Karen is thrilled to have one of her songs featured in this year's Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo. If her health co-operates, she will sing it. Either way, you will love it!

Learn the history of the Tattoo and the show's lineup at: https://nstattoo.ca/ 

Have you ever wondered where the name Tattoo came from? It's all on the website!

 

Karen's music videos have gained awards internationally, and she was a nominee in the ECMA's for Music Video Director of the Year.  Her videos are completely based on the song stories. Even the humourous ones are ‘art’, with visuals that explore aspects of the songs rather than  being features for promoting an artist.  If you haven’t already, go take a look below and see if you agree. 

Her latest album of original music, ‘The Flip Side: Well, what do we have here!’ was a nominee for 2023 Music Nova Scotia's Pop Album of the Year.The album is a  cornucopia of styles, from Blues to Dixieland to classic country. The songs are lighthearted, quirky, and the musicianship is outstanding.

Says Karen, “Given my amazing band - Larry Bjornson, Dave Staples, and David Burton, plus big contributions from Chris Mitchell, JP Cormier, Gina Burgess, Holly Arsenault and a host of other great artists, and  with Scott Ferguson handling the technical artistry, how could this music not be of interest even if it is unusual!  Maybe because it is unusual. I am pinching myself and sending thanks to my team.

When I think of the journey I have been on, I can't believe all of this is happening. In 1990 I was not expected to live. Recovery took all I had. Maybe someday I will say more about this multi-year journey, but for now I am just grateful and making the most of every precious minute.  Thank you to everyone who stood by me and brought me to this special time in my life.”

Sample the songs and purchase this or Karen's other albums on the ‘Music’ tab of this website. This website has a ‘Tip Jar’ if you feel you can contribute something to this artist.

Awards summary:

Music video ‘Ode to Gertie Ryan’ was awarded Best Comedy Short in the Hollywood International Golden Age Festival (December 2023) and was selected for viewing in London, England’s 2023 Discover Film Awards. (This annual festival, a red-carpet event, is one of the biggest short film festivals in the world with over 3,000 annual submissions from 100+ countries). It received First Prize in the Music Video category of the Women’s Freedom Song Contest 2023, was chosen Best Music Video in the Nashville Independent Filmmaker Festival (August 2023), and received the WRPN Women’s International Film Festival 2023 Exceptional Merit Award for Comedy. It won an Award of Recognition for both Animation and for Women Filmmakers in the December, 2023 Best Shorts Competition: ‘Celebrating and awarding short films, television and media worldwide’. It was a Finalist in the 2023 Paris International Short Festival, and Semi-Finalist in the San Francisco Arthouse Festival, (April 2023), the New York International Women Festival (June 2023), the Santa Monica International Filmmaker Awards (July 2023), and the Chicago Filmmaker Awards (Sept 2023). Gertie was also Selected for the seasonal Montreal Women Film Festival (November, 2023). (Ada Denil from the NS South Shore was the animator, and Karen's song was arranged by her band, Bjornson, Staples, Burton and Karen. ) 

Music video The Night the Lights Went Out, a tale of how ill-prepared we are for change in our world, received the Nature Without Borders International Film Festival Winter 2023 Exceptional Merit Award.

Music video, 'My Phone’ was an award winner screened in the Paris Shortfest Film Festival (Spring 2023), was selected for screening in the annual Parrsboro Film Festival, (September 2023). It was a Finalist in the 2023 Paris International Short Festival, and Semi-Finalist in the San Francisco Arthouse Festival, (April 2023), the New York International Women Festival (June 2023), the Vancouver Independent MovieMaker Awards (June 2023), the Chicago Filmmaker Awards (Sept 2023) and in the Hollywood International Golden Age Festival (December, 2023).

‘Tadpole Blues’  is a Quarterfinalist in the 2024 Edinburgh Film Awards. It was a Semi-Finalist in the San Francisco Arthouse Short Fest (July 2023), in the Berlin Shorts Awards (August, 2023), in the Austin International Art Festival (Sept 2023).

‘Delay is Not an Option’ received Award of Recognition for Editing, (awarded to Karen Robinson and Scott Ferguson) in the Best Shorts Competition: ‘Celebrating and awarding short films, television and media worldwide’, December 2023.

 

Songwriting awards:

 'The End of Time' from Karen's recent album 'When We're Together' won Best Jazz Song in the World Songwriting Awards, in spring, 2022.  

‘My Phone’, ‘Love’s A Moving Target’, and ‘Tadpole Blues’, three songs from Karen’s album ‘The Flip Side: Well, what do we have here!’ were semi-finalists in the International Songwriting Competition (ISC).  The ISC received more than 15,000 entries. Her nominated songs are listed alphabetically at: https://songwritingcompetition.com/winners 

The songs ‘Ode to Gertie Ryan’  and ‘The Night the Lights Went Out’   each received an Award of Merit for Original Song in the December, 2023 Best Shorts Competition: ‘Celebrating and awarding short films, television and media worldwide’

‘My Phone’  and ‘Delay is Not an Option’  each received an Award of Recognition for Original Song in the December 2023 Best Shorts Competition.

‘Cats and Crows’ was a Top-10 Finalist in the 27th USA Songwriting Competition Jazz category, 2022. 

‘A Song for Mississippi John Hurt’ was a Top-ten Finalist in the WSA spring 2021 Blues category 

‘Feather and Bone’ Top-ten Finalist for the WSA Summer 2021 Best Jazz Song 

‘Gamecock and His Hen’ Top-ten Finalist for the WSA Fall 2021 Best Jazz Song 

‘October 31st’ was a Semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition (ISC) children’s music category, 2021

Her jazz album, ‘Karen Robinson WITH’ , was a Music Nova Scotia nominee for Jazz Album of the Year, 2014. The Chronicle Herald’s Stephen Cooke said of the album, his Pick of the Week, “Karen Robinson With is like a love letter to the Maritime jazz scene with some of its finest players giving shape to her original songs about love, loss, and finding the strength to soar when fate tries to drag you down. …The range of expression is vast, the songs are rich and complex, and Robinson is direct and always present in the moment.”   

Several songs and videos from her jazz vocal album ‘When We’re Together' are included in the awards list above.

Karen says, "Imagine… all this film recognition was not even remotely on my bucket list. Writing, making, singing, creating…and now, video making, ARE all on my bucket list, ongoing.  I hope you enjoy the videos and songs!"

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 Click on the pictures below to enjoy the stand-alone music videos that are winning awards.  

Go to Karen's music page to purchase her music albums. 

Did you know that music creators receive only pennies, often nothing, when songs are streamed from online servers? Please consider using the MUSIC page on this website to purchase a song, a CD, or a CD download. Free downloadable CD artwork is also available on our Music page.   

There is also a ‘Tip Jar’ if you feel you can contribute something to this artist.

Your funds will go quickly and safely to Karen to help her continue to make these musical offerings.  Physical CDs will be mailed within 3 days and downloads are available immediately.

 

You'll notice in 'Tadpole Blues' that Lily, of "Lily and the Pads" is a bit of a DIVA. She even elbows me out of the way!   Musicians are Larry Bjornson, David Burton, Dave Staples, and Chris Mitchel, and playing for the "Pad's" guitarist is JP Cormier in hiding.

Thanks to Scott Ferguson's editing skills I got to play all the Pads' parts. Was that fun!!?

About the video, Ode to Gertie Ryan"I wrote the song for a concert for a woman blacksmith’s convention on International Women’s Day a few years ago. I wanted a song that fit the occasion, but despite being raised in a rural farming area, I had never met female blacksmiths until that conference. Instead, I drew upon the complexities of annual agricultural exhibitions.  I had a lot swirling around in my head, from playing off the name Gertrude Stein to things I knew about my female relatives’ and ancestors’ lives, and from having lived through the Women's Movement of the '70s. Throw in the challenge of making up rhymes that are silly! 

Then, when the guys and I started arranging it, we couldn’t resist taking it over the top with sound effects. Listen for multiple musical references and sound effects, including Randy the Auctioneer (That is Larry, who joined me for the pig duet too). The farmhouse is modeled on my own family’s heritage farmhouse and the fairgrounds resemble the Hants County Exhibition Grounds (which is, by the way, where I used to teach motorcycle safety courses). The rooster and chicken chorus is from our neighbour Joe’s flock. I asked him what time of day to come over to record them, and he answered “Well, Karen, they’re early birds.” Hence their name.  I loved working with animation artist, Ada Denil."

The online launch of Karen's album 'The Flip Side: Well, what do we have here!' was a roaring success! If you missed it, Eastlink TV is airing the show, as well as her previous album release, 'When We're Together', across Canada on Eastlink On Demand.  

The albums are available for download, or a physical CD can be mailed to you, if you prefer, from this website's 'music' page. Download the albums text and cover art for free.  

 “When We’re Together” videos are all now available to you on Youtube:  Youtube:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGW_SG_sc53DVTn3So6e4Zg   

Some of the videos are posted on this website under the photos/videos tab above.

A note from Karen:   "I think you can tell how much fun I have making music with Larry Bjornson, Dave Staples, David Burton and Chris Mitchell!   And Scott Ferguson, Mark Sawatzki, and Everet Stone filmed the show videos. Scott made the "on-site" videos with me and Scott & I edited them. 

To join my email list to find out about new music or the next concert, use the contact form below.  

Friend me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KarenRobinsonMusic   

All the best to you,"   Karen  

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Eastlink TV is broadcasting Karen’s online show "When We're Together", her previous album release show, on Eastlink On Demand across Canada.  Here is Eastlink’s trailer for the show: https://youtu.be/zU6Ddr5xS10 

  Audience comments from the video release show in November 2021: 
"WOW! YOU KNOCKED IT OUT OF THE PARK!"  - SA  

Atlantic Seabreeze "gives this album a full 5-star rating out of 5 stars." 

Read the review at: http://www.atlanticseabreeze.com/ItemOne.asp?ID=8248 

"The show was well-produced, Sound was well mixed and camera angles and fading were well done too. Accessing the show was easy and seamless."  - MC  

"Very, well done, the overall production was perfect. There was strong chemistry between Karen and the band and it was obvious they loved playing together. Karen’s intro to each song was one of my favourite parts. I really appreciated the insight Karen gave regarding her inspiration and the subtleties in the songs’ arrangements."  - SW  

"Karen and the band were amazing! What a great group of musicians. I loved the variety in the numbers. I think my favourite was "Breath", very touching."  - ES  

"Masterfully done. I was drawn in more than I expected for watching the show in a brightly-lit kitchen on an iPad."  - AM 

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Robinsong@casle.ca