Alberta Pride Artist: Tenille Townes


April 12, 2019 at 11:38 am - Home, Afternoons,
By Arielle Leslie

From Grande Prairie, Alberta.

Tenille Townes insisted that her parents sign her up for singing lessons at the age of five, which led to owning her first guitar from her grandparents at fourteen.

At fifteen, she organized a fundraiser called Big Hearts For Big Kids benefiting a youth shelter in her home town. To this day, they’ve continued it yearly and raised over $1.5 million dollars – Townes was inspired to start the event by a pamphlet her mother brought home one day, not an uncommon occurrence at her house.

After school, she continued this ethos by launching a tour called Play It Forward, where she spent 32 weeks on the road, visiting 106 schools and playing music for over 35,000 students. Meant to encourage leadership and inspire youth, it was a huge success and completely born out of Townes’ own scrappy sense of “anything is possible.” Some of the stories she heard along the way even inspire songs on her debut LP. The idea of community that she grew up with comes through, too.
She released her full-length debut, Real, in 2011. Her second album, Light, appeared two years later. She relocated to Nashville and signed a publishing deal with Big Yellow Dog Music, and a third album, Five, arrived in early 2018.
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