With an impressively deep, powerful voice, he and his charming partner quickly cast a spell over the audience. ” - Göttinger Tageblatt

Göttinger Tageblatt



It is rare to meet a man of few words these days, especially one with surreal talents. Maybe it’s that JD Crosstown’s songwriting speaks for itself. This local musician is both humble and skilful, but before he broke into the music scene and has since gone “full steam ahead” as he puts it, he was first just a kid playing guitar by the fire.

Crosstown grew up in Neyaashiinigmiing, the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation, and has family up north, giving him both Cree and Ojibwe heritage. His dad and uncle played guitar in his younger years, inspiring him to start as early as nine years old. Their old folk tunes stuck with a young JD, often playing classics like The Band and Bob Dylan, both of whom are still big influences.

Originally he was drawn to the piano, but guitar came more naturally, finding himself strumming along to Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, and just about anything a teenage boy would gravitate towards. Guitar was just a hobby throughout most of his adolescence. “I didn’t have the drive or confidence to perform,” he says.

But that’s since changed.

Not without its trials and tribulations, though. For example, when he finally did gain the confidence and reached the age to hit the bar scene, it was mid-pandemic, and live music was written off. A road bump on his path for sure. But, when things opened up again, Crosstown knew it was time to get on that stage.

He started playing at Heartwood Concert Hall’s open mics after freshly turning eighteen. He often covered traditional folk songs and played one of his originals, Sweet Margarita, a murder ballad he wrote influenced by Dylan’s cover of Lily of the West.

Crosstown has always gravitated towards folk music, for its ability to connect with the audience, and describes his own music as traditional folk, country, and blues. There are several people to thank for helping to shape his sound and advance his musical career. One of which is local guitar legend, Pete Devlin. Many advised JD to connect with Devlin, and when they finally crossed paths, Devlin helped to connect Crosstown with other musicians in the area, like Morgan Barrie, a Summerfolk Youth Discoveries judge, who urged Crosstown to apply, anticipating the young man would be the perfect fit for a coveted festival spot. Crosstown played on the grand ol’ Summerfolk stage the following year, and the crowd loved him.

Career Highlights 

Supported Matt Epps Rolling Wave Tour across Germany - 2023

Opened for The Sadies at Marsh Street Centre Clarksburg - 2023

Opened for Digging Roots at Meaford Hall - 2023

Opened for Julian Taylor at Small World Art Flesherton - 2023

Youth Discoveries Summerfolk Owen Sound - 2022