Nancy White (singer-songwriter)

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Nancy White is a Canadian singer-songwriter, whose topical songs were a regular feature on CBC Radio from 1976 to 1994 on the public affairs show Sunday Morning. White's most famous songs include Leonard Cohen's Never Gonna Bring My Groceries In, Stickers on Fruit, Piping them Home, Jesus at Tim's, Moose on the Highway, River Mend My Heart, Love in Wartime, Daughters of Feminists, No More Multitasking, Un Peu Cochon, and Someone Handed Me the Moon.


She is one of the writers (with Bob Johnston and Jeff Hochhauser) of the musical Anne & Gilbert, based on the Lucy Maud Montgomery books Anne of Avonlea and Anne of the Island. The show premiered at the Victoria Playhouse in Victoria, Prince Edward Island in the summer 2005, and has been produced at the Jubilee Theatre in Summerside for three summers, and in Gananoque, Ontario at the Thousand Islands Playhouse in 2007. In 2008, the Playhouse again produced the show, but at The Grand in Kingston, then toured it around Ontario. It has had amateur productions in Lethbridge, Alberta, Ottawa, Gretna, Manitoba, and Palmerston,Ontario. Anne and Gilbert returns to Summerside for the 2009 summer season.

She has done some translating from Spanish to English - notably Gracias a la Vida and Volver a los 17, by the Chilean composer Violeta Parra, and sang occasionally with the Toronto Latin-Greek band Compañeros in the late 1970s.

Probably her most loved CD is Momnipotent:Songs for Weary Parents, a collection of songs about the challenges of motherhood - produced in 1990 after the birth of her second child. This CD, though mainly a comedy album, has proven to be therapeutic, and is still a popular gift for new mothers.

Nancy White has played at countless folk festivals across Canada and did a series of symphony pops concerts in the 1980s. Stephen Pedersen of the Halifax Mail Star once described her live show as "a carnival ride through life's little perversities". She toured with Roger James and Wendell Ferguson as "The Three-Headed Trio", and occasionally sings with James in "Peculiar Behaviours". She considers herself more a cabaret singer than a folk singer (although she's really both, and plays banjo and guitar), and has worked in shows like Hey Seester, You Want My Sailor with Gay Claitman, and It's a Guy Thing with Erika Ritter and Linda Griffiths. Her one-woman show The Last Virgin on the Planet, at the Blue Angel in Toronto, was widely praised.

Since the mid-80s she has performed mainly as a duo with the witty piano player Bob Johnston, who has co-written several other Broadway shows as well as Anne and Gilbert.

She was formerly married to the composer and keyboardist Doug Wilde. Their daughters, Suzy and Maddy Wilde, are also singers, Suzy in the glamfolk band StoneFox, and in Flashlight Radio (with Ben Whitely) and Maddy in the indie rock band Spiral Beach.

White was born in PEI, educated in Halifax, and lived in Toronto. She has a BA in English from Dalhousie University.



  • Civil Service Songwriter
  • Sort of Political
  • What Should I Wear to the Revolution (1982)
  • Unexpected (1983)
  • The Sunday Morning Tapes (1984)
  • Unimpeachable (1987)
  • Bimbolandia (1988)
  • Momnipotent: Songs for Weary Parents (1990, Mouton)
  • Pumping Irony (1993, CBC/Mouton)
  • Homely for the Holidays (1994)
  • Songs of the Spanish Civil War (1994)
  • Gaelic Envy and Other Torch Songs (1998, Borealis)
  • Unexpected (CD re-release 2001, Borealis)
  • Stickers on Fruit (2002, Borealis)


  • Canoesongs, Volume One
  • Canoesongs, Volume Two
  • The World's Greatest Hockey Hits, Volume One


  • Topical Punch: Saucy Songs by Nancy White (Toronto 1986)

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