The Social Mystics and their very first album, Coming Out of Darkness.
Creative Works Studio’s very own music group, the Social Mystics, released their first-ever album, Coming Out of Darkness in March 2016. The group describes their album as, “gospel meets Broadway theatre meets a flash mob.” If it’s hard to imagine, it’s because they’re truly unlike any other group.
The album is the result of a decade of songwriting that has taken place during Wednesday afternoon music sessions at Creative Works Studio. Long led by CWS founder and singer/songwriter, Isabel Fryszberg, the Social Mystics are now led by longtime volunteer co-facilitator and former English teacher, Laraine McMahon-Nelson and musician/composer Asher Ettinger. Members work with facilitators to create lyrics, and compose music. Member John Reid also contributes with his great guitar skills. The group has written 50 songs together over the years and picked their finest for this 13-track album.
Finally, an album
With a grant from the Ontario Arts Council, the Social Mystics were able to record their very first album. A number of studio musicians joined for the recording: Asher Ettinger on piano; Alastair Whitehead on bass; and Jodi Pape on ukulele. They also had help throughout the preparation process – Ken Whiteley helped members create and learn the washtub bass and Rebecca Campbell acted as vocal conductor and helped them smooth their voices. Don Kerr worked with Isabel and members throughout the preparation and recording process. He produced, mixed, edited and engineered the final album.
With the additional support of a grant from the J.P. Bickell Foundation, the Social Mystics distributed free CDs to other mental health groups and performed in the Greater Toronto Area.
Get a copy of Coming Out of Darkness
Mental health programs may be eligible to receive a free CD – please inquire at the email below.
CDs are available for purchase at $15 each and proceeds go to support Creative Works Studio. You can pick one up at the studio or have us mail* it to you. We accept cash, credit card or payment by cheque made to “Good Shepherd Non-Profit Homes” with “Creative Works Studio CD” in the memo.
*If requesting by mail to an address in Canada, you’ll need to add a $2.25 shipping and handling fee to your payment ($17.25 total). If it’s an international order or if you’re looking to order multiple CDs, we’ll need to get back to you with the shipping cost.
Email Bernadette Wycks at firstname.lastname@example.org or Tasia Sourasis at email@example.com with your request.
Check out our article on Roots Music:
We thank the Ontario Arts Council and J.P. Bickell Foundation for their generous support that made the production and release of this album possible.