Features

Nicole Rayy Taking Big Steps

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Submitted by Don Graham
Nicole Rayy Photo Credit:  Ian McCausland

Nicole Rayy has been paying her dues and finding her path on the Canadian country music scene for about five years now,and has been getting more and more comfortable in her musical direction, growing into the artist she is destined to be.

Now that her name is familiar to fans and country radio, she is kicking it up a notch this month with the release of her debut full length album titled, Dig. We asked about the choice of album title; “I played around with different ideas for titles. I’ve always liked titles of songs on the album as a title and when we landed on Dig I thought it was perfect because that’s what I felt I did writing this album. I was digging deep and writing from my heart.”

The release date for Dig is October 14th, with a release party at Cowboy’s Roadhouse in Winnipeg on October 15th andall proceeds from the night being donated to the Manitoba Neurofibromatosis Support Group(MBNF). “We wanted a charity that really needed to have its awareness level raised. I was introduced to this charity by my manager whose 9-year old nephew lives with NF and I’ve seen the daily challenges he faces.I wanted to give back and help spread awareness by donating all the proceeds from the evening to MBNF.”

Southside Shuffle, Chuck Jackson and Stax is Back

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Submitted by Cindy Shibley Koury
Photo Credits: Cindy Shibley Koury
Photo at right: Southside Shuffle 2016

The weekend after Labour Day, for eighteen years now, Port Credit has come alive with Blues, Jazz and Roots music at The Tim Horton's Southside Shuffle and this Blues Mama has attended every year. It's my local festival, my home festival. It's easily my favourite weekend of the year and experiencing the evolution of this festival, from its inaugural event in the ballpark at the corner of Hurontario and Port Streets, where Chuck Jackson gathered a group of blues bands to play on the back of a flat bed, to the major four day event with 4 stages in Memorial Park, Street Shuffle, Beggars Banquet, Blues and Roots Jamstage and more, has been a pleasure. I have been fortunate to have seen International Blues greats like Mavis Staples, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Johnny Winter, Big Bill Morganfield, Elvin Bishop and Canned Heat just to name a few. However, more importantly, is the highlighting of great, sometimes Legendary, Canadian talent at Southside. Jeff Healey, David Clayton Thomas, David Wilcox, Lighthouse, Jack de Keyzer and more have all played at the Main Stage.

The Platinum Rock All Stars!

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Submitted by Don Graham

Imagine an album featuring some of your favourite classic rock songs to hit the charts by the original artists with some of the finest musicians of that era.

Acts like The Rascals, Yes, Vanilla Fudge, Whitesnake, Asia, Blue Oyster Cult and more. Now imagine seeing that album performed live featuring some of the original musicians playing together as a super group, a group called The Platinum Rock All Stars.

Well that’s exactly what you can do in Toronto on October 19th as The Platinum Rock All Stars come to The Rock Pile West for one show only. The band will feature: Carmine Appice of Vanilla Fudge, Cactus, Rod Stewart, Jeff Beck, Ozzy on drums;,Gene Cornish  of The Rascals on guitar;
Geoff Downes of Buggles, Asia and Yes on keyboards; Phil Naro of Talas, Peter Criss Kiss Army; Brian May, Julian Lennon on vocals and guitar;  Rudy Sarzo of Quiet Riot, Ozzy, Whitesnake, Blue Oyster Cult on bass and Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal, of Guns N’ Roses on guitar.

Rosie Mackenzie Releases New Album “Atlantic”

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

On Thursday, October 6th, at 7:00pmThe Old Triangle Irish Alehouse’s An Seanchai Room in Halifax will play host to the highly-anticipated launch of Cape Breton fiddler Rosie Mackenzie’s latest album, Atlantic. Recorded in her current home of Dingle, Ireland, with guitarist Matt Griffin, Atlantic is a collection of original compositions that pays tribute to MacKenzie’s Cape Breton roots while also highlighting how much the Atlantic Ocean has shaped her life. For more information, check out the facebook page for the free event here: https://www.facebook.com/events/534725980062711/

Additionally, Rosie and Matt Griffin will be performing on Tuesday October 11th, at 7:30pm, The Port Morien Legion/Community Centre in Port Morien as part of Cow Bay Ceilidh, a celebration of local music as part of the Celtic Colours Festival in Cape Breton.. There will also be a free concert two days earlier on  Friday, October 9th, at 5:30pm, at the Bras d'Or Yacht Club in Baddeck.

Carmine Appice Stick It!

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Submitted by Sandy Graham

As drummer for Vanilla Fudge, Carmine Appice set the grooves for the groundbreaking band’s 1967 psychedelic debut, inadvertently inventing Stoner Rock in the process. The Fudge had no precedent. The band was totally unique. No rock group, up until that point, had ever so lugubriously s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d out well-known pop tunes like the Beatles “Eleanor Rigby” and “Ticket To Ride,” Curtis Mayfield’s “People Get Ready,” Sonny & Cher’s “Bang Bang” Rod Argent’s “She’s Not There” and, most famously, The Supremes’ Motown classic “You Keep Me Hangin’ On” to such hippie heights. With Mark Stein’s mysterioso wash of Grand Guignol keyboard theatrics, Tim Bogert’s amazing and trippy bass runs, and guitarist Vince Martell’s era-happy soloing, Appice boomed like no other drummer in rock history. Their debut album still stands today as a Hard Rock classic. Vanilla Fudge went on to tour with Jimi Hendrix, Cream, and even had Led Zeppelin as an opening act.

Post-Fudge, Bogert and Appice formed Cactus (seen as an influence on King’s X and Van Halen). Post-Cactus, the rhythm section found Grammy-winning Guitar Hero Jeff Beck to form the first supergroup: Beck, Bogert & Appice (BBA).

BTW-The Peptides, Blackie and the Rodeo Kings, The Darcys, Kenny Brown, Brendan Canning, Kiosk

The Peptides

Submitted by Lenny Stoute

Fall is here and the time is right for finding new music strewn like acorns in the street. Ottawans The Peptides is a nine-member band with a larger-than-life pop sound. Five vocalists and four instrumentalists draw on funk, electronic and disco influences. Described by the Ottawa Citizen as “the B52’s crossed with The Manhattan Transfer backed by Arcade Fire.” They claim to be a  snapshot of Canadian diversity, The PepTides is made up of  English, French, Ukrainian, Mexican,Guyanese, Cree, Acadian, Armenian, Scottish and LGBTQ players. The group is noted for its extravagant live performances featuring thick vocal harmonies, theatrical choreography and colourful visuals. The PepTides’ songs juxtapose upbeat music with lyrics commenting on deep themes like love, hate, revenge, sex, religion, war and getting ready for dates.

In 2013, The PepTides garnered national attention by producing a full-length album in collaboration with Stuart McLean of CBC Radio’s Vinyl Cafe. A 2014 release Love Question Mark was lauded by Exclaim! as “an ambitious collection of fun, daring, unadulterated, true blue art.” 

The Hives -- The Buzz Is Back

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Submitted By Pat Blythe

Photo Credits: PAT BLYTHE
A Girl With A Camera "The Picture Taker"
Hives vocalist Per Pelle Almquvist

Bold, brazen, at times frenzied....electric...simply on fire. My introduction to The Hives, a Swedish garage rock band initially formed in 1993 by Per "Pelle" Almquvist and his brother Nicholaus, was to say the least, mind blowing.

Poncing, prancing and strutting around on stage, lead vocalist Pelle is Mick Jagger personified except....he has slightly more grace and flair with equal amounts of cockiness.....and his high leaps and kicks are effin' amazing. The microphone swing is well.....in FULL swing. Well practiced and choreographed it's part of the natural flow of things. Modesty is not Pelle's middle name. The crowd loved him. He has no shame in calling The Hives the crowd's favourite rock bank....day or night. Leaping off the stage a number of times and wading into the crowd, Pelle shines in the limelight. A true performer and entertainer....and yes, he can sing. A pretty good voice as a matter-of-fact....way, better than Jagger. Even Jagger's mother was apparently quoted as saying he couldn't sing for his supper. Pelle's favourite spot on stage....standing on top of the monitors. Second fave, standing on the kick drum (I'm beginnning to wonder how tall he actually is). He never, ever, stands still and he has no hesitation of sticking his face right in your camera. Talk about up close and personal.

Proudly Canadian: Goddo

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Story Credit: Jaimie Vernon/The Canadian Pop Encyclopedia 



Following a successful rock star lifestyle with Canadian Glam Rock outfit Fludd, bassist Greg Godovitz left the fold in frustration as the songwriting opportunities for him dwindled. Utilizing a team of musical cohorts from Fludd’s camp, he assembled an ad hoc studio act dubbed Goddo; and released a cover version of "Louie Louie" through A & M Records of Canada in 1975. To promote the song, which managed to stir up a bit of airplay nationally, Godovitz needed a working band to secure gigs, and a paycheck, in the Ontario bar scene. 

Enter former Brutus guitarist Gino Scarpelli and former Truck drummer Marty Morin in late 1975. The band made the rounds touring every dingy pub, dive, strip club and high school in Ontario and Quebec with occasional forays into the US and Western Canada as a means of perfecting their stage show and performance chops. There was also the matter of becoming a big act in a little pond. Soon they were the working-man’s power trio; a sonic three-man wrecking crew to be reckoned with through a steady diet of bar circuit gigs over the next two years before finally attracting the attention of Polydor Records who signed the group via a deal with independent production company Fat Cat Records. 

Sunrise & Good People Live In Concert

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Canadian Music Week – Club 120 –Friday May 6 (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
Canadian Blast at Morrisons MIDEM –Saturday, June 4 (Cannes, France)

The trio features Mastermind on vocals and guitar; Tsayffo on vocals, percussion, guitar and bass, and Mercury Brown on vocals and drums. Tsayffo and Mastermind have grown up playing music together since childhood. Onstage, they move with one mind. Playing to the audience – capacity and size won’t matter – within the first few bars of their first song THE LOVE, the band takes full control of the stage and everyone in the room.  You can hear a pin drop. There is a sense of something authentic happening here. I remind myself there are only three people on stage, though the sound completely surrounds and engulfs the senses. Mastermind is on vocals, a deep sultry bass voice. His guitar work takes me by surprise, not just because I have never heard anyone use a guitar like this before - more because it defies the norm and underlines a musical genius in his ability to link musical hooks together in a completely unexpected fashion. Tsayffo is on percussion – no, he actually is percussion. Every beat resonates in every movement he makes.

Billy Ray Cyrus Still Tugging at Our Heartstrings

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

Billy Ray Cyrus has released a music video for his current single, “Thin Line,” through an exclusive worldwide co-premiere with Vevo and CMT.

“Thin Line” is now available on Vevo.com, on CMT every hour during morning music blocks (5-10 a.m.), and every other hour on CMT Music. Starting Sept. 23, the video will be released to a panel of national, syndicated, closed circuit, Internet and regional outlets.

“Thin Line” was shot entirely on Cyrus’ expansive property in Middle Tenn. by director Blake Judd (Black Stone Cherry, Shooter Jennings, Thomas Rhett) and exposes faith, passion, and the power of music through Cyrus’ perspective. The music video offers viewers a peek into Cyrus’ southern home as he wanders through the spaces that flood with memories and the prized possessions in which inspire him—including a handwritten note from Johnny Cash in 1992.

“Thirty-six years ago I was working with Elvis and saw him take the same kind of flak you’re taking now. Congratulations on the way you’re handling it all. In your case, as in Elvis’, the good outweighs the bad. Let ’em have it. I’m in your corner.” – Johnny Cash

Cyrus shares the creative process that crafted the title track to his 14th studio album, released earlier this month through Blue Cadillac Music, in behind-the-scenes footage here. Thin Line is now available at major digital retailers, includingiTunes and Amazon.

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