BTW-Velvet Underground , Rose Cousins, Uffie, Glutenhead, Joseph, Bombay Bicycle Club, Paul James, Jack De Keyzer, Danny Marks, Charlie Parker

Fri Sep 20
Rose Cousins Photo Credit Lindsay Duncan

Least favourite kinda fall is like this one. When the cold wind arrives before the colour and the old demons come too soon to torment. An entry point from Velvet Underground
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62ckXALWn1M

JUNO Award-winning songwriter Rose Cousins shares her version of Prince’s classic, “I Would Die 4 U”, recorded together with Bear’s Den and Christof van der Ven.Why you ask?

Jack De Keyzer Check Mate

Fri Sep 20, 2019

For 46 years or roughly a couple million miles, bluesman, guitarist, singer, songwriter,  Jack de Keyzer has been hitting the road, rail and air to bring his brand of guitar driven blues across Canada and around the globe.  With 11 records, 1 DVD, 2 Junos and 7 Maple Blues Awards under his belt, de Keyzer delivers the goods wherever, whenever he performs.

Playing  over 100 shows a year, de Keyzer’s music is steeped in the Chicago blues,  with a broad range of influences ranging from Detroit’s Motown, Muscle Shoals deep soul ,  Memphis’  rock and roll,  Philadelphia’s funky soul jazz and London, England’s (where de Keyzer hails from) blues rock.  De Keyzer knows first hand as he has played with many first generation pioneers of these sounds and styles. (Bo Diddley, Otis Rush, Etta James, King Biscuit Boy and Ronnie Hawkins to name a few)   His latest recording  (Juno Nominated  -Blues Album of the Year 2019)  Checkmate is a 13 song tribute to the greats of Chess Records- Willie Dixon, Howlin’ Wolf, Albert King, Otis Rush and more.

Girl Pow-R - This Is Us!

Fri Sep 20
Girl Pow-R

Canadian popsters Girl Pow-R are once again set to inspire the masses with another stirring and encouraging release, “This Is Us” — available now! 

Hot on the heels of this year’s early success “Never Let Go” — which debuted on the iTunes Canada Children’s chart at #2 (second only to cultural force “Baby Shark” but ahead of genre mainstays such as Sharon, Lois & Bram, The Wiggles, and Raffi), and #15 in the U.S. — “This Is Us” comes in the midst of back-to-back-(to-back!) Canadian and U.S. summer tour stops.

With lyrics like “passionate for some change,” “take our message, shout it out,” and “we won’t be pushed around, we are strong, we are proud,” the latest song from the all-girl supergroup continues to embody their core mission of banding together and uplifting their peers. 

I Need To Get Paid

Fri Sep 20
Peter Åstedt

Yes, we all do need to get paid for our work. The problem is when you expect that payment or must invest to get out something out of it later.

If you open a business, you must market it. We go back to my restaurant that I always talk about that I should open if I wasn't in the music industry. Of course, no one will know my restaurant if I just open it. I need to advertise. Part of that advertising is probably to invite some food critics to a free meal. Yes, I will lose on that. I won't get paid for these free meals. In the end, though I will get people to come in faster who are paying to eat at my restaurant through these reviews. I must make a choice here, start making money direct and take a long time before I have enough of a customer base to get the money out or a faster way to give something away for free to bring in the money. Both ways have their faults. Give away food and I might re coupe it but aren't sure. The long way it might take so much time that I never get any salary out of it.

Multi-JUNO and CFMA Winners Sultans of String Release Stunning, Evocative New Single, “I Am A Refugee”

Fri Sep 20
Sultans of String

Featuring esteemed poet, multimedia artist, and Somali refugee Ifrah Mansour, the gorgeous and heart-gripping track is part of a larger cross-collaboration release, Refuge. Set for Spring 2020, this their seventh and most historic album features talents that arrived in Canada and the U.S. as immigrants and refugees — many of whom are GRAMMY and JUNO Award winners.

“Each one of us in the world has a remarkable story to tell…” says Sultans of String co-founder, Chris McKhool (Jesse Cook, Pavlo). It’s his bold, fiery fiddle — melded seamlessly with founding guitarist Kevin Laliberté’s (Jesse Cook) rumba rhythm — that lead the group’s distinctly signature sound. 

Added to this rich foundation are bass master Drew Birston (Chantal Kreviazuk), guitar wizard Eddie Paton, and Cuban percussion master Rosendo Chendy Leon (Alex Cuba). Together, their musical synergy strikes inimitable, explaining their three JUNO Awards, and four Canadian Folk Music Awards, plus many more. 

Canadian Pop Songstress Mauve Releases New Single "Close"

Fri Sep 13
Mauve

“Anything this good cannot be close enough” Canadian pop songstress Mauve sings in her newest release, “Close”.

Same goes for volume: a track like this one can’t be played loud enough either.

“I compare the energy of love to a growing fire,” she says of the chill-bop pop track sprinkled with hints of tropical house and RnB. “The energy a person emits attracts you… Then it spreads like a wildfire…

“I imagine a scene of watching embers in a fire start to glow, and that’s like the magic that’s birthed through that special connection with someone. That’s why I said a feeling like that cannot feel close enough because you want it completely come over you.

“My inspiration for this song began when I put together a tropical drum beat on my Cubase software program,” she recalls, painting a bigger picture on how “Close” came to be. “Justin Timberlake was in Toronto for a concert and I guess my mindset was in the romantic, hip hop mood he’s known for.

“I wanted to create a beat that was subtle but still had a lot of intensity charged into it — like that fire building up.”

Here Is The Secret To Success In The Music Industry!

Fri Sep 13
Peter Åstedt

Yes, the secret to success is to understand that it works like any other financial market! No, don’t buy the repeated phrase that we all work in the music industry because we love music. We are in here for the money like any other artists. And that is nothing wrong with that since we all need a salary to make our daily living. But that we work just because we love music well then, we could just have it as an extraordinary hobby.

So, for all you that just want to play for fun at the local bar or at your parent’s party. I’m not writing about that. That is cool that you are doing it. My text here is aimed at the ones that want to make it more than a hobby. They want a career.  And here it works like any other financial markets. I don't get how people think that someone would put in thousands of dollars in a project that clearly only will generate 100 dollars.

Katherine Penfold Releases new video “Better”

Fri Sep 13
Katherine Penfold Credit Lindyn Williams Photography

Co-written with Grammy winning Producer Chin Injeti (Eminem),  "Better" expresses the sweetness and loveliness of how one person can make you feel better, even with the smallest gesture.

Soul resides just beneath the exterior. Upon meeting Katherine Penfold, you might initially notice the prominent tattoos along her shoulder and arms before the conversation veers to her lifelong affinity for motorcycles, skateboarding, or woodworking. Listening to her music elicits a different impression altogether as a sultry, smooth, and sweet delivery belies the rustic badassery she exudes with ease. This gorgeous contrast illuminates the artist’s 2019 full-length debut, Sweetest Thing [Justin Time, Nettwerk].

“Sweetest Thing is a juxtaposition,” she affirms. “I have lots of tattoos and like motorcycles, but all of my music is about love and joy. When you see those extremes side-by-side, it really hones in on how I feel about myself and who I am. I had a cool and quirky upbringing that didn’t really fall into pigeonholes. Everything comes down to heart and soul for me, especially music.”

Julian Taylor Band – Avalanche

Fri Sep 13, 2019

The voice drifting into the lobby from the soundcheck sounds so timeless it might be emerging from some ancient well of souls at the end of the world, but it’s also fresh and vulnerable.

Sometimes he sings in riddles celebrating sexuality, courting, pleading, lonesome and profound.  Other times, lost in the dreads, the voice comes up out of the shadow summoning ancestral tones of Maroon resistance or slipping into a high Mohawk register.

So…not a monotone experience at all. And well beyond stereo. In fact not of any one genre. Not limited that way. You get doors opening on doors. There’s no dissonance. In fact it’s a harmonic whole.

Not a revivalist, but a musical revisionist, Julian Taylor masterfully re-combines and updates the vintage sounds that inspired him, to create bold, innovative songs.

BTW- XTC, The Trews, Bjork, Devon Eggers, Basement Revolver, Madame Psychosis, Walrus, Kensington Market Jazz Festival, Danny Marks, Alleycatz, Lula Lounge VMI Showcase, Iggy Pop

Fri Sep 13
XTC

In One Dimensional Man, Herbert Marcuse argues that capitalism, modern technology, historical materialism and entertainment culture, represent new forms of social control. Published in 1964, it’s still scary timely after all these years. This jaunty and mordant XTC number has resonance here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AiIlcew-GVM

It's been a year since the pride of picturesque Antigonish (I’m told) The Trews, released their critically acclaimed and JUNO nominated album CivilinairesThey’re celebrating with a special treat, brand new slick and catchy single, "Touch". Listen/ watch the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AOtF9h8aDqY

Ben Shapiro aka Glutenhead Releases “How It Feels”

Mon Sep 09
Glutenhead

Chaotic and catchy by deliberately delightful design, Canadian psychedelic art-pop /experimental rock vanguard Glutenhead has released his debut full-length LP, Glugen Frau — available now!

The album — and its premiere single “how it feels” — pull the curtain back on Toronto-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Benjamin Shapiro, and his distinctly multi-layered sonic style.

“The music is mostly aimed at representing the impressionistic and surreal quality of dreams and memories,” Shapiro shares. “I was studying neuroscience when I learned just how fluidly our brains construct our reality. The brain’s weakness and strength is the inability to discern what is real. There is a top-down influence on our perception, our minds simultaneously making connections between bits of information and building what we perceive.

Canada’s TETRIX Release Album #17

Mon Sep 09
TETRIX

Psych-country.

That’s it, that’s the pitch when it comes to Canada’s indie alt. outfit TETRIX and their new single, “Every House Has A Light On" — available now.

After 16 albums for the Calgary-based duo, Connor Gottfried and Neil Pockett have managed to further experiment with experimental, delivering a fresh, original sound that fuses the essence of old-time country with modern psychedelic music.

“Think ‘Hank Williams on acid’ or ‘melted accordion Kraftwerk,’” Gottfried details of their release by the same name, Every House Has A Light On. “For this album, we wanted to connect vintage country chord progressions and accordion with analog drum machines and avant-garde editing.

“Each song was recorded as an extended 20 to 30-minute improv session which was then chopped and edited using Ableton Live into the final arrangement heard on the album.”

BTW-Pentangle, Cat Fury, The Treble, Girl Wilde, Alone I Walk, Leeroy Stagger, John Findlay, Alfie Zappacosta, Sue Foley.

Fri Sep 06
Cat Fury & The Thunderbirds

Chilly in body and soul today. Good day for this classic from Pentangle.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RhGhbGOuS0

Once upon that time when the Eighties rolled over into the Nineties, the Riot Grrlllz thing was having its moment, young women with plenty to say and an in yer face way of going about it were grabbing guitars on the way to the barricades and kicking out tunes about it.  None rocked harder or were more articulate than Catherine Simpson; whether fronting Dez Monaz or Cat Fury, dominating Lee’s Palace or The Rondun, Simpson looked bound for higher ground but eventually ended up in her ancestral Ireland, got married and mutated into a garage rocking rockabilly loving radio DJing leader of Cat Fury & The Thunderbirds. Whose current album Visions Of Eden, brings the Riot Grrrlz spirit tempered with Irish mysticism, blazing guitars and a tackle box full of sneaky hooks. Don’t miss the burning cover of bonus track AC/DC’s ‘Jailbreak’ right at the very end.

Yes They Will Go on Pictures!

Fri Aug 30

No, don't take a friend that makes great Instagram pictures to take your band photos! No, don't be so damn artistic that you don’t know what the pictures are supposed to portray! And for f**k sake, if you don't know how to work with colours and lighting and make then in black and white, we just know that it's not good. Black and white can be cool, but you need to have the option to also have it in colour.

I got a phone call from a booker that will take out some bands at our festival. Of course, he has no chance to listen to all 150 bands that are on the site. Instead, he went into the bands that he knew and after that those that had great pictures and said something. Usually, if the band has a professional picture, they usually have a full show.

I could see so many good bands just be overlooked because they haven't taken the time to work with the picture. Yes, it needs to be a good photographer that knows about lighting that should take pictures not your best friend with a system camera. This is what gets people to look at your band in a roster or a post.

Mini Pop Kids Release Version of Hit Song Old Town Road

Fri Aug 30
Mini Pop Kids Release Version of Hit Song Old Town Road

The continuing success of the Mini Pop Kids is a refreshing phenomenon, with young talent doing great things and with a charity element to boot.

The latest is a release of the ‘Old Town Road’, the # 1 hit by Lil Nas X feat. Billy Ray Cyrus, and as always the Mini Pop Kids deliver!

Watch the video here: https://youtu.be/sckQCtGrAv8

A Quote from Jazzy (Jasmine): “Can't wait for you all to see our new Music Video "Old Town Road". We had so much fun shooting it at a really cool place called Downey's Farm in Caledon, ON.  We got to jump on a huge blow-up jumping pad, ride trikes on a track and pet farm animals (my favourite was the Bunny!!).  There were also some really cool special effects used in the music video, too!”

Each year, more than 500 hopefuls audition to be a part of this legacy act, and many MINI POP KIDS have gone on to perform with the biggest names in the biz, including Justin Bieber, Beyonce, and on national TV and Broadway.

Live at Heart Sweden 2019

Fri Aug 30, 2019

Live at Heart Sweden the festival is celebrating Year 10 of bringing music and media from around the world together.

The site of this gathering is the magical hamlet of Örebro, Sweden, a beautiful and picturesque setting replete with a castle, river and cobblestone roads balanced with hip, modern night clubs, restaurants and bars. Live at Heart Sweden is one of Scandinavia’s biggest showcase festivals and industry conferences.

The festival shines a light on the stars of tomorrow and brings creative professionals together to inspire, learn and create. During Live at Heart, hundreds of artists, filmmakers, industry delegates and thousands of Live at Heart fans come together in the heart of Örebro. They come from different backgrounds, cultures and industries. But they do have one thing in common. They come to discover “sensation”. What is a sensation?

BTW-Lou Reed, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Paula Cole, Sass Jordan, Throwback Fest, Demons, Climax Blues Band

Fri Aug 23
Lou Reed 1977

Having forsaken the leafy lanes of Riverdale for the gritty and noisy ambience of downtown, my days start early. It’s barely noon and I’ve already seen on the busy sidewalk out front, a pair of drug deals go down, one involving a period of testy give and take and a panhandling skirmish, all casually ignored by the folks rushing by and around them. A taste of Lou Reed’s paean to the black angel seemed apropos.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xcwt9mSbYE

The hardest working band in Australia, King Gizzard &The Lizard Wizard have released their fifteenth studio album -- the thrash metal-worshipping Infest The Rats' Nest via ATO Records. Earlier this week, the septet released a video game revealing their latest single Mars ForThe Rich

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UELbVHComM4

Bara Jonson and Free Release New Single Far’n Away

Fri Aug 23
Far'n Away Bara Jonson and Free

How does an act from Sweden take a chance and go to a Live at Heart Festival on a Peninsula named Burin in Canada’s Newfoundland, write a song and end up on the Swedish Independent Music Chart 10 weeks in a row in a # 1 position, thanks to the fans (who are now friends) that they met there?

This is what Bara Jonson and Free did. “We rented a car, drove through torrential rain, landed in the middle of nowhere at the Marystown Hotel and suddenly you feel like you came ‘home’? There is no explaining it, but that is what happened to us.”

So they went back to Sweden and immediately wrote “Hello Newfoundland” and their newly found friends embraced it. The release of the video included all of the amazing people who forged the road to these lifetime memories and also featured Tale The Rapper.

From there lifelong friendships were forged with the lovely people of Newfoundland and in addition the global delegates who attended became friends and fans, leading to being part of a sanctioned Showcase in Cannes, France at MIDEM 2019, attending Canadian Music Week in 2019,a return to Live at Heart Newfoundland 2019 and Cashbox Canada Showcase at CMW 2020.

How Festivals Have Changed

Fri Aug 23
How Festivals Have Changed

There was a kind of interesting article in a newspaper in Sweden how Swedish festivals have changed over the past 10 years. Before many of the festivals were held in some small town in a muddy field. Camping festivals they have named them. Many of them have now been replaced by a large city festival inside parks in a big city.

I don't know if this is just a Swedish phenomenon or if it is a change all over the world? I guess it’s a worldwide phenomenon.

I was recently at Summerfest the world’s largest festival with a million visitors in Milwaukee in USA. It's not a camping festival but held in a park area in the city with permanent structures. What struck me was the vendors. A part of being on the festival back in the days was that you could buy things around your favourite artists or records like they had on Medimex in Italy where I was at the beginning of the month. Also, a festival in the middle of the city.