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Lindsay Layla is an emerging dub poet and soul singer based in Toronto. This stunningly talented and rangeful Metis vocalist and multi-instrumentalist is rebuilding her music career after almost a decade away from the industry raising her son and discovering her spiritual path. She has recently shared the stage with notable artists such as Ammoye and The Dub Chronicles Trio, and is currently working with various producers on her debut EP. 

 

Lindsay Regina Marie Hachey was born in Northeastern Ontario, Cochrane District in the town of Timmins, located on the Mattagami River to a Metis (French Algonquin) mother and a Metis (Micmac, French-Acadian & Irish) father. Lindsay had humble beginnings with two sisters; one of whom was blind but showed Lindsay a deeper understanding of life. She and Lindsay were very close, and the two shared an unbreakable sisterly bond. Lindsay's older sister is 7 years her senior and they share the same mother. The family was far removed from much of any culture even though they lived on unceeded Algonquin land who enjoyed fishing and some hunting. From an early age, Lindsay demonstrated her talents for dancing, singing, acting and athletics. During her high school years, Lindsay toured across Canada with a French musical troupe called Tout Feu Tout Flamme (TFTF). While touring the East coast, in New Brunswick, she met a man in the audience who shared the same last name which led to the realization that she had a lot of lost family in New Brunswick on her father’s side. This experience led Lindsay to discover much of her lost lineage which had until that point been kept a secret from both sides of her family. Lindsay's paternal grandparents came from Bathursts NB and her maternal grandparents from Verner and Cochrane Ontario but the family moved around a lot. Both maternal and paternal grandparents eventually moved to Timmins Ontario where Lindsay's parents met and started their family. When Lindsay was born, her family was living in a trailer park off of highway 65 and years later moved to a semi-detached home in a local community called Melrose in Timmins Ontario.  Lindsay grew up in this community until she left Timmins to pursue her music career and post secondary studies in musical theatre, film and television in Toronto Canada.

 

Lindsay graduated from the acclaimed Randolph School of the Performing Arts in 2006 at the top of her class and established herself as a triple threat Artist. She signed with AMI, an artist management firm based in Toronto after her final performances with the Arts school. Shortly thereafter, her youngest and closest sister was diagnosed with cancer for the second time, and Lindsay dropped everything to return home to be with her sister until she passed away in 2008. Lindsay remained in her hometown caring for her mother and father after their tragic loss. Lindsay returned to Toronto 1 year after the passing of her sister in hopes of starting where she had left off but the grief from the loss of her sister led to struggles with depression and addiction. In 2012, the songstress was given a miraculous gift with the birth of her son Elijah, and she once again found purpose in life. 

 

In 2014 Lindsay released three singles – ‘Rewind’, ‘Unforgettable’, and a Christmas single called ‘Christmas All Over the World’ inspired by the birth of her Son – under her Artist name Layla to honour her late sister Kayla. At this time, the singer, songwriter and new mother was forced to flee her home with her Son and lived in a shelter for five months with her child in Toronto. She experienced many challenges thereafter and Lindsay soon realized that her musical abilities and skills were meant for much more than popular world music.

 

In 2018, after graduating from a transitional housing program for women and their children called Homeward Bound, Lindsay’s professor gave her a book entitled ‘Fractured Homeland’ by Bonita Lawrence, a book about federal recognition and Algonquin identity in Ontario. Lindsay Layla researched more intensively on the red path to her healing journey, and in 2018 she landed a job as the Indigenous Language and Family Program coordinator at the Native Canadian Center of Toronto as an Early Childhood Educator where she met her mentor, Elder and dear relative who taught her the old language. Lindsay and her team of language teachers and creatives co-created many wonderful learning materials using the Arts to learn the languages. As her earlier training in the Performing Arts proved to play a big role in making educational content as Lindsay learnt more about culture and traditional ways. Lindsay Layla wrote and created an Indigenous Language puppet series for children and families using her puppeteering talents and Early Childhood Education to teach the language with Elders and Language teachers to children and youth. As the songstress grew stronger in her sovereignty and voice, she decided to take this time to work on her next musical projects dedicated to her resiliency, her love for her Son and the desire to connect with the People of Turtle Island. The dub poet songstress released her single Come Back Nation on September 30th to honour those affected by Residential Schools and expects to release her EP sometime in 2024.  Lindsay Layla believes her music will give a voice to many lost women, youth and men of her time and hopes to reach as many people with her works for the sake of the current generation and the next 7.

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