Canadian singer/songwriter Norine Braun is on the eve of releasing her new album entitled, “Through Train Windows”, inspired by a cross country, 6000 kilometer train ride from Vancouver to Toronto. Of course the album has a hidden meaning as well as a literal train based motivation. The album was released on December 7, 2018.
Norine has a sensational voice and an emotional and passionate musical sense. She has won many awards including: the Western Canadian Music Award Nomination Spiritual Artist of the Year, winner of Los Angeles Independent International Music Awards, Female Singer, and winner of Artists For Literacy Songs Inspired By Literature. She has frequent festival appearances, and will be searching out even more with this new release.
I spoke to Norine regarding her new album, her inspirations and her music career including her exciting train journey….
What inspires your songs?
Just witnessing the world around me. Being in touch with that. All of it, I guess the beauty and the ugliness, and trying to communicate that. And just people.
When did you start singing and writing music?
I’ve been doing it a long time. Most of my life actually. My mom said I was singing right from a toddler. I formally started writing songs when I was 11 or 12. Professionally since …..I put my first album out in 1996. So I’ve been doing it awhile.
What can you tell me about this album that would make someone “need” to have it?
It’s a journey on a train and it’s a metaphor also for a journey through life. It’s a landscape, not just an outa landscape but also an inner landscape. I think anyone who likes to take journeys, who likes to reflect and to likes to feel things, I think would enjoy this album. For me I was traveling in a train that really happened physically, but it’s also an inward journey, of life.
What made you take that literal train journey?
I live on the Pacific ocean in Vancouver and I’ve never been to Eastern Canada. They have a train here in Canada and they have this program where there’s a barter system and you can travel across Canada in exchange for free 45 minutes sets. I thought that would be really cool so I applied and we were accepted, my partner and I. We got accepted and went to Toronto. Then in Toronto I set up some gigs for us. We went to Ottawa and Quebec City and then we went on board again from Montreal to Halifax. I thought it would make a really interesting album depending on what happens and how we experience the train. It was a really great way to meet people and it was a small intimate kind of space so that’s how it started. We got excepted, then we went on this tour and then I applied for residency at Banff Centre for the Arts and Creativity. I was excepted and got a scholarship there and then I synthesized the train experience in an album. The opportunity presented itself and I kind of grabbed it, and one thing led to another and now I have my album.
Do you plan on touring in support of your album?
Inside Canada to start for sure and then I’ll look towards the outside of Canada tour. I want to promote it because it is such a national kind of thing. I’m looking towards next fall to tour. Right now I’m applying for festivals and things like that depending upon where we get picked up. I’ll build a tour around that. If we don’t get any festivals I’ll plan a fall tour again on the train and maybe revisit my places and the people. I have nothing lined up right now but it will be coming for sure. It’s kind of what you have to do I guess. I kind of want to do it around the train, but maybe I’ll do Amtrak too.
If you could say anything to your fans and followers, what would you want to say?
To follow their heart. In relation to music, follow their heart to wherever it takes them.
Streaming album: https://norinebraun.bandcamp.com/album/through-train-windows