Songwriter | Multi-Instrumentalist

Born in Harrow, Ontario and based in Kingston, Derek Harrison writes contemporary folk music that pulls from many traditions but retains a distinctly Canadian outlook. His latest album Blossington, recorded in the Bloor/Ossington neighbourhood of Toronto with members of The Old Salts and The Barrel Boys, showcases his lyrical songwriting and fingerstyle acoustic guitar.

"Blossington is, not unexpectedly, an album about places—especially all the ones Harrison has left behind... It was a summer at the corner of Bloor and Ossington that shaped how Blossington came out. Some of that heat can be felt through Harrison’s storytelling and fingerpicking as he charts what brought him to that corner, and hints at what led him away." 
- Grayowl Point


Four Walls 

"Four Walls", the first song released from my new album And a Roof, is streaming now on all the things.

It was inspired by the neighbourhood in west Windsor just below the Ambassador Bridge, where almost a hundred homes were bought, vacated and boarded up a decade ago to make way for a new bridge. Since Moroun, the billionaire owner of the bridge, didn't yet have permission to build the new one, the city refused to hand out demolition permits in a bid to save the neighbourhood. They also required the owner to maintain the houses, but this was ignored and they fell into disrepair, sealing their fate (intentionally I'm sure). Eventually the federal government ordered the houses demolished and they came down in 2017 at this time of the year. 

Elements of the song have been kicking around for years, but the impetus for the final version was a picture in the news about two years ago of a group of people watching the first house come down and I wondered about the people who used to live there. I walked by these houses almost every day when I was in university and it seemed to me that, inevitable or not, it's always a little bit sad when a house comes down. 

So I wrote a song about it, and The Old Salts helped me whip it into shape. 

  • Erika Christou on bass 
  • James Da Mota on acoustic guitar 
  • Jef Harrison on drums 
  • Devin Staple on electric guitar 
  • Tish Gaudio and James on bgvs 
  • I'm playing mandolin and singing. 


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