June 9, 2014 2:02 pm

WATCH: Jimmy Rankin talks country music, fake nails

TORONTO — Singer Jimmy Rankin might know where all the best nail salons are in Canada.

“I’m dependent on these things,” Rankin said, referring to his artificial finger nails.

“So every town I go to I have a list of nail places in case.”

Rankin’s long nails allow him to do a lot of finger-picking on his guitar.

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The 50-year-old Nova Scotia native appeared Monday on Global’s The Morning Show to talk about his latest album, Back Road Paradise.

His sixth solo release includes guest vocalists like country star Alison Krauss and Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy.

“I like to collaborate with people,” said Rankin. “I’ve known Jim for many years and I sent him a song I thought he’d be perfect for. Luckily for me he agreed, and took time out of his busy schedule and laid down his beautiful vocal.”

Rankin said the album is “totally country” because it was recorded using traditional country instruments.

“Going back to the early days of making recordings with my siblings, we always included a country song and we always played some country music growing up,” he recalled.

He and his siblings, known as The Rankin Family, collected six Juno Awards, 15 East Coast Music Awards and three Canadian Country Music Awards between 1989 and 1999.

The family music act was rocked by the death of John Rankin in a car accident in 2000, the sudden death of Geraldine Rankin in 2007 and the loss of Raylene Rankin to breast cancer in 2012.

Still, Rankin said the remaining siblings try to reunite every summer in Cape Breton.

Do they sing together?

“It’s funny, sometimes,” he admitted. “But it’s not like we break out in song at the table when we’re having a barbecue.”

© Shaw Media, 2014

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