After the original album launch for La P’tite Acadienne at the end of March was postponed due to a particularly nasty blizzard, country music sweetheart Francelle Maria is reasonably optimistic that the rescheduled launch – set for this Friday at the Empress Theatre – will not meet the same fate.
And though the blizzard may have brought the city to a standstill back in March, Francelle’s career is definitely moving forward. This can, in no small part, be attributed to the fact that Francelle is the kind of artist who lives and breathes music at every given moment of every day.
Francelle’s story begins in 2010 with the launch of her debut record, Till The Wheels Fall Off, in front of a sold-out audience at Moncton’s Capitol Theatre. Her singles “What I Meant To Say,” “Till The Wheels Fall Off” and “One Has To Go” each benefited from generous regional and national airplay.
In early 2012, Francelle made the Top 40 cut of the sole broadcast season of Canada’s Got Talent. She credits the show will helping open new doors for her within the music industry while also helping to build her fan base.
But another benefit of garnering national television exposure was the confidence she gained as a result of the show. Compared to Till The Wheels Fall Off, Francelle was considerably more hands-on during the making of La P’tite Acadienne. Where she had a hand in writing two of the album’s tracks on her debut, she ended up writing or co-writing eight of the tracks on her latest release.
“I got so much in the way of exposure from the program,” Francelle says. “I have been a full-time musician since the release of my first album. To have an opportunity like this seemed like a bit of a once in a lifetime thing. Being in the competition was great regardless of whether or not I walked away the winner.”
In addition to the national radio success of a pair of singles released from La P’tite Acadienne, Francelle has been working equally as hard as host of the Rogers Television program La Country Show. The singer-songwriter has also been focusing time and energy on building success in the English music market.
Not long after the original March release show for La P’tite Acadienne was due to take place, Francelle and her bassist Mathieu Leger flew to Los Angeles where she secured a management contract while also gaining the opportunity to mingle with some of the industry’s biggest stars.
Asked if the experience was a bit overwhelming, she says it was amazing.
“The fact that we got to be there and be surrounded by so many amazing people, we feel nothing but blessed. Especially where our management team found me on YouTube. It is a bit of a Cinderella story, to be honest. We recognize that we are very fortunate, that many musicians work extremely hard but are not given the same opportunities that we have been given,” she says.
While in Los Angeles, Francelle and Mathieu played a handful of shows to appreciative audiences who seemed delighted that the pair was Canadian. They also used their time to shoot a number of new videos, which were subsequently posted to YouTube.
All of these perceived small pieces of the puzzle are being put together to build a story that Francelle hopes will provide the necessary leverage to eventually attract record label attention. She acknowledges that despite having a management team on board, there is still a seemingly endless list of things to do to ensure that she remains on track.
“While you have to have the talent to make it in the music business, it is also a lot about making friends and networking in addition to being super appreciative of what you have. Matt and I realized long ago that friendship, love and respect go a long way and believe that if you think about the positive aspects of your life, the right people will surround you to help make your dreams a reality.”
What: Francelle Maria Album Launch for La P’tite Acadienne
When: Friday, June 20, 7 p.m.
Where: Empress Theatre, Robinson Court, Downtown Moncton
This event is free. Advance tickets are available via phone at (506) 856-4379