Co-Conspirators: Canada’s Unreliable Narrators are Consciously Reliable

“You could tell me anything, just don’t tell me lies” sings Katherine Simons and Will Richards on one of the new songs, “Walk Me Home Tonight”, a song they tell me is about the night they met. “A fan said we sing like we’re in love,” says Will, something that is apparent to me as their casual laughter often intertwines, complimenting moments where they seemingly want to finish each other’s thoughts, but respectfully and organically synchronize their answers.


 “The Unreliable Narrators” is the name of the Co-Conspirators new album. A name that Will and Katherine have put considerable thought into. Will explains, “it’s a literary term of someone who is telling you a story, but you have to figure out what is the truth within that story.” The explanation prompts me to ask if the songs are about people they know. They both reveal that to be true and take a moment to share some intimate insights. In a moment of reflection and transparency, Will reveals that the song “Young Billy” is about himself with references to events of his upbringing. Katherine also reveals her personal connection to the song “You Shone So Bright”, which is about the death of her best friend’s daughter. It’s a rare moment, one that as a listener you should cherish because you get to hear the creativity of the music with the context that adds to the listening experience as you process all of it, helping you make your own connections. There is no doubt that Will and Katherine can take you to your thinking place. While the careful consideration of branding continues its artistic impression through the colour selection of the album as Will explains how it reflects “old penguin books”, I become more deeply aware that the Co-Conspirators have all sorts of gems, some more visible than others, each carefully placed in their music and presentation. The fact they can do this in a mostly now digital or online experience is a tribute to their artistic commitment.


They use that combination of commitment and talent to also acknowledge, inform, and tackle anti-racism. Will and Katherine became quite passionate as we discussed their song, “The Lonesome Death of Elijah McClain”, a title which I both borrowed and honoured for a short article I wrote reflecting on Black History Month. “Ain’t causing trouble, ain’t up to no good. I’d like to go home please sir if I could”. In those two lines they capture so much of what we’ve come to know about Elijah’s gentleness, but also the horrifying experience in that moment leading to his death. The song is rich and deep, giving me goosebumps at times as it pulls me into that moment. If you don’t know anything about Elijah McClain, I suspect you’ll want to read more about him after you hear this song.


This song as do the others, showcase Will and Katherine’s deep musical backgrounds. They are also happy to share how so many of their family are musically inclined. As it becomes increasingly obvious how much music is part of their very fabric, I jokingly ask if Katherine brings the calm to the storm, after Will describes their different but complimentary musical backgrounds. That question draws a chuckle from Will and agreement from Katherine as we all laugh together.


Will and Katherine are touring Canada, heading back from Vancouver to Quebec at the time of our interview.  They’re looking to continue touring in the coming months as they promote the new album, “The Unreliable Narrators”. Until you can see them live, their music and other content is available through their website, . You can also hear them on The Path Radio Mix ( during the Mini-Concert Monday segments, where three songs from the same artist are played consecutively (and both Will and Katherine have their own favourite three that will be alternated). The full interview with more insights, stories, and music is published in the March episode of The Go On with Guido Podcast (


Dreamin’ with Kelly Besd Takes Us All, “Back To Me”

Kelly Besd is a Canadian artist who is using her voice and talent to make the world a better place, progressing the message of racial injustice and discrimination through the art of music. Her debut album, Back To Me, features the song “Dreamin'” which is the catalyst in her catalogue to highlight much needed global change. Besd gets a little help from her friends, Jackie Art and K-Riz as they integrate their beat-driven words with her melodic interludes.


“We different that’s what is special”, in the middle of the first verse bridges all notion of race as we wait for Besd to harmonize in with, “I’m dreamin, bout somethin I believe in, said I’m dreamin, that on each other we are leanin.” The artists do a smooth lyrical shuffle and transition that impresses the message while keeping you musically engaged and entertained.


The song continues to make waves as it gets coverage from radio stations and other media. The video for “Dreamin’” is one of two songs that was recognized in Dropout Entertainment’s ( 4th annual Canadian independent music video awards under the Pop category for Besd. The song was also featured on The Go On with Guido Podcast ( ) and has been spinning here on The Path Radio Mix Online (


While Besd might have self-reflected with the album title, she also nudges us all to our own “back to me” moments as we reflect on “Dreamin”.

McKay’s “Don’t Forget Love”, A Message the World Must Hear

Music is often a reflection of the times, giving us a beat when we want to dance, words when we need to reflect, harmony when we need balance, and hope when there is none. The world seems to be in a place where not everyone is able to celebrate, where tolerance of each other’s views is met with doubt, looking outside the boundary of self needs and wants can be an afterthought, and a sense of abandon consumes news tickers. Occasionally, a song comes along with the perfect storm of resolution that has the potential to make you transition those challenges to opportunities. Franklin McKay, a six-time billboarding independent artist brings the world that soul-restoring storm in the form of his new single, “Don’t Forget Love”, a song co-written and produced by Greg Fitzgerald (Kylie Minogue, Madonna, Hall& Oates).


The opening warm and gentle tones instantly stroke curiosity. Franklin wastes little time in asserting what many may be feeling like these days as he opens with, “when I’m feeling cold, and I’m tired and low,” followed by a question with universal undertones, underscored by asking twice, “Are you there? Are you there for me”? He elevates the conditions of circumstance from the previous few lines as he leads us into the chorus with a powerful and credible voice, “when the rain’s falling down and the sun’s fading out,” then gently solves it for us with the message we all need to hear, “Don’t Forget Love.”


While the lyrics are strong, so is the music as it blends the highs and lows seamlessly, taking you along for a ride that you don’t quite want to reach the end of because you’re enjoying it so much. This McKay, Fitzgerald collaboration is smooth and in-synch on multiple levels.


Franklin McKay’s song, “Don’t Forget Love” was played exclusively on The Path Radio Mix Online ( on February 3, 2022 and continues to spin on any given day of the week. This followed an interview with Franklin that can be heard on The Go On with Guido Podcast (, a monthly show, which also features the song in a re-release of the January episode.  The show has Franklin providing several insights that complement the song through his childhood roots and life experiences.


Surely this song provides a perfect Valentine’s Day melody, but it also reminds us that each day, “Don’t Forget Love.”