Colleen Power
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Colleen Power


Band Folk Singer/Songwriter


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My first introduction to Colleen Power was through the happy-go-lucky-in-love ballad, "Leavin' Song," which -- title notwithstanding -- is not a leavin' song. With that hook drawing me in, I had no choice but to dive right into the rest of Face & Eyes, Colleen's second release.

This young Newfoundland singer turns serious on track two, "Ugly Tellin' Lies," which is exactly what it sounds like. Obviously, Colleen has no problem expressing her feelings through song. Track three gives voice to a cleverness that anyone who's spent time in Canada's Atlantic Provinces can appreciate; "Newfoundland Weather" is a dream come true for love-torn meteorologists with its matter-of-fact chorus: "Oh, you and me are like Newfoundland weather / We're hard to predict, can it get any better / We got thunder and lightning and a love turning sour / Conditions are subject to change in the hour."

OK, I promised myself this review would not be a litany of comments about each and every track, but track four is impossible to resist. "Na Na Song" is so bouncy and free, it sounds to the casual listener like the happiest of love songs. But listen to the words before you play it for your significant other, folks; the only happy one here is Colleen, and that's 'cause she's rubbing her absence like salt into the wound of a former lover.

I'd be lyin' if I didn't say these first four tracks are my favorites on the album, but that doesn't indicate any weaknesses in tracks 5-13. A bilingual singer, Colleen has included three songs in French; "Danger Danger" is especially jazzy and fun and "Aucune Idee" has a sultry slow blues that's a pleasure to hear even if I don't have a clue what she's singing about. There's a bit of a downhome hoedown, the quiet admonition not to smoke around the baby and the unexpected surprise of a relationship that has lasted into its second week. And I have to admit, I scoured Colleen's website looking for a photo of the infamous "Jodi Rae stripper clock," but I came up disappointed. At least the song's still fun!

Face & Eyes is a delightful album, more proof of my personal theory that much of the world's best musical talent and creativity is nestled in the snug harbors of the Atlantic Provinces. Not only is the music fun, but I suspect Colleen would be a treat on stage. Track her down, give her a listen and see for yourself.


Après deux albums dans sa langue maternelle avec quelques inscriptions dans celle de Molière, voici que cette Terre-Neuvienne nous propose un premier disque dans la langue qui passionne son cœur. Colleen Power nous offre Terre-Neuvienne comme pour satisfaire une flamme intérieure pour l'autre solitude du Canada.

Elle débute avec Terre-Neuvienne, un groove intéressant qui décrit ses origines. Elle poursuit avec une chanson des plus accrocheuses, Danger Danger vous reste maladivement dans la tête longtemps. Un des bijoux de ce disque est une chanson qu'elle a apprise en immersion à Trois-Rivières en 1994. Si fragile de Luc de Larochellière est interprétée ici de façon remarquable.

Quelques autres bonne pièces du disques à noter seraient, Vol de Terre-Neuve; un blues avec une bonne passe de B3, Char; un bon folk accrocheur et Boite en plastique; une chronique sociologique sur le monde du clavardage et l'excès de l'ordinateur. La pièce du disque selon moi serait Drapeau Noir, une belle mélodie d'influence irlandaise sur l'histoire de cette île territoriale et son destin. Un texte historique puissant.

Un premier disque entièrement en français pour cette anglophone de Saint-Jean Terre-Neuve. Comme elle le mentionne dans son livret, le français n'est pas sa langue maternelle, mais celle de son cœur. Je dirais tout de même que Colleen Power se débrouille assez bien. Son accent à quelque chose de charmant et la musicalité du disque est très bien rendue grâce à l'apport de plusieurs instruments comme l'orgue Hammond, le Dobro et la mandoline. La découverte en vaut le plaisir sensoriel. Cette anglo-saxonne nous charme avec sa flamme intérieure pour la langue de Molière. Découvrez Colleen Power en visitant le


I know we’re only a few months into 2001, but I think I’ve just found my favourite new artist of the year. Colleen Power is from St. John’s, Newfoundland, and if you need a convenient comparison, think Melanie Doane meets Liz Phair. But such comparisons can’t do justice to someone as original as Colleen. Having performed solo and in various local bands over the past 10 years, she released her debut solo CD, Lucky You Are, this past fall. Let me tell you again, this is one of my favourite CDs of the year. Power’s fine singing is sweet and lilting one minute, raucous and raunchy the next. Her delivery and phrasing veer from coy to cocky to caustic. Then there are the songs: beautiful, funny, biting, surprising, kick-ass — they cover a lot of ground. The gentle, acoustic folk of the title track, the straight-up, punky rock of the hilarious “T-Shirt Song”, the razor-edged kiss-off anthem “Liarcheeterloser”, and even reggae with “Chickadee”. Though it may not endear her to myopic, format-loving record labels, that eclecticism is one of the CD’s great attributes. “Every song I write is different from the last one. I don’t know what it’s gonna be,” Power says laughing. She even sings three songs in French. With the singles “Mommy’s Boy” and “Happy Girlfriend” getting radio play at college stations in Boston and back home on The Rock, let’s hope that’s just the beginning. Witty, touching, sassy, charming –Colleen Power is an incredible talent who I’m sure you’ll be hearing more from.
- Canadian Musician magazine

Colleen Power is another one I just adore. She’s outstanding, man. That girl’s just great. She’s a huge talent. We’d sort of kept in touch since that first time I met her in St. John’s. She put on an incredible show at the festival, and that was the first time I’d ever heard her. And everything I’ve heard since I’ve just loved. So she’s a huge talent. - Scope Magazine

"Brilliantly crafted songs, enchanting persona, enriched stotrytelling." : Boston's Weekly Dig, Oct 2002

"...a musical force with fierce songwriting abilities and a voice that just won't quit.": Lezlie Lowe,

"Colleen is one of the best songwriters we've evr had around here." Chuck Art, Current Magazine

"With this hot music, it is no problem at all to survive the coldest Canadian winter." FOLKER! Das Musikmagazin, Germany

"..lilting voice, frank and funny lyrics and melodic gifts." Stephen Cooke, Halifax Chronicle Herald - Various

Le charmant accent des Maritimes, on peut l'entendre sur le premier CD franco de Colleen Power "Terre-Neuvienne" (Baygirl / où se côtoient des accords trad-folk ("Aucune idée"), de douces ballades ("Le fantôme Denis") ou le futur tube entêtant à la guimbarde : "Boite en plastique". Naïf et jouissif.
- Longueur D'Ondes, France

Colleen Power is a popular folk guitarist, songwriter and singer from Newfoundland. Her writing and singing encompass both English and French traditions of her home province, giving an international sound to this CD. Continuing along that thought, she's got a cute reggae tune with Caribbean flavour about not-so-cute liars on "Chickadee."

Colleen has taken note that the pen is sharper than the sword and has learned to wield it well. She cuts sharply and deeply, fearlessly thrusting and thrusting again, making no retreat and giving no quarter with her lyrics.

The CD could easily be taken for one themed on bitterness at first glance, but because of the fine music and humourous repartee within many of the songs, it's a feisty form of keeping fit that flouts conventional words and ideas to expose the inner core of a woman's thoughts, bringing us instead to themes of love and life, with gritty revelations and self-assurances.

True to her name, Colleen is a powerhouse, turning out hard-hitting songs giving a voice to women's pain after contact with the rough imperfections of the other sex. The good thing is that each song sounds like it's directed towards a specific male and not the gender as a whole. Surely only one male in the world would ever wear a t-shirt that says "zero to horny in six beers" -- as the lyrics in "T-shirt Song" reveal.

"Mommy's Boy" could become an anthem and actually might hit home like the flat-side of a rapier on the side of the head, if applied to you. Ron Hynes, Newfoundland's most respected songwriter, sings along on this one and Colleen credits him with being a constant in her musical life.

The theme continues with "Liarcheeterloser" and "Dick-All," which the crowd she's singing to seem to appreciate. She's got a great head for guitar sounds and there is an army of fantastic musicians helping out. Geoff Panting, Larry Foley, Dogmeat BarBQ and Don Ellis to name a few. I found a couple of tracks a little rougher than the rest but hey, sometimes a girl's gotta say what a girl's gotta say.

"Taken Away by Fairies" is a good Celtic hair-raising story sung in Colleen's sweet, unassuming voice, while "Bottomless Pit" has a grunge/alternative noise; though it wasn't one of my favorites, the lyrics follow the theme of the rest of the album.

I didn't understand the three French tracks, "Cauchemar," "Le Fantume, Denis" and "Notre Prochaine Recontre," but they were great musically. Loosely translated , they're "Nightmare, Denis," "The Ghost" and "Our Next Meeting." "Happy Girlfriend" and "Car" are catchy tunes. I would have liked to see all of the lyrics written up in the liner notes.

Lucky You Are is a unique example of one woman's drive for expression and she does it very well, but setting each song in a separate frame of music so it's difficult to describe her music in one style. Modern folk might be close.

"Dick-All" and "Bottomless Pit" are rough diamonds in the jewel case, but the 13 other tracks are enough to give this album a good recommendation. It's very likely going to be the first of many, but this one gives the sense of a colourful phoenix beginning to rise from the ashes. Get to know this Colleen Power before the next one emerges with a brand new example of her musical perceptions.

published 9 October 2004



CD: Lucky You Are, 2000
CD: Face and Eyes, 2004
CD: Terre-Neuvienne, 2006



Colleen Power exploded onto the international music scene in 1996 with her rousing rendition of Ron and Connie Hynes’ “Mary Got A Baby”, which appeared on “11:11 – Newfoundland Women Sing Songs of Ron and Connie Hynes”. The track appeared once again on 1998’s “My Sister Sings”, placing Colleen in the company of well-known artists such as Sarah McLaughlan and Mary Jane Lamond. Colleen has since released three independently produced CDs. Her award-winning debut, “Lucky You Are” in 2000 gained her a reputation as one of Canada’s finest songwriters. It was Reverb magazine’s number one album to buy for 2000. Three songs were featured in CTV’s “The Associates” and several tracks received extensive airplay on national and international radio stations. Following its release, in 2001, Colleen won Music NL Female and Alternative artist of the year and received three East Coast Music Award nominations. “Face and Eyes”, Colleen’s sophomore release won the Music NL 2004 Alternative Artist of the year and was named in the Halifax Chronicle Herald as one of Stephen Cooke’s Top Ten albums of 2005. “Na Na Song”, the first single, went to number one on the nationally syndicated East Coast Countdown. It also received three ECMA nominations and airplay on many radio stations worldwide. In 2005, Colleen appeared on CBC TV’s ECMA Songwriter Circle. In July 2006, Colleen released “Terre-Neuvienne”, her first full length French CD. She was chosen to take part in SACEF’s Serie Découvertes and she performed two shows live at the prestigious Place des Arts in Montreal in January 2007. Aucune Idée spent 10 weeks at number 4 and 5 weeks in the number 5 position in Radio-Canada Manitoba’s Top 20 countdown. Colleen performed on Radio-Canada TV’s Brio taped live in Moncton. Songs from “Terre-Neuvienne” continue to be played regularly on French radio stations from Halifax to France and the CD receives rave reviews throughout Francophonie. Colleen is currently recording her fourth CD, which will be her third English release. She also continues to tour in support of her first Francophone release and is writing songs for her sophomore French CD.

CV/Performance highlights

March 2008:
-Instructor, Songwriting workshops, 2008 Youth Cultural Conference, Carbonear Collegiate
-Presenter, Francophone influence in Newfoundland culture through song, Beachy Cove Elementary

January 2008: Instructor, Art Smarts Songwriting Workshops with three Pod Two groups, MacDonald Drive Elementary

December/January 2007/2008: Featured in 8th annual Feast of Cohen, Newfoundland artists sing songs of Leonard Cohen

November 2007
-Official showcase and featured in Songwriter Circle at FrancoFête en Acadie, Moncton, New Brunswick
-Lucky You Are #8 in Alan Doyle’s Top Ten Newfoundland and Labrador Albums of all time in Bob Mersereau’s Top 100 Canadian Albums book

October 2007
-Featured in CBC TV pilot: “The Perfect Day”, to be aired at a later date.
- Instructor, Atelier Chanson (songwriting workshop) French School Board: Grande Terre, Cape St. George

September 2007: Instructor, Atelier Chanson (songwriting workshop), Festival Jeunesse de l’Acadie, Laval High School, Placentia

August 2007 performed at Arts Under the Stars, Clarenville, NL

July 2007 Recorded demos of new material with Sandy Morris

June 2007
-Instructor, Atelier Chanson Jeux D’Olympiades Labrador City
-Released first French music video for Aucune idée produced and directed by Roger Maunder, screened at Nickel Independent Film Festival, submitted to MusiquePlus.

May 2007: Instructor, Atelier Chanson Jeux D’Olympiades St. John’s NL

April 2007: Featured performer on CBC Raising the Roof Pancake Breakfast, broadcast live on CBC Radio One

April 2007-present: Volunteer at CHMR FM; host Ici Pour Les Chansons, a weekly radio show featuring music by French singer/songwriters and bands

Jan 2007: Featured in two shows in SACEF’s Serie Découvertes, Place des Arts, Montreal, QC

Dec 2006
-Performed on Radio Canada TV’s Brio taped live in Moncton.
-Aucune Idée #4 on CBC Radio Canada Manitoba’s Top 20 (10 weeks)

October 2006: Instructor, Atelier Chanson, Festival du Vent, St. John’s NL

August 2006: NL Folk Festival; French and English songwriting workshops and main stage performance

July 2006: Launched Terre-Neuvienne, first Francophone CD

May 2006: released music video for Newfoundland Weather, screened at 2006 Nickel Festival and Flicker Film Festival, Los Angeles, Halifax and North Carolina, regular rotation on NTV.

April 2006
-Instructor, Songwriting 101 For Teachers, NLAC Year of the Arts, St. John’s
-Launched In the House, dedicated to Newfoundland artists who perform at private house concerts

February 2006
-Nominated for two 2006 ECMA awards, Female Artist of the Year and Folk Recording of the Year
-Composed and performed score and was music director for children’s film, White Balloon, directed by Roger Maunder, aired on