Cluny Macpherson spent his pandemic years making sourdough, feeding stray cats, mending himself from a handful of heartaches, and writing songs about at least two of these things. Be it on banjo, guitar, mandolin, or upright bass, Cluny has a proclivity for creating tunes that split open hearts and patch them back together again. Instant Classic, his follow-up album to 2015’s Country Squall is due out late December 2023. Cluny’s backstory is as expansive as his musical inspirations. From his earliest memories soaking up the Bluegrass Album Band in his dad’s Volkswagen in Sudbury, ON, Cluny was primed to make music. Coming of age in Toronto, he honed his craft learning as many country, blues, and bluegrass tunes as his fingertips could handle. Eventually, Cluny made his way to the rugged splendour of Clayoquot Sound on western Vancouver Island and spent most of his 20s cooking brunch, waiting tables, and carefully studying his musical heroes: Stevie Wonder, Tony Rice, Aretha Franklin, and George Jones, to name a few. After making a few humans and pulling himself out of some dark corners, Cluny settled in Victoria, BC, establishing a strong presence in the local bluegrass, old-time, and honky-tonk scenes and playing in several bands. He’s shared the stage with the likes of Grammy nominee Jesse Cobb and acclaimed country artist Ridley Bent and collaborated regularly with Canadian Folk Music Award winner and fiddler Miriam Sonstenes. His latest album, the tongue-in-cheek titled Instant Classic, was recorded on Mayne Island at Fiddlehead Studios. Produced by Juno nominee and good buddy Adam Iredale-Gray, Instant Classic features eight new original tunes that span styles from honky tonk and new country to soul. The track “Port Alberni Bound” situates itself in true west coast backcountry lore – weaving the tale of a drinking and fishing trip meant to cure a broken heart and an empty wallet. “All My Fault” flips the gender script of traditional country ballads with the narrator taking full blame for a relationship’s demise. And with “Bûcheronne” – a French waltz – thrown in the mix, the songs on Instant Classic prove they are at home anywhere, be it a café in Montreal, a hootenanny, or the speakers behind the wheel of a road trip. These days, Cluny spends his time thinking about how to reinterpret outdated lyrics in old country songs, writing fresher lyrics that don’t have this problem, and waiting for his sourdough to rise. Available for bookings in 2024, Cluny is looking forward to hitting the road and celebrating the release of Instant Classic wherever that may take him.