Murray Porter’s music has an instantly recognizable sound. The Mohawk piano player from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory brings his culture and history to the masses through his music.
With a mix of blues, country, and humour, Porter’s gravelly, soulful voice sings not only of thehistory and contemporary stories of the Indigenous Peoples of Canada, but also universal themes of love, lost and found. He has spent over 35 years playing his self-taught unique style of foot stomping, hand clapping blues piano around the world.
It was with his latest studio album Songs Lived & Life Played that won the 2012 JUNO for Aboriginal Album of the Year. It was nominated for two Western Canadian Music Awards and four Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards. It was at the latter awards show where he brought the house to their feet and to tears with the emotionally charged song about Indian residential schools, “Is Sorry Enough?”
To watch Porter live, it’s so clear that he loves to perform, and does so with care, love, wonder, and unabashed happiness. He makes it look easy. These emotions are easily shared with the audience and one cannot help but get caught up in his performance. He has been compared to Dr. John, Joe Cocker and even Elton John! Robbie Robertson has called Porter “a master bluesman.” Whether he is playing an intimate venue for local blues fans, or on a festival stage to thousands of music aficionados, Porter’s love of performing comes across clear and strong.
Murray has shared the stage with hundreds of Artists including the late B.B. King, the late Etta James, Sam `Soul Man’ Moore (twice), The Neville Brothers, Tom Cochrane, Ricky Skaggs, Marcia Ball, Pura Fe, Derek Miller, The Carolina Chocolate Drops (Rhiannon Giddens) and The Funk Brothers (twice), to name a few amazingly talented musicians. Over the years, Murray has performed, either as a solo or with his band at: `Native Nations Inaugural Ball’, in honour of President Barack Obama’s Inauguration, National Museum of the American Indian, Washington, D.C. (Jan. 2013); Edmonton Folk Festival; Saskatoon Winter Blues Festival; Bella Coola Music Festival; Indspire Awards, Vancouver; JUNO Fest, Ottawa; BreakOut West, Regina; Nanaimo Summertime Blues Festival (3 times); Harrison Music Festival