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Scott Merritt


Country of origin:

Canada

Type of music generally:

Folky pop/rock

Status:

Most recent release, Of (limited edition vinyl + CD, 2015)

See also:

Scott Merritt's site

Maple Music's Scott Merritt page

Wikipedia's entry on Scott Merritt

An interview with Scott Merritt

Comparisons:

Bruce Cockburn, Bruce Springsteen

Covers/own material:

Own

General comments:

Scott Merritt is the kind of folk/pop/rock singer you don't think has really impressed you at first but later you find yourself humming his songs and his lyrics haunting you. All of his albums are good; Violet and Black in particular is a masterpiece. Scott Merritt is kind like Bruce Cockburn, but something about his songs have worn longer on me. It's strange—he starts off sounding quite derivative of other artists, but there's a haunting, catchy taste to it and soon you realize only Scott Merritt could have produced this music. (Neile)

Recommended first album:

Violet and Black

Recordings:


Serious Interference

Release info:

1983/reissued 1986—Duke Street—DSRBD 31017

Availability:

Unknown; probably only available used in Canada

Ecto priority:

Recommended

Group members:

Scott Merritt—vocals, mandolin, guitar, piano, acoustic instrument

Guest artists:

David Woodhead—bass
Carl Otway—drums
Doug Reansbury—guitar, acoustic instrument, chorus voice
Stacey Hersh—marimba
Matt Zimbel—percussions
Greg Roberts—percussions, pipes
Cherie Camp, Jeff Kahnert, John Welsman—backing vocals
Bob Disalle—drums
Ed Roth—Prophet, Hammond
Bob Becker—percussions
Ian Tamblyn—piano

Produced by:

Scott Merritt and Greg Roberts

Comments:

Even this early in his career Scott Merrit shows his huge skill in creating familiar yet fascinating songs that never wear out their welcome. The production here is fascinating, small sounds that add up to something that doesn't overwhelm you with its virtuosity but that sneaks into your subconscious. (Neile)

Gravity is Mutual

Release info:

1986—Duke Street Records—DSRBD 31026

Availability:

Not sure—may only be available used in Canada

Ecto priority:

Recommended

Group members:

Scott Merritt—vocals, guitar, mandolin, dulcimer

Guest artists:

Bob DiSalle—drums
David Woodhead—bass, backing vocals
Doug Wilde—keyboards
Matt Zimbel—percussion
Adrian Belew—guitar
Ron Searles—violin
Doug Reansbury, Daisy Debolt—backing vocals
Jimmy Bralower—additional percussion
David Van Tieghem—fairlight SMI

Produced by:

Roma Baran

Comments:

This album is almost a prefect example of 80s pop/rock. You'll find the songs slipping into your mind when you don't expect them to. Again, the production is nearly perfect: subtle, not overdone, but helping make the songs so infectious. The great songwriting here approaches the brilliance of Violet and Black. (Neile)

Violet and Black

Release info:

1989—Duke Street records—DSRD-31057

Availability:

Not sure—may only be available used in Canada

Ecto priority:

Highly, highly recommended

Group members:

Scott Merritt

Guest artists:

Bob Di Salle—drums
David Woodhead—bass, backin vocals
Doug Wilde—keyboards, piano
Matt Zimbel—percussion
Willie P. Bennett—harmonica
Robert Arthur Williams—drums, percussion
Arthur Barrow—keyboards, bass, percussion, key program
Greg Roberts—keyboards
Doug Baynham—backing vocals
Rob Gusevs—Hammond, keyboards
Brian Leonard—additional percussion
Mike Sloski—additional percussion

Produced by:

Arthur Barrow except "Blue Field" produced by Greg Roberts

Comments:

This is a wonderful collection. The first time you hear it you find yourself thinking how all his influences show—then later you find this a collection you play again and again. Particularly fine is the title track, "Violet and Black," about Diane Arbus and her work. This album has worn well over the nearly 20 years it's been playing in our house. It's an unrecognized classic. (Neile)

The Detour Home

Release info:

2002—MCA Records—MRCD 6403

Availability:

See Maple Music's Scott Merritt page

Ecto priority:

Recommended

Group members:

Scott Merritt—vocals, guitars, keyboards, beatbox, reed organ, wurlitzer, glockenspiel, pisno

Guest artists:

Peter Von Althen—drums, percussion
David Woodhead—bass
Dennis Pendrith—bass
Ian LeFeuvre—octave guitar, fuzz guitar, resonator, slide guide
Ed Roth—accordion
Paul Intson
Bill Dillon—electric guitar, dulcimer
Jeff Bird—synth
Richard Bell—Hammond
Gary Craig—drums, percussion
Anne Lindsay—violin
Gavin Brown—percussion

Produced by:

Scott Merritt

Comments:

Even 13 years on Scott Merritt shows his ability to give pop music an individual twist. This has some amazingly catchy moments, which make me glad that he's releasing music again. (Neile)

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