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My Playlist: Ron Hynes, 1950-2015

Carole Warren

Ron Hynes had a remarkable life and career. Alan Doyle, of Great Big Sea called him his all-time favourite singer songwriter, a thought echoed by musicians across Canada and especially in his home province of Newfoundland. His death on Nov. 19th at age 64 left people across the country reeling.

While best known for his classic ballad "Sonny's Dream," Hynes came by his moniker "Man of a Thousand Songs" honestly. He wrote about what he knew and what he saw -- songs about his own struggle with addiction, the treacherous sea, love and loss. And he wrote with an honesty and eloquence that only grew with the passage of time.

In July of 2013 Ron's lung cancer was in remission and he had finally returned to the stage after months of recuperating. He came to Toronto to play his first concert in a long time as well as record a My Playlist show. It's made up of some of his favourite singers and songwriters including Dave Gunning, Gordon Lightfoot. Terry Kelly, Lennie Gallant, Stompin' Tom Connors and Loreena McKennitt.

The cancer had affected his voice and you'll hear that, but his spirit was strong and he was clearly just so glad to be back. It's a lovely show.

My Playlist: Ron Hynes, 1950-2015

Ron Hynes reveals the stories behind his favourite songs.