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Sue Smith celebrates release of new album with concert Live-Streamed from River Run Centre

By Brenda Lewis

Live from The River Run Series presents Sue Smith with The Potion Kings

On Friday, March 26, 2021 at 8pm, long-time Guelph artist Sue Smith brings her evocative song writing and sultry voice to the stage of the River Run Centre joined by a band of locally and nationally esteemed colleagues,The Potion Kings.  Join her from the comfort of your home for an unforgettable live-streamed concert celebrating her sixth album, Tonight We Sail, released worldwide on Thursday, February 25, 2021.

On board with Smith on this journey are Jeff Bird on bass (Cowboy Junkies, Tamarack), Kevin Breit on guitar (Norah Jones, Cassandra Wilson), Randall Coryell on drums (Tom Cochrane, Mel Brown), and Howie Southwood on percussion (Rawlin’s Cross). Singing back up will be Gwen Swick (Quartette, Marigolds). 

Sue notes, “I’m thrilled to perform a live show with these musicians.  We’ll deliver up all the material from the album in their inimitable way. Playing with The Potion Kings is like running with wild horses.  Everyone brings their best game to the table – which is stellar to begin with – and added to that is the ensemble magic of what they do together in the moment – everyone listening, inventing, responding and playing with one another – all in service to the song.  Singing in the midst of their musical alchemy is one great big happy adventure for me.”

This concert is free of charge. Pre-register at:

Sue Smith with The Potion Kings – Digital Performance – River Run Centre



Michael Timmins of Cowboy Junkies describes the album thus:

"A beautiful and thrilling respite from the shit-storm that was 2020 and the gaping, looming maw of 2021. Sue Smith with the Potion Kings and her new album Tonight We Sail is the perfect blend of Sue's delicate, controlled vocals and the Potion Kings’ frenetic deep grooves."      

Smith’s revelatory new album offers up a soulful fusion of exceptional ensemble playing. Standing firmly in the centre of the Potion King’s incendiary musical alchemy, Sue’s expressive singing blends melancholy with hope, inviting the listener on a voyage into the night and beyond, arriving at the inevitable awakening of a new day.

It truly is a Guelph collaboration, produced by Jeff Bird and Sue Smith, recorded by Nik Tjelios and Scott Merrit and mixed by Nik Tjelios and Jeff Bird at ThecottaGe.

Sue elaborates, “When the Potion Kings started to play regularly in Elora, I was usually there, helping out as an honorary “village idiot” and always dancing.  I was the champagne mistress at their legendary New Year’s Eve dances, uncorking and serving bubbly to the midnight revellers.  The opportunity to record with them came about in a magical way   I really wanted to hear where they would take my songs. What an adventure it has become!  Once the bed tracks were done, Jeff and I spent a long time listening, choosing and adding a few additional tracks. When COVID hit, I was thrown sideways, not sure how I would complete it, but after five months or so realized I just needed to stand up and finish it and could do so in safe, distanced ways.  I’ve been running with it ever since.”  

Whenever the Potion Kings play, it's always an adventure, taking deep dives into the worlds of rock, jazz, blues, roots and more. Recorded live in studio (2017/18), Tonight We Sail beautifully captures their inventive mastery, interweaving with Sue’s voice and enlivening an enigmatic collection of songs.    

Album is available through Bandcamp, Spotify, Apple Music.
Purchase CD copies at Guelph’s "With The Grain".

Watch video for “Night Skies” 

Listen to singles One Thing I KnowWhere Oh Where  and Ophelia

Listen to the album Tonight We Sail on Bandcamp


About Sue:

Sue Smith, who calls Guelph home, is a singer, composer, producer, teacher and community builder
and has been an active contributor to the local and national arts communities for over 35 years.

Her discography includes The Bird Sisters “Flo” (1990), “Different Stories” (1992) and “She & She & She” (1995), Ondine Chorus “Towards A Little Light” (2013), and her debut solo release “I’m So” (2006). 

A co-founder of Hillside Festival and collaborator on numerous notable music projects, Sue has been honoured for her contributions to music and youth.

Much more at Sue Smith.

Sue is not on social media. Join Sue's Mailing List for updates.

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