Halifax-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Myles Davidson’s second studio album, Out with the Old, is available now.
This new album takes the folk sound I developed in my first album and introduces elements of rock.
In this Q&A, we learn more about the artist and the album.
This interview has been edited.
Please introduce yourself to our readers.
I am a self-taught singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from St. Peter’s, Cape Breton. I began playing music when I first became interested in guitar at age four. I have been performing professionally for the last fifteen years.
Part of the reason I took up music is that I come from a line of musicians. My grandfather, Estwood Davidson, was the long-time accompanist of Winston “Scotty” Fitzgerald, and my father, Harold Davidson, was the bassist of the Halifax-based group Brakin’ Tradition.
To date, I have released two albums of original material: Leaving it Behind in 2016, produced with J.P. Cormier and Out with the Old in 2022, produced with Dave Gunning.
My songs have received airplay nationwide, with one even being honoured in a museum in Scotland. You can find me performing across the province, usually in the summer months.
Outside of music, I am wrapping up a master’s degree in forensic psychology at Saint Mary’s University and will pursue a Ph.D. in the coming years.
How do you describe Out with the Old?
This new album takes the folk sound I developed in my first album and introduces elements of rock. It is the culmination of six years of writing and musical exploration. The album features eleven songs I consider my best work from the last six years.
Those who enjoy the likes of Dave Gunning and J.P. Cormier should find the album enjoyable to listen to as their influence comes through with a close listen.
Out with the Old tackles such themes as love, sorrow, and coming to terms with the changing times, with tales both true and tall woven in.
Why did you choose Out with the Old as the album title?
The title of this album was chosen for two reasons. First, when I wrote the song Out with the Old, I believed its title was very fitting for a project. Then, as more songs were written and the album’s theme became clear, I decided to stick with the title as it served a greater purpose. In addition, this album marked a shift from my roots as a country-folk artist into somewhere I felt was more reflective of who I was as a musician. As a result, the name served two purposes.
What was the inspiration for the album? Is there a theme?
Much like my first album, Leaving It Behind, which focused largely on my early life and the way I was looking forward into the future, the songs on this album follow a theme of reflecting on the past and telling stories from days gone by.
Between my first album and this project, I moved away from home, graduated from university, and am currently studying for a master’s degree. During that time, I had also written many songs reflecting my experiences and the stories I had been told along the way.
I had planned to make another album within a couple of years of Leaving It Behind’s release, but life got in the way. So when I texted Dave Gunning in late 2021 and asked if he’d be on board to record an album together, I knew it was time to get back to work.
What is your favourite song to perform off the album, and why?
My favourite song to perform off the album is Come to Cape Breton. I wrote this song in early 2021 as an ode to my favourite place in the world. It was my first attempt at a real crowd-engagement song. Since I wrote it, I’ve performed it countless times and had many people singing along, some even drowning me out. The feeling I get when a crowd sings my song with me is something that can’t quite be put into words.
What’s next for Myles?
As of summer 2023, I will be wrapping up my master’s degree. In the coming years, I intend to go back to school one last time for a Ph.D. in psychology.
As for my music, I intend to keep writing, performing, and trying to get my music out there. I already have enough material for another album or two, coupled with a drive to keep exploring different stylistic choices. I have begun moving into music production and have set up a little home studio of my own. Overall, my main goal is to have another album out before six more years pass.