Melissa Ferrick has played nearly a dozen gigs in Vancouver. She always flies into Seattle first, then climbs into a rental car to relish the scenic, solitary drive north.
When she arrives here this month to play at the WISE Hall in support of her latest CD, The Truth Is, she’ll be a little less solitary, with a full band, a stable teaching job and a healthy new relationship in tow.
“There’s something to be said for being seen and allowing people to know you. And being a travelling musician is a really good way to not let anybody know you,” she says. “It’s been great to have a group of people around me. I’ve been touring alone for so long, this is a breath of fresh air for me.”
The Truth Is chronicles the devastating end of Ferrick’s last relationship, the discovery of hope and renewal, and the joy of unearthing love again. After many years of releasing music under her own label, she produced this album under MPress Records and collaborated with musician friends who had fallen by the wayside during her former relationship.
While the singer-songwriter has been lumped into the category of folk or alt-rock in the past, she says she’s finally settled into her true style, which she describes as Americana.
The new songs reflect her newfound stability in her personal and professional life, too. No longer a transient performer, Ferrick mentors young artists as a professor in the songwriting department at Boston’s Berklee College of Music and is enjoying the rewards of a new relationship with a composed, self-sufficient woman.
“Now that I have some community at Berklee, I’m noticing how much my body and soul have been depleted of that,” Ferrick says. “I’m laughing a lot and smiling a lot these days. I feel really connected to the work I’m doing and how I’m living my life, and I think my long-time fans will be happy to see that.”
Ferrick is looking forward to playing for her Vancouver audience. “It’s a relief to have so many people be so considerate, polite, responsive and respectful of your music,” she says. “It really feels like a night out for the community. People get dressed up; they’re psyched to be there. They’re just out to have a great evening, and it makes me really happy that I can be a catalyst for that.”