Mary Stewart
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Mary Stewart

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2009 | INDIE

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2009
Band Pop Country


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Some Br(easy) listening for a Saturday : Mary Stewart"

Yes, breezy is spelled wrong purposely. It’s supposed to be clever. I realize it’s probably not. :(

Regardless, I proclaim today Mary Stewart day. From Nova Scotia, she fits the subdued mood quite well, as I can sit back, close my eyes and relax, watching birds swoon out the window while listening to her charming music. (Note: I live in NYC, there are no birds outside my window; Just buildings. But Stewart makes me imagine such a sight.) She has such a sweet voice, which, combined with guitar, keys, and the occasional strings (plus fitting percussion), numbs the body and mind into a pleasant daze. Stewart brings us folk-driven pop in its purest form.

Catch a few songs from her self-titled, debut record, which dropped May 1. Oh and by the way, she’s shared the stage with such wonderful acts as Jill Barber, Wintersleep, and several others. She’s one to keep on eye on. - Knox Road

"East Coast Road Trip Interview/ Spotlight"

John was nice enough to invite me into his studio (cupcakeless)
check out the interview here: - ECFM

"Stewart “overwhelmed” by music week nod"


Stewart “overwhelmed” by music week nod
The News

HALIFAX – As a songwriter and performer, sometimes making the transition from performing solo to performing with a full ensemble can be daunting. When other musicians begin interpreting and playing, it’s hard to tell how a song will translate.
Mary Stewart, who learned earlier this month she was in the running for best female recording during the upcoming Nova Scotia Music Week Awards, seems to have made the transition flawlessly.
In May, the Pictou County-raised Stewart released a new self-titled album, replete with tracks she wrote and arranged.
“I’m still kind of overwhelmed by the nomination, actually,” Stewart said.
“The record we did in a short period of time, and I went with my first intuition on all of the decisions. So the nomination kind of solidifies that we were on the right track with some of the choices we made.”
With a full band at her disposal, Stewart said it was nerve-racking to see how the songs she’d written would turn out.
“It’s really exciting – you want (other musicians) to have fun when they’re playing too. You don’t want to tell them, ‘this is my song, play what I want.’ I want to make it worth their while as well.
“It’s interesting when you get other people involved – especially when you’ve played on your own for so long.”
Stewart began singing at a very early age and grew up in a talented musical family. She recorded her first demo at age 16 with Fred Lays, now better known as George Canyon.
But it’s only been in the last year and a half that Stewart says she committed herself to the singer/songwriter’s trade. This latest album, she agrees, is a collection of her musical efforts reproduced fully and completely.
And to be included among Nova Scotia’s best female artists – the nomination roster includes Halifax-based Jenn Grant and Norma MacDonald, it appears those efforts haven’t gone to waste.
“I’m very excited about the nomination and being included in the same category as Jenn Grant, as well as Erin (Costelo), Norma (MacDonald) and Coco (Love Alcorn). It’s fantastic. It’s so good. I’m just kind of overwhelmed and honoured to be included in that category.”
To hear some of Stewart’s album, log on to Links to her Facebook and MySpace page can be found there. Nova Scotia Music Week 2009 takes place in Yarmouth Nov. 5-8. For more information, visit - The New Glasgow News

"Sweeter Than Video Launch"

The debut music video from Halifax Songstress was shot during two days in the spring of 2009. It marks the first single from her self titled record "Mary Stewart" which was released on May 1st. - Vimeo

"New Glasgow Native earns Nova Scotia Music Nomination"

By Angela Saieva
Mary Stewart wanted to know if she was on the right track with her music and earlier this month her question was answered with a definitive yes.
The New Glasgow native has exploded onto the Nova Scotia music scene with her debut, self-titled album. It has been so well received since its release on May 1 it has already earned her a Nova Scotia Music Award nomination for best Female Artist Recording. Stewart is ecstatic, yet still in disbelief.
“I’ve just been doing what I felt was best for the album,” Stewart said. “I don’t have a manager. It was just my decision and the band’s decision so it’s good to know other people agree with what we did. I am flattered to be bundled in with so many wonderful musicians. I’m still just kind of shocked by it.”
Stewart’s music has been described as pop-infused folk and it is a label she is happy to wear.
Stewart said the album is inspired by love and self-reflection. When she initially entered the studio she had written a collection of songs she was ready to record, but realized she had since written a second album better representing where she was musically.
“I am really happy with how the album sounds,” Stewart said. “My band did a great job, as well as the other musicians who came out to play. I’m really proud of it.”
Stewart hasn’t stopped creating since her album came out. She is currently back in the studio recording an EP, which consists of songs she wrote after “Mary Stewart.” She plans to release it in November.
She has also started a blog that has her writing a song a day for as long as she can. She plans to use the music to choose songs for her next album. Once a week she brings a song to her band to see what they think of it. If they like it, they write the music for it and see where it leads them. Her blog can be found at As of Sunday, she is on day 33.
“I am doing it so people can gain an understanding of the creative process behind writing music; some songs are not good; some are good,” Stewart said. “The purpose of the process is to show the evolution of the song to share with people how much songs can grow, which is what I realized when we were in the studio. A song can start out so small and then become epic when all the music is added to it.”
While Stewart plans to take it easy through the fall, she will be performing alongside Dave Carroll at The Reason For Hope Society’s breast cancer fundraiser at Summer Street Industries on Friday, Nov. 13. - Pictou Advocate

"Haligonia Live Interview" - Haligonia

"On a Cupcake Fueled Mission"

On a cupcake-fueled mission
The News

For months singer-songwriter Mary Stewart has been on a cupcake-fueled mission to record her first full length CD.
After years of sharing the stage with other musicians, she recently launched her own recording project set to be released next month.
Having the opportunity to be in control of the creative process, was icing on the cake, or cupcake in this case.
"We just finished tracking last night," Stewart said on Tuesday, catching her breath after a two-week long stint in and out of Halifax-based Sound Market Studios.
Stewart, a native of New Glasgow, was born into a very musical family, influenced early in life by her parent's enormous record collection spanning all genres.
She has shared the stage with well-known performers Cindy Church, Murray McLaughlin, Bruce Guthro, Jill Barber, In-flight Safety, Wintersleep, and Old Man Luedecke but until now hasn't had the confidence to undertake a solo project.
"I sort of wanted to take a while to get confident in my songs and my guitar playing," said the young musician.
She said she doesn't really know what brand of music her songs fall into but it has been described as pop-driven folk music.
About six months ago she assembled her band, including Rob Corrigan, Brad MacDougall, and Mark MacDonald also of New Glasgow, and they accompany her on the CD.
Studio recording began the last week of March and all the vocal tracks were laid in one day.
"I sang for 14 hours straight," she said. "It was crazy."
The CD contains 10 original studio tracks.
Stewart said she felt it was important for all the songs to sound as close to what you would hear at a live performance without a great amount of editing.
"I just feel like that is how it should happen, " said Stewart. "I feel like my songs speak for themselves and they don't need a lot of other things on top of it, except for my band."
The 22 year-old's name has become synonymous with a graphic of a cupcake found on most of her promotional material.
She said she loves baking them but there is also symbolism in the sweet icing topped treat.
"I don't eat dairy because I'm allergic to it so, I bake vegan cupcakes," said Stewart.
"When you give someone a cupcake you really mean business, at least I do."
Stewart also just filmed her first music video in Halifax for the track Sweeter Than.
"The theme is sort of 1940s Mad Hatter tea party," said the musician. " It's a metaphor of junk food and how it effects you in comparison to negative experiences in life."
The CD will be released May 1 at the Company House in Halifax and another release party will be held on May 9 at 10 p.m., at Fibbers Pub on George Street, New Glasgow.
For more information about the musician or where to purchase the CD visit - New Glasgow News

"Mary Stewart Self Titled Review"

I know plenty of our regular readers have been asking a similar question: "Oh Nova Scotia, have you finally run out of sweet-voiced, female singer-songwriters who play an appealing brand of pop-infused folk?". Negative my friends, old Nouvelle-Ecosse has another great one for you, and her name is Mary Stewart.

Raised in the heartland of our fair province (if we even have a heartland, what exactly would constitute a heartland?), this New Glasgow native has always been around music, and a career in music was on her mind from an early age as she recorded a four song demo in her hometown at sixteen. That demo was recorded by fellow Pictou County native Fred Lays, also known as Canadian Country star George Canyon, so it's clear the music community up there knew they had something special in young Mary. It's also clear that in many respects, the name Fred Lays is superior to George Canyon, but I can see why it might not work as stage name.

Anyway, I usually avoid the "sounds-like" game most reviewers love, but it's hard to listen Mary's new self titled album and not think of another female with a soaring voice who brokeout of Halifax over the last couple years: Jenn Grant. When you consider the fact that Jenn has been a hill favorite since we reviewed her first album, oh, and I guess also the the success she's enjoyed here at home as well as across the country, it's certainly not a bad comparison from Mary's perspective. And, like Jenn, Mary comes across as sugar-sweet as the hand-drawn cupcakes that adorn her website, but despite the occasional references to cats and cookies, Mary's songs show her to be as complex as any other woman in her 20's - dealing with relationships that fail more often than not, and trying to find her place in the world.

Mary was wise enough to call upon on some of her friends to beef up the instrumentation on her debut album, and her songs are the better for it. The strings on album opener Money Trees, the steel guitar on uptempo Someday In May, and piano finger-plucked violin on Separation are all welcome touches, but for me, it is Mary's songwriting and melodies that really stand out. I think my favorite track is A Mess, which, for the first half of the song anyway, is simply Mary and her guitar, but the apologetic refrain ("Normally I'm neater, normally I put some effort in") is lovelier than it really has any right to be.

If Mary Stewart is any indication, our province is nowhere near done producing talented female singer-songwriters. I think it's safe to say that if you've enjoyed any of other ladies that have been making waves in Canada's Ocean Playground (oh yikes, that is bad, sorry about that) - like Rose Cousins, Rebekah Higgs, Cristina Martin, Meaghan Smith, Amelia Curran, Erin Costelo, Tanya Davis, and Ruth Minnikin to name but a few - then Mary will be a welcome addition to your music rotation.

- Hero Hill

"Sure Thing"

CD Release Friday May 1 at
The Company House, 2202 Gottingen, 8pm, $7

Growing up in New Glasgow, singer-songwriter Mary Stewart was surrounded by music: jazz, blues, classical and hair metal. "My mother was in a rock band... an 80s hair cover band," she says. Stewart didn't go down the glam rock road herself, but lists her mom as a major influence, along with Joni Mitchell, The Beatles and David Bowie. She keeps her own hair less voluminous, though she regrets that her mother has disposed of all the leopard print and shiny pants from the 1980s. Stewart describes her music as jazz- and pop- influenced folk, acoustic and heavy on finger-picking. She studied classical music in her hometown, and spent a year in Bordeaux, France, studying voice and opera. She releases her first full-length album of placid and sweet folk songs on Friday at the Company House.
A Halifax resident for the past four years and happy at home, Stewart's lyrical inspirations included her cat, her Quinpool neighborhood and her interest in baking and crafting. "I have lots of interesting neighbors, and there's a three-street yard sale on Lawrence Street, Duncan Street, and Allan Street every year.' Her band merch includes homemade vegan cupcakes and cupcake pins, and a previous EP was housed in cases made from recycled copies of the humble Coast. Her next idea is a more ambitious one for knitting "scarf hats"-s scarf with a hood attached. "I found one at Frenchy's for 25 cents- it was the best investment I've ever made," she says.
Stewart performs with her band, Brad MacDougall (Nerd Army, Windom Earle), Robert Corrigan (who produced the new album) and Mark MacDonald, as well as Kinley Downling (Jenn Grant) on violin for the release show. Cupcakes will be avalible. Stewart also plans a tour of the Maritimes and Quebec this summer.
Laura Kenis.

- The Coast

"Mary Stewart Releases Debut CD"


APRIL 20, 2009

“MARY STEWART” the long awaited self titled debut CD from Halifax based singer songwriter Mary Stewart will be released in early May with a number of shows in Halifax and Pictou County. The CD, which features all original material penned by the New Glasgow native, is the fulfillment of a longtime dream. “I have been writing songs since my parents gave me my first guitar about 10 years ago and it’s really great to finally get a chance to get them recorded” said an excited Stewart from the SoundMarket Studios, where she is putting the final touches on the project before it heads to Toronto for mastering.

Born into a musical family, Mary grew up around an extensive record collection which led to an appreciation of music from all generations and genres. At sixteen she recorded a 4 song demo at New Glasgow’s Riverfront Studios with engineer Fred Lays (aka George Canyon) at the controls. Six years later with a maturing voice and songwriting abilities, she looks forward to the release of this project with anticipation.

The MARY STEWART project was recorded at SoundMarket Studios, Halifax, produced by Mary Stewart and Robert Corrigan and engineered by Robert Corrigan. The project has been mastered by George Graves with graphics and art work by Glen Leck. The project features Mary Stewart on vocals and guitar, Brad MacDougall on drums, Rob Corrigan on keys, Mark MacDonald on electric bass, Kinley Dowling on violin & viola, Claire Gallant on cello, Kev Corbett on upright bass, Dale Murray on pedal steel and Jonathan Andrews on electric guitar. Mary’s release will kick off with a show on May 1st at The Company House, Halifax, followed by performances at Just Us Café on May 4th, Fibbers in New Glasgow on May 9th and an all ages show at the Trenton Youth Center on May 10th.

- 30 - - The Chronicle Herald Halifax, NS


Chances Are I Like You (2013 - LP)
Mary Stewart (2009 - LP)
Sweeter Than (2009 - Single)
Crafty Winter (2009 - EP)
Snowflakes and Cupcakes (2009 - EP)



Mary Stewart isnt a singer songwriter. Well, she does sing and she likely writes more songs than anyone youve ever met, but if youre picturing a sullen woman perched atop a wooden stool, playing depressing songs on her oversized acoustic, youve pegged her all wrong.

In fact, Mary has never sported an acoustic guitar during a live show and prefers to strum along on her Gretsch, singing clever pop songs, and sharing anecdotes about her love of baking, cats, and hopes of becoming Sidney Crosbys wife.

Hailing from New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, Mary grew up consuming an incredible range of genres from folk and pop to opera and hair metal true story. Before her pop days, Mary was classically trained in opera. Her mother sang in hair metal bands and her dad was a sound engineer.

My parents would bring me along to gigs because it was easier than finding a babysitter, says Mary.

She really didnt stand a chance to fall in love with any career other than music.

At 16, Mary had her first recording experience and shared it with fellow New Glasgow native, George Canyon who has since become a long-standing supporter of Marys music.

Canyon isnt the only heavyweight Mary has had the chance to work with. Shes opened for acts like Jill Barber, Wintersleep, Jenn Grant, and Blue Rodeo. A huge fan of Jim Cuddy, Mary giggles, I almost wore a wedding dress on stage.

Among her many accolades, Mary was nominated for Music Nova Scotias Female Artist Recording of the year in 2009.

Mary currently uses Toronto as her stomping grounds, performing at famous venues like The Horseshoe Tavern and The Drake and is rarely not on a bill somewhere. She recently played a packed show at Canadian Music Week in 2012, and is gearing up for another showcase in 2013 along with the release of her second album, Chances Are I Like You.

The record is the result of a hugely successful year-long project where Mary wrote one song each day, allowing website statistics and fan votes to dictate which of the 365 songs would make their way onto the album. Because of the unique conception, Mary says that the album doesnt really have a conscious theme. Instead, it is a snapshot of a year and not necessarily a good one.

Mary wrote through sickness, surgery, tours, and anything else this particular trip around the sun threw at her.

She jokes that the record sounds like, You hair after four days of not washing it, but not five five would be too much.

The tunes have that gritty and wonderfully natural feel, but still rely heavily on Marys pop sensibilities that make her immediately pleasant to listen to.

Produced by Jason Ball (The Heavy Blinkers, The Guthries, Hopeful Monster), the album features a ton of Canadian talent like Luther Mallory, PJ Herrick (Crush Luther), and Andrew La Tona (Big Stereo). Fans can catch a sneak peek of the first single, Go At Anytime online.

Band Members