musician, vocalist, lyricist, composer
This Pacific-Canadian born songwriter and sixth generation Canadian possesses a profound connection to his Celtic roots. Bruce Coughlan is a true bard (a collector of songs). As principle songwriter and vocalist for Tiller's Folly, Bruce has navigated the band through a long succession of subtle, yet defining changes. From performers of Celtic music to interpreters of the genre, into an influential entity in the course of progressive Celtic and Canadiana music.
"Their words and melodies are at once populist, minimally produced and poignant while at the same time singularly powerful and sincere". - Tom May, River City Folk (NPR)
Bruce has received commissions to pen several commemorative songs, among them The Ghost of Simon Fraser (BC Coast and Mountain Tourism), Robbie McBeath (Village of Kinlochbervie, Scotland), Friendly Harbours (Port of Vancouver) 23 Camels and The Ghost of Kitty O'Rielly (Heritage BC).
Bruce's compositions have been featured on TV Series The Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits, West Coast Escapes and The Aviators, the film I Me Wed, and title song and soundtrack for the documentary Cross Canada Century Flight. Bruce is a multi-instrumentalist (guitar, woodflute, whistle, tenor banjo, bodhran) and has worked at different times as jingle singer, music coordinator, music director, actor, consultant & character voice over.
Bruce's songs have been recorded by artists in all genres, including Kelly Brock, Sam Bush, Cia Cherryholmes, John Cowan, Hank Cramer, Sean Hogan, Tom May, Valdy and Wendy Waldman.
"Bruce seems to be concerned with and committed to is "the song". In the same regard that Lyle Lovett, Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Rodney Crowell, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell and folks like Darrell Scott are. He works at it with discipline, a sense of wonder, and trying to honor the very craft of it. I think his results speak for themselves." - John Cowan (John Cowan Band, Doobie Brothers, Newgrass Revival)
With a growing list of co-writes, commissioned works and soundtrack credits, this composer/lyricist/adapter/interpreter is a creative force of rare ability. Bruce Coughlan is a multifaceted talent and will undoubtedly be recognized as a great Canadian songwriter in the league of Gordon Lightfoot and Stan Rogers.