The songwriters first joined forces when they found themselves onstage singing with Jane Siberry on her famous encore “Calling All Angels.” After heading clean across Canada on the first leg of their Dirty Laundry Dual CD Release Tour 2011, duo partners Jenny Allen and Leslie Alexander are heading down to Memphis Folk Alliance this February with their new solo CDs, each produced by BCCMA/BCMIA Producer of the Year John Ellis (Be Good Tanyas, Jane Siberry, Barney Bentall). To warm up for the conference, they’re doing a series of shows on their home turf, from Edmonton to Fernie.
“The music here is exceptional,” said Rootsmusiccanada.com about Jenny’s disc “Blanket,” while Earshot called Leslie Alexander’s “Nobody’s Baby” a “genre-bending, intelligently written, well-performed album.” With each artist a strong voice in her own right, together Allen & Alexander deliver the razor-sharp songwriting and powerhouse performances fans have come to expect from their solo shows – and more. Now sharing seamless vocals, multiple instruments, and much in common, Allen & Alexander agree that their set list – exchanged like a salty heart-to-heart over a load of laundry – contains their most personal songs yet.
Music from Leslie’s recent release “Garden in the Stones” was featured on the PBS program Roadtrip Nation last fall, also appearing alongside Bruce Springsteen’s “Point Blank” on the Odd Squad’s fundraiser CD for Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. With fans stretching across Canada and far into the States, Allen has opened for remarkable artists including Taj Mahal and Shawn Colvin. She’s also released two roots-folk independent CDs, “Something to Say,” and “If I Fall,” both of which received rave reviews.
Now, these women may not believe in talking dirty, but their onstage chemistry has been known to bubble over into sheer soap opera on occasion. Featuring harmony vocals, guitars, washboard, harmonica and other assorted instruments, from flat-out folk rock’n roll to more intimate fare, Allen & Alexander will play the Arts Station in Fernie on Sunday, January 29.