John K. Samson

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John K. Samson
Weakerthans guy, by tao zhyn.jpg
Background information
Birth name John Kristjan Samson
Origin Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Genres Folk punk, indie rock, post-punk, hardcore punk
Occupations Musician, songwriter
Instruments Vocals, guitar, bass
Years active 1980s–present
Labels Epitaph, ANTI-
Associated acts The Weakerthans, Propagandhi

John Kristjan Samson is a musician from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. He is a singer-songwriter and currently the frontman of the Canadian indie folk/rock band The Weakerthans. He also played bass in the punk band Propagandhi during the mid-1990s.

Samson is married to Canadian singer-songwriter Christine Fellows.[1] He is an adjunct professor with the Creative Writing Program at the University of British Columbia.

Music[edit]

In 1993, while still a member of Propagandhi, Samson released a fifteen-track solo album on cassette tape, entitled Slips and Tangles. In 1995, six of these songs were featured on a split album shared with the now-defunct punk band Painted Thin. Following the critical success of The Weakerthans, Samson's side of the split was re-released online by G7 Welcoming Committee as a digital EP in 2006.

In 1995, also while still in Propagandhi, Samson released the song "Letter of Resignation" on a split with F.Y.P. Although credited to Propagandhi, Samson was the only band member to appear on the song. He later rerecorded "Letter of Resignation" on The Weakerthans' debut album, Fallow.

Samson performing with the Weakerthans in Montreal, 2004

In 2006, he and his wife Christine Fellows recorded The Old House, an album intended as a Christmas gift for friends and family. They eventually released two songs, "Taps Reversed" and "Good Salvage", for airplay on CBC Radio 3 in 2007. Fellows and Samson also performed live on the network on March 17, 2007, to mark the final night of the network's terrestrial simulcast on CBC Radio 2. Both Samson and Fellows also participated in writing and performing music for Clive Holden's multimedia project Trains of Winnipeg.

In 2008, Samson collaborated with electronic musician Blunderspublik and Inuit throat singer Nikki Komaksiutiksak on the song "Keewatin Arctic", as part of the collaborative music project Record of the Week Club.[2]

Shortly afterward, Samson announced his first solo project since 1995's Little Pictures: a series of 7" releases about Manitoba roads, which he plans to release over the next 18 months. The first, City Route 85, was released on November 3, 2009 through Epitaph and ANTI-.[3] In August 2010, Samson announced his next EP, Provincial Road 222, to be released on September 21.[4] In December 2010, the Weakerthans performed four concerts in Winnipeg, one for each of their albums. In their final concert at the Burton Cummings Theatre, they performed all four of their albums in one night.

In 2011, Samson, Fellows and Sandro Perri participated in the National Parks Project, working with filmmaker Daniel Cockburn to produce and score a short film about Ontario's Bruce Peninsula National Park.[5]

On November 29, 2011, Anti- Records announced that Samson would be releasing his 'first full length solo album', Provincial, on January 24, 2012.[6]

Other activities[edit]

Samson is also a founding member of Arbeiter Ring Publishing, a publishing collective. In 2012 he published his Lyrics and Poems, 1997-2012 with the press.

In 2006, Samson championed Miriam Toews' novel A Complicated Kindness in the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's annual Canada Reads, and the novel went on to win the competition. In the 2007 edition of Canada Reads—an "all-star" competition pitting the five winning advocates from previous years against each other—Samson returned to champion Heather O'Neill's novel Lullabies for Little Criminals, which also won the competition.

In 2008 and 2009, Samson spent several weeks working at the CBC's Winnipeg studios as part of the production team for the CBC Radio 2 program The Signal.[7]

Samson was a writer in residence at the University of Manitoba in 2013.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

EPs[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Song Peak chart positions Album
CAN
Alt

[8][9]
2012 "Cruise Night" 36 Provincial
"When I Write My Master's Thesis" 29
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

References[edit]

External links[edit]