Hot Toddy
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Hot Toddy

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Discography

1998 Hot Toddy, Hot Toddy
2000 Hot Toddy, Shoe Factory
2001 Hot Toddy, Any Day
2003 Hot Toddy, The Salty Sessions Vol.1
2004 Hot Toddy, The Salty Sessions Vol.4

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Hot Toddy

Award winning acoustic roots and blues trio Hot Toddy: Tom Easley (double bass, vocals), Thom Swift (acoustic guitar, dobro, vocals), and Joel LeBlanc (electric guitar, harmonica, vocals), have just released their fifth independent album The Salty Sessions vol 2.

Recorded as the follow-up to last year’s successful Salty Sessions vol 1 at the fabled Salty Towers in St. Andrews By-The-Sea, this album, like its predecessor, is a collection of songs that reflect the band’s penchant for writing about everything, including friends, time on the road, and the railway.

Featuring the master barrelhouse blues piano player Bill Stevenson and the incomparable drummer Geoff Arsenault on various tracks, the album consists of 17 songs; 16 of which are originals. Among them Swift’s romantic “Be with Me”, a song about road memories and commitment to life back home and the upbeat “Dusty Ol’ Relic” a song about times gone by, the loss of the railway and constant change. Easley’s funky “Monty” is an ode to a lifelong friend. With “Rocks Would Roll”, Easley sets out the form of the tune and each band member collaborated with lyrics. Stevenson contributes a tune to this album as well, offering his classic “Century Sam”, a story of the San Francisco earthquake.

Known for their sweet blend of roots, jazz and blues, Hot Toddy’s live performances are a unique mix of acoustic and electric sounds and The Salty Sessions vol 2 captures that “live off the floor feeling.”

For the trio this album was “an incredibly fresh experience” says Joel. “Although the songs from both albums were all recorded at the same time putting this one together was much less stressful.” Thom Swift agrees. “The whole production process was much more laid back. It wasn’t just a matter of putting what was leftover from the whole recording session on this album…. there were lots to choose from and we had time to listen and reflect on the material and make choices.”

Tom Easley feels that of the five Hot Toddy releases, this is his favourite so far. “In my opinion this album has an upbeat, even edgy quality to it” says Tom. Almost half of the tracks on the album were first takes reflecting the incredible chemistry between its band members. “We also experimented a bit.”

The experimentation continued with the addition of number short pieces that bridge a number of the tracks. “School House, Fire Escape, Room 8, 2nd Fridge and 3rd floor” are all places in Salty Towers” reveals Tom, “and they all have some significance to us. It’s sort of a tribute to the Inn and our special spots within it.”

Hot Toddy are two- time winners of the Dutch Mason Blues Award (1999, 2002); Toronto Blues Society National Competition finalists (1999); Maple Blues Award nominee for Acoustic Group of the Year (2003); Canadian Music Week Award nominee for Best Independent Blues Recording (2000); ECMA Awards nominee for Best Blues Group/ Artist (1999, 2001, 2002, 2004), and winner of the Cream of the Crop Award at the Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival in Fredericton, NB (2001).