Born and raised on the Manitoba prairie, Del Barber has found a new
home on stage, winning audiences across Canada and the United States with raw talent and ample doses of charm. With wide-eyed ambition and a work ethic second to none, in two short years, Barber has released two full length records and found the time to tour coast to coast twice, playing well over 300 dates everywhere from Halifax to Albuquerque. At just 26 years old, Barber's road tested collection of tunes are just beginning make their mark on Canada's competitive roots scene.
Barber's first official release, Where the City Ends (April 2009) was his first foray outside his home audience of Southern Manitoba. This August, 2010, Where the City Ends was nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award for roots solo Album of the Year. With the release of his sophomore record, Love Songs For The Last Twenty (June 2010) Barber has maintained a frequent presence on college radio and has been climbing roots charts across the country. This July Barber hit the well trodden stages of the famed Winnipeg Folk Festival as a tour-de-force, making an impression that could not be ignored. One of the top sellers at the 2010 festival, Barber won the hearts of his home-town crowd, selling over 350 records along the way. Since then Barber has transformed from an almost unknown singer-songwriter into an artist in demand. In the spirit of legends like Townes Van Zandt, Greg Brown, Neil Young and John Prine, Del Barber dreams new life into old forms with a cutting sense of humour, a hint of cynicism, and songs that span the gulf between the sacred and the profane. Dipping deep into the well of the folk tradition, Barber's capacity to weave experiences and characters stems from a keen understanding of narrative, phrasing and metaphor, which get tied together by Barber's polished finger-style guitar work, warm home town melodies and his inviting and intoxicating personality. Barber's presence on stage is electric, wandering seamlessly from song into story, painting diverse scenes of home, hardship, embarrassment, love and loss.
The Winnipeg Free Press has called Barber's Love Songs For the Last Twenty “As sincere and heartfelt as the day is long”. Named as “Winnipeg's Finest Songwriter” by CKUW veteran Darren Day, and quoted as having “That Woody Guthrie Wanderlust” by Mitch Podolak of Home Routes, Barber is the latest promising young songwriter to emerge from the fertile musical breeding grounds of Winnipeg, Manitoba.