Sproule’s Quarff band show

Canadian/American singer-songwriter Devon Sproule. Photo: Paul Curreri.

CANADIAN/American musician Devon Sproule will be returning to Shetland with her band this spring – three years after her last visit – as part of a tour for her new album Gold String

The critically-acclaimed 34-year-old worked on some of the material while staying in Culswick on Shetland’s west side in the summer of 2014. She has previously performed at Mareel, the Garrison Theatre and the Cullivoe and Bixter public halls.


Sproule rounds off a 12-date full band tour of the UK, which also includes her first show in Orkney, with a live performance at Quarff Hall on Friday 7 April. 

She says: “I was staying in a tiny house all by myself, on a windy island out in the North Sea. My daily human contact was waving to afarmer while he trained his nine-month-old sheepdog, Jan, for a herding competition. 

“I had a little map of the ruins in the area, but I never really felt like it. I was gravitating toward the more modest plants and birds, considering all the people in my life. Everything seemed hyper-connected. 


“So I postponed dinner — which is always easy because I can’t cook — and begin to write these long, long lines of lyrics.  They were way less laboured than usual, less chiselled into a meter. But I found that if I narrowed the melody to a few notes — almost like a chant — the ideas began to string themselves together. That song became The Gold String.”

Gold String, due for release in late March, is described as “North American music with weirdo roots” and was recorded in three different Canadian provinces – Yukon, Ontario and Nova Scotia – and the short, lush LP features backing from Toronto dream-poppers Bernice.