Jane Siberry

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Jane Siberry
Issa 2007.jpg
Jane Siberry on stage in 2007, when her identity was Issa
Background information
Birth nameJane Stewart
Also known asIssa
Born (1955-10-12) October 12, 1955 (age 63)
Toronto, Ontario
Origin Guelph, Ontario, Canada
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, composer, musician, record producer, poet
InstrumentsSinging, guitar, keyboards, computer
Years active1981–present
Labels Sheeba, Duke Street, Open Air, Windham Hill, Street, East Side Digital, Reprise, Rhino
Associated acts Brian Eno, K.D. Lang, Hector Zazou, Peter Gabriel, Rebecca Jenkins, Holly Cole, Mary Margaret O'Hara, Victoria Williams
Website Jane Siberry on Sheeba Records

Jane Siberry ( /ˈsɪbəri/ SIB-ər-ee; née  Stewart; [1] born October 12, 1955) [2] is a Canadian singer-songwriter, known for such hits as "Mimi on the Beach", "I Muse Aloud", "One More Colour" and "Calling All Angels". She performed the theme song to the television series Maniac Mansion . She has released material under the name Issa ( /ˈsə/ EE-sə) – an identity (as opposed to a simple stagename) which she used formally between 2006 and 2009.[ citation needed ]

Mimi on the Beach single by Jane Siberry

"Mimi on the Beach" is a song by the Canadian singer/songwriter Jane Siberry. It is the only single released in support of her second album No Borders Here, first issued in 1984.

One More Colour single by Jane Siberry

"One More Colour" is a song by the Canadian singer/songwriter Jane Siberry. It is the first single released in support of her third album The Speckless Sky, issued in 1985.


On August 30, 2005, Siberry was awarded the 2005 Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award in music by the Canada Council for the Arts. [3]

The Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award is a monetary award given since 1971 by the Canada Council for the Arts to Canadian artists judged to be outstanding in their mid-careers.

The Canada Council for the Arts, commonly called the Canada Council, is a Crown Corporation established in 1957 to act as an arts council of the government of Canada, created to foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and the production of works in, the arts. It funds Canadian artists and encourages the production of art in Canada. The current board chair of the Canada Council is Pierre Lassonde.

Career history

Childhood and early years

Jane Stewart was born in Toronto in 1955 and was raised in the suburb of Etobicoke. [4] She would take her subsequent surname, "Siberry", from the family name of her maternal aunt and uncle. Many years later, she would explain this choice by stating "this woman and her husband were the first couple I met where I could feel the love between them and I held that in front of me as a reference point." [1]

Toronto Provincial capital city in Ontario, Canada

Toronto is the provincial capital of Ontario and the most populous city in Canada, with a population of 2,731,571 in 2016. Current to 2016, the Toronto census metropolitan area (CMA), of which the majority is within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), held a population of 5,928,040, making it Canada's most populous CMA. Toronto is the fastest growing city in North America, and is the anchor of an urban agglomeration, known as the Golden Horseshoe in Southern Ontario, located on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario. Toronto is an international centre of business, finance, arts, and culture, and is recognized as one of the most multicultural and cosmopolitan cities in the world.

Etobicoke Place in Ontario, Canada

Etobicoke is an administrative district and former city that makes up the western part of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Etobicoke was first settled by Europeans in the 1790s; the municipality grew into city status in the 20th century. Several independent villages and towns developed within the area of Etobicoke, only to be absorbed later into Etobicoke during the era of Metro Toronto. Etobicoke was dissolved in 1998, when it was amalgamated with other Metro Toronto municipalities into the City of Toronto. Etobicoke is bordered on the south by Lake Ontario, on the east by the Humber River, on the west by Etobicoke Creek, the city of Mississauga, and Toronto Pearson International Airport, and on the north by Steeles Avenue West.

Siberry learned piano from the age of four, predominantly teaching herself [5] and developing her own concepts of notation and structure. At school she learned conventional music theory (as well as French horn) and taught herself to play guitar by working through Leonard Cohen songs. Her first song was completed at the age of seventeen, although she had been developing song ideas since much earlier.[ citation needed ]

Music theory considers the practices and possibilities of music

Music theory is the study of the practices and possibilities of music. The Oxford Companion to Music describes three interrelated uses of the term "music theory":

The first is what is otherwise called "rudiments", currently taught as the elements of notation, of key signatures, of time signatures, of rhythmic notation, and so on. [...] The second is the study of writings about music from ancient times onwards. [...] The third is an area of current musicological study that seeks to define processes and general principles in music—a sphere of research that can be distinguished from analysis in that it takes as its starting-point not the individual work or performance but the fundamental materials from which it is built.

French horn type of brass instrument

The French horn is a brass instrument made of tubing wrapped into a coil with a flared bell. The double horn in F/B is the horn most often used by players in professional orchestras and bands. A musician who plays a French horn is known as a horn player or hornist.

Leonard Cohen Canadian poet and singer-songwriter

Leonard Norman Cohen was a Canadian singer, songwriter, poet, and novelist. His work explored religion, politics, isolation, sexuality and romantic relationships. Cohen was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was invested as a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation's highest civilian honour. In 2011, Cohen received one of the Prince of Asturias Awards for literature and the ninth Glenn Gould Prize.

"I started out in music, but switched to sciences when I realised how much more interesting it was to study than music. I would leave the classes ecstatic about tiny things."

Jane Siberry on her education [5]

Following high-school graduation from Richview Collegiate in Etobicoke, Ontario, [6] and then the Canadian Junior College, Lausanne, Switzerland, Siberry moved on to study music at the University of Guelph, later switching to microbiology (in which she gained a BSc degree) [5] when she found freshman music courses to be stifling. She began performing in folk clubs in Guelph, linking up first with singer Wendy Davis and then with bass guitarist John Switzer in a group called Java Jive. [4]

University of Guelph university in Ontario, Canada

The University of Guelph is a comprehensive public research university in Guelph, Ontario, Canada. It was established in 1964 after the amalgamation of Ontario Agricultural College, the MacDonald Institute, and the Ontario Veterinary College, and has since grown to an institution of more than 32,000 students and over 1,500 faculty as of fall 2015. It offers 94 undergraduate degrees, 48 graduate programs, and 6 associate degrees in many different disciplines.

Microbiology Study of microscopic organisms

Microbiology is the study of microorganisms, those being unicellular, multicellular, or acellular. Microbiology encompasses numerous sub-disciplines including virology, parasitology, mycology and bacteriology.

Guelph City in Ontario, Canada

Guelph is a city in southwestern Ontario, Canada. Known as "The Royal City", Guelph is roughly 28 kilometres (17 mi) east of Kitchener and 100 kilometres (62 mi) west of Downtown Toronto, at the intersection of Highway 6, Highway 7 and Wellington County Road 124. It is the seat of Wellington County, but is politically independent of it. The city is built on the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation.

First three albums and Canadian success (1979–1986)

Following the split of Java Jive in 1979, Siberry maintained both a musical and a romantic relationship with John Switzer (who would work with her on her first four records). On leaving university, she supported her work as a solo performer by working as a waitress, earning enough to finance and tour her debut album, the folk-influenced Jane Siberry , which was released in 1981 on Duke Street Records. The album was relatively successful for an independent release, enabling Siberry to sign a three-album deal with A&M Records via the Windham Hill label. As part of the deal, Siberry was able to release her albums on Duke Street Records in Canada while Windham Hill handled American release and distribution. [4] [5]

<i>Jane Siberry</i> (album) 1981 studio album by Jane Siberry

Jane Siberry is the self-titled 1981 debut album by Jane Siberry. The original vinyl album is out of print. The album was re-released on CD by East Side Records in 1994.

Duke Street Records was a Canadian independent record label established in 1984 by Andrew Hermant which ceased operations in 1994. The Universal Music Group took over the label when it disappeared.

A&M Records American historical record label

A&M Records was an American record label founded as an independent company by Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss in 1962. Due to the success of the discography A&M released, the label garnered interest and was acquired by PolyGram in 1989 and began distributing releases from Polydor Ltd. from the UK. Throughout its operations, A&M housed well-known acts such as Gin Blossoms, Dishwalla, Joe Cocker, Procol Harum, Captain & Tennille, Sting, Sergio Mendes, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, Supertramp, Bryan Adams, Burt Bacharach, Liza Minnelli, The Carpenters, Paul Williams, Quincy Jones, Janet Jackson, Cat Stevens, Peter Frampton, Elkie Brooks, Carole King, Styx, Extreme, Amy Grant, Joan Baez, the Human League, The Police, CeCe Peniston, Blues Traveler, Soundgarden, Duffy and Sheryl Crow.

Assembling a backing band of Switzer, guitarist Ken Myhr, keyboard players Doug Wilde and Jon Goldsmith, and drummer Al Cross, Siberry recorded her second album No Borders Here (released in 1984) for which she mostly abandoned the folk approach in favour of electronic art-pop. [5] This coincided with a growth in support of new wave and independent music within Canadian broadcast media, including the Toronto radio station CFNY and the video channel MuchMusic. Both of these became keen supporters of Siberry and put her onto high playlist rotation.

Siberry's first hit was the No Borders Here track "Mimi on the Beach" – a seven-and-a-half-minute art-rock single [5] which benefited from the art-friendly broadcast support at the time (and from its video made by Siberry and friends). Both factors earned it heavy MuchMusic and college radio play. Two further singles with videos – "You Don't Need" and "I Muse Aloud" – consolidated the success. No Borders Here sold 40,000 copies and won Siberry a CASBY award for best female vocalist, [7] as well as giving her first opportunity to play live in New York. [4]

Siberry's third album, The Speckless Sky (1985), continued her art-pop approach. It was another commercial and critical success, going gold in Canada by selling over 100,000 units and establishing Siberry as a Canadian pop star. The album provided another hit single, "One More Colour" (with an entertaining video featuring Siberry walking a cow) [5] and won the 1985 CASBY for best album, with Siberry also picking up the award for best producer. In 1986 Siberry signed with Warner Brothers subsidiary Reprise Records, which picked up her American contract from Windham Hill, while honouring the existing Canadian arrangement with Duke Street Records. [4]

Reprise Records period

The Walking and Bound By the Beauty (1987–1992)

For her fourth album (her first for Reprise) Siberry created The Walking . Released in 1988, it contained a set of intricately structured songs, many of which were lengthy and shifted between narrative viewpoints and characters. Many of the songs dealt with romantic collapse and miscommunication, partially inspired by Siberry's breakup with John Switzer (which happened during the writing and recording of the album). She was marketed as part of the "high art" end of rock music, alongside artists such as Kate Bush or Peter Gabriel. Siberry embarked on a tour of Europe and the United States to promote The Walking. This included her first European performance, which took place at the ICA in London. [4]

In spite of the efforts of both label and artist, The Walking was ultimately less of a commercial success than The Speckless Sky, with Siberry failing to make her mainstream breakthrough. Although the album met with the same critical interest and attention as its predecessor, reviews were noticeably harsher and less welcoming. As well, the album was considered unsuitable by broadcasters for radio airplay, despite the presence of several shorter and more accessible tracks on the album (both the title track and a shorter edit of "Ingrid and the Footman" were released as singles but failed to make an impact). [4]

Despite this setback, Reprise retained Siberry's contract, even taking over the Canadian side of the distribution for her next album, 1989's Bound by the Beauty . Siberry moved towards more simple and direct song forms, jettisoning electronic art-pop in favour of more acoustic styles drawing on country and western and Latin music. While retaining her quirkier conceptual approach; the album's song themes were generally more lighthearted than those of The Walking. Prior to the album's release, Siberry toured various folk festivals (in a duo format with Ken Mhyr on guitar) in order to reposition herself in the market; Bound by the Beauty had better record sales, and appeared on the RPM Top 100 Albums chart in 1989. [8] In 1990, she embarked on a 50-date tour of Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Britain, the United States and Canada. [4]

By 1991, Siberry had completed demos for her next album: however, this was scrapped when neither Reprise nor Siberry herself were happy with the results, which were deemed too much like Bound by the Beauty . [4] In 1992, during the wait for a new record, Reprise released a Siberry compilation album called Summer in the Yukon for the UK market. This focussed primarily on her more pop-oriented side and featured a remix of the Bound by the Beauty track "The Life is the Red Wagon" with a new dance-friendly rhythm track.[ citation needed ]

When I Was a Boy and Maria (1993–1996)

Siberry's sixth album, When I Was a Boy , was completed in 1993 after a three-year writing and recording period during which she'd undergone changes in her personal life and in her musical approach. For the first time she chose to share album production responsibilities with other musicians – in this case Michael Brook and Brian Eno, both of whom also contributed instrumental work to the album. [4] During the recording period, she had also confronted and overcome a longstanding alcohol addiction. She would later consider the music on the record to be more liberated, featuring what she described as "more body in it, more sexual energy... it's about the sacred aspects of sexuality, and finally being able to embrace them and not, em, (just) be an observer anymore." [9]

In contrast to its predecessor, When I Was a Boy was influenced by funk, dance and gospel music and featured extensive use of layering and sampler technology, [4] in line with developments in latterday pop music, trip-hop and R'n'B. It also featured what would become Siberry's best-known song, "Calling All Angels" (a duet with k.d. lang which had first appeared as part of the soundtrack to Wim Wenders' Until the End of the World and as a track on Summer in the Yukon; it was later re-recorded for the Pay It Forward soundtrack). Other contributors on the album included Canadian singers Holly Cole and Rebecca Jenkins and (for the last time) regular guitarist Ken Mhyr. The album introduced the more spiritually-oriented themes that became a hallmark of Siberry's later work [10] and launched three singles – "Calling All Angels", "Sail Across the Water" and "Temple".[ citation needed ]

Prior to the release of When I Was a Boy, Siberry performed in Edinburgh as the opening act for Mike Oldfield's premiere of Tubular Bells 2 . She met with a disastrous rejection by the audience. Initially, Siberry was devastated (later describing herself as having "cried for two weeks") and had to make a serious reassessment of her perspective on her work. From this point onwards, she chose to reclaim her art for herself and decided "I took back all the power back that I had put outside myself trying to please (others). The worst show of my life has become the best show because it's given me the ultimate freedom to care only about what I think is really good. How my career does is secondary." [4]

Siberry would subsequently reassert full control over all areas of her work, from songwriting to stage presentation and video direction. For her promotional tour for When I Was a Boy – which she called "The It Ain't a Concert Concert", she opted not to use a band and instead performed solo, encouraging audience interaction and including spoken-word material (to the puzzlement of critics).

Later in 1993, Siberry collaborated with Holly Cole, Rebecca Jenkins, Mary Margaret O'Hara and Victoria Williams on a live concert of Christmas music, which was broadcast on CBC Radio on Christmas Day that year [11] before being released in 1994 as the album Count Your Blessings . [12]

During 1994 Siberry recorded sporadically, without constructing a new album. She came to the attention of a new audience when her song "It Can't Rain All the Time" was included on the soundtrack for the movie The Crow; [13] time spent with Peter Gabriel at Real World Studios resulted in three more songs (not released for another seven years) and she sang on the Indigo Girls album Swamp Ophelia. [4]

Siberry's next release was another complete change of direction. In contrast to the intricate studio production of When I Was a Boy, Maria (released in 1995) featured a more jazz-inspired direction with live acoustic instrumentation and approaches similar to Van Morrison's Astral Weeks . The basic tracks to the album were recorded in three days flat [5] by a group featuring Tim Ray (pianist for jazz band Orange then Blue), Betty Carter's double bass player Christopher Thomas, top jazz session drummer Brian Blade and trumpeter David Travers-Smith (with Siberry playing electric guitar and singing). She edited and reworked the recorded material into fully realized songs, most of which featured various perspectives on innocence. The album also featured a 20-minute extended conceptual work called "Oh My My". Siberry took this new band on tour across Canada and the United States and professed herself pleased with the results, but Reprise Records were less pleased with the album sales. [4]

After Maria, Siberry parted company with Reprise Records, later stating "they wanted me to work with a producer and that severed any sense of loyalty. I realized they truly didn't understand what I was doing... so I took my leave." [14]

Sheeba Records period

New York period (1996–1997)

In 1996, Siberry founded her own Toronto-based independent label, Sheeba Records, on which she has released all of her subsequent material. [5] Although her public profile became lower once she became an independent artist, she retained a devoted cult following. Her first Sheeba release was Teenager (1996), an album of songs which she had originally written during her teenage years and which she had recorded during the Maria sessions (taking advantage of the fact that the sessions had been completed with studio time left over). Leaving the Sheeba Records office to continue its work in Toronto, Siberry herself then relocated to New York City in search of new inspiration. [4] [5] [15]

In 1996, she performed four concerts at the city's famous Bottom Line jazz club – all of which were recorded and released on a set of live albums between 1997 and 1999, collectively known as the "New York City Trilogy". [5] The first of these was 1997's Child: Music for the Christmas Season , a double album which combined Christmas standards and carols (such as "O Holy Night" and "In the Bleak Midwinter") and original Siberry songs containing religious imagery (such as "An Angel Stepped Down...")[ citation needed ]

Siberry had also demonstrated the greater creative freedom she had as an independent recording artist via her other 1997 album, A Day in the Life . This was her most unconventional release to date – although it did feature song excerpts, it was predominantly a sound collage representation of a typical day's experience by Siberry in New York. The album was filled with recordings of yoga classes, phone messages and street sounds; and featured conversations and exchanges with a wide variety of people – cab drivers, friends, fellow students and Siberry's then-current musical collaborators Patty Larkin, Joe Jackson, k.d. lang and Darol Anger. [4] [5]

Also in 1997, Siberry's former label Reprise Records released a second compilation album of her work, A Collection 1984–1989 , aimed at the Canadian and American markets, and drew from the whole range of Siberry's output prior to When I Was a Boy.[ citation needed ]

Toronto period (1997–2005)

With Sheeba running into financial problems, Siberry left New York, returned to Toronto and reestablished her label as a one-woman operation (handling everything from songwriting to envelope-stuffing). [4] In order to finance Sheeba, she also began to experiment with what were then seen as unorthodox promotional ideas, such as the weekend-long "Siberry Salons" (a concert-cum-seminar featuring two performances plus a workshop and dinner, which were hosted at intimate and unusual venues such as art galleries and loft apartments). Sheeba now also sold soft toys and auctioned off collectible career-related items such as signed lyric sheets, her first guitar and even the pink bra which she had worn on the cover of Maria. [5] [16]

Siberry took two years to restore Sheeba's precarious fortunes, [4] during which she kept busy. Her first book of prose-poems, S W A N, was published by Sheeba in 1998, the same year that she toured as one of the acts on the female-oriented "Suffragette Sessions" tour, alongside Indigo Girls, Lisa Germano and members of Luscious Jackson and the Breeders. A second book, One Room Schoolhouse, followed in 1999. [14] In the same year, Siberry released the second and third volumes of the New York concert recordings. Lips: Music for Saying It was based around themes of communication (and included a "Mimi"-sung riposte to 1984's "Mimi on the Beach"). Tree: Music for Films and Forests documented a concert in which Siberry had sung songs linked by the concept of trees, as well as adding a couple of songs she'd contributed to film scores. The complete trilogy was reissued as a three album box set the same year. [5]

Siberry's tenth studio album, Hush was released in 2000. This was a predominantly acoustic record consisting entirely of cover versions in which Siberry explored traditional American and Celtic folk and gospel songs such as "Jacobs Ladder", "Ol' Man River" and "Streets of Laredo". She released a third book via Sheeba in 2000, New Year's Baby. [5] The following year's City album compiled various non-album tracks, rarities and collaborations between Siberry and other musicians. As well as providing another home for "Calling All Angels", the album included work with Nigel Kennedy, Peter Gabriel, Hector Zazou and Joe Jackson and featured "All the Pretty Ponies" (a children's song which Siberry had contributed to the Barney's Big Adventure soundtrack). [5]

In 2002, Love is Everything: The Jane Siberry Anthology was released on Rhino Records: a double-CD album combining material from her Duke Street, Reprise and Sheeba eras and summarizing the first twenty-one years of her career. This was followed in 2003 by Shushan the Palace: Hymns of Earth – another Christmas-themed album of cover versions. This time, Siberry performed her own interpretations of liturgical Christmas hymns by various classical and Romantic composers including Mendelssohn, Bach, Holst and Handel.[ citation needed ]

Despite her apparent productivity, Siberry was continuing to find her independent career and business efforts to be challenging and problematic. The live albums were in part an inexpensive tactic to enable her to gain resources to record her original work. She would later confess "I really thought it was going to be much, much easier. The whole label thing. It wasn't. Those records, Shushan and Hush, were to pay for studio time." [17]

"Issa" period (2006–2009)

Early in 2006, Siberry closed her Sheeba office, then auctioned and sold nearly all of her possessions via eBay – including her Toronto home and her musical instruments. She retained one travelling guitar, but none of the other instruments featured on her albums and in her concerts. In 2006, she told The Globe and Mail that she had kept a very few precious possessions, including her Miles Davis CDs, in storage. [18] [19] [20]

"I felt the need to make some strong changes in my life. It seemed important to change my name, so I did. I changed it to a name that I thought was simple, an empty cup. I had never heard the name Issa before, and it turns out to have some wonderful meanings, including a haiku poet in Japan, and the name that Jesus had in India. But two weeks ago I officially changed my name back to Jane Siberry. I felt with the name change, I had gotten in my own way, in terms of devoting myself to my career, making my work available to people. So, Jane Siberry is my name again until further notice, but I feel richer from having been Issa for three years."

Jane Siberry, explaining her time as "Issa" in 2009 [21]

On 3 June 2006, somewhere in northwestern Europe, Siberry changed her name to Issa: revealing this change of identity to the public a couple of weeks later on 24 June 2006. She told The Globe and Mail that she chose the name Issa as a feminine variant of Isaiah. [18] She stated that her older music would remain available for sale under the name "Jane Siberry", but her new material would be released as Issa. At the time she also stated, regarding the change of identity, "I had to do it right. I had to be serious about it and I had to convey that. When I put Jane away, I went silent for 24 hours. Not a word to anyone. And then Issa from that point on." [17]

Later she would describe the process of choosing a new identity in terms of changing her writing approach – "Moving into Issa, I didn't know if I'd be in the music business any more. I just started writing. I wanted to let go of any expectations and just try to get closer to what I heard in my head... I just tried to write as precisely as I could to what I heard in my head. I slowed everything down and took one note at a time, and just waited until I heard the next note." [19] The process was evidently successful, resulting in thirty-three songs written in thirty-three days. [17]

On 4 July 2006, Issa gave a lecture at University of British Columbia in Vancouver on the topic of "Cracking the Egg: A Look from the Inside". She began with a poetic meditation on science and life, and then opened the floor up to questions from the audience. She talked about her recent adventures in decommodifying her life, her change in name, and her new conception of herself as an artist. Over 2006 and 2007, she documented the process of recording some thirty new songs in her journal, posted on her MySpace page and on her new website.

In autumn 2008 Issa finalized the ideas for a trilogy of albums to be called the "Three Queens" sequence. The first of these – Dragon Dreams – was the debut Issa release, on 12 December 2008. As with the previous Jane Siberry material, it was released on Sheeba: Issa had retained the label despite slimming down its operations. In 2009, Issa released the second album in the "Three Queens" trilogy, With What Shall I Keep Warm? However, it was plain that her identity was no longer fixed, as both of the names she'd used as a musician – "Issa" and "Jane Siberry" – were included on the cover. In December 2009, she notified her fans that she had recently changed her name from Issa back to Jane Siberry, feeling that the process of working under a different name had run its course.[ citation needed ]

Later work (2010–present)

Inspired by the dichotomy between frequent e-mails from devoted international fans asking her to play a concert in their city and her difficulty in finding a suitable concert promoter, Siberry launched a "microtour" through her fan mailing list in 2010, [22] in which she offered to play small venues – ranging from intimate cafés to fans' own homes – in any location in Europe where one or more fans could organize a space, an audience of about 20 to 30 people and a night of accommodation. [22]

In May 2010, Siberry made her entire back catalogue of music available as free downloads in MP3 and AIFF formats. [23] She had previously employed a flexible pricing policy, stating "I started feeling weird about holding back anything people wanted because of the money. It just felt wrong to my stomach, so I made a flexible interface so people could take it with whatever reasoning they felt was right, and I didn't have to worry about it any more." [19]

In March 2011, Siberry advised her fans through her mailing list that the third album of the "Three Queens" trilogy was almost ready (having been "nearly completed" several times before), and that she intended to release a fourth disc as part of the collection. The album, Meshach Dreams Back, was released later in 2011 and was the first album to be credited to "Jane Siberry" for eight years.[ citation needed ]

In 2014 Siberry used crowdfunding to raise funds to produce Ulysses’ Purse, a limited edition CD. [24] Siberry is featured in the Corey Hart single "10,000 Horses", which was released on 8 April 2014. [25]

Musical style and commercial approach

Siberry's music is most commonly compared to artists such as Kate Bush, Joni Mitchell, Suzanne Vega and Laurie Anderson. She has drawn from a wide variety of styles, ranging from new wave rock on her earlier albums to a reflective pop style influenced by jazz, folk, gospel, classical and liturgical music in her later work. She has cited Van Morrison and Miles Davis as being strong creative influences.[ citation needed ]

Siberry has often criticized the competitive power of commercial radio and the recording industry. [26] In 2005, she pioneered a self-determined pricing policy through her website [27] on which the purchaser is given the choices of: standard price (about US$0.99/track); pay now, self-priced; pay later, self-priced; or "a gift from Jane". In an interview with The Globe and Mail , Siberry confirmed that since she had instituted the self-determined pricing policy, the average income she receives per song from Sheeba customers is in fact slightly more than standard price. [18]

Personal life

Siberry is a vegetarian. [28]



Studio albums

Live albums


Chart singles

Siberry has placed three singles in the Canadian RPM Hot 100:

Two other tracks made RPM's Adult Contemporary charts:

Compilation albums

Siberry has also contributed tracks to a number of movie soundtracks and compilation albums:


Two Nice Girls recorded a country/folk cover of "Follow Me" on their 1989 debut album 2 nice girls.

Her song "One More Colour" was covered by Sarah Polley on the 1997 soundtrack to The Sweet Hereafter , and by the Rheostatics on their Introducing Happiness album. K.D. Lang covered "The Valley" and "Love Is Everything" on her album Hymns of the 49th Parallel .

Alice covered "Calling All Angels" on her album God Is My DJ in 1999.

Rock Plaza Central covered "You Don't Need"; and "Calling All Angels" was covered by The Wailin' Jennys in 2009.

The late Kevin Gilbert recorded a piano version of her song "The Taxi Ride" which appears on the posthumously-released album Bolts , a collection of unreleased material from Gilbert's career released in 2009.

Steven Page with the Art of Time Ensemble recorded The Taxi Ride on the 2009 release A Singer Must Die.

Guest performances

She sings on Bob Wiseman's 1991 Presented By Lake Michigan Soda. She sings "The Bridge" on the Joe Jackson album Heaven & Hell. Jane sang backing vocals on the 2003 Emmylou Harris album Stumble into Grace .

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Child: Music for the Christmas Season is a 1997 live double album by Jane Siberry.

Lips: Music for Saying It is a 1999 live album by Jane Siberry.

Tree: Music for Films and Forests is a 1999 live album by Jane Siberry.

<i>City</i> (Jane Siberry album) 2001 compilation album by Jane Siberry

City is a 2001 album by Jane Siberry.

Gail Ann Dorsey musician

Gail Ann Dorsey is an American musician. With a long career as a session musician, she is perhaps best known for her lengthy residency in David Bowie's band, from 1995 to Bowie's death in 2016. Aside from playing bass, she sang lead vocals on live versions of "Under Pressure" and dueted with Bowie on other songs, including "The London Boys", "Aladdin Sane (1913-1938-197?)", "I Dig Everything", accompanying Bowie on clarinet, and a cover of Laurie Anderson's "O Superman".

Deanna Kirk is an American jazz singer-songwriter based in New York City.

<i>A Day in the Life</i> (Jane Siberry album) 1997 studio album by Jane Siberry

A Day in the Life is an album by Jane Siberry, released in 1997. It was the second release on her own Sheeba Records label after leaving Reprise.

<i>Love Is Everything: The Jane Siberry Anthology</i> 2002 compilation album by Jane Siberry

Love Is Everything: The Jane Siberry Anthology is a two-disc compilation of songs by the Canadian singer-songwriter Jane Siberry. It was released in 2002 and contains material dating back to her debut release in 1981.

Jane Taylor is an English singer. She won the UK and International Songwriting Competition in 2003 with her song Blowing This Candle Out. Her second album Compass was awarded the Best Album title in the Folk / Singer-Songwriter category at the 2010 Independent Music Awards.

With What Shall I Keep Warm? is an album released in 2009 by Canadian singer-songwriter Jane Siberry. The album artwork features both the names Issa and Jane Siberry. It is "the second of a story told in three parts," the first being Dragon Dreams.

Dellamarie Parrilli American painter

Dellamarie Parrilli is an American painter and visual artist and record producer who is noted for her evolving, self-taught abstract style that encompasses numerous genres and media. Parrilli's art has received numerous successful gallery exhibitions in prestigious art galleries throughout Europe and the United States, particularly in Chicago and New York.

Calling All Angels (Jane Siberry song) single by Jane Siberry

"Calling All Angels" is a song by the Canadian singer/songwriter Jane Siberry.


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