After nearly 60 years of performing and being in the spotlight, Canadian Music Hall of Famer Sylvia Tyson has spent the last few years doing things her way. And luckily for everyone in Windsor-Essex, she’s decided to make time for a special show at the Kingsville Folk Music Festival on Friday (August 11). She’s one of three main headliners, including The Cowboy Junkies and Jimmy Rankin, for the three-day music festival running from Aug. 11-13 at Lakeside Park.
“I recently made the connection that this year is Canada’s 150th Anniversary, she said in an interview from her Toronto home. “I can’t believe I’ve been around for more than half of that! I’ve also been performing for one-third of it, so it can be a bit overwhelming when I look back, but I’m now in a position to do only the things that I want to do. And that makes my life a lot more fun.”
The iconic princess of Canadian folk and country music might be best known for her part in the folk duo “Ian and Sylvia” throughout the 60s and early 70s, but she’s also garnered a successful career as a solo artist, as a member of country super-group Quartette (with Cindy Church, Caitlin Hanford and Gwen Swick), and she’s a best-selling author of novels such as Faith In My Cowboy and Joyner’s Dream.
“Physically, I don’t get too adventurous anymore, so I limit myself to what feels comfortable and I go with it,” she added. “I limit myself to music and writing at this point and then all my excitement centers around what I’m working on at the moment. I always seem to be working on new songs though and I might play one or two for everyone in Kingsville.”
Additionally, for the show in Kingsville, Sylvia promises she’ll play some of the old favourites like Four Strong Winds and Someday Soon, as well as a few from her own albums. It will also be her first performance in the Town of Kingsville.
“Even though I grew up in Chatham, we never strayed too far from the city,” she explained. “If we went out to Blenheim, that was considered a big trip. I’ve yet to visit Kingsville, so this will be new and thrilling for me. I’m looking forward to the festival – there are some very familiar names like The Cowboy Junkies and Jimmy Rankin. There’s even Christine Lavin, who I haven’t seen in years. It’s all very exciting.”
The festival takes place at Lakeside Park (315 Queen Street, Kingsville) from Friday, August 11-13. Tickets and more information can be found at kingsvillefolkfest.org.