Cranbrook singer nails ‘less is more’ approach

With a wealth of talent already at his fingertips a young Cranbrook, BC, singer/songwriter is ready to take on the folk music world.

Dawson Rutledge’s Today

Dawson Rutledge’s Today

With a wealth of talent already at his fingertips a young Cranbrook, BC, singer/songwriter is ready to take on the folk music world.

Dawson Rutledge’s Today, Tonight, Tomorrow album is a collective of eight beautiful folk-alternative songs.

Rutledge has a distinguished raw talent that will only continue to grow with more experience, a sensational voice and a way of viewing the world unique and well-seasoned beyond his young 18 years.

His voice could do with a little more maturation, as it sounded thin in places and then richer and deeper in others.

However, Rutledge, despite those issues, still manages to seamlessly blend the personality carried in his voice with the ambiance of whatever song he’s singing; and the music does vary throughout the course of the album.

The title track Today, Tonight, Tomorrow was more moody with a darker tone while some of the other songs on the album, such as Mysterious Woman, were more funky and upbeat, and others took on a haunting whimsical hue The Kingdom.

Throughout the album Rutledge’s musical talents were always on display and those talents extend far beyond his voice.

Rutledge plays both the electric and acoustic guitar and can accompany himself on the kick drum and harmonica. In many songs the instruments are quite prominent and you can almost image his fingers flying across the frets of the guitar or or leaning in to breath life into the lonesome harmonica.

The first few songs of Today, Tonight, Tomorrow display a more abstract way of storytelling while the later songs take a more linear, traditional approach. Having the two varieties is definitely a bonus and keeps the album from sounding too monotonous or eclectic.

Rutledge possess a strong grasp of his storytelling abilities, as his voice has a pleasing, rhythmic lilt. However, the song Johnny’s Tale is wordy and awkward in spots; but that’s the only song that comes across less than perfectly polished in that aspect.

With themes of love, adventure, the frailness and imperfection of humanity and the inevitability of time there’s no doubt Rutledge will rise through the music ranks. And while we may never see him as a super successful megastar I think what he has already created for himself will stay purer out of that environment. I hope he grows into his abilities but I wouldn’t want him to change the foundation of his sound too much, it’s already something magical.