Win tickets to Martha Wainwright

The Georgia Straight presents Martha Wainwright at the Rio Theatre on March 9

With a hugely expressive voice and an arsenal of powerful songs, Martha Wainwright is a beguiling entertainer and a refreshingly different, new force in music.

Wainwright is the daughter of folk legends Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle and sister of acclaimed singer songwriter Rufus Wainwright. Born in New York City and raised in Montreal, she spent her childhood immersed in music and often performing with her parents. She took the first step in her own recording career in 1998 when she contributed her song “Year of the Dragon” to her mother and aunt’s album The McGarrigle Hour. The same year she started singing back-up for her brother both live and on record.

After leaving college, Wainwright moved to New York City and distinguished herself almost immediately.

Wainwright released a self-titled EP as well as a four-song EP called Factory in 2002. In February 2005, Wainwright released an EP called Bloody Motherfu*king As*hole, followed by the eponymous Martha Wainwright in April to great critical and commercial acclaim. In the January 2005 issue of Mojo, Norah Jones listed her as one of the “best things she heard all year.” London’s Sunday Times included “Bloody Mother Fu*king As*hole” in their songs of the year and Rolling Stone called BMFA “a blistering prelude to her debut album.” Throughout her career, Wainwright has also contributed to albums by Dan Bern, Kate & Anna McGarrigle. Rufus Wainwright, Snow Patrol, and Teddy Thompson among others.

A dynamic performer, Wainwright was a part of the acclaimed Leonard Cohen tribute concert in May 2004 at Brighton’s Dome Concert Hall. Wainwright also took a turn performing on film in Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator, and contributed two songs to the soundtrack of American independent film P.S. starring Laura Linney and directed by Dylan Kidd. Wainwright joined her brother on his fall 2004 U.K. dates to rapt audiences and has also supported artists such as Cyndi Lauper, Van Morrison, Neko Case, Snow Patrol, Pete Townshend, and Sean Lennon over the last few years.

Undoubtedly her own person, with her own sense of style, Wainwright creates her own music with an extraordinary versatile and compelling voice.

Wainwright returned with her third studio album, Come Home To Mam,a in 2012. The album is her first collection of original music in four years and was produced by Yuka C. Honda of Cibo Matto. Recorded earlier this year, mostly at Sean Lennon’s home studio in New York City, Come Home To Mama displays the passionate angst of her 2005 eponymous debut coupled with the twisted pop of 2008’s I Know Your Married But I’ve Got Feelings Too. Honda and Wainwright have created an edgy, multi-instrumental soundscape that showcases Martha’s raw, confessional poetry with undeniable style and grace. The captivating 10-song set features performances from Yuka Honda, Nels Cline (Wilco), Sean Lennon, Jim White (Dirty Three), Brad Albetta, and Thomas Bartlett (Doveman).

During the winter of 2009 and 2010, Wainwright gave birth to her first child and her mother passed away. Confronted with both joy and anger, the songs on Come Home To Mama are, at times, aggressive and forceful, but also the most reflective of Wainwright’s songs to date. 

Come Home To Mama follows Wainwright’s live collection of Edith Piaf songs, Sans Fusils, Ni Souliers, A Paris, in 2009



A pair of tickets to the show on March 9 at the Rio Theatre

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