reviews & INTERVIEWS

D.A. Richards' novels inspiration for new album by Dan MacCormack — CBC New Brunswick, November 26, 2014

"Anyone familiar with Richards' novels knows that they have many dark moments. The trick is finding the joy that comes from living through the bleak times. MacCormack has certainly found that joy in the music he's created. I'd call it symphonic folk, with its many bright instruments weaving through the tunes that sometimes have the uptempo light-heartedness of bluegrass, others that have rich textures of horns or piano. Produced by like-minded orchestral pop fan Jason MacIsaac of The Heavy Blinkers, it's a rich listen in every way, whether you are a music person, or a lyrics one. But why bother choosing? Both work here very well."

"Literary folk of the highest order is supplied by Dan MacCormack on his debut record.... the poetic title Symphony Of Ghosts is an apt hint at the literary bent of this lovely new debut album from Halifax-based songsmith Dan MacCormack… There are dark ghosts lurking in the lyrics here, but the aural richness on display keeps despair at bay." — New Canadian Music

Dan MacCormack is book smartThe Coast, November 13, 2014

Dan MacCormack's latest album, October's Symphony of Ghosts, lives in the fertile valley between folk and literature. MacCormack's album was the result of six years of work, picking away his concept of an entire album based on the 15—now 16—novels of David Adams Richards. Dubbed "literary folk," MacCormack's inspiration for the album came from Adams Richards' rich written world and his humble, enthralling characters.

Fine fiction inspired songwriter’s CD — The Chronicle Herald, November 7, 2014

Richards’ poetic, intense novels, set in the Miramichi and often about downtrodden people struggling for hope, love and survival, struck a chord with MacCormack. He comes from Westmount, just outside Sydney in Cape Breton. 

"For me, I feel the setting and the people and the way these communities deal with struggle and the perseverance of the human spirit is similar in a way to the community I grew up in. He is articulating a lot of my own experience that I never understood before I read his work."

Musician uses novel approachThe Cape Breton Post, November 1, 2014

Each of the 10 songs on the recording focuses on a different Richards' novel. While MacCormack plays guitar, pedal steel, mandolin, banjo and fiddle, some of the players on the recording come from a symphonic background and the end result is a lush, band-style recording that includes string arrangements and even trumpet on some songs. When MacCormack arrives back in Sydney next weekend though for a Saturday night performance at the Cape Breton Fudge Company, it will be just him, armed with his guitar.

David Adams Richards's work inspires an albumThe Aquinian, October 28, 2014

Songwriting was at a standstill for Dan MacCormack — until one quote inspired an entire album. A six-year-long project birthed Halifax-based artist MacCormack’s 10-track album, Symphony of Ghosts,entirely based on the characters, places and stories of David Adams Richards’s books.


A half-hour documentary about Symphony of Ghosts featuring Dan, David Adams Richards, Alexander MacLeod, and Sue Goyette. September 2014.



Audio interviewHalifax Is Burning, October 14, 2014

Dan MacCormack stops by to talk about the album and perform a couple songs from the record.