Bullseye Records Getting Ready To Hit The Mark

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Submitted by Cashbox Magazine

Rita Chiarelli: The Queen of Canadian Blues

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Submitted by Julijana Capone
Courtesy of National Music Centre

To iconic blues singer-songwriter Rita Chiarelli, blues music was always the most honest expression in music. The expression was real. It was about life—the anger, joy, and sadness—and you could hear it in the lyrics.

The Queen of Canadian Blues, as Chiarelli has come to be known, was the daughter of Italian immigrants, born in the working-class steel town of Hamilton in the early ‘50s.

“In Hamilton, we identified with blues music,” says Chiarelli. “We identified with hard work and hard times—that blue-collar mentality. That’s the kind of town it was.”

Chiarelli’s parents worked difficult jobs that paid very little at nearby cotton mills. And although they were strict, they were supportive of their daughter’s passions.

“Singing seemed like an impossibility,” she says. “But they believed I deserved to be heard. For traditional Italian parents, that’s a huge leap of faith. I give them credit for that.”

With Hamilton’s close proximity to Michigan, radio frequencies from the U.S. spilled onto local airwaves, offering the nascent singer her first taste of the blues.

She soaked up the soulful tunes of ‘60s powerhouse singers, such as Big Mama Thornton, Janis Joplin, and Odetta. “Hearing blues music for the first time was a revelation,” she recalls.

BTW- Sight For Sewn Eyes, Speed Control, Tame Impala, The Dears & Wilco

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute

Halifax visionaries A Sight For Sewn Eyes have released their sophomore album 'Self-Titled' . The thing's a showcase for the band's sound, comprising flurries of ferocious riffing, maniacal time shifts, and merciless, in-your-face vocals. It's an expertly-executed collage of components from various styles of contemporary heavy music; incorporating everything from the manic tempos of NYC hardcore, to the delightfully dissonant rhythmic onslaught of early metalcore pioneers like Norma Jean and Beloved, to more melodic musings that border on post-rock.

ASFSE recorded their new record in the early summer months of 2014 with the Canadian legend Greg Dawson at BWC studios in Brampton, ON. After the completion of the record, it was sent to mastermind Matt Bayles (Mastodon, Minus The Bear, Norma Jean) for mixing, then off to Harry Hess at Vespa studios for the final mastering.

Sewn Eyes have completed several national and international tours touring alongside contemporaries like Structures, Counterparts, Cancer Bats, Architects, Dead and Divine, Vanna & more. The young Maritime metalers will continue to tour tirelessly in support of Self-Titled, so you've been warned.

Shirley Horn: You Won’t Forget Me (1991)

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Submitted by Bill King

I was sorting through past interviews and came across this timeless chat with the very lovely and approachable Shirley Horn. Horn had a career resurgence beginning with signing on with Verve records in 1987 and the release of “I Thought About You.”  From 87’ to 2005 fifteen recordings saw daylight. Miles Davis brought her into the spotlight in 1960 praising her depth and creativity. She recorded a few sides for Mercury Records under the watchful eye of bandleader, A&R man and producer Quincy Jones. Those tracks failed to gain traction but on reflection are truly magnificent – (Loads of Love and Shirley Horn with Horns)

I arrived at the Four Seasons Hotel with no clue to how the soft spoke Shirley Horn would receive me. One tap on the door and there she was – still in overnight pajamas inhaling a long drink of a Pall Mall. I couldn’t remember a time I’d seen that particular brand of cigarette around. I thought they had gone the way of Lucky Strikes and Kents.
Horn invited me in then climbed back in bed.

Years later I catch Horn perform live at the Top of the Senator with pianist George Shearing in the audience. Part way through the first set, Shearing stands up and yells her name out. This was a joyful call. The reason being – Horn played with the same assurance and harmonic depth and rhythmic pulse as Shearing. Deep textured tones, gorgeous passages; a soft-sweet touch painted the room in muted impressionistic color. That was just the piano sounding off. That voice, oh, that voice! The interview begins.

Rayland Baxter Releases New Track 'Young Man' From 'Imaginary Man'

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Rayland Baxter has released the newest track from his upcoming record 'Imaginary Man,' which will be released on August 14 via ATO Records and MapleMusic Recordings.  Entitled 'Young Man' the song has found an early champion with GQ Magazine who raves "If this track is any indication, it's gonna be full of addictive and moody end-of-summer jams. The perfect way to close out the season.'"

In celebration of the new album, Baxter will embark on a series of tour dates this summer and fall, including a series of dates supporting Grace Potter as well as headlining shows in NYC and L.A.  Recorded in Nashville, the 11-track album was produced by Adam Landry (Deer Tick,Diamond Rugs) and Eric Masse (Andrew Combs, Robert Ellis) and features Bucky Baxter on pedal steel as well as Jessie Baylin, Isaaca Byrd (MYZICA), Mikky Ekko, Jordan Lehning(Caitlin Rose, Steelism) and Matt Vazquez (Delta Sprit) on background vocals.

Of the album, Baxter comments, "To me, Imaginary Man is an audible record of my journey down the bright blue river of imagination. It is a multicolored dream of song, a sonic birdbath if you may. The sounds and songs are as visual as they are tactile and it shows a bit more of who I have become as an artist, as continual and never ending as that process is."

BTW Starring ON AN ON, James Linck, In The Valley Below, Tia Brazda, Perch Creek, Texas Musicians Museum, Skaface, Pistol George Warren

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute

ON AN ON have released their video for the song 'It's Not Over', off the upcoming sophomore album 'And The Wave Has Two Sides,' out July 24 on Fontana North.

The Carlos Lopez Estrada directed video was shot entirely on an iPhone 6, and features two lovers as they chase each other alongside a speeding train; crashing through buildings, jumping over cows and riding along on horses and motorcycles and even jet-packs to keep up. The fun and dynamic video is the perfect complement to the upbeat song. "Put this in the right hands," wrote Stereogum of 'It's Not Over' last month, "and it'll be dominating the radio for the rest of the year."

The Minneapolis trio recorded the follow up to their well received debut, 'Give In,' at the famous Sunset Sound Studios in Los Angeles with legendary producer Joe Chiccarelli (Spoon, White Stripes, The Shins, My Morning Jacket). When ON AN ON began work on their new album, they brought a new approach to their song-writing with them. "This is another first record for us in a way," says keyboardist Alissa Ricci of the album. "This time we came into the studio as a band," she says, alluding to their experience with their debut, which was recorded only weeks after the three members had formed ON AN ON. "'Give In,' was us learning to think less and trust our instincts," she continues, "what you hear on that record is a band beginning."

That Summer Jazz Festival Season is Warming Up!

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Submitted by Bill King

Each season I’m asked to photograph and video ten nights of TD Toronto Jazz Festival. Remember February, well that’s when I start getting my jazz roll on. Those bleak – sometimes loathsome days I stare beyond my office window on to Christie Street and dream about temperatures exceeding – 21 degrees and find imagination basking in plus 27 degree ecstasy. I beg March and April end. Then May arrives and it’s much like March and April. Then June sneaks up and the thaw begins – and yet the persistent  footsteps of cold air stalks from behind.

Well, I’ve found my bliss. TD Jazz is a memory – a very fine collection of memorable performances; George Clinton & Parliament/Funkadelic, Morris Day the Time, Dumstaphunk, Al Jarreau, Booker T & the MGs, Al Di Meola, Gary Clark, Snarky Puppy, Jamie Cullum; the new wave of bookings that keep the pot stirring and audiences engaged.

I’m usually whipped from all the lugging of gear and camera motion but not this year. In the back of my head I still had that fearful reminder of a bitter wind ripping my lungs as I bike through the downtown core. No feat of summer endurance can match the ‘slap to the chest’ feeling driving headlong into ice wind.

Next up; the big Ernie Ranglin night at Lula Lounge.

PanAmania: Epic Arts & Culture Programme is On!

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Submitted by Lee Fraser

By now, it is pretty hard to avoid the fact that the PanAm Games are scheduled in Toronto.  And you may be thinking that it won’t affect your life, other than increasing your traffic time due to the HOV lanes.  But even if you have no interest in sports, there are a lot of reasons why you should be checking out what the PanAm Games have to offer.  Whether it’s one of the many free photo exhibits or the abundance of live Latin music, you will be sure to find a way to connect with the 41 countries represented at the Games.

A large part of Panamania,the arts & culture program component of the Toronto 2015 PanAm and Para PanAm Games, is theatre.  There is a new work by Robert Lepage called “887”, an exploration of memory as it is relevant to today’s high tech world.  There’s also a modern adaptation of “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”and a piece about Toronto’s first African-Canadian letter carrier.  The organizers have also managed to include something called Watercolour, which is a sailpast to celebrate the start of the sailing competition, curated by the Textile Museum of Canada.  There’s ballet, break-dancing and urban street dancing.

If you are curious about the evolution of athletic ware, there is an exhibition on at the Design Exchange for the duration of the PanAm and Para PanAm Games.  Other fashion events include outdoor fashion shows (at HTO Park on July 16& 17), and a paid gala event at the Westin Harbour Castle on July 18.

Christian McBride Walkin’ with the Lions

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Submitted by Bill King

Watching Christian lead his big band through the paces at the recent TD Toronto Jazz Festival I couldn’t help reflecting back to the summer of 1993 and the St. Lucia Jazz Festival when he was just 19 years old. We were staying at the Wyndham Resorts and the house band playing poolside was led by pianist Mulgrew Miller. Miller’s band was comprised of new faces – Joshua Redman tenor saxophone, Donald Harrison alto sax, Tony Reedus drums and Christian McBride bass, along with Steve Turre - trombone. The group played six straight nights and were always a delight. I invited each one by one to sit down for a chat only a few steps from the Caribbean Sea.

BTW April Wine, Kill Matilda, Win Win, Nervous Curtains, Kempenfest, July Talk, Chris Staig & The Marquee Players, Kevin Jollimore, U2

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute
Photo at right: Kill Matilda

Canada's favorite sweaty, sexy punk rock nomads Kill Matilda are coming in from the cold via a signing with Louisville's Little Heart Records. The label will release the band's brand new EP, Songs of Survival, on August 22 and the good folks at Exclaim! has premiered the video for first single "Needle and Thread."

"We have waited a long time to sign with the right label and we are excited to be partnering with Little Heart Records," the band said. "Signing with Little Heart is the first step on the next leg of our rock 'n 'roll journey. We wanted to do this release justice in terms of pushing it out there to our fans and we think Little Heart is the right label to do that with."

Kill Matilda broke through with the now notorious #Punk#Zombie#RocknRoll  EP in a social climate of intense zombie interest paralleled by a similar interest in female-fronted power punk bands. An unabashed throwback to classic punk with a little bit of horror rock mixed in, an impressive mashup of The Misfits and The Cramps, with 'I Want Revenge' and 'Zombie Apocalypse' typifying those acts. The Montrealers came on as a fresh and exciting burst of musical energy powered by Dusty Exner’s voice, whether in scream mode or getting melodic and the invariable comparisons to Hole, The Misfits, Offspring and Yeah, Yeah Yeahs, were on the mark and remain so. Once they started touring, it was quickly evident Kill Matilda came out with the intent to kill every gig they played.

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