Ken Tizzard

 
 

Who The Folk Is?

Ron Hynes - Man Of 1000 Songs and more...

Years back when Ron Hynes contacted me to come on tour with him, I was flattered and very excited.  I had known Ron socially for 30+years, but we were not exactly "friends.”  Once I began learning his catalogue of music, I was baffled at the complexity of his songwriting.  The tour consisted of just me and him on the stages of the Arts and Culture Centres across Newfoundland and Labrador.  I had to know his material inside out in order to follow along and be guided by his key changes, arrangement shifts and general mood.  

 

It was an amazing learning experience for me and one that I have no regrets looking back on.  During that tour and the tours which followed, I was writing the material for “No Dark No Light.”  Getting inside of Ron’s material and as well performing with him taught me so much about the craft of songwriting and performing.  I had come from 20+ years of touring with pretty big rock bands where volume, lights and crowd energy were key to the show.  Watching Ron walk on stage every night with just his guitar, songs and stories allowed me to look behind the curtain of the singer/songwriter.  

 

Ron’s comments to me on the songs I was working on, and his offside commentary on character/story development and structure of songs, leave me feeling blessed to have had time with such a master.  Personally I would call him a mentor, but I am certain that Ron did not see it that way.  He was just a buddy sharing some insights as we killed hours on the highways heading to more shows.  Getting to know him as a friend in the last years of his life was a seriously entertaining and enriching time.  

 

When I received the news of Ron’s passing I was pretty floored.  The death of a close friend who had become such a huge part of my life, combined with losing the wealth of learning that he provided, was a loss that I have never experienced before.

 

 

 

Over Christmas I spent a lot of time in my studio listening to Ron. I have some demos from the new record which I swore to him I would never share with anybody.  These songs of him in a room with one microphone are intimate and very personal.  His music soothed my sadness. During this time I spoke with Brian Finley (Westben Festival Theatre) and we chatted about me doing a show once again at Westben in the spring.  I suggested a Ron Hynes tribute of sorts and Brian loved the idea - and so HYNESIGHT was born.  Schedule for Friday, June 3rd I am still working daily on learning Ron’s songs.

 

Choosing the material was tough, but I have settled in on the songs and now commit my time to learning words, melodies, turns of phrase and strangely “Ron” styled guitar playing.  This is allowing me to grow once again as a writer and guitar player.  My hope is to get the material as close to the way that Ron would perform and then forget it all and perform these songs as I would, while still embodying the essence of my good friend. Once again I am blessed to be still learning from a great master even though he is no longer here.

 

Fingers are tired, voice is adapting, brain is full, grief is passing… Ron Hynes RIP…

 

 

 

 

 

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