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Debut album from B. Knox 'all about finding new ways to reach an audience'

Barrie musician recently released Heartbreak & Landscape and is already looking forward to getting into the studio again

B. Knox was originally a school teacher who wrote songs just for himself, but at the prodding of loved ones he is now celebrating the release of his debut album.

“I was just thinking about making some songs for me and putting a CD together for family and friends,” Knox told BarrieToday. “Everyone kept telling me I should go further with it and pushing me to put it out for more people.”

His style is called Americana, a blend of roots rock, blues and country. His new album, Heartbreak & Landscape, was released April 24 and features 12 songs dealing with regret, loss, heartbreak and choices.

“The thing is with heartbreak, that doesn’t have to be because of a break-up or death. Moving to a new town and leaving your old one, that can be a heartbreak," he said. "I like to use the imagery of the landscape around me a lot, so that contributes to my creativity.”

Knox was a school teacher but gave that up due to the complications and politics involved with the profession.

The 38-year-old got into music when he was 13, but took a long break, with the exception of some pub performances in university. 

After playing some gigs at Barrie’s Painters Hall, he started falling back in love with music and creating his own songs.

Playing between Barrie and Toronto, Knox has a tour planned before COVID-19 cancelled everyone’s plans.

“Everything stopped. We had to cancel any plans moving forward because we didn't have any idea when this would be over with,” said Knox. “It is definitely a situation that no one has ever had to deal with, but you make due with what you have.”

How Knox made due was by a suggestion from his management team. The idea was to release one song a week off the new album until the whole thing became public on April 24. 

“I wasn’t too big on the idea. I’m an album guy. I always looked forward to the day an album I wanted would hit stores and I felt that was the only way,” said Knox. “After two weeks in, I saw how well it was doing and started to get into it. It is all about finding new ways to reach an audience.”

That new way to reach his fans will continue for the foreseeable future as COVID-19 has no sign of stopping anytime soon. 

With live performances up in the air, Knox will hit the studio with the collection of songs he has set aside from days and weeks of working on them.

“Even when we can perform at establishments, who knows what that will look like and if owners will be able to pay live acts,” said Knox. “It will be a time for creativity for most artists and it also means I can get back into the studio, which I love to do.”

Knox also said he hopes the current trend being seen online continues and that people use music in a positive and connecting way.

“I'm originally from Newfoundland, the home of the kitchen party. It is great seeing family kitchen parties on social media and everyone having fun despite what we’re going through.”

You can follow B. Knox on Facebook and Instagram at @bknoxmusic.