David Leask – Five Questions With

David Leask pays tribute to Toronto’s legendary Massey Hall in his new single, “Take A Seat”

Award-winning Scottish Canadian singer-songwriter David Leask has recently unveiled his single “Take A Seat” with a music video to accompany the release. The single is from his EP, Voyageur in Song, a concept record inspired by the Six String Nation guitar nicknamed Voyageur.

“Take a Seat” honours Toronto’s legendary Massey Hall, where Canadian and international music titans like Gordon Lightfoot, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, The Tragically Hip, Oscar Peterson, and many more have graced the stage. The song was inspired by Voyageur’s headstock, made from the original wooden back of seat 69, located high up in Massey Hall’s gallery section.

More than a hundred years of vibrations have gone through the people sitting there and through the wooden seat itself. Leask says,

“I wanted the song to capture the history and range of momentous events that the Hall had witnessed, so it was a big challenge to have to choose a limited number of moments.”

Watch the video for “Take A Seat” below and learn more about David Leask via his socials.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

I am a performing songwriter drawn to the challenge of chasing down songs and recording the song’s unique emotion in an aural photograph. I love to perform my songs in a stripped-down acoustic way, with the hope of connecting their musical stories with the experience of others.

Tell us a bit about your most recent release.

My 7th record, “Voyageur In Song,” was written with and about the Six String Nation Guitar – built from over 60 pieces of Canadian history and culture – and the songs were inspired by the stories behind different pieces of the guitar. One of the pieces, the headstock of the guitar, is made with the original seat 69 from the gallery section of Massey Hall and inspired the song, “Take A Seat,” for which I’ve just released a music video directed by Alistair Simpson and produced by Big Red Oak Films. The video combines a dreamscape of my writing the song and dreaming of the concert magic inside Massey Hall, time travelling through Massey Hall’s storied past, including historic video footage of Gordon Lightfoot.

Where do you tend to pull inspiration from when writing?

My antenna is constantly picking up inspiration anywhere and everywhere. Musical ideas come out of the blue, and I grab the guitar or sit at the piano and try to get out of the way and let the idea flow. Lyrically, it might just be a phrase with a particular musical intonation, even when it’s spoken, that suggests a melody or a powerful meaning as a lyric that already has you imagining the next few lines before you even know what the song is about. Songwriting is ultimately a mystery, and you keep pedaling the wheels of inspiration until you feel the song has reached its destination.

Do you have any upcoming shows or festivals you’d like to tell us about?

I am playing several summer concert series – Streetsville Village Square in Mississauga on Friday, July 15th, and Yorkville Village Park on Sunday, July 17th. There’s more info on my live dates here.

What’s your goal for 2022?

To stay creative in all forms, whether writing, recording, or being in the moment when I’m playing live. I’m always looking to find something new, something I’ve never written or played before.

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