• By: Keith Whittier

Singing Her Soul Out: Kristine St. Pierre’s Infectious Sound

From her light, delicate finger picking to the stomp of her feet, you can hear Kristine St. Pierre’s soul baring itself to the audience with every melody. Beneath her lyrics of heartache and self-discovery is an artist who has continued to develop her unique sound to become a celebrated local talent. Last year, St. Pierre performed in over 50 shows and most recently opened for Emm Gryner in Stratford. She’s also involved in both the Francophone and Anglophone communities where she’s collaborated with multiple Canadian artists. This month, St. Pierre is embarking on an even more impressive journey — a national tour by herself. “I’m extremely excited but quite nervous. I’ve been putting so much effort into this and I really hope it’s a success.”

Indeed, she has worked hard to get here. In 2010, she released her first EP, followed two years later by her first album, Call Me Crazy. For the past three years, she has continued her musical development as a member of the Ottawa band Old Whiskey Road, a country-alt group with a nostalgic sound.

In addition to her music ventures, she’s also completing a Masters of Journalism from Carleton University. After securing a grant from the International Development Research Centre, she traveled to the Congo to create a documentary on music in a conflict setting.

“I’m trying to do as many music things as possible. However, eventually, I’d also love to be writing articles and producing radio documentaries on music, peace and security, women’s rights and Francophone issues.” She added, “My experience in the Congo was incredible as I learned to tell stories but also how to include more colour into my writing, which also improves my songwriting.”

KristineStPierre3Music has been her primary focus and a constant throughout her life. As a child she performed in many musicals and was into acting, but never thought it could be a career path. Through university, St. Pierre took singing lessons as a hobby but it wasn’t until a tragic life-altering event happened that she decided to take her musical talent more seriously.

“My mom got very sick from breast cancer and it was around that time I started to do music more professionally,” she added. “She always wanted my brother and I to be musically inclined as she played a lot of piano herself. Before she passed away, I held a concert at the University of Ottawa to raise money in her honour. She got to see me play guitar for the first (and sadly, the last time) in a real concert venue. It was so special to me.”

Thanks to her coordination and dedication, the event raised over $1,200. Now, as St. Pierre continues her musical journey, she says she knows her mother is always with her.

“She’s a huge part of my music and always will be,” she said.