Steven Taetz – Five Questions With

Steven Taetz

Photo Credit: Jen Squires

Steven Taetz unveils his album, Late Bloom

Toronto’s Steven Taetz has unveiled his incredibly personal new album Late Bloom – and, to celebrate, he’ll be throwing a huge party at The Dakota Tavern tonight.

Intended as a collection of queer love songs, Steven’s new tracks celebrate a love found later in life.  With Americana and folk influences, this is a departure into new creative territory for Steven – and it’s taken on a confessional tone as he’s fully embraced his queer identity.

A singer, songwriter, and bandleader based in Toronto, Steven Taetz has written for many internationally renowned artists published on Sony/ATV, Nettwerk, Warner, Shapiro Bernstein, and Universal. His earliest recordings were collaborations with leading DJ/producers across Europe, released on top EDM/dance labels Armada Music, Perfecto, etc.

For 2013’s debut solo album Steven Taetz, he created a cross-Canadian collaborative collection of songs with JUNO-award-winning singer-songwriters from each province of Canada. His 2018 Drink You In album debuted at #3 on iTunes jazz charts and received rave reviews from JazzTimes and other leading media. His upcoming Spring 2022 album Making Room includes collaborations with Jill Barber, Caroline Brooks of Good Lovelies, Jenn Grant, and many other world-class artists. He has performed in venues such as Carnegie Hall (NY), The Rogers Centre (Toronto), Blue Room (Korea), Capital Pride (Wash DC), Hotel Café (LA), Toronto International Jazz Festival, Rochester International Jazz Festival (4 sold-out performances), and Koerner Hall.

Listen to Late Bloom below and learn more about Steven Taetz via our Five Questions With segment.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

I am an Alberta-born, Toronto-based singer and songwriter who leads a band playing contemporary roots, jazz, and blue-eyed soul music. I’ve written and released music in a variety of genres and styles and published music with many of the major publishers, including Universal, Sony/BMG, Warner, and Nettwerk.

Tell us a bit about your most recent release.

I’ve released two singles from an upcoming album up until now and leading up to the full album dropping on February 16. This project was cowritten with award-winning collaborators, including Jill Barber, Jenn Grant, Caroline Marie Brooks of the Good Lovelies, Emma-Lee, and many more. It was produced by Grammy- and JUNO-recognized producers Drew Jurecka and Daniel Ledwell and include love songs written from a queer perspective but with universal themes, which I think will resonate with everyone. The press is saying it will overlap with the audiences of Roy Orbison, k.d. lang, and Brandi Carlile, and I think it has something for everyone musically.

Where do you tend to pull inspiration from when writing?

I gravitate towards a pop sensibility in my melody writing and chord progressions, and for this project, I’ve been inspired by the Nashville style of writing tunes that keeps an emotional storyline front and centre. Several of my grandparents passed during the several years it took for me to create this album, so there are some hints of nostalgia for the 1950s to the 1970s, some throw-back prom dance-style tunes, some driving songs that harken back to Fleetwood Mac era, etc. I think the writing style was influenced a lot by my collaborators, too; Jenn Grant and I were pulled towards a Blue Rodeo rootsy twang, similar to her own recent projects, and Mary Bragg (a wonderful singer/songwriter/producer who was based in Nashville at the time) has that Roy Orbison meets Nashville pop vibe. One member of the press recently said I have a Brill-Building (Carole King, Bert Bacharach) approach to writing catchy tunes, which I will gladly accept as a compliment also.

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

I’m so excited to be playing Calgary Folk’s Block Heater (Feb 9 and 11), Blue Chair Café (Feb 10), Dakota Tavern (Feb 16 for the album launch), Casa Del Popolo in Montreal (Mar.2), and the National Arts Centre in Ottawa (Mar.3). Summer dates will be announced soon as well—info and tickets here.

What’s your goal for 2023?

I’ve started to write and record a Christmas album for the end of 2023 and planting the seeds for another project in 2024 that includes many duets with more talented collaborators. Please stay tuned by following my social media, @steventaetz, on all platforms.

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