words and music
from the north woods
Leslie Alexander grew up on an Alberta sheep farm and couldn't wait to hit the road, make a bunch of mistakes and write about them. She wound up singing on a Vancouver street corner for spare change and does not consider this a mistake.
She quit her first "real job" as Editor for Vancouver's Personal Success Magazine, taking her songs from coffeehouses to concert halls and folk clubs to festivals. From Victoria to St. John, San Francisco to New York City, she toured with her own band, Barney Bentall's Grand Cariboo Express and Jenny Allen, also opening for and appearing with the likes of Jane Siberry, Corb Lund, Mary Gauthier, and Harry Manx. Along the way, she created four acclaimed collections of original recordings with the multiple award-winning producer John Macarthur Ellis. Her songs were selected for compilations including such artists as Bruce Springsteen, Randy Bachman, the Barenaked Ladies, and the Odds. Meanwhile, she became a regular contributor of features and reviews for Roots Music Canada, BC Musician, Words and Music and Vancouver Parent Magazine.
Her music has been compared to Bob Dylan, Lucinda Williams, Rosanne Cash, Kathleen Edwards and Ray LaMontagne. It has been licensed to television shows DaVinci's Inquest and Roadtrip Nation, as well as the National Film Board of Canada. Artists including Taylor James, Angela Harris, Shane Chisholm, and many more have covered Leslie's songs on their own releases. Three tracks from her records Garden in the Stones and Nobody's Baby received honourable mentions in Billboard's World Song Contest.
She returned to her home town of High River, Alberta, just in time for the great flood of 2013. Her single and career retrospective compilation "High River Strong," produced by Leeroy Stagger, raised funds and spirits across Alberta, and prompted a career change from touring musician to her second "real job" as a nurse. She went to work in mental health and kept her chops up with her classic rock cover band "Four Wheel Drive," appearing for community and fundraising events.
Today Leslie's "real job" is writing and learning in a heritage hunting camp in Northern New Brunswick, playing her music mostly on the back porch with friends. Her current work in creative non-fiction has appeared in literary magazines including Queen's Quarterly, the Humber Literary Review, Open Minds Quarterly and Existere.
Check out her take on the Canadian music scene at Roots Music Canada. Follow her on Quora and subscribe to her blog to receive news, stories, and free downloads.
Humber Literary Review / Booty Call
Queens Quarterly / My Moccasins
You Might Need To Hear This / Bird in the House
Roots Music Canada /Love and Art at the Edge of Apocalypse
Calgary Herald / Bill Kaufman: High River Fights COVID 19 Outbreak
Roots Music Canada / New Country vs. True Country at Nashville Americanafest
Roots Music Canada / How I Lost the Muse, Quit the Biz and Found Myself
Roots Music Canada / Leslie Alexander's Top Musical Moments 2019
Stephen Fearing: Conquering the Unconquerable
Roots Music Canada / Emily Triggs: Middletown
Earshot / Jim Dupuis:Nobody's Baby Review
The Province / Nobody's Baby Review
Babysue / Nobody's Baby Review
Calgary Herald / Licia Corbella: Singer Inspired by Flood Response
CBC Key of A / High River Strong
BC Musician Magazine / Flood of Inspiration
BC Musician Magazine /A Bird in the House
Earshot / Jim Dupuis: The Word's The Thing
YouTube / Grand Cariboo Opry Live at the Ashcroft Opera House
Okotoks Today / Duo Will Air Their Dirty Laundry
Bow Valley Music Club / Memphis Folk Alliance Showcase
Kamloops This Week / The Music is In The Words
LA Beat / Jenny Allen & Leslie Alexander Bring New Music to Lethbridge