The Folk Sinners
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The Folk Sinners

Dundas, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2012 | SELF

Dundas, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2012
Band Americana Folk


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



"Folk Sinners"

Ralph Nicolle had played in local bar bands throughout the '80s and '90s, first a Deadhead group called Mars Hotel and then the ever-popular Saloonatics, but he never thought about writing his own songs, let alone making a record.

Things changed, however, when Nicolle's son Marlon, drummer for Hamilton folk-rock band Harlan Pepper, started taking music seriously. Then came the first Harlan Pepper record, "Young and Old," a contract with a respected label, Six Shooter Records, and a second Harlan Pepper album, "Take Out a Twenty."

It was like somebody had turned the tables on Nicolle's life. Ten years ago, the Harlan Pepper kids would jam in his basement. He'd introduce them to old records, folk, blues gospel, and a lot of Bob Dylan, especially Dylan. He showed them new ways of playing guitar chords.

Nicolle was the Harlan Pepper mentor. Now the kids were in their 20s, out on their own, writing and playing their own music.

The tables will be turned back around on Friday at the Casbah when Nicolle's new group, The Folk Sinners, releases its debut album, "Move That Rock."

"This is the very first record I've ever done in my whole life and the reason I did it was because I was jealous of my son," says Nicolle, 58. "I had never written songs until about three or four years ago. And I'll tell you, I like my songs better than theirs."

The Folk Sinners — Nicolle, Ed Kopas, Randy Eastwood, Bruce Mallory on Bass and Jeff Hagin — recorded "Move That Rock" at Michael J. Birthelmer's Pine St. Studios in west Hamilton with plenty of help from friends, young and old.

From Harlan Pepper, Dan Edmonds helps out on keyboards, guitar, banjo, vocals and is credited as co-producer with Birthelmer; Jimmy Hayes plays pedal steel guitar, Thompson Wilson sings backup, and Nicolle's son Marlon plays percussion.

As well, there are a lot of old friends from the Hamilton scene, including Dave Rave, Tom Wilson, Tim Gibbons, Ed Roth and Mimi Shaw.

Not surprisingly the album, which contains 11 original songs, sounds very much like Harlan Pepper — a mixture of folk, rock, blues, country and gospel.

There was a time, however, when Nicolle feared he might never see the album to completion. About six months ago, near the finish of the recordings, Nicolle — lead singer and chief songwriter for The Folk Sinners — was diagnosed with throat cancer.

"We started before I knew I had cancer, but I think the entire record was made while I had the cancer in me," Nicolle says. "There was a time when I didn't think we were going to get (the album) out."

Surgery wasn't an option. He underwent a tough few months of radiation and chemotherapy. Nicolle is a few pounds thinner, but he can still sing. His doctors have given him the go-ahead to return to his day job at the city's department of parks and recreation.

"I'm hoping everything is good," Nicolle says, turning the conversation back to the upcoming CD release at The Casbah. "The show is going to be amazing. It's going to be a gigantic band. All the players who played on the record are going to play."

905-526-3331 | @RockatTheSpec - The Spectator

"Hamiltons The Folk Sinners debut serves up KIckin Country Gumbo"

Hamilton band The Folk Sinners have cooked quite a musical gumbo with Move That Rock, their kickin' debut album. When their music's playing you'll be guaranteed a good ol' time.

The gang takes some old-fashioned Country goodness and spice it up with some Zydeco, latin rhythms and a dashes o' funk n' soul. You'll find some songs of love, heartache and salvation to strike your fancy.

You'll find the Harlan Pepper boys hangin' around the Sinners on the disc as well. Dave Rave, Tom Wilson, Tim Gibbons, Ed Roth, and Mimi Shaw also join in the jamboree. Everything is superbly co-produced by Michael J Birthelmer and Dan Edmonds (Harlan Pepper).
With band members Ralph Nicolle, Ed Kopas, Bruce Mallory Jeff Hagin and Michael Keena

Pick up a copy at one of their rockin' shows or head on down to Picks N Sticks. You can also download it through iTunes. - Blues Hamilton


Still working on that hot first release.



The Folk Sinners are an Acid Folk band, showcasing a strong catalogue of original material. FS are located in Southern Ontario, Canada. Influences include Gram Parsons, Jimmy Reed, Bob Dylan, Hank Williams, McKinley Morganfield, Mavis Staples, John Cash, Tom Wilson, Emmylou Harris, Tim Gibbons, Howlin' Wolf, Dave Rave, Patsy Cline, Johnny Ballistic, Willie Dixon, John Martyn, Merle Haggard, Wanda Jackson, Jerry Reed, Chet Atkins, Mimi Shaw, Beck, Etta James, Keith Richards, Marty Stuart, ABB, Ma Rainey, Buddy Miller, Neil Young, Norton Buffalo, Joe Zuger and Tommy Joe Coffey.

Band Members