Graham Brown Band
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Graham Brown Band

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | INDIE | AFM

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada | INDIE | AFM
Band Americana Rock


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"The word is out on the latest CD - Do What You Should ..."

"Summer is here, so it's probably about time you started auditioning contenders for albums to listen to with the windows open Sunday afternoon. May we present Contender # 1 , weighing in at 36 minutes, Vancouver's Graham Brown & The Prairie Dogs with "Do What You Should"... "
Matt Hutchinson - Americana - UK
- Americana - UK

"A hybrid sound"

On Brown’s 4th Stomp release, the first in which his
Prairie Dogs band gets full billing, there is rock, blues,
folk and country, but it’s hard to say Brown and The
Prairie Dogs lean more in any one direction . It’s a
hybrid sound that’s probably best characterized as
roots. There is an element of Bob Dylan in the presence
of harmonica or occasionally in Brown’s phrasing,
but this might be the only landmark. The songs are
simple but wise and you find yourself nodding in
agreement with the sentiment of “ A Good Talking To”
about having the courage to let go.

Tom Harrison ****/5 The Province
- The Province

"warm honest vocals"

Graham Brown fares better outside our borders than
within. The veteran songsmith was a founding member
of the wonderful Jr. Gone Wild back in 1984, and led
his own bands Brilliant Orange and Happyman.
Subsequent solo albums ( Brand New Smile ) ,
( Good ‘n Broke) and ( Stand Your Ground ) were
well received and this new outing maintains the quality
level. “ The Wandering Kind” , an album highlight ,
has an Everly Brothers feel, and there’s a Dylan -esque
harmonica sound on “A Good Talkin To”. The social
commentary isn’t quite as convincing as Brown’s more
personal material, the latter fuelled by his warm and
honest vocal approach. There’s a nice variety of tempos
and tones here.

Kerry Doole ****/5
Exclaim Magazine - Canada
- Exclaim Magazine

"Great Disc / master Storyteller"

First, let me say that anyone who titles a song “Shotguns, Cacti & Vengeance”
gets a couple of points right off the bat. When that same person manages to gather
a band and a bunch of songs that are this good, well let’s just say this band won’t be
lacking for stars at the end of the review. Brown hails from Canada which is the home
of one of my favorite bands, Blue Rodeo, and has a rich country heritage of which Brown is sure to play a part in years to come. A songwriting mix of Robert Earl Keen and Tom Petty, Brown’s songs are always hopeful despite the misfortune suffered and caused by his main characters all the while bolstered by melodies as hummable and memorable as a nursery rhyme. A master storyteller and surprisingly adept at jumping from blistering rock to Bakersfield breakdowns, Brown has managed to release a record that should wind up on many (Best – of’s) at the end of the year. GREAT DISC!!

****1/2 /5
Scott Homewood
- Freight Train Boogie Magazine

"Damn Good Stuff"

Vancouver based Graham Brown has completely eluded my
attention until now even though he has been churning out
albums with a number of outfits and solo since the mid 80’s.
(Good ‘n Broke) is his 2nd solo album and a fine one it is too.
It’s not that unreasonable to assume that he’s had to struggle,
as many Canadian artists have, with the attention lavished upon
the music originating from their southerly neighbours, which is
often regarded with more credibility than it necessarily deserves.
Perhaps the dogged good-natured persistence of Graham Brown
and other similarly talented bands already praised in these parts
like Radiogram and Flophouse Jr., will help swing the balance
more favourably in the future, although sadly in reality that most
likely won’t be the case. Fortunately though what many bands
would regard as debilitating apathy probably won’t effect their
resolve and they will continue to make music for the appreciative
few who will grow in number as the word begins to spread.
Good ‘n broke might not be groundbreaking or all that alternative,
But damn it’s good stuff, that’s nigh on impossible to fault.
There is no stellar line-up of guests in support and no big shot
producer in the chair, but Graham Brown doesn’t need them. He’s
got a big heart, catchy, well written songs, great musicians to back
him up, whether you’ve heard of them or not. If you have ever had
even a passing affection for a little twang, rockabilly swagger,
bluegrass or rousing guitar pop as performed by the likes of Neil
Young, Tom Petty or Freedy Johnston then Graham Brown
deserves a space in your collection. And who could possibly
resist a song called “Shotguns, Cacti & Vengeance”. Not Me.

Geraint Jones
- Comes With A Smile ( UK )

"Impressive isn't it"

Alt Country NL has made a real discovery, Graham Brown
is his name. Now there are probably a few of you who think
(oh well) we know him already, but as long as he has not
appeared on this site, he is new blood. Ha! He comes from
Canada where he is known as a country-rock with pop influences, singer/songwriter/guitarist. After National Dust, this is a very
pleasant surprise for the ears. Brown is convincing as a singer
and as a rock guitar player, which is seldom in the world of the
singer-songwriters. Think of Bob Dylan (the source) The Beatles
(Melody), Springsteen (Rock), Mellencamp (Folk), Tom Petty and
and the Cash Brothers (Harmony), Impressive isn’t it.
And don’t think that after 5 songs Brown runs out of great material
as most others do. Again and again he knows how to surprise the
listener, if not with a contagious chorus, then with a sweeping guitar
solo or both at the same time as in “Got To Go”, one of the many
highlights on this record. “Good ‘n Broke” remains impressive
through the last song, where Brown closes the disc with a solo Dobro
tune on which Graham’s qualities as a highly talented string master
are confirmed again. One Hell Of A Record.
Bart Ebisch
- Alt-Country Magazine ( Holland )

"It's a Must buy"

Graham Brown is a singer / songwriter from Canada
and “Good ‘n Broke” is his 5th CD for Stomp Records,
accordingly already boasting an impressive back
catalogue of well-received country – rock. While some
Americana is pensive and holds back on anything you
might describe as “full blown,” Brown shows no such
restraint – the comparisons with Neil Young are more
than justified, and not just stylistically either. From the
kick off (Already Done) races it’s way into your consciousness
before the end of the first listen with it’s real driving guitar
and Brown’s infectious vocals. Brown’s songwriting isn’t
over-introspective, but he has a great knack for writing a tune.
Whether it’s (Shotguns, Cacti & Vengeance) with it’s resilient
and unforgiving pace, or the more Neil Young-esque ….
(Angel Heart) with it’s wonderful chorus and harmonica, the
songs stand up by themselves against the strength of only one
another. The lyrics too sometimes soar – “Ride the shapeless
wind soon to be betrayed, Every fool’s a king and every king’s
a renegade.” (Wild Emotion) As with the track in point, there
are points where the country becomes more prolific than the
rock, but they work well too. In fact listening, it’s hard to imagine
what areas Brown isn’t consummately talented in. With clear,
open hearted, wonderful songs, IT’S A MUST BUY.

- Mark Whitfield ****/5
- Americana ( Uk )

"Exquiste singer/songwriter"

This Glasgow born, Canadian prairie raised singer/songwriter
Graham Brown has been releasing wonderful albums for many
years. Two albums with Brilliant Orange, three more with
Happyman and now his fourth solo release has arrived.
Graham Brown & The Prairie Dogs – “Do What You Should”
follows the same great quality of his past releases. We know he
is such a talented guitarist from past albums, this time around
the guitar is in a less prominent role for this group of 11 songs,
which allows for some beautiful harmonica work on the Dylan
fuelled “A Good Talkin To”. That is followed by the bang on
“Incredible” that swings perfectly. For “The Wandering Kind”,
Brown dives deeply into the roots of country music with the use
of pedal-steel guitar and a delicious fender telecaster sound .
The next song “If I Fall” is a beautiful, intriguing song with
(wah – wah ) guitar , an excellent song that I fell in love with
after my first listen, real fine work. “Long Way From Home”
rocks in a Dave Edmonds, Nick Lowe / Rockpile kind of way,
Brown does an immaculate job of all genres and his vocals are
bang on, at the same time his accomplished band The Prairie Dogs ,
Mark Gruft –Drums and Dave Bridges – Bass, give everything
the songs deserve. Brown shows what a wonderful singer he is
on “Do What You Should” and follows that with a Crazy Horse
work-out on “Love Is The Only Bullet ( for peace)”. There are
some bluegrass sounds on “Till We Burn” with it’s mandolin
and violin at the core of the song. Graham Brown brings
seasoned Americana with original sounds. The album consists
of 11 wonderful songs from a which Graham Brown
earns a place in the club of exquisite singer-songwriters .

Fred Celis **** ½ /5
Rootstime Magazine - Belgium
- Roots time ( Belgium )

"Demands to be heard"

Brown writes songs that, when played with
a full ensemble, the listener knows they’d be
just as powerful on a single acoustic guitar.
An incredibly honest songwriter, penning
songs that are down-home and true.
Good ‘n Broke just might be Brown’s best
effort to date. The disc begins with a couple of
scalding country-boogie numbers – Brown’s
devil-may-care delivery of the albums lead track
“Already Done,” grabs the listener by the throat
right from the get-go. “You can write me care of
stupidity,” Brown howls over a flurry of western-
tinged guitars. “You can send it to a fool like me.”
“Prairie Smile” is a joyous guitar, organ and bluesy
harmonica jaunt, with Brown extolling the virtues
of making the regular trip back home.
While the album has more than it’s share of touching
moments, moving from the electric to the acoustic
with ease, Brown stands out as a songwriter who
knows when and when not to take himself too seriously.
With Good ‘n Broke, he has created an Alt-Country
record that simply demands to be heard.
- Steven Sandor *****/ 5
- Vue Weekly


2009 / Graham Brown & The Prairie Dogs / "Do What You Should" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

2005 / Graham Brown / "Stand Your Ground" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

2003 / Graham Brown / "Escovedo 101" - a Vancouver benefit CD for Alejandro Escovedo featuring Graham Brown's version of "Rosalie"

2002 / Graham Brown / "R.A.N.C.H" Compilation featuring Graham Brown's track "Shotguns Cacti & Vengeance"

2002 / Graham Brown / Miles of Music Sampler featuring Graham Brown's track "Shotguns

2001 / Graham Brown / "Good ‘n Broke" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

1999 / Happyman / "Just Like You" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

1998 / Graham Brown / "Brand New Smile" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

1997 / Happyman / "Live At The Press Club Compilation" - 'Oh Yeah'

1996 / Happyman / "Impact Magazine Compilation" - 'Tripped On Our Tongues'

1996 / Happyman / "Sunburst" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

1994 / Stigmata / co-writer “Sunshine & Flowers” - full length CD (A&M)

1993 / Happyman / "Born To Entertain" - full length CD (Stomp Records)

1992 / Happyman / "Jungle Compilation Vancouver" - 'Everything Between'

1992 / Greenhouse / six song cassette (Stomp Records)

1991 / Brilliant Orange / "Last Call" - Compilation (Zulu Records)

1987 / Brilliant Orange / "Love & Evolution" - full length CD (BMG Records)

1985 / Brilliant Orange / "happy man" - EP (Zulu Records)

1984 / Jr. Gone Wild / "Less Art More Pop"/ "Too Dumb to Quit"/ "Pull The Goalie"



Latest News…
My freshly pressed CD is called Graham Brown & The Prairie Dogs "Do What You Should". As usual a lot of these songs were written while on the road in support of the "Stand Your Ground" release.

As for the title, I don't usually like to name my albums after a song on the CD but like to sum them up with a phrase that covers the feelings of the songs. To me, "Do What You Should" does cover the feeling and vibe of the recording. The title can be taken in many ways and that's just the way I like it. Whatever it is you love to do, do it. "Do what you should" so to speak.

I did make an effort not to wank out on the guitar too much this time around but really wanted the songs to breathe their own sentiment. I started with 16 songs and ended up with 11. Not to say the others sucked. But sometimes when recording you just don't capture the proper feel or textures of the song, and to release it that way would be an injustice to the song.

So Turn On - turn Up & Tune In.

Wrong turn #1…
I was born in Glasgow, Scotland and moved to Canada as a child, with my parents and older brother and sister. We landed in Winnipeg and moved to Toronto shortly after. Although I was still too young to be in school, I have very strong memories of the old house we lived in and the trees that lined our street. From Toronto we moved back to Winnipeg for a brief period and then headed west. As fate would have it, we missed our highway turn-off for Calgary and ended up in Edmonton. (Maybe Dad was still confused about driving on the "wrong" side of the road????) It was obviously meant to be, and we only moved once more in my childhood - to a town about 5 miles north of Edmonton called St. Albert.

First Goes…
My first bands were in high school ("Stone" in grade 7, "Triton" in grade 8). We played covers and also did some songs I was writing at the time. Strangely enough, I can still remember a few. As always, I was playing a lot of sports (hockey, soccer, baseball) and chasing girls, so I wasn't taking the music thing seriously…until 1984.

On My Way…
By 1984 I was a founding member of Edmonton-based Jr. Gone Wild, playing with them for a year.

I moved to Vancouver in 1985 and put together the band Brilliant Orange. Our first release, an EP on Zulu Records, became a national hit on college and university radio stations.

In 1987, Brilliant Orange released a full length CD on BMG Records. (only released by BMG's U.S.A. label)

By 1992 my new band was Greenhouse, and we released a six song cassette.

In 1993 our band was renamed Happyman. We released the first of three full length CDs on Stomp Records. Our first release, "Born to Entertain", was met with good reviews and an emerging fan base.

In 1996 Happyman's second CD, "Sunburst" was also released to strong reviews. It has gone on to sell well in Europe through our American distributor.

Here I am, this far
In 1998 I released my first solo CD: Graham Brown - "Brand New Smile". My solo work has given me a new found freedom and I was pleased "Brand New Smile" was met with such positive reviews.

In 1999 I got back together with Happyman and we released our third CD, "Just Like You". It was our toughest sounding recording to date and was also met with good reviews.

In 2001 I released my second solo CD: Graham Brown - "Good 'n Broke" (July 2001 - Stomp Records). The reviews were absolutely astounding and brought me a whole new fan base in Europe and the US.

In 2005 I released my third solo CD entitled Graham Brown - "Stand Your Ground" . Once again, reviews were very strong.

It's now 2008 and I've just released my fourth solo CD "Do What You Should". But this time I'm giving the guys in my band (The Prairie Dogs) full billing because they deserve it. All of their hard work through the years is only part of what they do. Mark Gruft (drums) John Werner (bass/vocals) Rob Blackburn ( Keyboards, Guitar, vocals ) all are fine musicians, good friends and superb human beings.

This is my 9th full length release to date and my 7th for Stomp Records. I have just agreed to a distribution deal with Bongo Beat Records. What this means is that this new CD will be much easier to find in record stores. The distributors (by country) are: Pinnacle in the UK, Burnside in the USA, and Outside for Canada. Hopefully this will make radio play somewhat easier to achieve. I guess we'll see soon enough.

Lots of people have asked for more photos, so I promise to take more photos this year when we're on the road. It's no problem for me to get up on stage and play for an audience - in fact, it seems kinda natural to me. But, for some reason, I really don't like getting my picture taken. It just doesn't feel comfortable. But hey, if you are out in the audience some night and take some great shots, please send them through. We might even put them on this website!

Band Members