Near North Music

Stephen Fearing

Born in Vancouver and raised in Dublin, Stephen Fearing has been named one of Canada’s finest singer-songwriters. He cultivated a national – and international – audience for his music, building it ‘old school’ through countless performances at intimate venues, concert halls, and festivals of all sizes, including major events like the Reading Festival, Shrewsbury Folk Festival, and WOMAD.

His music is a mesmerizing blend of folk, roots, and pop and he has released nine albums as a solo artist, with special guests including: Bruce Cockburn, Margo Timmons, Richard Thompson, Shawn Colvin, Sarah McLachlan, and Rose Cousins. A beguiling teller of tales and master guitarist, Fearing is an alluring entertainer – heartbreaking, expansive, and full of mirth – with a clear, honourable voice that lifts you out into his wide world and “brings you back home to yourself.”

In 1996 he co-founded the Canadian super-group Blackie and The Rodeo Kings with Colin Linden and Tom Wilson. After 20 years together and nine albums to their credit, the band has become one of the most respected names in North American roots-rock-Americana music. While it’s hard to imagine he has much free time, Fearing also released two albums and toured as one half of the duo Fearing & White, with fellow Irish son Andy White.

Fearing’s abiding love for his craft and ability to delight audiences are reflected in multiple JUNO and Canadian Folk Music awards and an ever-expanding touring circuit throughout Canada, the UK, and Europe. Like the guests on his albums, the many awards and nominations that have come his way over the years speak to the respect he has earned among his peers, presenters, and critics.  With a life of many relocations and years of touring and performing, Fearing is a gifted storyteller and true musical nomad with the ability to captivate audiences of all sizes and attitudes. “Getting on stage is the fun part, especially when the adrenaline kicks in,” he says, with a broad smile. “People want to relax and be taken on a journey. I sketch out my shows so they deliver on that.”


He also shares his knowledge and experience with fellow musicians through songwriting workshops (often scheduled in conjunction with concert and festival appearances). “The classes dovetail nicely with performing,” he said. “My students are from all walks of life and I enjoy helping to coax them out of their comfort zones to create songs they might not have otherwise developed.”

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