Mo Kenney In My Dreams

Download In My Dreams here.

Video Telephones
When Mo Kenney started writing the songs that would become In My Dreams, she was in a sweet spot: Mo had just recorded her debut, and wrapped up her tour feeling like she had all the time in the world to write anything. In fact, she didn’t even realize that the title track, which was the first song she wrote, would become the starting point for her next album.

The Canadian songsmith’s 1930s Parlor guitar she purchased after her tour shaped In My Dreams, released in the US April 29th, 2016. “It’s the best guitar ever. I love it so much,” she says of the instrument she bought from the Halifax Folklore Center. But there was something besides her guitar driving her to write: the breakup of a long distance relationship, a subject that trends track by track. “There’s definitely a theme to the album,” Kenney says. “It’s reflective of what I was going through at the time… spending a weird couple of years in and out of relationships. That was on the forefront of my mind and it came through in my writing – most of the songs are about it.”

The biting and relatable lyrics stay true to Kenney’s mantra of unabashed honesty in order to create music that connects. Mo’s darker muses include Elliott Smith and Sylvia Plath, as evident in “Take Me Outside” and “Mountains To The Mess”. However, the progression of her songwriting craft compared to her debut isn’t indulgent or maudlin. She describes her relationship with producer and mentor Joel Plaskett as the yin to her yang. “With some songs, I knew that he would add something cool to it and make it less dark…that’s one of the things that he brings to the table,” Kenney explains.

Recorded in Plaskett’s studio, Mo and her musical counterpart took advantage of the technology his new production space presented. “He has a super hi-fidelity Neve board now, so the difference in the sound quality in the studio [compared to her debut] was really noticeable,” she said. “It has plenty of analog equipment, and I love the sound of tape.” This recording method and the liberal use of vintage keyboards yielded a warm and rich sound that complements Mo’s alto. The rich harmonies on the record are all hers, and they add an authentic resonance to other tunes, like “Field Song” and “Pretty Things”.

“I never censor myself when I write,” she explains. “I just write down whatever comes into my head. I think that because I am quite private, I used to be a little cryptic to protect myself, but I have been writing a little more honestly lately.” This honesty stems from the emphatic response to her debut by critics across Canada, where she’s rising in the ranks of our northern neighbor’s music industry.

An earlier version of “I Faked It”, was written by Mo, Gordie Sampson and Willie Stratton at an intimate songwriting retreat called The Gordie Sampson Songcamp. This, along with the rest of the songs on In My Dreams, reveal a rising talent whose candor and courage as a lyricist deserve the recognition the 25-year-old has received thus far. The record was just nominated for a JUNO Award for ‘Alternative Album of the Year’, voted ‘New/Emerging Artist of the Year’ by the Canadian Folk Music Awards, and has won numerous Nova Scotia and East Coast Music Awards. This outpouring of positive responses early in her career has opened doors to national and international touring opportunities with Ron Sexsmith, Frank Turner, and on lineups at international festivals throughout Europe and Australia.

Fans of her 2012 self-titled debut album undoubtedly noticed the songs on her second album are plugged in and blown out, making her sound bigger and more rock leaning. Working the material out with two friends on bass and drums meant she could take them out on tour when the record was done. These companionships assuaged her fear of not only the sophomore slump, but allowed her to envision them working on a live stage. Having that bigger sound gave her a sense of freedom on the road and in the studio. “With acoustic songs, you have to think about what you’re recording because everything is sparse and exposed. A bigger rock record is a lot more fun because it didn’t feel as delicate,” Kenney says. As for her personal favorite, Kenney loves playing “Wind Will Blow”. She was inspired by her songwriting hero Elliott Smith to try writing in drop C tuning. “I like how the guitar sounds. I’m proud of that one,” Kenney says. “And it’s dark, so that might also be why.”

Press Highlights

…an album of grace, power and insight. -Laura Thomas, Kemptation

Folk, pop, scuzzy rock – she is clearly poised and ready to pounce. -Tony Clayton-Lea, The Irish Times

New Zealand has Lorde – the UK has Foxes – and the U.S. has Lana Del Rey……Canada’s response to this trend of strong female singer-songwriters is the irresistibly beautiful, Mo Kenney. -Craig Roxburgh, Mind Equals Blown

With the release of In My Dreams, it’s clear that Kenney is more confident and experimental — and that her dreams are just beginning. -CBC Music

“Playful lyricism entrenched in intricate guitar work.” -Stereogum

“Her sultry vocals and the guitar’s fuzzy, tortured whine makes ‘Mountains to the Mess’ a sexy, mysterious song.” -Noisey

Kenney’s best verses feel like little explosions somewhere between the stomach and the heart. In My Dreams is full of them. […] The tender stories and dappled memories on the record are Kenney’s, but they are everybody else’s too. -Alex J MacPherson, Verb Regina

It’s dark and stormy, with rays of light here and there. It’s devoid of gimmick, relying on old-school six-string wizardry and razor-sharp, perfectionist songwriting. But its most endearing trait might be Kenney’s ‘no bullshit’ attitude, which makes the 24-year-old’s rage, apathy, loneliness, vulnerability, and love or lack of it shine clear through her lyrics and delivery. – Matt Williams, Stylus Magazine

It’s a collection of songs that pushes Kenney beyond the realm of a Maritime folk singer and hears her evolve into a confident and experimental-leaning musician. -Sarah Murphy, Exclaim!

Mo Kenney has had a few trustworthy CanCon players – Joel Plaskett chief among them – in her corner for a while now, and In My Dreams makes it pretty clear why. The 24-year-old Halifax singer/songwriter’s second album signals the brash, career-making arrival of a cutting Canadian voice fit to join the likes of Emily Haines and Tegan and Sara Quin on the export-ready A-list. -Ben Rayner, Toronto Star

On her sophomore release, the ambient folk-pop record In My Dreams, Mo Kenney has not only discovered the true her, she’s tapped into that and breathed forth one of the most engaging, alluring, intoxicating, honest and distinctive albums this country has produced this year. Voice: found. Strong. And wonderful.         -Mike Bell, Calgary Herald

Mo Kenney’s a lady of great talent and promise. […] Her great voice is a warm and controlled tool she wields as wonderfully in person as in the studio. Her unassuming charm is a bonus, a quiet enthusiasm that led her to say, “Cool song, eh?” after covering a song from Dog Day’s Seth Smith. -James Brotheridge, Exclaim!

Though it does mark a notable sonic progression, specifically boasting a more buoyant overall energy, In My Dreams features many of the endearingly unique qualities that drew listeners in the first time around. The most significant of those is her unmistakable voice, and the sincerity and transparency it lends her deeply personal lyrical content. -Jessica Mees, Canadian Musician

Everything she does is fantastic, but her lyrical prowess in particular will impress you. -Gary Ewer, The Essential Secrets of Songwriting

Just 24, Kenney has already released two killer albums that showcase her talent as a songwriter, as well as grabbing a SOCAN song writing prize, ECMA and Canadian Folk Music Award. She is both meek and commanding, with a strong sense of humour and stage presence. -Adria Young, The Coast

What stands out most on Mo Kenney’s second album is the directness of her lyrics, which reveal the Halifax singer/songwriter’s cruel side in matters of love. […] She drops f-bombs everywhere and sugarcoats nothing. Think what you like about that approach to life – even fictionally, through songs – but it comes across as bold, confident and fierce. Those words also describe Kenney’s voice, a loud, husky alto reminiscent of Kim Deal’s and Sharon Van Etten’s, while her fingerpicking guitar style brings Elliott Smith’s to mind. The 10 songs are fully fleshed out but never dense, thanks to Joel Plaskett’s intelligent production work. And variety is the spice in Kenney’s work. She moves easily between pop, blues and folk. -Carla Gillis, Now Magazine

Video Carnivore Ft. Rachel Sermanni

Awards and Achievements


JUNO Award Nomination Adult Alternative Album of the Year

International Acoustic Music Awards Nomination Best Female Artist

ECMA Award Nomination Album of the Year

ECMA Award Nomination Solo Recording of the Year

ECMA Award Nomination Video of the Year

ECMA Award Nomination Fans’ Choice Video of the Year


The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition 1st Place Winner (Folk) – “I Faked It”

Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Recording of the Year – In My Dreams

Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – In My Dreams

Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Solo Recording of the Year – In My Dreams

Nova Scotia Music Award Winner Music Video of the Year – “Telephones”

The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Female Solo Artist(Gold)

The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Pop Artist/Band (Silver)

The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Songwriter (Bronze)

The Coast “Best of Halifax” Award Winner – Best Artist/Band Most Likely To Make It Big (Bronze)

Unsigned Only Songwriting Competition Semi-Finalist – “Telephones”

ECMA Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – In My Dreams

ECMA Award Nomination Song of the Year – “Telephones”

ECMA Award Nomination Fans’ Choice Entertainer of the Year


The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition Top 20 Honourable Mention Winner – “Sucker”

The U.S.A. Songwriting Competition Folk Category Finalist – “Sucker”

CBC Shortlist Award Nomination Best Song/Earworm of the Year – “Telephones”

ECMA Award Winner Pop Recording of the Year – Mo Kenney

ECMA Award Nomination Songwriter of the Year – “Sucker”

ECMA Award Nomination Solo Recording of the Year – Mo Kenney

ECMA Award Nomination Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year

Music Nova Scotia Award Nomination Entertainer of the Year

Click here for more Awards & Achievements


    • I Faked It
    • Take Me Outside
    • Telephones
    • Mountains To The Mess
    • Field Song
    • Untouchable
    • Pretty Things
    • In My Dreams
    • Wind Will Blow
    • Dancing


    • Sheri Jones (Manager)
      Management, Jones & Co.
      [email protected]
      Phone: 902-429-9005
      Cell: 902-483-9005
      Fax: 902-457-1187

    • Grace Russell (Publicist)
      Management, Jones & Co.
      [email protected]
      Phone: 902-223-1460

    • Tom Kemp (Booking Agent – North America)
      The Feldman Agency
      [email protected]
      Work: 416-598-0067 x 320
      Fax: 416-598-9597

    • Kim Cooke (Label – Canada)
      [email protected]
      Work: 1(416) 961-1040
      Cell: 1(416) 509 8359
      Fax: (416) 343-9986

    • Phil Simpson (Booking Agent – UK)
      Strada Music
      [email protected]
      Phone: +44 (0) 1377 217662

    • Lizzie Evans (Publicist – UK)
      Evans Above PR
      [email protected]
      Phone: 0207 241 5010 / 07909 901 322

    • Liv Slania (Radio Promotions – UK)
      Mystic Sons
      [email protected]
      Phone: +44 (0) 7799 405 250

    • Susan O’Grady (Radio Promotions – Ireland)
      Publicity & Radio, Star House Collective
      [email protected]
      T (North America): +1647 965 1516 (North America)
      T (Europe): +353 1254 8515

    • Felix Schwadtke-Heinrich (Publicist – GE)
      Publicity & Radio, Community Promotion
      [email protected]
      T: +49 (0)40-432 08 46-13
      Fax: +49 (0)40-432 08 46-16

    • Dennis Krause (Booking Agent – GE)
      A.S.S. Concerts & Promotion
      [email protected]

    • Joe Stahl (Publicist – US)
      Missing Piece Group
      [email protected]
      Phone: 862.234.0801
      Phone (2): 415.996.7036

    • Brad Hunt (Radio Promotions – US)
      [email protected]
      Phone: 585-765-2083