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The Assassin's Apprentice

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Album Review

On his first record for Canadian independent label True North (his previous two have since been re-released by them), Fearing teamed with Los Lobos' Steve Berlin as his producer. The result was a more polished work than his previous and the musicianship throughout is excellent. Contributions from Richard Thompson and Sarah McLachlan augment Fearing's skilled acoustic guitar playing, which is highlighted on the instrumentals "Lark and Duke" and "Martin's" (dedicated to guitarist Martin Carthy). The archetypal singer/songwriter, Fearing's songs on this album reflect on topics such as loneliness ("Down the Wire"), love ("Give It Up"), and life on the road ("The Life"). He celebrates his "Canadianness" in the invigorating "The Longest Road" and dabbles in the blues with "Lonesome Whistle," popularized by Little Feat more than a decade earlier.


Born: 1962 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Cana

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Singer/songwriter Stephen Fearing was born in the mid-'60s in Vancouver, but spent most of his boyhood in Dublin, where he picked up the traces of Celtic folk that color his music. He returned to Canada in the mid-'80s, and began playing clubs and festivals in the area. Fearing self-released his debut album Stephen Fearing (The Yellow Tape) in 1986, and signed with Canadian label Aural Tradition for a second album, 1988's Out to Sea. The LP also appeared in the U.K. on Black Crow Records. Though...
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The Assassin's Apprentice, Stephen Fearing
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