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MP3 Dawud Wharnsby & Bill Kocher - Vacuous Waxing

"Vacuous Waxing" promises to go beyond simply expressing parallel threads of faith and experience, to address the human condition as a deeply-woven fabric, a holistic journey.

10 MP3 Songs
FOLK: Modern Folk, WORLD: World Fusion


The collaborative effort of singer/songwriter Dawud Wharnsby and writer/guitarist Bill Kocher, celebrates a joining of faith, culture and musical style. It is a statement of hope in the midst of today''s increasing social and political tension.

Wharnsby and Kocher (friends since their teens) reconnected musically in 2001, in a simple effort to reflect artistically on their unique lifestyles and independent growth as writers and artists.

The material featured on their debut joint recording "Vacuous Waxing" intimately hits several issues of social concern: Struggle for identity, family violence, religious hypocrisy and conflict resolution.

Recruiting a diverse team of session musicians and featured guests, Wharnsby and Kocher''s collaborative project unites prominent artists with varying musical passions (Jazz, R&B, Folk, World-Beat, Classical and Pop), spiritual foundations (Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Atheist, seeker) and cultural backgrounds.

Among the CD''s featured artists are, British double bass legend Danny Thompson (PENTANGLE, NICK DRAKE, DONOVAN, RICHARD THOMPSON, ERIC CLAPTON, LOREENA McKENNITT), Canadian folk musician and Juno nominee Stephen Fearing (BLACKIE & THE RODEO KINGS, SARAH McLACHLAN), world renowned sitar master Irshad Khan, up and coming R&B vocalist Priyesh Shukla (ANXIOUS BLUE), and top Canadian oboist James Mason. The recording has been produced by Canadian arranger, composer and artist Trevor Yuile.


A third generation Canadian with Scottish and British roots, Dawud Wharnsby''s recordings and reputation have established him as an institution in the realm of a growing international market of English language Nasheed (spiritual songs of a world-beat/folk style). In true folk-song tradition, his writings have taken on a life of their own - with his CD''s (including "A Whisper of Peace" , "Sing, Children of The World" and "The Prophet''s Hands") spreading far beyond official marketing territories by way of a bootleg industry which circulats his recordings unofficially and uncontrollably throughout the world.

Wharnsby - a traveler, writer, actor, troubadour and multi-instrumentalist - emerged onto the North American folk music scene in 1991. His debut solo recording "Blue Walls and The Big Sky" (1995), firmly established his skills not only as a crafty lyricist, but also as a powerful vocalist, capable of drawing listeners into his world like a vibrant stage actor, or an intimate storyteller. His newest CD, "Vacuous Waxing" (a joint effort with co-writer Bill Kocher) brings together a unique mix of featured artists and presents an obvious maturing of Wharnsby''s lyrical expression.


A native of Southern Ontario, Bill Kocher began writing music in his mid teens, building an impressive collection of demo recordings pieced together in his tiny bed-sit with crude but creative multi-tracking methods. Teaming up with long time friend Dawud Wharnsby, the two young musicians began aping the writing styles of artists they had grown up hearing on their parent''s vintage LPs of the 50''s and 60''s, (The Kingston Trio, Bob Dylan, Hank Williams and Simon & Garfunkle). In typical folk song tradition, their early collaborative compositions were whimsical musings and, as members of various folk and rock bands, the two writers wrote prolifically together throughout their late teens and early twenties.

A self taught musician (guitar and bass), Kocher has always remained unconcerned, and unbound by rules and standards for musical composition. Playing by ear, his songs (though sometimes built upon basic chord progressions) hold lyrics that touch the emotions, and sometimes also the funny bones of listeners. A comedic gem like "Beautiful Bathroom" , (Kocher''s most memorable composition from his time with the folk duo The Climba Trio) is based on text from a magazine ad for a bathroom and spa renovation company, while the sensitive simplicity and warm sincerity in "Follow" (featured on the CD "Vacuous Waxing") is proof that Kocher takes composition very seriously. Kocher''s writings often capture his child-like observations of the world, reflecting his acute social consciousness and articulating the innate human desire for simplicity, love and acceptance. His sometimes satirical lyrics speak out on behalf of the working class ("Blue Collar Life"), the socially insecure ("Love Strong"), or the ill treated ("Argus Array").


"...Featuring a diverse mix of star talent, including Irish-Canadian folk icon Stephen Fearing, sitarist Irshad Khan, British bassist Danny Thompson (formerly of Pentangle), and K-W Symphony principal oboist James Mason, the new CD promises to go beyond simply expressing parallel threads of faith and experience, to address the human condition as a deeply-woven fabric, a holistic journey..."

Pauline Finch
The Waterloo Chronicle

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