Ruth Cassie

Ruth Cassie

 Huntsville, Ontario, CAN
SoloAlternativeSinger/Songwriter

Ruth Cassie's music is up Literary Pop Alley-- a grafting of powerhouse-ethereal vocals and well-crafted lyrics with a sound that swigs heartily from cabaret to cloister.

Biography

Ruth Cassie's debut album, Ivan Blackbird's Story, came out in 2010 to critical praise and a demand for more. Muskoka Sound Festival co-founder, Andy McLean, once compared Ruth's sound to Florence and the Machine. Ruth Cassie has played on her own & supported other artists such as Hawksley Workman, in live music venues round the globe, including Arlene's Grocery in NYC, Ottawa's Zaphod Beeblebrox, Toronto's The Painted Lady, The Cameron House, C'est What, a guest appearance at the legendary Horseshoe Tavern with Ruth Minnikin, and she was invited to sing with Jadea Kelly on her 2013 CD launch of Clover. Collaborations also include:  recording background vocals on Hawksley Workman's albums "Between the Beautifuls" (2008) & "Los Manlicious", recording with producer Karl Mohr, performing in the round with Karyn Ellis, Carlos del Junco & Linda McLean, playing music with Tom Juhas, Daniel Neill, Tyler Emond, Amanda Penner, Nisha Coleman, Alex McMaster, Luke Vassella (Australia), Steve Dagg, Brennan Pilkington.

Lyrics

Pass the Time

Written By: Ruth Cassie

Chariot sweet swinging low
Picked me up and let you go
I was singing just to pass the time
Saved me for this chorus line

I wonder at the name you gave
Tremble at the one who slaves
This song for you, this wound for you
This open mighty dirge for you

Singing just to pass the time
Saved me for this chorus line

Unwind that healing piece of string
The black nun's had it for her ring
Those bells they sound like thunder crashing
Through the mystic blunder

Singing just to pass the time
Saved me for this chorus line

Apple Jack and Jill and Snake
Invited to a beach fish bake
With Jesus serving red red wine
To catch a few more on his line

Singing just to pass the time
Saved me for this chorus line

Bee Sting Na-Na

Written By: Ruth Cassie

I though you were a shadow in the metro fuse
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
Instead you were a face a name I can't refuse
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la

I don't want you
But I want you
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la

I am dripping honey
I am full of buzzing bees
The humming comb's desire
My mouth the coffer's queen

Bee sting, bee sting
Bee sting, bee sting
La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la

Cake for Rebecca

Written By: Ruth Cassie

i'll make a cake today for rebecca
she's moving out and leaving me for robert
he's a good deal smarter and more dextrous than i am
she'll tell that kind of man

to hold her tender
need her smoulder
head and toes
and knees and shoulders
love her up and lover her down
take her for another round

so she's in there throwing things in boxes
candles and that necklace that we made in gym class
asking questions i thought yesterday at tea
canned ham?
i want to be the man

to hold her tender
need her smoulder
head and toes
and knees and shoulders
love her up and lover her down
take her for another round

rebecca's loading the car up heavy
can't stay for a piece of cake
no time for chatting
robert's swinging by to pick up the stereo she says that robert
he's a handy man

to hold her tender
need her smoulder
head and toes
and knees and shoulders
love her up and lover her down
take her for another round

i wonder if she knows i'm in the kitchen
whipping up her favourite sweet nothing
just put it in the oven
damn i forgot the sugar
half an hour and i'm the man

to hold her tender
need her smoulder
head and toes
and knees and shoulders
love her up and lover her down
take her for another round
take her for another round

Small Bold Moves

Written By: Ruth Cassie

it's a warm wind-whipped endless day
sun shining down on prairie hay
think i'll trace a line thinly mellow
a cast-away in this sea of dry yellow
two black wheels and blue body metal

sun tracking down on field horizon
glinting off wheat heads and my hands with dust on
deserted by mothers and their small children
in this dirt playground

my legs dangle loose
toes jammy and black
from black rim-tire games of mouse and cat
my hands hold tight round rusty chains
my head back unashamed

small bold moves
small bold moves

blessed by the ones in armour
holding fast their cups of water
ex caliber for kingdom come
a loaded gun will come undone
with a flick of the trigger
a flick of the wrist
face to the ground and i've been kissed

i want to ride i want to lift
i want to sore by pedal
i want to rise i want to drift
i want to graze by nettles

small bold moves
small bold moves

Above Red Bramble

Written By: Ruth Cassie

the unkindness of ravens
the whiteness of swans
puzzles this bird
puts off gestures of crumb and seed

stays the pooling of worms on grey days
stays the pooling of worms on grey days

there is no community
no murder of company
the cup passes full to brimming
no cluster of of tongues

flits beatingly above red bramble
flits beatingly above red bramble

i am brooding for a little while
until the crumbs crust over
until the cup spills over
until the flight flips over

and you return to me
and you return to me

White Horse

Written By: Ruth Cassie

white horse falls down dead
lies heavy across the boundary line
fenced in fenced out
the reminder
that good fences good neighbours make

before the fall
he paced and he ate apples
blessing the trees
bowing to old pine
and seeding young orchard
on wind gust and hard hoof

those hounds of love
they were coming down
forty days and forty nights-worth stalking
down sweet nape long bitten
and panting takes territory deep

and so running eyes on far hill
good neighbours posting fails
its reckoning chastising
and gallop spans the civil draw

yet claim lays tooth and nail to stake
the bite of border cries
love usurps the cull
yet white horse falls down dead

Cordwood

Written By: Ruth Cassie

he sold cordwood
door to door in winter
the sweet smelling kind
the kind that makes you weep
because you didn't call your mother
the day before she died

he sold cordwood
door to door in winter
the sweet smoking kind
the kind that makes you pray
because the fearful fools whipped up a frenzy
& another anonymous saint is
carried by the wind

and his arms are strong
they are branches and born
of steady swing & ready sway
the axe splits cordwood
for another day

he sold cordwood
door to door in winter
the sweet burning kind
the kind that makes you laugh
because with again you made love
& you had something left to give

Awe and Wonder

Written By: Ruth Cassie

Awe and wonder
awe and wonder
awe and wonder

I am the lady in pink at the fair
breathing in cigarette tokes in the air
hoping to catch the eye of the artist
weakened to please for a ride in the darkest

Awe and wonder
awe and wonder
awe and wonder

I will be Eve in New York one day
eating an apple at Adam's cafe
stealing a glance at the pep and the rally
leaving a tip for autumnal shall we

Sit by the long winding road and ponder
whether the egg flew before the feather
and whether or not I'll love you forever

I will be Robert and Duncairn in June
sending my poetry up in balloons
wishing and praying that I was fifteen
kissing the lake girl he called Mary

Awe and wonder
awe and wonder
awe and wonder

Not to the Day

Written By: Ruth Cassie

Not to the day but
to the intent of it
the reasoning the reckoning
is the glass raised

Incandescent is the thought
that we were to be kind
that we were to be dear ones
fumbling strong

If I were the wood and fur
across your lap with steel stir
I'd pluck the burrs
I'd loose the knots
and comely wane the fearful stock

And crippled into healing
moonlight plays the peeling
and edges out the sun for some hours
of dimness and reflection

If I were the wood and fur
across your lap with steel stir
I'd pluck the burrs
I'd loose the knots
and comely wane the fearful stock

Ghost Salute

Written By: Ruth Cassie

It's best if I hold it under my tongue
It's best if I hold it there just for fun
It's best if I like it, it's best I don't fight it
It's best if I line it up straight and salute it

There is a balm in Gilead to heal the wounded soul
There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole

It's best if I heed it, it's best if I speed it
It's best if I wear short sleeves when I bleed it
It's best if I like it, it's best I don't fight it
It's best if I blow it up big and abuse it

There is a balm in Gilead to heal the wounded soul
There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole

Dark and deep down where you live
Haunted lovers fear to tread
Shadows lie with baited breath
But I am not already dead
I am not already dead
I am not already dead

Discography

"Ivan Blackbird's Story" is Ruth's much anticipated debut full-length album. Available on itunes! Songs are currently receiving airplay online at CBCRadio1, CBCRadio3, and Hunters Bay Radio, www.muskokaonline.com. "Ivan Blackbird's Story" charted in Lethbridge, Alberta, & North York on CKXU & CHRY.

A CBC podcast of a concert Ruth sang supporting Hawksley Workman can be found @ http://www.cbc.ca/radio2/cod/concerts/20080305hawks

Ruth's latest field recordings can be heard at myspace.com/ruthcassie

Set List

Ruth's typical sets run for 25-45 minutes; she'll perform 2-3 sets, & most songs played are her own. They could be:
Ghost Salute, Agitate, Love's Around, Deserve, This Time As Jewelry, White Horse, Bee-Sting, Awe & Wonder, Small Bold Moves, Cake for Rebecca, Cordwood, Othello, Above Red Bramble, Dust Settled Here, All My Loners, Becoming Jane, Not To The Day, Monkey Kills Mayor, My Ride, Mercury's Rising, Pass the Time, So That.
Ruth may include covers: Hawksley Workman songs such as 'Oh You Delicate Heart', 'You, Me & the Weather', 'The City is a Drag'; Bruce Cockburn's 'Child of the Wind', & "Fascist Architecture"; Bing Crosby's made-famous "It's Been A Long, Long Time"; spirituals such as 'Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen', 'Wade in the Water', 'Swing Low', 'All the Pretty Horses': Bjork's "I Go Through All This".