Luke Doucet is what you might call a true Canadian. Born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, but raised in Manitoba, he travelled across the country by himself before he was thirteen, eventually settling in Vancouver at the age of nineteen when he became a member of Sarah McLachlan’s band.
Now in his late thirties, Luke has been putting out under-appreciated alt-country albums for the last decade. His music caught the attention of author and self-professed music obsessive Nick Hornby (a quote of whose this blog is named after, incidentally); in 2008 he listed Doucet’s “Cleveland” as one of his ten favourite songs of the year and described the album Blood’s Too Rich as sounding like it came straight of 1977 (“not the Ramones/Talking Heads/Clash take on that year, but the Graham Parker/Dire Straits/Tom Petty version of it”).
In 2006, Doucet married Canadian songstress Melissa McClelland and the pair have been musically inseperable ever since, appearing on each other’s records and frequently making appearances on stage together. This year, the pair released their first album as the duo Whitehorse. Clocking in at 24 minutes, the self-titled debut is essentially an EP, but Doucet has said that they already have enough material for a double album and plan to release something else next year. Whitehorse includes a rework of McClelland’s “Passenger 24” and Doucet’s “Broken” (originally titled “Broken One”) as well as a stunning cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “I’m on Fire”. Buy the album on iTunes here.
Video of Whitehorse performing “Broken”:
Here are some old Luke Doucet favourites for your listening pleasure. Get this guy’s discography stat and go see him live if you ever have the chance — incredible guitarist and performer.
mp3: Luke Doucet - Cleveland from Blood’s Too Rich
mp3: Luke Doucet - Brother from Broken (and other rogue states)
Luke Doucet performing at this summer’s Burnaby Blues & Roots Festival