Ken Whiteley

Ken Whiteley

 Toronto, Ontario, CAN
BandBluesRoots

Ken Whiteley is a Canadian roots music legend, a multi award winning songwriter, performer and producer. His musical journey has taken him from jug band, folk and swing to blues, gospel and children's music.

Biography

Ken Whiteley is a Canadian roots music legend, a multi award winning songwriter, performer and producer. His musical journey has taken him from jug band, folk and swing to blues, gospel and children's music. Among numerous accolades, he has won a Canadian Folk Music Award, Genie Award for Best Original Song in a Canadian film, Lifetime achievement awards from the Ontario Council of Folk Festivals and Mariposa Folk Festival. Whiteley has been nominated for 7 Juno awards and 17 Maple Blues Awards. As a producer of over 125 recording projects, Whiteley's productions have garnered 10 Canadian Gold and Platinum records, 4 American Gold records, 22 Juno and 2 Grammy nominations, and sold over 8 million copies.

Ken Whiteley's Freedom Blues CD, Borealis Records 2016
    'In Freedom Blues Canadian roots music icon Ken Whiteley has crafted a timely set of songs that address both contemporary and historical struggles for the freedom endemic to a healthy, progressive society. Deftly drawing on a wide range of musical sources including blues, gospel and, for lack of a better word, folk, Freedom Blues is a landmark album in Whiteley's career and Canadian roots music in general.'  ~ Grammy Award winning music professor, Rob Bowman

Ken Whiteley and The Beulah Band CD, Borealis Records 2015
    Last year's collaboration, Ken Whiteley & The Beulah Band was the number 2 folk recording of the year on Stingray Music streaming. Banjo player Frank Evans (Slocan Ramblers) and fiddler Rosalyn Dennett (Oh My Darling) add their rich vocal harmonies and instrumental virtuosity.  Rosalyn has a great feel for not only old time music but also swing and blues fiddle a la Stuff Smith.  A master of both 'clawhammer' and bluegrass banjo, Frank is one of the finest players on the scene today.  Together with Ken and co-producer/bassist Ben Whiteley (Basia Bulat) they are creating exciting original music that unites a deep respect and understanding of traditional folk forms with new songs and attitude.  You'll hear echoes of blues, gospel, swing, string and jug band sounds. They are all outstanding and versatile instrumentalists and great harmony singers.

Gospel Music Makes Me Feel Alright! CD, Borealis Records 2004
    Ken Whiteley's popular Sunday afternoon Gospel music series at Hugh's Room (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) is celebrating it's 14th season with an amazing selection of both local and international artists. The series kicks off on October 30th. Special guests lineup to be announced.

www.kenwhiteley.com


 



Lyrics

The Moment We've Been Waiting For

Written By: Ken Whiteley

The tension of the moment seems to vanish into tears
The rains dried off the roadway and evaporates my fears
In the act of letting go, there’s something else appears
It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for.

It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for
The time we’ve been waiting for
Waiting till the stillness dissolves to something more
It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for.

The seeds have just been planted, so lightly in the earth
Now all they need is sun and rain for them to know rebirth
Like the seed we need the patience,
to nurture our own worth
It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for.

What about the weeds we’ve seen, proliferating here
Pull them all out one by one and soon they reappear
But If we keep on pulling one day this field will clear
It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for.

Now the sky is quiet, and alight with distant stars
It may be hard to see them
but we know somewhere they are
And we feel this constant turning both within us and afar
It’s the moment we’ve been waiting for.

© 2014 Ken Whiteley

How Fast Flies Time

Written By: Ken Whiteley,Arthur Renwick

How fast, flies time, time and again,
How fast, flies time, time and again,
I’ll be ready, I’ll be ready, I’ll be ready
When the time comes, when the time comes, when the time comes

I know, I’m slow, right now
I know, I’m slow, right now
I know I’m ready, I know I’m ready, I know I’m ready,
For the time to come, when it comes, for the time to come

I’m not worried about the day or the hour,
I’m not worried about the sun or the shower
Let it come
I’m not worried about the money or the power,
I won’t sit in the corner and cower
Let it come

All of this and more
All of this and more
I am ready, I am ready, I am ready
Let it come Let it come Let it come

An elder’s tears of joy fill his eyes,
Within his arms a newborn cries
They feel the love
So many angels fill the sky,
Take our hands as we say goodbye
We feel the love

© 2014 Ken Whiteley and Arthur Renwick

Bring It All Down

Written By: Ken Whiteley

I’m not worried about the price to pay,
I’m not worried about another day,
I keep thinking there must be a way
To bring it all right down

I don’t have to know the very end
Not everybody has to be my friend
There’s no one here that I must defend
To bring it all right down

From a level place that’s where I’ll start
Beautiful balance best, using both hand and heart
When the seed will grow, it breaks the nut apart
So I’ll bring it all right down

I remember when I sang the blues
I sang of other’s troubles, yesterday’s news
But the time has come when I must choose
To bring it all right down

I don’t intend to hesitate
There’s a moment when we just can’t wait
I hope this time that I’ll get it straight
And bring it all right down

Once we’re on the proverbial battlefield
I’ll pick up the sword that I must wield
Separate all of the truth from lies
Let my soul and spirit fly

That Other Shore

Written By: Ken Whiteley

When I was young, barely past my teens
Consequences were unforeseen
I told the priest that I would not obey
Before you knew it, I was on my way

Took ship to Cornwall, where I worked the mine
This Irish man had to toe the line
Back breaking labour through the mud and fears
Who knew I’d last it fourteen years

I’ve got to reach that other shore,
I know there’s got to be more,
Get up each day, work my life away
Find out what I’m looking for

Good thing for Jane, who became my wife
It wasn’t easy but we had a life
But I didn’t want young Thomas going down below
So one more time we had to go

So here I stand on this cold ship deck
The North Atlantic blowing down my neck
But when it clears and all the stars do shine
Midst heaven’s vastness I can trace a line

It runs through me and it runs through you
We are more than just the things we do
It’s not a place that’s the final goal
But somewhere deep in my soul

Everybody Has The Blues

Written By: Ken Whiteley

Some days you’re up, some days you’re down,
It will always, turnaround
But sooner or later, everbody has the blues.

The rich man’s had em, The poor one too,
Male and female, me and you,
Sooner or later, everybody has the blues.

I don’t follow, where my eyes my wander,
Cause of the love at home, that that would squander
Sooner or later, everybody has the blues.

Even the Buddha, neath his tree,
Said, “life is suffering”, don’t you see
Sooner or later, everybody has the blues.

It’s just, a part of life, I guess
Living with the joy, and dealing with the mess.
Sooner or later, everybody has the blues.

Discography

Ken Whiteley & The Freedom Blues Rhythm Band:
Freedom Blues (2016)

Ken Whiteley & The Beulah Band:

Ken Whiteley and The Beulah Band (2015)

Ken Whiteley:
The Light of Christmas (2012)
Another Day's Journey (2010)
One World Dance (2007)
Join The Band (2006)
Gospel Music Makes Me Feel Alright! (2004)
Songs From Sivananda Kutir (2002)
Listening (2000)
Musical Mystery Machines (1998)
Acoustic Eclectic (1995)
Thank You, Lord! A gospel celebration (1994)
All of the Seasons (1993)
Bright Side (1986)
Here I Am (1983)


The Whiteley Brothers (Chris & Ken):
Taking Our Time (2002)
Sixteen Shades of Blue (1996)
Bluesology (1993)


Mose Scarlett, Jackie Washington & Ken Whiteley:
Sitting On A Rainbow (2003)
We'll Meet Again (1999)
Three by Three: 3 CD box set (1995)
Where Old Friends Meet (1991)


Chris & Ken Whiteley's Junior Jug Band:
Songs To Sing (1988) with Dan Whiteley & Jenny Whiteley
Lots More Junior Jug Band (1985)
Junior Jug Band (1982)


Ken Whiteley & The Paradise Revue:
Stand the Storm (1981)


Ken Whiteley with The Original Sloth Band & Honolulu Heartbreakers:
Up Above My Head (1979)


The Original Sloth Band:
"634-5789" / St. Louis Blues (1980)
Original Sloth Band 1978 (1978)
Hustlin' & Bustlin' (1975)
Whoopee After Midnight (1973)


Set List

Ken Whiteley & The Freedom Blues Band Set List  Everybody Has The Blues, Baby Leapt, Freedom Blues, Midnight Special, Give Your Hands To Struggle, Throw Me Anywhere, Omar Khadr Blues, Sewing Machines, That Other Shore, Bring It All Right Down, I’ll Take You There          

Ken Whiteley & The Beulah Band Set List  The Moment We've Been Waiting For, Beulah Land, How Fast Flies Time, Try Not To Fall, The Lone Pilgrim, Straight To You, Feel Just Like Goin' On, Friends All Over The Place, Hands On That Guitar, Indian Buffett, Hackett's Cove, Quite Early Morning

Depending on the type and nature of gig the set list may change. A short festival set would be tightly structured while a concert would have room to respond to the mood of the moment and might include any of the additional 1,000 songs Ken knows.