Duo keeps up musical family tradition

Myrol joins myriad of performers at Central Music Festival

Gearing up for a stint at the Central Music Festival, engaging mother-daughter duo Myrol performs Aug. 18.

The seventh annual event runs Aug. 16-18.

Several years back, Joanne and Haley Myrol, based near Edmonton, decided to take their mother-daughter relationship to a new level, carrying on their family’s tradition of making music. Joanne had been recording and performing on her own for years, and recalls always having it in the back of her mind that one day she’d like to team up with her daughter.

Haley accompanied her mom on a tour in Europe one year, and would occa-sionally join her onstage doing background vocals.

“She was bitten by the bug at about age 16. But officially, we didn’t really start (working together) until she was 18 or 19,” explains Joanne.

It was a pretty seamless transition.

“It’s probably one of the most amazing things I’ve ever done in my life. I find that now when I sing alone I bore myself,” she laughs. “I need that harmony. I had it with my dad all my life, and now I have it with my daughter. Singing now without a harmony partner is really uneventful for me.

“Working with my daughter is a gift.”

Their first disc, titled Myrol, offers a smattering of styles from old fashioned classic western shuffle to bluegrass and catchy folk, and their voices blend beautifully over tunes crafted with tight, polished production. Joanne’s strong, expressive lead vocal couldn’t be better suited to the genre. It was first released in Europe, where Joanne has developed a strong follow-ing over the years. Their second disc, Blue Moon Away, was officially released in 2011.

The goal was to lean towards a more alt-country approach without abandon-ing those textured roots tones.

“Our theme was creativity with more of a roots feel,” she says of the vision she and Haley had for the project. “I think we’ve really achieved that – we’ve had a lot of success out of that album. We’re very proud of it.”

Fueled by the power of Joanne and Haley’s prolific songwriting, the CD charted very well and continues to attract new fans.

“We had great players on it, from our own bass player Fred LaRose from Ed-monton, plus Jeff King who is Reba McEntire’s right hand man, and plays guitar for her regularly.”

Ultimately, Joanne describes their music these days as Americana-roots.

“We really have explored our own creative roots you could say.”

And plenty of folks across the pond have taken note in countries ranging from Norway, Denmark and Lithuania. “We were actually the featured band at a huge Lithuanian country festival; it’s one of the biggest ones in Europe.”

As mentioned, a love for music came early as it was such a major focus of the family.

“I remember going out to my uncle’s farm and the parents would stay at the house and play music, and the younger kids would go to the Quonset and lis-ten to my teenage cousins play Beatles songs and stuff like that. I remember listening to music every weekend.”

Joanne went on to play in a band with her dad from age 13 right through her university days where she earned her teaching degree as well.

“I always thought I’d be doing the music and supporting myself through sub-bing.” But music became more and more of a focus, with increasing demand for what she had to offer audiences.

Looking ahead, both women want to do solo projects but will always be pro-ducing music as Myrol. “We want to keep our individuality. I’m thinking of doing a CD of my favourite songs with some covers and a few of my new ones in there. My goal is to keep it really simple and acoustic sounding. As bare bones as it can be.

“But we will always be Myrol.”

Meanwhile, excitement is building for the Central Music Festival, which is described as a family-friendly weekend showcasing a top-notch array of musi-cal artistry.

Other artists slated to perform at the Central Music Festival this year in-clude Devon Coyote, Just Glovely, Kevin Cook, Randi Boulton, Leeroy Stag-ger, the Amos Garrett Jazz Trio, Dick Damron & Stoney Creek and Bill Bourne among others.

The event takes place in a outdoor amphitheatre located minutes north of the City – attendees can head north on Taylor Dr., cross Hwy. 11A and continue on the C&E Trail. Continue onto Township Rd. 392, turn left and the site is located just up the road.

There will be include free camping, food and artist vendors, a Kids’ Corner and a shuttle service running back and forth from the Red Deer Lodge through the weekend.

For complete information on the artists, weekend prices, sponsorship oppor-tunities or ways to volunteer, check out www.centralmusicfest.com.

editor@reddeerexpress.com

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