Former Great Big Sea musician Alan Doyle will be releasing a new EP called Back to the Harbour, a collection of songs to celebrate his love of folk music on May 21st. The album was produced by Joel Plaskett at The New Scotland Yard in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Featured alongside Doyle on the album are Kendel Carson and Cory Tetford from his touring band, along with Plaskett himself. You can also listen to the shanty song “Leave Her Johnny,” which should be a hit since shanties are popular again thanks to Tik Tok.
Back to the Harbour features three original songs plus unique spins on three classics: “Back Home on the Island” by one of Newfoundland’s most popular musical groups Wonderful Grand Band; “Let It Be Me” popularized by legendary duo The Everly Brothers; and the first single, the shanty “Leave Her Johnny.”
Alan commented about the song “Leave Her Johnny:”
“This shanty of a ship’s last day is one of the dozen or more songs I don’t remember learning,” “I realize this may seem odd to some, as in most parts of the world people have one or two songs they don’t remember learning, like Happy Birthday or Silent Night. But in Newfoundland we have so many songs that are just part of our language. I doubt many from around here could tell you when they learned I’se The B’y or Lukey’s Boat. We just know them.”
Back to the Harbour follows Rough Side Out, Doyle’s chart-topping country album released last February, and Songs from Home, a collection of music from Doyle and an all-star lineup of Newfoundland artists, which was released in November. Doyle – the songwriter, producer, actor and author – is a 12-time JUNO Award nominee for his solo material and work with his iconic band Great Big Sea. In 2018, he was awarded the Order of Canada for his contributions to the musical traditions of Newfoundland and for his commitment to numerous charitable initiatives. His most recent book, All Together Now: A Newfoundlander’s Light Tales for Heavy Times, was released in November 2020 and quickly became a national bestseller.