Good things are happening this spring for 19-year-old Yarmouth County musician Jacques Surette, including his first CD release on June 12, in Petit de Grat, near the end of Isle Madame, followed by a release tour of the province. The album, Marche, Marche, Marche – features three English and seven French songs.
In April Surette was in New Orleans, performing at the annual Lafayette festival. In early May, Balade, a UNIS TV program, sent a film crew to the region to make a 25-minute documentary about him.
Locations included Surette’s Island, the Cape Forchu lighthouse and La Baie Sainte-Marie.
“They like to film the character of the area so I thought the Yarmouth lighthouse would be a good spot to do that,” said Surette. The documentary will air this fall.
Surette says his album cover song is about people searching for certain things.
“But all anybody really wants is to have a little bit of love at the end of the day,” he said.
Surette started playing guitar at the age of 12 and began writing songs at age 14. He won the Nova Scotia Stella Festival Award in 2017 (four prizes) and earned direct access to the Caraquet Gala Song Gala (Summer 2018).
Last year, he signed with Le Grenier Musique, owned by Carol Doucet, in Moncton.
He’s been featured on CBC’s L’amour du Country, a variety show hosted by Patrick Norman that features some of the “biggest names in country music from Quebec and the rest of Canada.”
Surette does a lot of his own writing; it’s something he enjoys doing.
“I’ve always liked to write, in school as well. I found it very liberating for my thoughts. It’s another form of expression. I found once I could collaborate music with stories it allowed me to express myself in a different way than I used to.”
His song Les Carino captures the wild escapades on Surette’s and Morris islands before law enforcement. Some of his fans refer to the music as hauntingly beautiful.
He says he wrote it quickly, in about 10 minutes, while in Moncton.
“Sometimes when you go away from a place it makes you think about different things… you get inspired,” he said.
He says he plans on releasing another album soon after this one, because there are many songs that he still hasn’t recorded. “
“I’m going to try and keep making as many albums as I can until I run out of songs.”
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