Suzanne de Bussac is back with her new single “Breathe” the second single from the forthcoming EP Water scheduled for release in Fall 2023. Water is the first of four EPs on the horizon, (Vinegar, Wine, and Blood,) building into an album titled Liquids.
The content of the song speaks to de Bussac’s family crisis survival, her own mental health challenges, and her advocacy for music, movement, and time in nature to help soothe mental anguish and re-ground our spirits. Breathe was written by de Bussac while running trails in Calgary’s Bowmont Park during a long and severe health crisis in her family. “Running trails by the river was the only way I could release my anxiety…. just breathing, feeling my feet pounding on the earth, and moving my body with the trees and water…it was medicine” she states. Shinrin Yoku (a recurring lyrical theme in the track) is a Japanese practice meaning Forest Bathing… an exploration and practice of mindful movement forests and the physiological benefits in bolstering our immune systems with healing compounds from the trees.
The music is a moody and brooding aural journey with a heady trip hop groove and wistful tones invoking a sense of darkness and need for relief. The bridge’s whimsical shift to parallel key in the bridge provides a sense of hope and resolve, representing the moment of “runners high”, which de Bussac exudes, “kept me from going completely insane during very lonely and difficult times…once you get to that place it provides such relief…everything seems possible if but for a fleeting moment!” she adds.
Produced by long-time musical compadre Dean Drouillard, the recording was created long distance during the lockdown. Suzanne’s piano & vocal tracks were recorded by Scott Arnold at the Asylum for Art in Calgary, then sent to band mates in Toronto to add their parts in their own studios individually. “While I’ve not previously recorded without everybody physically together, the project provided a great sense of connection during an otherwise lonely and isolating time” de Bussac states, adding that “Between my long friendships with Scott (Asylum for Art) & Michelle Baker here in Calgary, and the bond between the bandmates in Toronto, I feel we were able to create something musically almost on a deeper level due to the connections between the musicians and perhaps due to the most bizarre situation of pandemic isolation”. Musicians are Kurt Swinghammer (Guitar), Don Kerr (Drums), Kevin LaCroix (Bass), Dean Drouillard (Synth/Guitar) Michelle Baker (backing vocals), Suzanne de Bussac (Piano/Vocal).
Suzanne de Bussac is a committed believer in Kahlil Gibran’s contention that “work is love made visible.” And she’s been loving the work of making music ever since she can remember. Launching herself over the years on a many-sided exploration of the meanings and the magnitude of music, Suzanne has made melodies and lyrics both her inner domain and her public platform. Tireless in her creative drive, she’s evolved from her early days of growth and learning with the Royal Conservatory of Music to a stint as a music industry executive to a producer/programmer for her own communications company Tranzister Productions. And throughout it all she’s often been found crooning and cresting on the stages of various club circuits, kicking off the national release of her debut album The Valley of Baca (2000), and a building a collection of bright, shiny tunes full of progressive hooks, catchy rhythms, clean-burning musical energy, and a flair for the tuneful and the trenchant. Her second album Shiver Stories (2018) earned a nomination for the Polaris Music Prize, a place in Alberta Music’s Merchandise tent on the festival circuit, and entry into the finals for the Ship & Anchor Songwriting contest.
Suzanne’s music and live performances have turned heads and sharpened ears with its cascading, wonderstruck style and unshakable intensity. “Anyone who can appreciate the fine art of songwriting accompanied by fleeting moments of Kate Bush brilliance should become intimate with Suzanne de Bussac,” exclaimed Exclaim! magazine. while Collected Sounds recognized her as “a very evocative singer...de Bussac’s talent as a songwriter (is) evident.” It’s all exemplified her longstanding credo that music is a direct connection to the “world between the worlds”.