01. Deda’s Song:   This song 'for my grandfather' pays tribute to my Doukhobor ancestors, who left Russia in 1898/99 to escape religious and political persecution as a result of their renunciation of the Russian Orthodox Church and their declaration of pacifism. My grandparents told me many stories.

02. Places:   Doukhobor history is a story of places. Siberia, Transcaucasia, Bogdanovka, Kars, Batumi, Milky Waters, Saskatchewan, Ootischenie, Grand Forks, Agassiz, Farron…the list is long. In this song I tried to connect with my roots by undertaking an imaginary journey through events and places that are of special significance to understanding the Doukhobor experience and life concept. This song affirms my belief that knowing your heritage is key to knowing who you are.

03. Sod Houses and Silver Linings:   I have always marveled at the Doukhobors’ ability to see some good coming out of even the most difficult situations they had to endure. Although sometimes it is difficult to see the 'silver linings' given the Doukhobors’ penchant for living in the 'minor keys' (perhaps a Russian trait), glimmers of a positive future have always been there. It was in their ability to overcome the harshness of their first winter on the Canadian prairie. It is felt in the power of their communal singing.

04. Ootischenie's Burning:   This song recalls the anguish of watching Ootischenia villages go up in flames from the Castlegar side of the Columbia River. It also alludes to the villages destroyed to make way for the Castlegar Airport. One village was where my grandfather’s extended family lived. Those were sad times..

05. Baba's Waltz:    Many times I saw my grandmother looking into the distance and often wandered what she was thinking about. Now I know she was longing for the Russia she left behind as a child. Her philosophy of life was simple, based on unconditional love. From this she never wavered..

06. Grave Digging Man:   I used to volunteer for grave digging when I lived in Slocan Park. This is my take on Doukhobor funerals. 'Big John' was a real character who was always in charge.

07. Burning Of The Guns, June 29, 1895:   This tune pays tribute to the courage of our ancestors during the burning of arms events in Russia.

08. The Bridge Song:   In 1913 the Doukhobors built the Brilliant Bridge across the Kootenay River just below the Brilliant Dam. It was a spectacular achievement, a glorious example of the Doukhobor’s belief in the virtue of hard work and their independent spirit. They received some engineering assistance and finally, a very modest financial contribution from the provincial government but, for the most part, the bridge was built by Doukhobors with their own money. Over the years the bridge fell into disrepair, at one time being considered for demolition. Today the bridge stands in restored beauty for all the world to enjoy.

09. The Five-String Guitar:   I think I was twelve years old when I got my first 'cowboy' guitar as a Christmas gift. My father, who played a bit of guitar and sang mostly 'railroad' songs, was just as excited as I was. We couldn’t wait to play it. But as father was tuning the guitar a string broke and we were left with a five-string guitar. Everyone was very upset, but only until he started to play. We sang all the Christmas songs. The five-string guitar sounded great. This is when I learned that music really can soothe the soul.

10. Doukhobor Assimilation Blues:   Ever since the Doukhobors arrived in Canada in 1899 they have been concerned with assimilation into Canadian society. Whether through Canadian education, intermarriage, the loss of the Russian language, or just ongoing exposure to modern life, the fear of losing the Doukhobor identity has been prevalent. The blues are well suited to capturing the melancholic notes associated with loss; real or imagined.

11. The Wish:   This song expresses Doukhobor belief in the merits of hard work, commitment and determination to overcome challenges, and the need to look inside oneself to unlock the forces of good that come from within..

12. Wagon Train to Verigin:   Not long after the Doukhobors settled in Saskatchewan at the turn of the 20th Century, problems arose. Canada’s federal government went back on its word and began to break up the commune. The Doukhobors lost thousands of acres of cultivated land. Internally, they split into 'independent' and 'community' groups, the latter choosing to stand for communal life. This led to bitter divisions and strife, as a result of which 5,000 'community' Doukhobors chose to move to BC for a new start. This song was inspired by a sad and moving photograph of an actual Doukhobor wagon train heading for the railway station in Verigin, Saskatchewan.