Caroline Wiles confronts her past on her new single and video How Dare You — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
Taken from her fourth album Living in the Now, the confrontational slow-burner recounts an uncomfortable encounter with an abusive former lover who showed up out of the blue at a gig. It’s just one of several personal songs that find the Ontario singer-songwriter revisiting her past while being present in the moment.
“In the last year or two, I’ve done a lot of soul searching,” Wiles explains. “We do that as we get older. We reflect on life — where we’ve been and where we want to go. And sometimes we forget where we are.
“When you’re raising a family and working at a job, you’re constantly thinking, ‘What do I have to do next? But I’ve realized it’s just as important to take a breath and just be in the moment. When you have a crazy-busy life like we all do sometimes, you really need to just slow yourself down and feel the joy of simple things. Take a walk in the woods. Smile as much as you can smile. Make the most of it.”
That homespun, heartfelt philosophy is the guiding light behind Living in the Now. Wiles’ most mature and uplifting work to date, the 11-song release captures one of Canada’s best-kept musical secrets at the height of her powers, brilliantly showcasing her unique blend of thoughtfully moving lyrics, intimately and endearingly warm vocals, and timeless pop songcraft.
Born and raised in Quebec, Wiles began singing and playing guitar at age 11. She became a full-time professional musician at age 18, fronting a rock band. By her early 20s, she was living in the Toronto area and writing songs. A self-taught artist and songwriter, she’s spent a lifetime honing and practising her craft. Her self-titled first album appeared in 2000, followed by 2006’s I’d Like to Know and 2016’s Lovers Lane. She’s shared the stage with artists such as Ian Thomas, David Bradstreet, Tom Wilson, Blair Packham, Wendell Ferguson, Carter Lancaster (Gordon Lightfoot), Chantal Chamberland and Rick Fines — and moonlights in the local trio McCurlie, Doidge and Wiles. Not bad for someone who’s also raised a family and held down a career in dental hygiene for much of her adult life.
With Living in the Now, Wiles is finally following her true path. And her own advice. “I’m very passionate about songwriting, and now is the time in my life I can finally pursue it and give it the attention I’ve been craving to give it. I’m not doing this for fame. I’m doing it because I feel it’s what I’m supposed to be doing: To make music that’s enjoyable and uplifting. That’s my goal and that’s my purpose.”