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Tonight!!!!! at Dekcuf!!!!


SaggyBalls
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My friend Melissa Larkin just hopped onto MSN and told me to come out for her show with Nine Mile tonight at Dekcuf.

I know I want to make it out because downstairs my friend Denis is spinning some deep grooves...so it'll be an awesome night in that building. indeed.

I think you'll be impressed with this girl and the friends she's brought with her. She's seen a lot. Definitely a special woman. I met her when I was in London and she recorded a bit with me when times were rough.

If you can get out it'd be awesome to see you there.

Her music tells the story of us all. Using conscious, awe-inspiring lyrics combined with a unique guitar style and a sultry voice that stirs listeners to the core, Melissa Larkin embodies a shining light in the canon of singer/songwriters. Always a writer, Mel learned guitar late in life -- on her twentieth birthday -- and immediately began putting her poetry and stories to song. Encouraged to sing by Dylan Murray -- lead singer of the popular Toronto based reggae act -- Melissa began singing back up for him, and did so for 2 years. Her true passion, however, was writing her own music in which she incorporated observations from relationships and daily life, alongside realities learned through her studies at the University of western ontario; she completed an honours degree studying war, genocide, conspiracy theory, and politics, as well as english and visual art. Writing at an astounding rate, Mel had completed nearly 40 songs in her first two years of playing, all of which had been

shared only with

her bedroom walls.

In her last year of university, Melissa's talent for song became apparent when she volunteered to perform in an open stage -- a fundraiser for the campus production of the Vagina Monologues which she was performing in. The response to Larkin's music was overwhelming, and she soon began opening for many local and international acts -- from Kinnie Starr to Teitur -- at a local London bar. Slowly gaining the confidence she deserved, Melissa entered a university battle of the bands. Bravely ignoring the fact that she was the only female competitor, as well as the only solo act amongst nearly 40 hard rock acts, Melissa made it to the finals, winning one of the top prizes.

After graduating, Melissa took her guitar on a backpacking trip throughout Europe and Northern Africa -- a trip she considered a pilgrimage of music. Herself and her best friend Kim Chambers -- an up-and coming fashion designer who designs all of Melissa's merchandise -- busked throughout their travels for extra money -- Melissa singing, and Kim selling her handmade, re-worked vintage clothes. It was here that the universality of both music and Larkin's unforgettable voice was revealed. Whether playing impromptu concerts to mass audiences that gathered on the beach in France, or entertaining Berber villages in the mountains of Morocco, Melissa's music captivated audiences globally, despite language, despite race.

It was in Morocco, that Melissa's musical journey truly began. Before leaving for Europe, Melissa had followed her intimidating intuition, and sent a copy of a live recording to Jacob Tell, a web designer from Oniracom, the company who oversees popular singer/songwriter Jack Johnson's website. While in the Sahara desert, Melissa recieved an email from Jacob overwhelmed by her music, beckoning her back home to the Jack Johnson show in Toronto, Canada. Following her dream -- she went. Within 48 hours of leaving the Sahara, she was playing for Jack in person -- a dream come true. It was that night that Melissa met D'ari Pouyat and Dave Tolley of Canadian band Nine Mile, who Melissa gave a copy of her live recording to. Ecstatic at the honesty and purity of Melissa's music, D'ari offered to help the new artist in whatever way he could, and after recording the majority of her massive repetoire of songs simply on his laptop, she was invited to open up for them on their first stop on tour with Xavier Rudd -- folk's newest icon, the multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter phenom from Australia. After hearing her songs, Melissa was invited to join Xavier's 36 date tour accross the Northeastern United States, playing whenever the venue permitted it, and observing the workings of the music industry.

At 23, her raw talent is uncanny. Whether she is telling a story, firing off a rythmic spoken word piece, weaving through mesmorizing ballads, or rootsy, patois reggae medley's, Melissa's music echoes a place of honesty that resonates within each of her listeners. Her music tackles complex issues through metaphor and emotion, often shedding light on the core of the problem offering solutions on a holistic, not on a systemic level. She challenges listeners to engage in a more true, more righteous way of living. Her performance is a triple threat -- briliant lyrics, an unforgettable voice, and unrivaled melody accompanied by the sheer energy she omits while on stage, and in daily life -- leaving audiences feeling blessed, filled with exuberance, and eager to hear more.

Melissa will be recording her first album in January 2005 on Dreadrock records alongside friends Nine Mile.

Toronto's Nine Mile garnered attention across Canada in 2001, quickly becoming a favorite of campus radio shortly after the release of their debut album, Run. Building on the success of their first album, the band is gearing up to embark on the next phase of their journey. At recent industry showcases in New York, Boston and Toronto, audiences and industry alike were spellbound as Nine Mile delivered their impressive repertoire. Charismatic performances and playful musicality are hallmarks of every Nine Mile show; however, it is the strength of the songs themselves that is truly turning heads.

Nine Mile easily dissolves the lines that separate traditional genres by melding rock, funk, Caribbean, and folk influences into a high-energy groove-oriented performance best described as urban acoustic pop. Recently, the band has been compared to such legends as Paul Simon for their dedication to melody and musicianship and Ben Harper for their ability to transition folk, harder edge rock and funk smoothly. With a loyal following firmly ensconced in Canada, the band began gathering believers south of the border in early 2003 after only a handful of US shows.

With a pocketful of new songs, Nine Mile recently wrapped up production of a new full length album with Canadian producer Dave Draves. Draves has secured a grand reputation due to his recent involvement with Kathleen Edwards' album, "Failer". Edwards, like Nine Mile, recorded "Failer" independently in Canada with Draves, and was recently named one of Rolling Stone Magazine's 10 most promising new artists.

The production of the new Nine Mile album, entitled "Close To Touch" comes at a perfect time for the band. Having been out of the studio for almost 3 years, fans are eagerly awaiting a new release. Recent performances alongside major label recording artists such as Sarah Harmer and Cowboy Junkies have proved instrumental in the band's growing street buzz. In the next six months Nine Mile will be showcasing at several industry conferences (NEMO, CMW, SXSW), recording a Nationally Syndicated CBC radio feature, performing live on the hit CBC television late show "Play". Recently, the band released a 5-song acoustic EP, entitled "Glance", to hold fans over until production of the new album has been completed.

This October, Nine Mile embarked on a North American Tour with RCA Victor recording artist, Andy Stochansky. In 1991, Stochansky began a seven-year stint playing and recording with Ani DiFranco, the Barenaked Ladies, and the Indigo Girls among others. The recent North American dates proved instrumental in Nine Mile securing an opening slot with Australia's largest Independent touring act The Beautiful Girls.

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