NEW HARBOUR, NL — A local musician from New Harbour has been working closely with some big names to release a new project.
Jordan Harnum got the opportunity to work alongside Glenn Simmons of Wonderful Grand Band and The Fables fame on a new project – an album titled “The Boys Around the Bay.”
Harnum told the Compass that music has always been his passion.
Over the years, he’s been playing local gigs, entertaining crowds with his guitar and his voice wherever he gets the chance.
“I was out in Corner Brook, doing some playing out there, and me and (Glenn) got to talking, and the idea of the album came up,” explained Harnum. “We got to work on it in August of 2016, and finished up in August of 2017.
“It was a whole year’s worth of work that we put into this.”
The album, launched at a sold-out release party at the Stone Jug in Carbonear on Friday, Nov. 24, features Harnum’s original songs, as well as a song co-written with Simmons.
Songs by other Newfoundland artists such as Angus Stewart from the Northern Peninsula are also featured on the CD.
Harnum noted the album would not be what it was without the help of Luke Welsh, who contributed his fiddle skills to the final project.
He told the Compass he takes great pride in the addition of the song “Captain John,” originally written by Simmons and Ron Hynes in their Wonderful Grand Band days. Hynes never recorded the song himself.
“Captain John” was first released on the second anniversary of Hynes’ death in 2015, when Harnum’s album was played from start to finish on local radio station K-ROCK.
During the CD release, he said he was also working alongside members of the acclaimed rock band Fairgale – a band hailing from Winterton – as well as instrumentalist Matt Glover.
“There’s a few traditional songs on there, and I think overall it’s a pretty well put together album. I’m really happy with it.”
When he was 14, Harnum started playing music on his father’s left-handed guitar, despite being right-handed. Over time, he acquired a guitar more suited for him, and went on to play for several different bands, as well as solo gigs.
“I was playing on the weekends around St. John’s when I would fly back and forth from Alberta,” explained Harnum. “But I never really committed to being a musician until the last couple years.”
Working with Simmons was a special experience, he said, noting he had been listening to the tunes of Simmons and Hynes, as well as the rest of The Fables and Wonderful Grand Band, for as long as he could remember.
Now, with an entire album written with Simmons’ help, Harnum couldn’t be more pleased with the turns his musical career has taken.
“Anybody who’s anyone in the music industry on the east coast knows who Glen Simmons is, you know?” said an enthusiastic Harnum. “It’s an amazing feeling to work with him after listening to his music for so long, and it really makes you better as a musician – picking up on these little tricks when writing songs with him.
“For me, coming in as someone who’s relatively new to being in a studio and preparing a big project like this, I think it’s really going to help me prepare for my next album.”