I steadfastly believe it is impossible for anyone named Jim to be anything but a good guy. As proof, I present Exhibit A: Cha Cha Cha: The Songs of Shotgun Jimmie, a 30-song, 15-year career retrospective tribute album covering the songs of Jim Kilpatrick, aka Shotgun Jimmie. The project may seem excessive in print, but the finished product is an engrossing and captivating encapsulation of Shotgun Jimmie’s impressive musical canon.
Kilpatrick is the consummate Canadian songwriter, touring cross-country multiple times and making connections with fellow musicians from Surrey, BC to St. John’s, NL and all points in between. Admired by fans and musicians alike for his consistency and dedication to crafting smart and memorable music, the Shotgun Jimmie catalogue is ripe for reinterpretation. Songs this well written and constructed offer the perfect canvas for others to impress their own visions.
Former Shotgun & Jaybird partner Frederick Squire starts things off with a pared down interpretation of the early unreleased “There is a Line Girl I’d Like To…”. Squire’s trademark stripped down presentation further confirms what Shotgun Jimmie fans have known for years: he’s a fantastic storyteller whose eye for detail comes through in his vivid lyrics. From there, friends By Divine Right, Spencer Burton, Bruce Peninsula’s Misha Bower, The Burning Hell’s Ariel Sharratt and Mathias Kom, and Jon McKiel each explore their own favourites from Jimmie’s prolific back catalogue.
All 30 songs are faithful covers that manage to avoid feeling like carbon copies of the originals. Whether you’re familiar with the tunes or experiencing Shotgun Jimmie for the first time, Cha Cha Cha: The Songs of Shotgun Jimmie is sure to put the whole country in a party mood. The feel-good vibes extend all the way to The Yukon, too; all proceeds from sales of *Cha Cha Cha…” benefit Dawson City Music Festival’s Songwriter in Residence initiative.