About The Brights
The Brights is "an exciting new duo formed by established singer-songwriters and well-respected instrumentalists, Don Bray and Alyssa Wright" [Orillia Packet & Times]. Roots music, tinged with gospel, country and blues is accompanied by guitar, cello, Hawaiian king, accordion, mandolin, cajon, and whatever new sounds have recently tickled their fancy. "A couple of musical powerhouses... charismatic charm... experienced, gifted, original and extremely likeable" [Castlegar News]. With soulful harmonies and sensitive arrangements, The Brights present original songs in an easy-going, timeless style, equally at home in kitchen party or concert hall.
Colleague Paul Court put it best after The Brights’ recent performance at the Barrie Performing Arts Centre: “A little him, a little her, a little them. Much more than the sum of the parts.”
Renowned for his “brilliant guitar style” and “extraordinary talent” [Dave MacMillan, Mariposa Folk Festival], Don Bray has impressed audiences from Toronto’s Hugh’s Room to the Tucson Folk Festival with his finely-crafted songs and high-spirited performances. “…A brilliant songwriter … poetry married to an unsurpassed guitar style … lyrics clear as water.” [David Francey, singer-songwriter]. Alyssa Wright is known for her “passionate style” [David Newland, performer], has been described as “the best thing in a woman’s voice since Ruthie Foster or Serena Ryder” [David Zub, presenter]. Her vast musical knowledge and experience, trademark tone and innate musicality have made her one of Ontario’s most popular session and studio cellists, performing at such venues as Massey Hall, the Banff Centre for the Arts, and Harbourfront Centre.
After several years of performing and recording on each other’s solo endeavours, Don and Alyssa were encouraged by their peers and fans to make theirs a more lasting collaboration, and The Brights was officially created in 2007
Since that time, The Brights have shared their rootsy musical stylings and playful banter with audiences across Canada, in such venues as BC's Duncan Garage Showroom, Merlin's Sun Theatre and 2nd Street Studio B, Alberta's Haven Social Club, Saskatchewan's 23 Main, Manitoba's Bhigg House and Avalon Arts, Ontario’s Toronto City Roots, Vital Spark Folk Society, Staircase Theatre and Stephen Leacock Museum, Quebec’s Church Street Concert Series, Nova Scotia’s Harbour Folk Society, Mersey House, The Carleton and The Company House, New Brunswick’s Broadway Cafe, and Crumbs Cafe. They've been featured at the Blue Skies Folk Festival, BarrieFolk Festival, Live From the Rock Festival and Mariposa Folk Festival, performed with the New Tecumseth Singers as their own personal gospel choir, held workshops for schools and ensembles, and given many of their favourite performances -- house concerts!
The Brights released their debut CD, Live Love Dream, in 2009 at Hugh’s Room in Toronto. Live Love Dream is a collection of twelve original tunes (eleven songs and one instrumental). The album stays true to their live duo sound, albeit with Patrick McPhail’s bass and a few harmony and instrumental layers thrown in on the occasional track.
As their fan Robert Rountree exclaimed: “drop everything but your drawers and go see this group!”.