All My Favourite Songs


For the last nine decades, Dave Withers has been an enigmatic part of southwestern Ontario's music scene. From his early Victrola recordings of farmhand hollers, to his innovative combination of country music and poetry that inspired Leonard Cohen, to his punk rock days drowning in distortion pedals, to his rebirth as an environmental propagandist infiltrating the public education system—Dave Withers has been impossibly hard to pin down. He didn't properly get his due until the early 90s with Black Cabbage, who coaxed him out of retirement and shoved him into a van driving across Canada. They shoved him out somewhere outside Edmundston, N.B., in 1999. More recently he could be spotted playing the same sad-bastard song at every open stage in Guelph (the Replacements' "Here Comes a Regular"). He's been paying his bills in a wedding band while slowly working with producer Scott Merritt on his epic rock opera about a shuttered tattoo parlour.