Adrian Sutherland – Midnight Shine, Lead vocalist/guitarist
In this interview, NationTalk profiles Adrian Sutherland, Lead Vocalist/Guitarist of Canadian roots-rock band, Midnight Shine. Adrian comes from Attawapiskat on the remote coast of the James Bay. He’s a singer, songwriter, musician, recording artist, and the fascinating frontman and founder of roots-rockers Midnight Shine, making meaningful music with important messages that resonate across Canada and beyond.
Adrian is a father of four, grandfather of four, and hard-working husband, proud of who he is and where he comes from. He speaks his Cree language, is a respected cultural leader, practices traditional ways of the land, and is a genuine example of someone who lives authentically.
Passionate about making a difference for youth, Adrian is driven to ensure that young people have access to education, sports and recreation, and the chance to explore skills and talents. He is an Artist Ambassador for Downie Wenjack Fund, and a Master Corporal with Attawapiskat’s Canadian Ranger Patrol where he leads young people in wilderness initiatives. Adrian previously launched a music program with support from MusiCounts, and was instrumental in bringing ArtsCan Circle to his community.
Outside of music, Adrian is an entrepreneur who has been running an eatery in Attawapiskat with wife Judy since 2018. Prior to this, he spent three years as CEO of a community-based business development company, a position he left in 2017 to make more time for music, cultural obligations, and family.
Hear the latest Midnight Shine track, Survivor, written by Adrian Sutherland. Adrian wrote this inspirational song with verses in Cree, dedicated to a special individual who was suffering from an illness,
“Survivor was written for a lady who had cancer. Her family approached me one day and asked if I would write a song. It wasn’t an easy thing to take on, but I tried, and wasn’t able to complete it. The next time I saw them, they told me the good news that she had beaten the disease – and the song just came to me after that. I think anyone who has struggled with cancer will be able to relate to it, too.” — Adrian Sutherland
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