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Scott Smith has helped make a lot of other people sound great over the years. From the heartland roots-rock of Barney Bentall and the arena-sized country of Aaron Pritchett to a slew of insurgent Vancouver club champs like Rich Hope, Speeding West, and Marin Patenaude, Smith has been everybody’s ringer, flipping between guitar and pedal steel while casually raising the bar with lightning technique and unfailing good taste. With his band Just A Season, Scott Smith switches from sideman to frontman, enlisting some of his favourite players to put the right groove on a collection of songs that recall an era when folk, rock, and country met in a sun-baked embrace.

Produced by Erik Nielsen, Just A Season’s third album Leave To Come Home continues the contemporary Americana vibe of the first two records but adds some new elements to the bands’ sound. Smith and second guitarist John Sponarski bring Allman Brothers style twin guitar hooks to “She’s The One” and the gorgeous “You’re Gonna Be Okay”. Drummer Liam Macdonald adds vibraphone to the English folk of the title track and the spacey instrumental “Stars Burn Out”. Harmony singer Ashley Grant is featured throughout the album, especially shining on the Bobby Charles groove of “That Sunday Sound”. In addition to the rock-solid bass playing of Brad Ferguson and Erik Nielsen, the sonic star of the show might be multi-instrumentalist Matt Kelly (City and Colour) whose pedal steel, Wurlitzer and organ recall the brilliance of Wilco’s Jay Bennett and The Band’s Garth Hudson. And though Smith’s main roles in Just A Season are that of lead singer and songwriter, his slide guitar, harmonica, acoustic fingerpicking, banjo and pedal steel are all key elements to the Just A Season sound as well.

Lyrically Just A Season’s third record is primarily an album about hope. Whether it’s about helping a friend chase their dreams in “Queen of the Underground”, overcoming addiction in “I Will Fight, I Will Fight and I Will Win”, or affirming that better times are ahead in “You’re Gonna Be Okay”, Leave To Come Home is an album that sees the light at the end of the tunnel. And while Smith sings in one song that he’s “never too far from the blues”, the title track speaks of how the difficult moments in life make the good times that much sweeter, with the last verse encouraging everyone to make the most of their short time here. “Strike a chord on your guitar/Add your voice to the choir/Don’t let them make you turn down/Don’t let them put out your fire”.


  1. You’re Gonna Be Okay 4:55

  2. Leave To Come Home 4:36

  3. Queen of the Underground. 4:07

  4. I Will Fight, I Will Fight and I Will Win. 4:23

  5. Saw You Yesterday 3:58

  6. She’s The One 4:43

  7. That Sunday Sound 3:36

  8. Never Too Far From the Blues 3:41

  9. Will You Stay? 3:59

  10. Stars Burn Out 3:24

  11. Anything You Want 4:46

Preview/Purchase Leave To Come Home here


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