Coco Love inspired by human spirit

Coco brings her Wonderland tour to North Saanich this month.

Coco Love will perform at St. Paul’s United Church with special guests Anne Schaefer and The Collective on Sept. 24.

Coco Love will be making her way to Sidney next week touring her new album Wonderland, out this week.

Love has had a career of over 20 years, beginning in jazz and then doing all sorts of genres ranging from electric hip hop to folky to acoustic pop.

She will be accompanied by a fellow on the drums who will also sing in her upcoming performance at St. Paul’s United Church.

“For this tour, he’s bringing a very minimal kit. He’s actually using my suitcase as his kick drum and he’s using this drum pad to trigger other sounds…” she told the PNR.

There will also be a small choir from Victoria joining her for some of the songs in her intimate folk/jazz/soul/gospel performance.

Love took a five year break from the music industry to spend time with her five year old daughter and be home with her while she was young.

It was just a couple of years ago that she began writing for her current record.

“I was feeling that itch to get out and sing again but it needed to be more meaningful than just making the next whatever-fell-out-of-my-head record,” she said.

She said her spirit was feeling restless and she missed those moments in a concert where the energy in a room crystallizes and everyone is sharing a moment that’s unique.

“All through life, every moment we have is unique, but there’s something about music where people feel a little more free to connect with each other and in the moment.”

Love was talking with a friend of hers, well-known Canadian folk singer James Keelaghan about making another record.

He asked her about some of the records she wanted to make, to which she replied that she had an idea to make a record inspired by the human spirit, but not specifically connected to any religion. She was then encouraged by Keelaghan and began writing for it.

She later began going through her old material and realized that every record she’s ever done has had two or three songs that have had that feel to them — talking about themes of hope, inspiration and community and the strength people get from their spirit.

Love wrote most of that album on a five track looper, where she could record and layer her own voice and make the loops different lengths.

“So I have all these different vocal phrases that are layering over top of each other and some body percussion rhythms. That’s how I wrote most of the songs …”

She later discovered she accidentally wrote choral music.

Very early on, in around the second song she wrote for the album, she posted a Youtube video of her singing The River, building all the parts of the vocals one by one on the looper. Choirs then started to sing it too.

“To my knowledge, there’s at least 30 choirs that are singing The River now,” she said.

Love later reached out to choirs already singing the song, and so this tour, choirs will be joining her for half the shows in her various tour stops.

“It feels very community oriented and it just feels nice.”

When asked how she remains so positive, she said she’s pretty happy, always the half glass full kind of gal.

“I get hurt by things or I have days where I feel lost and not really sure what to do or whatever, but I seem to have this ability to see the good side of things,” she said.

Love will be touring the next few weeks out west and all through the fall and into next spring and fall touring her new album.

She will also be doing a songbook, which is a collection of six by nine cards. The front is a full colour graphic representing the songs that can be hung as an art print, while the back has all the lyrics and chords to the songs. All come together packaged in a folder.

Love will be singing in a workshop with Anne Schaefer on Sept. 24 from 1 to 3 p.m. and will be singing in a concert that same day beginning at 8 p.m. at St. Paul’s United Church.

Tickets are available at Tanner’s Books and Lyle’s Place in Victoria.

For more information visit deepcovefolk.ca.