Editor’s Note – Issue 9: Kinship

By: Tabassum Siddiqui | Art by: Galen Milne-Hines

“Kinship” is the theme of this issue—and something that’s at the heart of New Feeling. As a collective, New Feeling is committed to building a supportive platform where music writers and the wider music community can feel at home, learn from one another, and uplift each other.

Those values permeate Issue 9, in which our writers explore what kinship means in the context of some of the music being made across the country today.

Each issue, we bring together multiple writers to give us their take on some intriguing new songs. Having a mutual starting point for our Group Chat reviews draws on the idea that kinship is about a sharing of characteristics or origins, but also offers up each writer’s distinct perspective—which, if you think about it, is akin to any thoughtful collective experience.

In this issue’s edition of Group Chat, you’ll read Leslie Ken Chu, Jordan Currie, Jesse Locke, and Laura Stanley’s musings on Vancouver-based composer, improviser, vocalist, and violinist Wallgrin’s latest composition and the new track by Hamilton-bred, Toronto-based singer, rapper, and producer Quinton Barnes.

This issue’s two features delve deep into the concept of community—Winnipeg writer Cierra Bettens interviews B.C.-based Indigenous singer-songwriter Francis Baptiste about drawing on his roots for his new album of songs in both English and nsyilxcən, the language of the Syilx people.

And Toronto writer and photographer Tom Beedham takes us into the heart of the Lawnya Vawnya festival in St. John’s, which spotlights new independent music over several days and invites its audience to engage with music and art in an inclusive and innovative way. Tom’s overview of his time there reminds us what a festival can be: a place of creative kinship rather than a corporate cash grab.

In keeping with our commitment to being a communal space where communication and transparency is key, we also want to acknowledge that Issue 9 is coming to you later than we’d hoped—in part due to the ongoing challenges with COVID and the summertime schedules of many of our contributors. That means that work on Issue 10 will be affected, pushing that edition back as well.

We know our readers and paying members expect New Feeling to publish in a timely fashion, so we hope to be back on schedule with Issue 11, and thank you in advance for your patience as we continue to work towards publishing unique, inclusive coverage of the Canadian music scene you won’t find elsewhere.

A reminder that you can join New Feeling’s cooperative as a member—when you subscribe, you become a co-owner and help to equitably pay our talented contributors across the country and shape the organization’s direction.

And as Public Editor, I’m always open to your feedback and ideas around how we can continue to grow and foster kinship—you can reach me at nfpubliceditor@gmail.com or follow us on Twitter and Instagram @newfeelingcoop (keep an eye out for a Twitter takeover from me in August where we’ll be looking to hear more from our readers and members about how the Public Editor can best serve their needs and interests).

As Francis Baptiste puts it in this issue, “I guess when I hear that word [kinship], I think of family. Not just your literal biological family, but the family you create around you.” Thanks as always for being part of the New Feeling family—bringing together people through music, one issue at a time.