The Simon and Garfunkel of the prairies

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They make beautiful harmonies together. And you'd seriously think they were Paul and Art incarnate. They're Chris Neufeld and Donovan Giesbrecht, performing under the moniker The Other Brothers, and we've got these two playing in the (204) studio this weekend.

The Other Brothers aren't really brothers, even though they look peculiarly similar. They're two solo folk musicians who've recently joined forces. Aside from being catchy, the band name fits because when it comes to their approaches to music, they're a lot like siblings (in all the good, non-bickery ways). They're about to release their first CD as the new duo - you can check out the release part April 3rd at the Park Theatre in Winnipeg at 7pm.

Chris's solo career gained immediate attention. After being featured on CBC radio's Culture Shock, and sharing the stage with the likes of Fred Eaglesmith and Nathan, Chris's debut CD, Colorado Low, was met with eager anticipation. It did not disappoint. The record ranked #1 for three weeks on the UMFM campus charts, and was later selected as one of the top ten albums of 2005. Those who have heard Chris live—whether on stage at the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Brandon Folk Music and Arts Festival, or the West End Cultural Centre—will agree with Jo Snyder of Stylus Magazine: "His is one of the most alluring voices I have ever heard."

Meanwhile, Donovan was also turning heads with his solo performances, though his appearances were fewer and further between. In fact, his supporters have more likely seen him promoting other Manitoban talents than seeking attention for himself. Donovan was a founding member of Manitoba's Mennofolk Festival, now a thriving annual event celebrating young talent within the Mennonite community. In 2007, he sang background vocals on Cara Luft's The Light Fantastic—her first project since her involvement with The Wailin' Jennys—and he continues to contribute to her live concerts. Still, over the years, solo performances at the Back Forty Folk Festival, Academy Coffee Company, and the West End Cultural Centre have kept audiences loyal and waiting for more.

The Other Brothers tap into the core of the folk music tradition: simplicity, harmony, and authenticity.

And that's only part of this week's show!

It's also a day of verbal competition as we near the CBC National Poetry Face-Off. Poets from across the country compete for the title, bringing their A game and a poem on the theme of flight. Wab Kinew's got highlights from the semi-finals held in Winnipeg this March. Five poets went head-to-head: Skip Stone, Di Brandt, Annharte, T'ai Pu and Andrea von Wichert.

Listen to:
The (204) with Wabanakwut Kinew
Saturdays 5-6 p.m. on CBC Radio 1


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