I really do have sort of a strange thing for Canadian folk musicians. I don’t know why. We all have our quirks. You’ve already encountered one of my little obsessions (Lynn Miles), and today you’re going to meet another: the national treasure of Canada known as the late Stan Rogers. Because I’m in the middle of a week of largely a capella songs, I decided now might be a good time to take a shot at one of my all-time favorite songs, Stan Rogers’ Northwest Passage (AKA the Unofficial Canadian National Anthem). I honestly get chills every time I hear it — the song itself is terrific, and the recorded performance most commonly played is just a brilliant bit of performing. His voice was rich and highly distinctive, and he had the knack for making an original song sound like the most holy and beloved traditional tune you ever heard.
I decided to play this one more or less straight, and just went for it. I most certainly did NOT do the original justice, but I think it’s a reasonable sort of half-assed tribute, at least.
The harmonies were really, really difficult to emulate, especially since I started in a slightly different key and don’t have enough vocal range to make it work properly. I’m glad I tried, though — it was an excellent ear-training exercise, and it was a lot of fun to sing the song.