• About

  • Ron Nigrini

    Singer Songwriter

     Rambling through his fifth decade on the music scene, Ron Nigrini still plays for the love of the music, and it shows. A singer, songwriter, guitarist, craftsman, poet and performer, he's on a lifelong musical odyssey. He opened for The Mamas & The Papas in 1967, had a hit with I'm Easy in 1976 and had the most played Canadian single of the year with Baby I'm A Lot Like You in 1984 on his own Oasis Records. He has acted in movies and on TV and entertained in countless coffee houses, concert halls and music festivals across Canada, the United States and Europe. The sweet style of this "worker in song" is reminiscent of Jim Croce and Harry Chapin. His stage presence is captivating and everyone who hears him becomes a new fan instantly.
  • 1965
    Ron Nigrini joined with Ken Harris to form the folk duo The Coachmen adding lead guitarist Don Heard in 1966.
    Ron and Ken, as part of the folk-rock group Dan's Heard, opened for The Mamas and The Papas before 10,000 fans at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto. That led to a 2 week gig at the Penny Farthing in Toronto's Yorkville village.
    Ron meets Tim Hardin and hangs out in New York with him. A big influence at the time.
    The beginning of a 2 year tour criss-crossing the USA performing solo in coffeehouses and on college campuses. He was booked by Marilyn Lipsius of Campus Directions in New York. It was a time of upheaval in the States with the Vietnam war and the rise of the American Indian movement affecting Ron's writing with songs like "Montana Plain",  "American Sons" and "Soldiers".
    Ron joined another band called "Entertainment Nightly" and began a year long gig at the Arlington Hotel in Collingwood.  Sara Ellen Dunlop fronted the band. A dynamic singer, she worked her band six nights a week with a matinee on Saturdays - a true working band.
    At the Colonial Tavern in Toronto, listening to one of his favourite songwriters, Jesse Winchester, Ron met soon-to-be-music mogul Tom Williams of Attic Records. He asked Ron for a demo. Ron obliged. Tom listened and signed Ron.  There followed 2 albums, Ron Nigrini and Rich Things, which contained Ron's hit single "I'm Easy", the Oscar winning song written by Keith Carradine. It gave Ron a national profile and led to work with Kenny Rogers, Roberta Flack, David Bromberg and a Canadian east coast tour with Hagood Hardy ending back in Toronto performing with Hagood at Massey Hall and Ontario Place.  His television and radio appearances at this time included the Tommy Hunter Show and Morningside with Peter Gzowski. The rest of the 70s were rounded out with folk festivals, club dates and studio work as a singer and guitarist.
    Ron began working with legendary bassist John Stockfish in Toronto. They headed to Los Angeles in 1980 to record a demo of new songs with some of LA's finest studio musicians. Ron had management there for over a year with Eddie Wenrick and toured the west coast with a popular Hawaiian band, Cecilio and Kapono. 
    Ron returns to Canada and settles into the club scene with forays into acting in films and television.
    Back to recording, this time on his own label, Oasis Records, Ron hits the airwaves in a big way with a new single, "Baby, I'm A Lot Like You". It becomes the most played Canadian song of the year, garnering over 300 stations across the country and reaffirming his national profile. The success of this song results in the release of a new album called, The Drift in 1986.
    With the band Western Radio, Ron toured France in '93, '95 and '97 which included gigs in Paris at Le Scenario and Disney's Rock 'n' Roll America stage. 1993 was also the beginning of a 25 year run playing the Harvest Dance  with Western Radio every September at Commanda Hall in north Ontario.
    With Western Radio and producer Garth Mosbaugh, Ron recorded his 4th album, Above The Noise.
    Songs from Turtle Island followed, with roots music producer Paul Mills. The CD release concert was held at the legendary folk concert club, Hugh's Room, always accompanied by Rodney St. Amand, Mitch Lewis and Anne Lindsay.  This led to an annual concert for 18 years with many musical guests from the Toronto scene.
    The move is made to northern Ontario where Ron meets the great blues guitarist Jake Thomas. They team up as a duo and play the north.
    Ron records his 5th. album, called Undisguised Hearts in Commanda, Ontario at Andy McClelland's Silversmith Barns Studio.
    With the help of Jake Thomas, Directions Home is recorded with Andy McClelland in the producer's chair.  The next few years saw Ron in San Antonio, Mexico performing benefit concerts in the small town.
    His latest CD, The Quiet is released. It is the beginning of Ron's last tour, mostly in Ontario, ending with a concert at Hugh's Room and a final solo concert in North Bay.
    Ron retired from performing (for the time being) and now lives quietly in northern Ontario with his wife of 48 years, Maryanna.