You Me & the Horse
Jerry Leger is a young songwriter living in Toronto. He has gained critical acclaim and praise from peers such as Ron Sexsmith('One of the best songwriters I've heard in quite some time.') JERRY LEGER BIO Toronto singer-songwriter extraordinaire Jerry Leger cites Hank Williams and Bob Dylan as his two main influences. It is hard to imagine two finer singer-songwriters to model one's craft on. Born on April 19th, 1985, Leger came of age in the Upper Beaches area of Toronto. It was his grandfather who turned him onto Hank Williams, constantly playing the youngster a plethora of the honky tonk master's great recordings. Although Williams' voice came from another world in terms of time, geography, and class, Leger was intrigued by the ways that Williams' songs told a story and often conjured up mysterious images in his head. Dylan, likewise, animated Leger's imagination. By the time, the aspiring musician reached high school, his horizons had widened to include Lightnin' Hopkins, Elvis Costello, Leonard Cohen and Gordon Lightfoot. A quick study, Leger began writing songs in elementary school, largely encouraged by his sixth grade teacher. In high school, he came to realise that, for better or worse, singing and writing songs was what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. Leger cut his first album when he was 19 in 2005. His sophomore record, Farewell Ghost Town, followed the next year. Produced by Don Kerr and Tim Bovaconti and featuring constant Leger supporter, songwriter Ron Sexsmith on piano, the album was critically acclaimed, receiving rave reviews in a number of popular publications. Both albums featured Leger's regular backing ensemble, the Situation. Leger's newest record, You, Me and the Horse, was recorded in two sessions in Toronto, production being handled by Skydiggers co-founder, Josh Finlayson, and Tim Bovaconti. Partially inspired by the musical arrangements on Gordon Lightfoot's first two albums, You, Me and the Horse is a stripped down affair, most tracks featuring Leger strumming away on acoustic guitar or playing block chord piano. A story teller at heart, Leger writes songs that interrogate the trials, tribulations, stories and emotions that are part and parcel of everyday life. As an album You, Me and the Horse deals with such perennial themes as love, hate, folklore and matters of the spirit, most of the lyrics inspired by personal experiences, bits of conversation Leger overheard on the street or a subway car, newspapers and/or things he has observed in his travels. For example, the lyric of the CD's opening track, "Round Walls," came about due to a chance encounter with an elderly woman who told Leger that her Daddy always said that "the devil can't corner you and take your soul in a round room." "Daddy's Lantern" is a true ghost story that has been passed down by generations and told to Jerry by some of the family members. "Mansion Round the Bend" with it's line 'under Sudbury stars it don't matter where we stand, we'll see our mansion round the bend', is a gorgeous love song with the mansion serving as a symbol of what the two protagonists share. Taken together, the eleven songs on You, Me and the Horse are rife with wonderfully crafted melodies, evocative lyrics and the spirit and energy of a young songwriter discovering his voice and honing his craft. The net result is a wonderfully refreshing tonic in troubling times. Rob Bowman October 4th, 2008 Rob Bowman is a internationally recognized author and Grammy Award winner for best album notes. He currently is a music professor at York University in Toronto.