Amelia Curran & Duane Andrews Take You To Ron Hynes’ Dark River

The duo share an intimate cover from the upcoming tribute LP Sonny Don't Go Away.

Amelia Curran & Duane Andrews show you around Ron HynesDark River ghost town in their intimate and transfixing new acoustic cover and live video — showcasing today on Tinnitist.

The duo’s wistful and beautiful rendition is the second preview of Sonny Don’t Go Away: A Tribute to Ron Hynes, a collection of 20 songs written by the beloved Canadian icon, reproduced by a collection of Newfoundland and Labrador-based artists. Set for release Oct. 20 via Sonic Records, the album was co-produced by Great Big Sea frontman Alan Doyle and singer-songwriter Cory Tetford.

“I’ve said this before, but it’s always noteworthy,” says Curran. “The thing about Ron Hynes, is that he was around. In the late 1990s, you could find me working the door at the Ship Inn or the Rose & Thistle in downtown St. John’s. Ron would play fairly often then. And there wouldn’t be a guest list, but he’d call out from the stage every so often, ‘She can come in, let him in, she’s good, he’s alright,’ etc. Owning the room. And everyone knew every word and I never gave that a second thought at the time. Cover was $5. Cash and coins in a french-fry basket. And at the last song, I’d weave my way through the dark little Ship Inn dance floor and stash the lot in the kitchen behind the bar. And later, after hours, I was allowed to hang around. We smoked cigarettes and I played songs. I was 20. Maybe 19. I could count my original compositions on one hand, and he gave me room to play them all. It’s all I’ve been doing since.”

Andrews adds: “It feels like as time continues to pass, we’ll keep realizing more and more how infinitely great Ron is. I love hearing one of his songs out in the wild and still get more from them every time I hear one. I was especially excited to be able to work on this with the one and only Amelia Curran. We danced around Dark River for a while looking for the right approach, we even talked about string quartets and grand arrangement ideas but in the end went with the most intimate setting of just one voice and one guitar, which we found let the beauty of the song shine the most.”

Hynes, known as “the man of a thousand songs,” left an indelible mark on Newfoundland culture. Born in St. John’s and raised in Ferryland, he released music for four decades, both as a solo artist and as a member of the famed Wonderful Grand Band. His 1972 debut album Discovery was first album composed entirely of original content by a Newfoundland artist. Throughout his career, he earned 22 ECMA nominations and six wins, a Juno nomination, a CCMA nomination and a Genie Award. In 2008, he was presented with the National Achievement Award by SOCAN in recognition of his songwriting success, and in 2013 he received Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, honouring his status as a Canadian icon and Newfoundland patriot. His music has been covered by artists all over the world, perhaps no song more so than Sonny’s Dream, which inspired this album title. Hynes passed away in 2015 at the age of 64 and was inducted posthumously into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2020.

Watch the video for Dark River above, check out Tim Baker’s version of Leaving On The Evening Tide below, and get more information at the album website.

Sonny Don’t Go Away Track List:

Tim Baker | Leaving on the Evening Tide
Amelia Curran & Duane Andrews | Dark River
Quote the Raven | Godspeed (Requiem for Gene MacLellan)
Alan Doyle & The Dardanelles | St. John’s Waltz
The Once | Atlantic Blue
Jodee Richardson | Cryer’s Paradise
Mallory Johnson | River of No Return
Joel Thomas Hynes | Last Chance Avenue
Ennis Sisters | Lonely Song
Matthew Byrne | 1962
Barry Canning | Where Do You Get Off
Cory Tetford | Shine Like Diamonds
Glenn Simmons | Picture of Dorian Grey
Yvette Lorraine | Where Does Love Go Wrong
Rum Ragged | House
Shanneyganock | If I Left You Alone with My Heart
Fortunate Ones | No Change in Me
Silver Wolf Band | Dry
Mick Davis | Get Back Change
Kellie Loder | Sonny’s Dream


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