Last Chance This Week to Catch Hunnay at CROW

Every Wednesday this month, Hunnay has been doing a residency at CROW Bar and Variety.  It’s part of the vision of this new Collingwood venue to help local artists develop an audience and polish their chops, with a new artist featured every month.  Last month it was Austin McCarthy and there is just one more performance this month from Hunnay.  If you haven’t seen this uniquely entertaining duo, you should make a point of getting out to CROW this Wednesday, no cover, to check them out.

CROW provides a nice little room for listening to music.  It’s the shape of a shoebox, longer than it is wide, which is ideal for acoustics and sight lines.  If they continue the practice of featuring developing artists for month-long residencies, it should be on your monthly to-do list to be sure that you catch at least one of the Wednesday night shows.  It could be a first intimate glimpse of someone with a big future.  Hunnay seems to fit that bill.

Hunnay consists of Laura Somers and Karen A. Witt, each of whom worked independently before the two of them joined forces.  Early in their collaboration they attracted the attention of Wasaga Beach drummer Lee Chomiak, who has worked for the past fourteen years as guitar, bass and drum tech for Blue Rodeo, with the last eight years including duties as their road manager.  He was blown away by the duo’s effervescence, humour and harmonies and he worked with them to produce and record their first full length C.D. “The Other Side Of The Coin”.

For this residency, Laura and Karen are accompanied by the ubiquitous Dave Russell, adding his signature runs and embellishments to Laura’s strumming.  They have a lot of songs for him to learn and on some of them he is carefully watching Laura to be sure he has the changes right, but on the ones he knows he is able to soar with his typically impressive solos, adding a dimension to the performance.

The main attraction to Hunnay, though, is the compelling vocal harmonies the duo achieves with a repertoire of songs that is quirky, humorous and a little edgy, with lyrics that sometimes approach a punk sensibility.  Their voices draw you in but the layers of meaning and lyrical play that characterizes their songs are what keep you entranced.  “Wishing I Was Living In Stereo” and “Let Go of My Soul” in particular are the kind of tunes that jump right out of the speakers, making you sit up and pay attention.

Catch Hunnay, with Dave Russell, this Wednesday at CROW and be sure to keep an eye out for them in the future

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