The Stray Crows
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The Stray Crows

Rycroft, Alberta, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | INDIE

Rycroft, Alberta, Canada | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Folk Soul




"The Stray Crows Take Flight."

Who Knew that the crows were songbirds? Christina and Mitch Cedar do, which is a big reason the name of their band, The Stray Crows, is such a perfect fit. Grande Prairie will have a chance to find out what kind of songbirds The Stray Crows are June 23 as they launch their new CD, One Sky, at The Rabbithole downtown... In 1988, we were in the lucky position to adopt three young stray crows who had fallen out of their nest during a storm and were abandoned," explained Christina. "Nurturing the infant crows and feeding them three times every hour helped us connect and deeply appreciate all crows and feathered folk."
The Cedars found they identified with many of the crow's traits. We discovered that crows were a unique songbird who called out because they had something to say," said Christina. "They like to explore. They could also be annoying for those who wanted to sleep. Like the crows, our music is exploratory and can be uncomfortable for those who choose to ignore the dark side of life." The crows begain as a duo, but in 2004 became a trio when bassist Angie Maksymetz joined the mob. "Angie was helping us out with recording some of the stuff and we were using her as a studio musician," noted Christina. "It became that she was so much a part of the songs and the essence of it that we said hey, do you want to perform as well? And she said yeah." The Cedar's son, Isaac, also plays drums and guitar with the band on occasion. One Sky is the band's first album and covers a wide gamut of songs written by both Christina and Mitch. Some of the songs were written as far back as 20 years ago and some as recent as last year. It covers a full range of time line," said Mitch.
Many of the songs came out of a local songwriter's group with which the Cedars became involved last year.
Mitch admitted was a bit reticent to take part in the songwriting group until it came time for he and Christina to host the monthly meeting. "I couldn't really get out of it," he laughed. "Its been great," smiled Christina,"I always wanted him to write love songs and now he's writing love songs because he has to do one a month." The creative process of bouncing ideas off of other artists has given the Cedars a fresh look at their writing. "It's a starting point," said Christina. "For me, personally, it's been nice to actually be able to write things down because songs come to me, and always have come, very spontaneously. As they come very spontaneously and intuitively, ask me 10 minutes laters and I won't know what I sang," she laughed.
While the duo write on their own, they do write together sometimes. "Mitch might come up with a riff on the guitar and say to me "put lyrics to it" and that's when I do my ... go into the space thing," she laughed. "Usually the first time is it, and then you try to remember what you actually sang."
"Christina is great for just coming up with improvisations," noted Mitch. "Some of my
favourite songs have been done that way. Phonecall on the album was done like that. Highway of Tears is another." The difference in styles and genres between the members of the band is part of what makes The Stray Crows so unique. "We also do poetry and storytelling, if that's what the venue calls for," Mitch said.. "I kind of mix it up, it's just kind of my style." While Mitch has been likened to Lou Reed or Leonard Cohen, Christina is a little more difficult to pin down. She recalled singing a song she wrote, for singer/songwriter Dennis Lakusta when he was here for a performance and took part in the songwriter's circle. "He looked at me and said, "Where did that come from?" she said. "He says, "I can't figure out where you fit in with the different musicians out there." She said her music fits in to different little cracks. "Its's sort of bluesy, but not quite. It's sort of jazzy, but not quite . . . I'm sort of a not-quite," she smiled. "You've got some soul in there for sure," said Mitch. "Kind of folk, roots." "Sometimes," she agreed with a laugh. "And the next thing you know I throw out a country song."
With a wide range of thought and musical content, One Sky has a global and eclectic feel, which will be showcased at The Rabbithole in downtown Grande Prairie June 23. "It's a really neat store and it's nice to be able to have that space so we can invite other people to jam with us," said Mitch. Other artists who will join the Stray Crows that evening will include poet Catherine McLaughlin as well as musicians Tim Trapanier and Susan Picard. The event begins around 8 p.m. CD's are available at The Rabbithole. For more info on The Stray Crows, check them out onlineat
- Sun Media

"Don't Overlook the Small-Label Treasures"

Forget for a moment this is a local band, and listen to the magic and movement in the tone and lyric. I love this release because it is unique. Technically and linguistically it is average, but the leap of musica faith becomes self-evident as each songs proceeds. It speaks of a spiritual element, an earth based motif using symbolism of sound and vision found in aboriginal culture.
It does a great job of juxtaposing this with a bluesy sound, an almost Leonard Cohen style of lyrical interaction with the underscore. A big congrats to Christina Cedar, Robert Cedar, Angie Maksymetz, Isaac Cedar and the production crew on this one. It's a vaulter. - Sun Media


Still working on that hot first release.



The 'crows' hailing from the peace river country, have been celebrating the arts since 2004 in all kinds of venues from cafes and libraries to indoor and outdoor festivals.Their unique brand of thought-provoking lyrics and earthy/rootsy sound suggests a universal connection between all people. Their name originated from having the opportunity to adopt three infant crows that fell out of their nest and were abandoned after a storm. The three birds became like family and inspired Christina and Robert to fly out on their own in the arts. Many years and gigs later, the Stray Crows are active on the music and arts scene having established successful public events such as the Junction Coffee House Rycroft, the annual Matta Fest at Dunvegan Historical Provincial Park, Muses North Arts Festival touring the peace river country, and the Revolution Love Live concert series. They enjoy playing live and celebrating music and arts with other folks.

Band Members