September 2014 – More work! PDF Print E-mail

The months started off with a BANG with TV appearances (Global TV Montreal and CTV Montreal) for the extension of our House of Jazz residency to Laval. Yep! After over 30 years in Downtown Montreal, the House of Jazz opened its doors to the public on September 6th! Check out the House of Jazz, Laval Facebook Page and you can see photos from the opening event. While you're there, you might as well join the group page and « Like » it.

So now, you have the option of going to see us at a location close to you. September brings us performing in the Downtown Montreal venue on the 6th & 13th (Saturdays) and, at the Laval Venue on Friday the 19th.

Bad Taboo continues to gain reviews! Here are the latest from B-Man Report (USA), Rue Rezzonico (in French, Montreal, Canada), The Examiner (Montreal, Canada) … As well, we've charted in the top 50 in the UK and top 10 on the Blues 411(USA)! We are also gaining place in Germany and Blues 411 (USA).

Happy, grateful, appreciative...there are not enough words to describe the feeling. This coming from someone who was told that I was not a 'real Blues singer' because I do not growl and scream like Janis Joplin. I've written about my thoughts on it here, in my blog, awhile back (July 12 2012). It's just nice to see that through our music, audiences are listening and are finally understanding why some journalists dubbed the band « the evolution of the blues ».

As Bad Taboo continues its momentum, the guys and I have gone back into the studio to work our 4th ablum! We're right back into the creative process – writing lyrics, finding the right riffs – we even have the concept of the next album done!

Stay tuned for more and come out and see us play!

July / August Congrats Abound! PDF Print E-mail

We, Carolyn Fe Blues Collective, have been blessed with two sponsors who have ensured our foothold in this tough but lovable music industry.  They have congratulated us numerous times and lent a padded shoulder when we needed it.  This time around, it is our turn to congratulate our sponsors. BIG HUGS AND CHEERS to the House of Jazz and Sennheiser Canada!  Here’s why…

The House of Jazz has officially announced that they will be opening a branch in Laval!  After 30+ years in Montreal, entertainment entrepreneur Georges Durst, has decided that Laval would be a great spot to spread the word of Jazz music!  The branch will have the same glamour and 1920’s Cabaret feel that is Mr. Durst’s signature.

Sennheiser Canada (Sennheiser Worldwide, for that matter) has been awarded an Emmy.  Although I am a bit late with the news, it was awarded in October 2013, it doesn’t take away from the fact that Sennheiser has made a name in quality of sound.  Visiting the Sennheiser offices is always interesting as there is always something a-buzz.  Chris Isaac, the artist relations always has some interesting news about the latest technologies and the new artists he recently signed up.  Quite interesting!

The thing is, one doesn’t really know how blessed or lucky they are when sending off promotional packages to the media: radio, newspapers, TV – all over the world.  It is an expensive gamble…especially for indie bands like us.  The cost of CD printing, supplies and mailing add up really quick and we hope to get a return on our investment sooner than later.

When you think that there are thousands upon thousands of bands out there submitting their music and information.  All of them there vying for media attention not only to validate their existence but to spread the word so that a royalty pennies can come in and even better, CD sales jump a few points. One can only hope and pray that the media person and powers that be will take the time to open up the humble envelope and take a listen to the material…and like it.

I am happy to announce that to date, those media representatives who listened to our material did like it and continue to promote on air, online, etc.  Are we lucky? Blessed?  Maybe.  But one thing for sure, we are humbled that folks like what we do.

So with another birthday approaching (53), we will be celebrating in the quaint town of St. Andre de Avellin.  We're having a triple whammy gig!  It will be the release of Bad Taboo in the region + my birthday + having fun with our guest artists - Daniel Prevost on bass and Brian Fisher & Bar a Clous who opens up the night for us.  Come on out and celebrate with us!  Click on: Calendar



June 2014 - Post Launch and Still Going! PDF Print E-mail

*Deep Breath*  ...inhale...e x h a l e...

The BAD TABOO CD Launch happened on May 28, 2014 at the House of Jazz.  What a build up it was with media calls and then leading to the launch.  I must admit, I was a train wreck prior to stepping up on stage.   But before I go are some media memorabilia that you can check out.  Media calls are still coming in fast and furious even though the launch is done, I am still being called for interviews so stay tuned.  Click on the links to see what they's pretty awesome if I do say so myself.  Google translation does an OK job to give you the gist.

Montreal Gazette (Canada)  ::  Montreal's Global TV (Canada)  ::  Zicazic (France) ::  Blues Underground Network (Canada)  ::  Sound Guardian (Croatia) ::  No More (Podcast)  ::  The Suburban News (Canada)  ::  Wasser-Prawda (Germany)  ::  Cashbox Canada (By the way, this is the 2nd review they do about us.  Their first review confirms that we're on the right path in pushing the envelope on the Blues. Here is their review of Original Sin.)  ::  Le Net Blues (Quebec, Canada)


Aside from the whirlwind of Bad Taboo's CD launch, media was also ramping up for the launch of a web-series I had a role in called "Sex & Ethnicity" where I played the role of Mrs. Tan, wife to a strict Asian husband and mother of a lesbian daughter and a child with autism. Fun in an actress kinda way but no way would I like a husband like that!

So back to the launch.  We had a blast! Our beloved sponsor, the House of Jazz was full to capacity.  Our other much loved sponsor, Sennheiser Canada was there in spirit but supported us with another mic since this album requires 3 backup vocals. People were into the music!  We even got a festival booking on the spot for October!  There are some photos on the group FB page but I am purposely holding off on the videos for now. Some fans posted their videos on youtube, which I am sharing.

The day after the launch (phew!), adrenalin kicked in again as we hit the stage at the VIP Fundraiser for the West Island Blues Festival, honouring the West Island Palliative Care Residence and the West Island Black Community.  Great causes!  We had a big stage where each member of the band had lots of room, and of course - lots of room for me to dance around!  We had a triple-exclamation-point-blast!!!  We got folks up on their feet dancing, laughing at the jokes AND A STANDING OVATION!!! We also made some new friends, and the food! Oh my goodness, THE FOOD!!! A cornucopia of Caribbean, Greek, Italian fare.  The bad part was that I had to be careful not to overeat before going on stage.  But what the hey! I had seconds and it was well worth the tummy confusion after the show! LOL

The band is definitely a solid unit.  Not only are we musical colleagues, we are friends.  There were funny moments behind the stage where Tim, our keyboardist, was fighting with the thick curtains to get backstage. It was a slapstick sight to behold. Then there is Rami, our guitarist, who misunderstood the lyrics on the hook of "Not Worth The Show", thinking that I am singing something X-Rated. I still giggle.

So now, something a bit more serious.  To our new fans, we truly appreciate the enthusiasm you have regarding our new album (Bad Taboo) by spreading the word on the internet & social media. However, posting a studio-version of a song, i.e. ripping/copying any song (or the whole album) and posting it on youtube, FB & other media without authorization & our consent hurts us more than your intent to help us. Doing that robs us of earning a living. As well, you could get in trouble with copyright laws (theft of intellectual property). The best way to support us is by sharing the links where to purchase the album or singles or even better, request a tune from your local radio station and if they do not know who we are, direct them to our online pages (FB, youtube, website, etc.) Here are the links to help promote the album and its singles.

Thank you for understanding, thank you for helping us make a living out of our passions for you to enjoy. We love you!

May 2014 - Countdown to Launch! PDF Print E-mail

We stepped back on stage on May 10th after a month+ of studio work, administration work on the album, bla bla bla.  I must admit, I was as nervous as heck.  Sweaty palms, butterflies in the stomach...the whole kit.  But after the first 5 minutes on stage, I was back at home and it was good.

I was quite blessed with the month off.  I met so many people in the music industry.  I even had lunch with a world renowned Diva who stopped by Montreal.  She heard the work that we do and said that we were on the right path.  I cannot describe the feeling I have inside with such an acknowledgement. Gives me strength and the will to keep on keeping on.

Then at a moment when I felt unsure, I receive a phone call from one of Montreal's living jazz legends.  He wanted to congratulate me and the band on the launch of our 3rd album.  I had a long talk with him, about my insecurities, about my fears and wishes, and, about wanting to do this right not just for me but for the guys in the band. We all worked so hard, we were oh-so-patient, we kept getting hit by life time and time again, but we continued on.  His wise words, "Do you feel it is right? Then it is. You've managed to do it all on your own.  It's hard, it's costly, it's lonely but it is all yours. So now, breathe.  Like a mother who is about to give birth, breathe in deep and give birth.  Share your gift and never stop doing so because you owe it to us."


Our 3rd album.  I have the boxes of CDs under my stairs, I've mailed hard copies to radio stations all over the world.  I've been receiving some congratulatory emails, confirmations that airplay has begun and some who are wondering when they will receive theirs.  Canada Post has them and will surely bring them to your doorstep.  Media interviews have begun to promote the launch.  There is something different about it this time around.  I cannot pin point it.  It feels like the first time...but even more.  I don't know if it's good or bad, but I go with the flow. There is a new familiarity about it.  I am careful and somewhat scared.

This 3rd album is not about me.  It's about the collaborations with the guys, the guest artists Guy Bélanger...the honor of having Shun Kikuta on a tune. Goodness! My head hasn't spinning since Shun accepted to collaborate a few years ago.

I catch myself stopping to inhale deeply and exhale slowly.

May 28th is coming fast.

I've turned a page.

And again...

I catch myself stopping to inhale deeply and exhale slowly.

April 2014 - We're Stepping Up! PDF Print E-mail

We missed you!
March and April has been such hectic months preparing for our CD launch that there wasn't enough time in the day to update the news. But we're back. Things have calmed down slightly enough to take a breath and give you some exciting news!

2014 Lys Blues Awards
For the 3rd year in a row, I have been nominated in the category of Best Female Blues Artist.

Montreal's man about the town, The Montreal Gazette's Richard Burnett says, « Best Female Blues Artist" at Quebec's 2014 Lys Blues Awards is by far the toughest category this year: Nominees include the awesome Carolyn Fe (Carolyn Fe Blues Collective), living legend Nanette Workman, and the kickass Dawn Tyler Watson and Angel Forrest. »

To be nominated in the same category as veterans of the Blues world is quite an honour. I never thought that the Blues insiders would consider me in the same calibre.

The winner is decided by the public and voting ends on Sunday, April 27 at 11:59pm. Here is the link and I hope you will take the time to vote, here is the link:  2014 Lys Blues Awards

Back On Stage
Although we did not have any shows in April, we were busy behind the scenes getting the new songs under our belts and preparing for the CD launch. So here it is...we step back on stage in May and it is going to be a blast!!!

New CD is Finally Here!
CD Launch on Wednesday, May 28th from 5:30pm to 7:30pm at the House of Jazz. Don't wait for the last minute. Seating is limited and although we are still in April,  seats have already been reserved! Call the House of Jazz at 514-842-8656 and reserve your spot today!

Numerous postponements delayed the release of the album. But now, the long awaited CD is finally seeing the light. Our 3rd album, BAD TABOO featuring Shun Kikuta comes out at the end of May! Dedicated to Barry Mell, BAD TABOO will be debuted on Wednesday, May 28, 2014 from 5:30pm to 7:30pm at the band's Montreal base and resident venue, the House of Jazz. The 3rd album BAD TABOO, CDs (including the award winning Original Sin and the band's debut 100%) and T-Shirts will be available for purchase. A tour will ensue shortly after, visit the calendar:

The album features a collaboration with Mr. Shun Kikuta on the title track, BAD TABOO, wherein Shun serves up the notes to this soulful R&B styled song. Mr. Kikuta who has left Chicago and now resides in Asia was formerly the guitar player for Queen of the Blues, Ms. Koko Taylor and dubbed “The light (skinned) BB King” by BB King himself.

This collaboration is quite exciting as Carolyn Fe Blues Collective keeps pushing the Blues envelope and continues on with our personal take on the musical genre's evolution.

Check out the calendar and we are looking forward to seeing you in May - especially at the CD launch!

February 2014 - New Beginnings PDF Print E-mail

Old Habits Die Hard ~
If you've been following my blog, you will notice that I am not really good at starting the blog in the New Year. Especially now that each New Year brings bittersweet memories.
I hope that the holiday season was kind to you and that memories you have make you appreciate each moment you live.

Honouring Friends - Old and New, Here and Departed ~
2013 as you may remember started out with the loss of the band's Artist Agent and my friend, Barry Mell, at what was a turning point in the band's career.  Barry passed away on January 18, 2013 - the eve of our show at the Toronto Blues Summit - 6.  Then, February 3, 2013 marked the Tribute show in honour of Barry.  The Mell Family was so kind to me at what must have been a most difficult time in their lives.  They found it in their hearts to cheer me up and encouraged me to go on. But when all was said and done, I was at a complete loss as to what to do with the management of the band.  We had started work on our 3rd album, but deep down inside, I was not so sure if I could go on.  I had a heavy heart and lost confidence in my capabilities to run the business of being an artist, actress, musician and producer. But as you continue to read, you will see that I have found my strength and conviction to go on.

I am so grateful for the fans, friends and family members whose encouragements touched me to the core.  Their belief in my work helped me find my footing.  The guys in the band, who I lovingly call my "Stage Husbands", forged ahead with writing new tunes and I had no other choice but to follow and write up the lyrics.  There are times when one has to fake it to make it.  2013 was such a heavy year.  It was a year of reflection, re-adjustments, planning and now, I am so happy that it is nothing but a memory!

I welcome 2014 with open arms and curious excitement at what can and will happen!

A New Life ~ Carolyn Fe Productions Inc. / Les Productions Carolyn Fe Inc.
Whereas 2013 was a year of re-adjustments and planning, 2014 is a year of action!  Putting into place what was put into a plan.  So we start the year with the introduction of my new company, "Carolyn Fe Productions Inc.".  Inspired by Barry Mell, this company will oversee the management and booking of shows for Carolyn Fe Blues Collective.

New Projects, New Sponsorships ~
Carolyn Fe Productions Inc. will eventually represent other artists as well, but for now it is exclusive to Carolyn Fe Blues Collective. I always told Barry that "We Will Represent!" and I intend to hold my promise.  For that matter, I am happy to announce and introduce you to Ms. Colette Lachapelle, our new Artist's Representative.  If you wish to book the band, you can reach her by email at:  colette (at) carolyn-fe (dot) com

By the same token the new company will be a production house overseeing the production of Blues Shows such as "Jammin' the Blues" (last year we had two shows featuring King King and Angel Forrest - there will be more coming), Theatre Productions (Altera Vitae Productions), and the management of my projects as an Actress for TV, Film and Theatre. My acting agent will continue to do the bookings for me in film/TV/theatre.

Most recently, the House of Jazz has become an official sponsor for the band.  The band was grateful when we were given residency and we always feel at home on the stage of the House of Jazz. Sennheiser is still rock solid behind us making sure we are heard. There are more sponsors coming to join the band but I will announce them as they come.

Other projects are now in the beginning stages for the new company!  Stay tuned as these are exciting times!  I will definitely keep you posted in due time.

The Album, The Launch!
Sometimes, one just has to go with the flow.  The 3rd album has been postponed so many times that I was ready to throw in the towel and forget it.  But my stubbornness didn't allow me to let go, so I hung in there.  Besides, when there are 4 stage husbands to take care of, I cannot afford to let go because if I did, it would be like corralling hamsters running free in a 1000 sq ft space.  Goodness knows, I am too old to run after men.  They come to me instead.

So here it is.  The news you have all been waiting for.  The 3rd Album, which is still untitled, will be launched at the House of Jazz in May 2014.  The album has two guest artists:  Mr. Shun Kikuta who played guitar for the great Koko Taylor (RIP), and Mr. Guy Bélanger who is a staple in the Quebec Blues Scene as one heck of a classy Harmonica player.  I am so honoured to have them on our next album! Stay tuned for the date and time of the launch.

In the meantime come see us play at the House of Jazz, the dates are here:  Calendar

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