Gerry Wall
Gig Seeker Pro

Gerry Wall

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | SELF

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Band Americana Singer/Songwriter




"Returning Fire"

A reflective, often obscure, album, Returning Fire is the second release by Ottawa’s Gerry Wall. In it, Wall ponders issues great and small, from the self-congratulatory egos of the wealthy and the self-righteous jealousy of the rest of us to the sanctity of motherhood, the precariousness of love and, in one particularly elliptical song, the election of a new pope.

Wall has a light, pleasing voice that adapts readily to the pop- and country-tinged melodies, moves easily from warm engagement to a knowing distance, and focuses the listener’s attention on the lyrics (all the songs were written by Wall and his brother-in-law, Graham Knight).

Local producer Jon Park-Wheeler shares honours with Wall for the tasteful, low-key production, and plays guitar and mandolin.

—Patrick Langston

- The Ottawa Citizen

"Winter Grass"

He names the Jayhawks, Wilco, Mark Knopfler, Paul Kelly, J.J. Cale and Blue Rodeo as influences for Winter Grass, the third release from Ottawa’s Gerry Wall. You can almost see, taste and hear the vistas painted in the lyrics of this 10-song release with songs titled “Winter Grass” and “Willow Bluff”. Somehow these southeastern Canadian-born tunes sound remarkably like they were conceived in the southwestern US. Adding to the colorful lyrics are coolly delivered harmonies and mostly acoustic instrumentation contributed by Dave Draves (Howe Gelb, Kathleen Edwards), Jeremy Gara (Arcade Fire) and Jens Lindemann (Canadian Brass, UCLA Music faculty). A particular highlight of the album are the lovely background vocals provided by Ana Muira. The album stays fresh with a good variety of songs and instrumental experimentation. Start with “Light the Match”. If that suits you, move on to “Come Along”, “(Total) Domination”, “I Don’t Aim” and “Northbound”. Winter Grass is available at CDBaby or Amazon as well as eMusic and iTunes. -

"Winter Grass (international)"

A first listen...the voice of this Canadian from Hamilton Ontario is definitely warm and captivating. Now, after more "turntable time" it is time to render a verdict, and it is a positive one. Compare him somewhat with compatriots Shuyler Jansen and Paul Brill, while Robert Burke Warren also comes to my mind. They all make music using sound gadgetry things. Not really my bag, but Gerry Wall does add these little "blips" ( such as keys, melodica ) in a tasteful and well measured fashion to the overall sound, just like above named singers. With the help of Dave Draves ( Howe Gelb ) and Jeremy Gara ( Arcade Fire ), and also the female addition of Ana Miura ( vocals ) Gerry succeeds in making this third disc a good one. It has variety and falls under, according to himself, Canadiana. Influenced by Americana, folk, roots, and jazz, indeed those styles are smartly woven into his ten songs. Wall has found the right cowriter in mate Graham Knight and knows how to use, aside from the "sounds", dobro, banjo, lap steel and here and there some brass ( Jens Lindermann; Mike Schmidt ). In his bio Wall tells that he would like to produce a few more CDs. While enjoying songs like Come Along (with Dave Draves on accordion), Light the Match (with a searing guitar solo by Wall himself) and the easy to listen to Poor Man's Train that is an intention that I can endorse. Track nine, I Don't Aim (with the pulsing drums of Jeremy Gara), proves this thesis. Winter Grass is a relaxed, cool disc. (Leo Kattestaart)

3 ½ horses out of 5.

"Winter Grass (international)"

The Canadian singer songwriter Gerry Wall...believes that the Internet can be the key to the return of creative music that independently finds its way to the critical listener. I could not have translated this more independently and there is some truth to it. Being a pioneer has always been a passion of mine. One walks into a record store, rummages around in the CD display tables and retrieves something from there that attracts one’s attention. It all seems somewhat past tense but the Internet is now my mega CD record store. With my mouse I roam around several websites and sniff in their show tables. This same Gerry Wall surprised me thus, recently, with his third CD Winter Grass. The man wrote, together with a friend, a brother in law, canoeing and camping mate and advisor Graham Knight, the delicious pop-rock songs on this carefully prepared digipack. The well chosen beautiful melodies are especially well supported on the title track and opener of this album by very fine trombone playing of one Mike Smith. Gerry Wall is not worried to smith modern loops and the necessary programming into his songs. Willow Bluff combined with a traditional slide and dobro groove is one of the examples of that. In the tracks Come Along and Half the Battle one Jens Lindemann handles the dirty trumpet. I don't know what such a trumpet looks like but it sounds good. There also are very well done back up vocals by one Ana Miura and Wall's mate Graham Knight. Beautiful music that makes you think of Prefab Sprout and Deacon Blue by its musical mood pallet that, I am sure of it, will be discovered by the listener. (Jan Janssen)


"the rockcliffe rocker"

Jeans, t-shirt, bare feet, guitar draped across his body as he lounges on a couch, fingers dancing over the strings. Gerry Wall seems worlds away, lost in his cocoon of music.
It’s the look that seems to fit him best, though he’ll admit to having to wear a suit once a month. He’ll even admit to having a PhD in Economics, though it’s unlikely he’d ever ask anyone to address him as Dr. Wall. - Ottawa at Home

"Review: Gerry Wall "ex Patriots' Day""

Gerry Wall is a prairie boy who made good. The Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada native eventually made his way to Toronto, squandering top-notch foosball skills on the way to a doctorate degree, but found his calling making music. A chance childhood encounter with Joni Mitchell aside, Wall falls into the school of songwriting sometimes inhabited by folks such as Jackson Browne, Josh Rouse, Bob Dylan and even, yes, Joni Mitchell. Today we’ll be checking out two of Wall’s albums, Winter Grass and Ex Patriot’s Day.

Winter Grass opens with the title track, a plaintive country rocker with shades of Blue Rodeo woven in. Willow Bluff has a minimalist blues element to it. It's a fun song about the impact of priorities on relationships. Light The Match has this wonderfully dark, seedy quality to it that gets into your brain. Lyrically the song doesn't stadn out, but the arrangement and construction of the song is brilliant. Poor Man’s Train is particularly memorable with its period vocal style and insistent blues feel.

Ex Patriot's Day opens with Cheticamp, a sort of declaration of independence set against the backdrop of quaint fishing village on the Western edge of Cape Breton. The song is wonderfully tuneful and very well constructed. Ex Patriot's Day deals with the joy of living in a place like New York City while still missing home. Wall's songwriting has a strong Country/Americana feel that is undeniably smooth. Hello Amsterdam is an upbeat Country/Rocker that sounds like perhaps Jackson Browne and Bruce Hornsby jamming together. This highly commercial song has real chart potential and is one of the most pleasant listens on the disc. Home By Sunday takes a bit of a jazz turn (a la K.D. Lang) in a very tight arrangement that accents Wall's voice perfectly. Are You Making Any Friends? keeps the jazz vibe going with an 1970's AM radio feel. Other highlights include Lost At Home, Willow Bluff V2 and Tiny Letters.

Gerry Wall sets an example on Wintergrass, while on Ex Patriot's Day he lives it. Both albums show strong songwriting and a promising musical touch. Ex Patriots Day finds the artist a year old than on Wintergrass; By the time Ex Patriots Day rolled around, Wall had grown as a songwriter from above average to excellent.


Wintergrass – 3 Stars (Out of 5)
Ex Patriots Day – 4 Stars (Out of 5)
- Wildy's World


December 2010

Fall 2007

Mark Rheaume (CBC) Fresh Air pick for February 2008.
"Cheticamp" - Top 10 placement (#4) in Winter 2009 Indie International songwriting competition.

Spring 2006 (Co-produced with Dave Draves)

Highly Recommended by,, and
Best Indie Artist List – JerseyJoe Podcast
- selected for “The Best of the Great American Music Hour Vol. 3”
- featured as one of Rhapsody’s most significant new releases
“Northbound” – Best of Spring Sampler 2007
“Willow Bluff” - #8 all-time Most Original in Americana (

Spring 2004
“Your Fabulous Life” – featured in dozens of podcasts
“Fire in St. Peter’s” – - soundtrack for “Finding Melissa (four-minute Indie film)
“Hesitate” – selected for “Toronto Experimental Artists Vol. 8”
“Last Chance” – featured on Klipsch Audio Technology Website (acoustic top 5 section)

Spring 2000



Gerry was born and raised in Saskatchewan, travelled throughout Canada and eventually settled in Ottawa. He is a singer songwriter who also holds an undergraduate degree in English Literature as well as a Ph.D. in Economics.

"While growing up in Saskatoon, I tried to make a few bucks by delivering a weekly newspaper. Anyone who has tramped outdoors on Saskatchewan February mornings will fully appreciate that toes and fingers should never be taken for granted. One of my deliveries was to the Anderson household where the parents of Joni Mitchell lived. Joni was by that point already a bit of a legend. She opened the door one morning on collection day, surprising me. Although purely fortuitous, I believe that the fact she couldn't pay me, didn't know when her parents would be back and didn't invite me in to get warm, somehow still inspired me to a musical career. Well . . . she did smile at me – both warming and inspirational."

Taking his cue from Joni, and hearing a band of Prairie boys called The Mozart Group (who looked like they came from any place but the prairies) perform soaring falsetto harmonies and laying down a cavernous Motown groove, got Gerry hooked on a kind of music with no limits and no pretension. This has led him to his unique roots sound – one might call it Canadiana with an emphasis on the lyrical.

Since 2000, Gerry has released five albums – with "World" just released in December of 2010. ex Patriots' Day (2007) has received extensive airplay on Canada's CBC and elsewhere. Tobermory (2000), Returning Fire (2004) and Winter Grass (2006) are filled with deceptively honest songwriting. Stand-out tracks include "Fire in Saint Peter's" and "Your Fabulous Life" on the 2004 album, while the title track of the third album "Winter Grass" and "Poor Man's Train" continue to receive critical acclaim.

Gerry performs his original music in the Ottawa area to a steadily growing audience. His music is characterized by thoughtful, multi-layered lyrics, catchy melodies and warm vocals.