It’s not always easy being the new lad on the block, but as Galen Hartley can attest to, sometimes it can be motivational. This singer-songwriter followed the well worn path from Victoria in to Montreal last March, and soon completed his debut solo record, Good Dreams. In fact representing the seventh album in Hartley‘s music career, this new disc still marks many firsts. “I was very much in the habit of working with a band, so it was a little daunting to be making a solo record… but eventually I came to know the many wonders of being the boss,” says Hartley.
Good Dreams, the resulting indie-folk-rock opus, is about as lovely as they come – celebratory melodies, undercurrents of romance and revenge, poetic absurdity – and best of all, it’s just fun to listen to. “I love pop music, but I’ve kind of been trying to out-think it for a long time… This time I just tried to relax and let the guiding principle be ‘what would sound awesome?’”
Contributing in no small part to the awesomeness is an all-star supporting cast that Hartley is quick to praise. “I had a lot of help from some amazing players on this record. Everyone turned in fantastic performances, and the variety of their backgrounds – jazz, classical, folk – really adds to the texture of the album.”
More fun facts about Galen Hartley:
In 2001 his most ridiculous and successful album (Panty Boy’s Orgy of the Senses) peaked at number 49 on Exclaim Magazine’s national charts. Sitting at number 50? The Tragically Hip! That was hilarious.
He’s worked as an accompanist for the Tripod Collective, who are some crazy talented modern improv dancers. He even danced with them once. He had a big cardboard box on his head, which made it easier. I mean, they all had boxes on their heads, so it wasn’t JUST him…
He accompanies the super talented Portuguese fado singer, Sara Marreiros.
He can sing in Portuguese quite convincingly, but don’t try to chat him up in it…
He was very nearly employed as a phone psychic at the age of 18. He cuts his own hair. Sometimes he cuts other people’s hair.