The gentle pulse of an acoustic guitar ebbs and flows, like waves breaking on a beach as the spring sun warms the coast. Whispers give way to melodies as she draws you in with her voice; it shimmers like smoke hanging in the air after a summer campfire. This is Ava Wild.
Ava Wild is a Regina-based singer songwriter who has spent the last few years carving a name for herself into our ever-expanding Saskatchewan music scene. Born in Regina, Ava returned home after living in Toronto for four years with her family shortly after having her first official solo performance at Regina’s Cathedral Village Arts Festival. Since then she has poured her heart and soul into her music. Her dedication to her craft yielded her debut full-length record Bare in 2016 and a confidence in performance that is strong beyond her years.
Bare is a wonderfully honest representation of Ava’s music. Warm, ringing, finger-picked acoustic guitar greets you at the beginning of the record and beckons you to make yourself at home in her songs. Those gentle stokes give way to pseudo-flamenco strumming throughout the record, successfully shifting the listener’s focus instead of lulling us to sleep. Shuffling drums interject at times, further emphasizing the thrumming rhythm inherent in her music and deftly accentuating some songs and not others for dramatic effect.
Atop these subtly arranged and expertly recorded instrumentals, Ava’s vocals ring out. Her voice is the kind that is equally at home murmuring at the bottom of her range or shimmering at the top, all the while carrying a sort of intimate breathe and confident heart that makes you feel like the songs are just for you. Take special note of the bird-like ooo’s in the album’s opener “White Tooth Bastard.”
If you have the pleasure of seeing Ava Wild perform live (perhaps this Thursday at the Artful Dodger?), you will be treated to all the beauty and simplicity you hear on her record. Her live show is as honest as her recording, and a quick look into who she is will surely reveal the origin of her personality and positivity. With songs about changing the world, the interconnections of humankind, and simple, innocent love, Ava tells stories that are full of positivity, kindness, and love. They are universal and powerful yet personal and uncomplicated. They are what the world needs right now.
Ava Wild plays The Artful Dodger in Regina this Thursday, February 9th, with Scott Pettigrew.