steve dawson

Dawson has been a straight fingerpicker since age 20. He dropped the flatpick after taking lessons with Bob Stanton at Berklee College of Music.

Photo by Alice Dawson

The Canadian fingerpicker jumped into the deep end of Nashville’s guitar pool, where he’s thriving as a solo artist, sideman, and producer.

Listening to the slinky, undulating moan of the tremoloed slide guitar that kicks off “Loose Ends," the opening track of Steve Dawson's new full-length Solid States and Loose Ends, might conjure images of a dragonfly hovering low over a steamy Mississippi Delta swamp, or maybe a gator lazily skimming the surface of some remote Louisiana bayou. And you might find yourself thinking, surely Dawson grew up somewhere in the South.

And you'd be right—if, by “South," you mean the south of Canada. Dawson was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia, which remained his hometown until he and his wife moved to Nashville three years ago. But like some other notable Canadian-bred musicians before him—the Band and Daniel Lanois come to mind—Dawson has always been drawn to musical styles rooted in the South, whether blues, country, soul, or gospel.

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