Pacific (Caitlin Press).
Tickets for the Nov. 8 concert start at $57.50 and can be purchased online at rmts.bc.ca, by phone at 250-386-6121 or in person at the Royal or McPherson box offices.