Joel Plaskett indirectly made a long-term investment to receive at least some Best of Music votes when he wrote “Love This Town,” a song about his love for his hometown Halifax.
“It used to be the question, ‘Do you know Sloan?’” Plaskett says from PEI where he’s doing pre-production for Two Hours Traffic’s new record. “But the scene has changed since those days and now it’s the place that people know, not the sound. And that’s good.”
Highlights for the troubadour in 2005 include the release of the lower-key La De Da, a tour with Kathleen Edwards in the US, a bassist change with the departure of Ian McGettigan and arrival of Museum Piece Chris Pennell, and a year-ending show that everyone is still talking about.
“Two thousand five was a great year, but pretty intense,” Plaskett says. “I was getting a bit burnt out. But then New Year’s”—at the Marquee, which featured a Thrush Hermit reunion—“was an amazing show. Then I had a little time off and now I feel a bit energized.”
Next up for Plaskett are a few west coast dates, another tour with Edwards, appearances at the ECMAs and Canadian Music Week, then a tour of Australia. Catch him in the whirlwind with the new Emergency line-up at the Pavilion on February 17. “I still feel like I’m in a city big enough to do what I do but it’s like Cheers, everyone knows your name,” he says. “I’m flattered to live here and I try not to take advantage of it.”
Runners-up: Jon Epworth, Matt Mays