Ann Vriend will play twice at the Harrison Festival of the Arts this year.

Vriend looks to Americana for latest album

Singer brings Love & Other Stuff to festival

It’s been a long few months on the road for Ann Vriend, promoting her most recent album Love & Other Messes.

But for the next few weeks, she’s taking a break from life on the road, and tending to business at home in Edmonton.

“It’s been a very intense tour,” she told the Observer. “I’m taking some time to take care of the other side of the business.”

Music is a full-time gig for the singer/songwriter these days. With five records under her belt, and a steady stream of performances on her calendar, there would be little time for anything else.

“I get criticized for pushing myself too hard,” she said. “And I’ve definitely been called a workaholic. But I really like doing things. I think of things and I want to record them, and play shows.”

What she’s wanting to play right now, is the music off Love & Other Messes, her first self-produced album. Like most artists, Vriend is passionate about her current work, and constantly striving to improve her craft.

“Every (record) I change it up and do a different genre,” she said. “But this one I kind of think of as an Americana soul record. There’s some old school and very acoustic songs. We did a lot of stuff live off the floor. It’s a very acoustic and organic sounding record.”

And if she has to pick a favourite, it would be the single Tin Man.

“I’m happy with a lot of them,” she said. “We were most excited about that one when it finally came together.”

While all the music on Love & Other Messes conjure up that organic, nostalgic feeling, fans shouldn’t get too attached to one particular sound.

“That era of music was a really, really rich era unlike one we’ve seen since and I think it’s just a really great musical era to borrow from,” she said. “But the next record won’t necessarily sound like this.”

Vriend will take the stage at the Harrison Festival of the Arts a few times this year, once in the evening on the beach (July 14, 7 p.m.) and once in the afternoon on the beach (June 15, 2 p.m.) She says she’ll be playing with one other artist, as a duo.

The music on the beach runs throughout the nine-day festival, and those wanting to sit and watch can purchase a button for $2 right on site.

Other beach performing musicians this year include Los Morenos, Jackie Essombe, Kunaka, New Country Rehab, Leela Gilday, the Fito Garcia Afro-Cuban Bass Project, Andrea Koziol, Navaz, New Directions: An Aboriginal Collaboration, Redgy Blackout and Kytami.

For a full list of the entertainment planned at this year’s festival, visit www.harrisonfestival.com or phone 604-796-3664.