April 25, 1949 |
|Labels||Mother of Pearl Records|
Heather Bishop, CM OM (born April 25, 1949) is a Canadian folk singer-songwriter primarily known for her work as a social justice advocate and in the field of folk music and children's music. For her dedication to social justice she has been awarded the Order of Canada, the Order of Manitoba and an Honourary Doctorate of Laws among many other awards.
Born in Regina, Saskatchewan on April 25, 1949, Bishop studied piano as a child, began playing the guitar in her teens, and later took voice lessons in Winnipeg with Alicja Seaborn. She earned a BA (Regina) in 1969. After performing in the early 1970s with the all-women dance band Walpurgis Night, first as a pianist and then as a singer, she began a solo career at the 1976 Regina Folk Festival.
After more than four decades of crooked miles, Heather Bishop has deduced that she is an alchemist and metaphysical artist. Her work transforms beliefs while simultaneously rooting you in the truth that magic is afoot. Armed with only her steel string guitar and rich voice she has traveled the world leaving beauty and light in her wake. In 1979 she created one of the first independent music labels in Canada, releasing 15 multi award-winning recordings.
Before launching her career in music, Heather began as a visual artist, studying Fine Arts at the University of Regina. After graduating in 1969, she began a life long love affair with oil paint and, although touring kept her from her easel, she has returned to her wonderland of colours. A published author, her first book, my face is a map of my time here, is a hardcover edition of her artwork. Heather's most recent recording is entitled The Montreal Sessions.
Any spare time finds Heather plying one of the many trades skills she possesses: building a house or wiring a barn or being an innovator in green building techniques.
Heather Bishop has dedicated herself to activism and, for her life's work, has received The Order of Canada, The Order of Manitoba, and an Honorary Doctorate of Laws. Most recently she was called upon to sit on the Independent Advisory Board for Senate Appointments. Retiring from music, Heather has continued to live many lifetimes in her current avatar, morphing most recently into an educator, keynote speaker, and Master Hypnotherapist.
A singer of considerable power and warmth, Bishop emerged in the 1980s as one of Canada's leading performers in both feminist and children's music. Bishop has been active in the folk community since the late 1960s. She has appeared at dozens of folk festivals including her inaugural appearance at the 1976 Winnipeg Folk Festival, London, Ontario's Home County Folk Festival, and has been a staple at numerous international children's festivals in both Canada and the United States. Heather was a regular guest performer on the internationally acclaimed Fred Penner Show.
In 1976 she founded Mother of Pearl Records. She recorded her first children's album, Belly Button: A Collection of Songs for Children in 1982, and has 15 albums to her credit, including Juno nominations for her 1987 A Taste of the Blues and her 1997 Chickee's on the Run. Bishop is also a prominent social activist, championing such causes as social justice, labour unions, environmentalism, LGBT rights, animal rights, and children's safety. She was made a member of the Order of Canada in 2005, the Order of Manitoba (2001), an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Brandon University (2011), and Her Majesty the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012).