September 26, 2022

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Richard Seguin |  From screams to whispers

Richard Seguin | From screams to whispers

In Connecting places, Richard Seguin walks between the country of childhood and the inhabited area. An intimate and inclusive new album from a singer-songwriter who believes in the power of the word “faith.”

Posted at 6:45 am.

Josie Lapointe

Josie Lapointe
Pres

Richard Seguin is discreet between each album, but he’s never written anything less. Five years after his music project dedicated to Henry David Thoreau, here he is again with A The work has matured for a long time, in which his music acquires new colors.

“At 70, the new thing is that you do things without expectations,” says Richard Seguin, who for two years has been writing and composing in his small cabin built in the forest of Saint-Venant-de-Paquette. He took his time, “Without Deadline To “forge” each of the ten songs on the album.

Photo by Marco Campanosi, The Press

Richard Seguin

“Basically, I’m a craftsman,” the singer says, then rushes to show us photos of said cabin and a view of “his” mountains in the Appalachians. “My girlfriend is much happier because I go to work there and the house is less noisy! »

Richard Seguin is in a good mood. He is gearing up to hit the road again in mid-September with a massive tour of 80 shows in a year. “I’m doing vocals, I’ve started practicing guitar again… The stage is not a place to release your toxins, I want to be in good shape! And enjoys working with musicians who take him in new directions.

“They are all young men in their forties. They tell me their parents made them listen American Day When they were 9 years old… it makes for good stories! »

He laughs. But working with artists from other generations is part of the fun of a long career — about 50 years in his case.

The album was born with three texts written for him by the poet Helen Dorian, a vivid vision of the world he wanted. ” It is already midnight / In the forest of the world / What we have betrayed / For the storm to roar », he recites to us. “She sums it all up. »

Her longtime partner Marc Chabot wrote a song for her. from, a more serious text than he expected, born after a discussion about loved ones taken away by the “grim reaper.” The singer also adapted a text by Hugo Latulippe, inspired by his documentary I lift myself upAt the end of the album he performs a cappella.

Inspired by the “unpredictability” of these new texts, and after meeting arranger Mathieu Vanasse, Richard allowed Seguin to take up strings and keyboards alongside the guitars. “It gives me colors I’ve never had before. »

Conclusion: He feels a form of peace that we hear in the way he sings on this “new signature”, softer and closer and closer. “I tend to push the note too much, in which case I lower the register. »

Sometimes we even have the impression that he is whispering A bit of poetryThis opens the album.

Photo by Marco Campanosi, The Press

Richard Seguin

With this sweetness, it is not surprising that we find family and the benevolent shadow of his parents there. In Parking lot, he gently awakens his father’s cave filled with objects that “speak like words.” Then inside Near Aspens, for the first time, he dedicated a very moving song to his mother. The one who brought “culture” into the house and wrote all sorts of quotes in a little notebook.

Today, he carves fragments of the inscribed text into the wood of his room. “Ah, that’s his DNA, that’s for sure,” says Richard Seguin with a soft smile, for whom looking to the past is not a nostalgic gesture. He sees exercise as a “chronicle.”

“It is very difficult for me to look back, I want to look forward. But it does not reduce the fact that the country of birth and childhood are still alive and the impressions received at that time are decisive. »

hope

This bubble of introspection that he weaves around the album spills over into his most assertive lyrics. For example, in Forest trailsRichard Seguin, who condemns clear-cutting, is carried by the same enthusiasm of the time. Protest song. But the way has changed.

“The way to approach it is less upfront, but felt. Sometimes whispering has a bigger impact than yelling. »

who sang What to do with them 15 years ago there is more concern than ever with the climate crisis and the treatment we have assigned to the planet. But if he is clear, he denies fatalism.

The words will also be performed in what promises to be more vocal than previous shows. He certainly likes to switch between recent and old songs and highlight the album’s 30th anniversary. At the gate in the morningIt means a lot to the public.

“I don’t remember who said it, but a song is like an emotional marker in our lives. It is always surprising to know the path they take. »

He hopes the message will resonate with people. And, “even though we are far behind”, he is hopeful for the future of the world and has faith in the growing generations.

“At this moment, the current is running high in women, just like the mothers at the front. We don’t know how future generations will perceive us… Are we sometimes dancing on the Titanic? ? »

This did not stop him from continuing to create songs.

“Yes. As long as my health permits. A song… for me, it makes me feel better. As Hugo gives me his words: Let us feed the fire of our villages… The happy days we live in… These territories are our temple… That really gets me going. »

A sudden emotion constricts his throat and he stops talking. By singing precisely these words, he reminds himself that he is useful. He closes his bag, quietly gets up and looks at us, his eyes shining.

“Let’s try.”

Scrapbook Connecting places Releases on Friday, September 9.

Connecting places

Folk rock

Connecting places

Richard Seguin

Spectrum