Born in Harrow, Ontario, Derek Harrison writes contemporary folk songs that pull from many traditions but retain a distinctly Canadian outlook. An accomplished multi-instrumentalist, his solo material showcases his lyrical songwriting and fingerstyle acoustic guitar. His latest album, Blossington (released December 15, 2017), is a bluegrass-tinged collection of original songs recorded in the Bloor/Ossington neighbourhood of Toronto.
Based at times in Montreal, Toronto, Melbourne and various border towns, he has toured throughout Canada, Europe and Australia as a member of Krief, The Custom Outfit, Madeleine Leman and others. In 2014 he released his debut solo album, Dead & Gone, recorded with a 5-piece band in Montreal, and supported it with a tour of Eastern Canada and a stint as Via Rail's Artist-On-Board.
Relocating to Toronto in late 2014, he began working as a mandolinist and songwriter for The Old Salts, a five-piece folk-rock band founded in 2012 in East Toronto and contributed songs to their sophomore album Fisherman Jake (released Steptember 2018). During this time, he created and produced two seasons of I Quit My Job: A Podcast About Songwriting, interviewing working Canadian songwriters on their careers and craft.
After a self-directed songwriting retreat in Northwest Ontario, Derek is currently producing his third solo album in Kingston.