BTW with badbadnotgood/Ghostface Killah, Joel Plaskett, Zeynep Ozbilen, Swamperella, Pelletier/Freedman/Patel/Fekete and Mimi O'Bonsawin

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Submitted by Lenny Stoute

Big big night for the T.Dot hip hop community when the inimitable Ghostface Killah joined forces with local genre smashers and hip hop collaborators badbadnotgood to celebrate their collab album Sour Soul. That the joint was jammed and buzzing was a given. That it was a free show upped occupancy all the way to Fire Marshall level and a set of original jams by badbadnotgood pushed the excitement to red line level.

Highlights of their too-short set were a blazing Flying Lotus cover; a similarly energized reworking of III's "Kaleidoscope," and the new BBNG single, "Four Shots," featuring an impassioned throwdown from drummer Alexander Sowinski.

BTW-Starring badbadnotgood, Rich Aucoin, Gang of Four, Sleater Kinney, Vusi Mahlasela and Hugh Masakela


Submitted by Lenny Stoute
photo: Ghostface

Badbadnotgood, Toronto’s jazz-funk instigators stir it up strong with Sour Soul, their-long buzzed about collab with the legendary Ghostface Killah. For the most part, it’s a good fit. The voice and cadences are unmistakable as is the film noir gangsta rhymes and badbadnotgood do a righteous job of not only matching the beats but getting the emotional connections just so. While Ghostface DNA is all over the project, the guys manage to get in some guest shots from young comers DOOM (“Ray Gun”), Elzhi(“Gunshowers”), Tree(“Street Knowledge”) and a sizzling drop from Danny Brown on "Six Degrees" giving it all a very much in the moment vibe. Very cool considering the bulk of the material was written in 2012 durng an NY session with producer Frank Dukes. This is muscular, sinewy music tapping Stax soul, nodding at Jazzmatazz, touching on RZA and arranged so that a song’s true intentions often creep in from side stage rather than pushing to the front, all boombastic. Beats and production values are outstanding, bright touches like guitar reverb and string passages are never out of place and as per the badbadnotgood aesthetic, all this happens to you in 34 minutes flat, thank you ma’am.

Lesley Gore Passes on from Lung Cancer

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Submitted Courtesy of Rob Durkee
Photo: Lesley Gore 1964

Lesley Gore, who has died of lung cancer, aged 68, once told an interviewer: “There’s nothing more wonderful than standing on stage and shaking your finger and singing ‘Don’t tell me what to do.’” Gore later appeared in films and TV series and was a campaigner for women’s rights.

Legendary producer Quincy Jones discovered Lesley Gore. Around February of 1963, Jones had Gore record some 200 demo tapes and one of the songs was "It's My Party." According to Wikipedia, Lesley told Quincy, "It's not bad. I like it. Let's put it on the 'maybe' pile." Two solo women singers--Barbara Jean English and Helen Shapiro--would record the song but it went nowhere.  Then producer Phil Spector heard it and had the Crystals record it. When Jones found out about it, he rush-released the Gore version to beat the Crystals to the pop chart.

How did Lesley find out about "It's My Party" being released as a single? While driving in her car and hearing it on the radio. She was so shocked to hear herself singing "It's My Party" that she almost drove her car off the road.

Folks Happily Brave the Winter for Winterfolk

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Submitted by Lee Fraser
Photo: Ben Sures

This is a tale of bitter cold and welcoming warmth. Somehow, here in Toronto, the right light bulb went on over the right head.  Winterfolk is the creation of Brian Gladstone. Having spent most of his life in the corporate world, it seems that Brian chose to explore his creative side when others were embarking on mid-life crises.  With almost five decades behind him, he decided to record an album.  Through hard work and self-promotion, he got radio play and record label distribution in Europe.  But when he tried out for the home-town holy grail, Mariposa, Brian didn’t make the cut. Out of defeat comes innovation: the idea of a folk music festival in the dead of winter.  Winterfolk was born.

Winterfolk plays out over five stages within close proximity on the Danforth, just east of Broadview.  If the weather hadn’t been in the neighbourhood of minus twenty all weekend, you could have darted between shows without your jacket.  Given the fact that it was bitterly cold, with the wind only making things worse, it was easy enough to settle into one warm room and spend hours of your time there.  Winterfolk has two aspects to it: ticketed shows and a wristband.  This year, there were five ticketed shows offering line-ups of 4 to 6 artists following a theme per show, while the $10 wristband gets you in and out of all the other shows.

BTW-Starring Astral Swans, Swans, Michael Feuerstack, Dave Rave, Emilia, Bob Dylan


Submiited by Lenny Stoute
Photo at right: Astral Swans

This week, it’s all about the Swansy. First up, Astral Swans, which is mostly just Matthew Swann. Astral Swans just laid down All My Favorite Singers Are Willie Nelson, a collection of stark psychedelic folk from the mindsets of Calgary’s Matthew Swann. Songs steeped in universal anguish, marveling at the world’s knack for enterprise and cannibalism, come across instead as subtle, reassuring lullabies.

Chart Attack premieres the latest single from Astral Swan’s debut LP, “What Calms You Down, Freaks Me Out”. Steeped in serene 60’s folk, 80’s no-wave alienation, and the insouciance of 90’s grunge, the track bears the ominous pleasance of Syd Barrett, Arthur Russell, Nick Drake, and fellow Calgarian Chad Van Gaalen.

Set for release on Dan Mangan’s Madic Records on February 24, these twelve songs come wrapped in taco shells of sardonic reflections, in his own words, “confronting our strange ways of experiencing personhood, in the moral gorge between ideals and inadequacies”. Tracked live in Swann’s living room, and later embellished in an old Calgary warehouse with local experimental/improv mainstay Brad Hawkins (Ghostkeeper), All My Favorite Singers Are Willie Nelson is flawed if not for its air of accidental perfection, normalizing existential struggle with rhythm and harmony, a natural marriage of the sweet to the acrid. Y’all can catch the dude live all over the country as he’s currently on the never-ending tour with Dan Mangan + Blacksmith.

Joe B. Maudlin Will Not Fade Away

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Submitted by Don Graham

Bassist with the Crickets, Joe B. Maudlin, has died of cancer in Nashville,Tennessee at age 74. He passed away just days after the anniversary of the death of Buddy Holly, his former boss (Februrary 3, 1959.) Mauldin, like Holly was a Lubbock, Texas, native, and took over bass duties from Larry Welborn just after the Crickets recorded their initial single, 1957′s ‘That’ll Be the Day’. Together they would release a string of hits in quick succession after ‘That’ll Be the Day’ topped the charts including ‘Oh, Boy!,’ ‘Maybe Baby,’ ‘Peggy Sue’ and ‘Rave On,’  and that was only through 1958. “It did feel like everything was happening super fast,” Mauldin later was quoted as saying.

Grammy Award Winners 2015

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Submitted by Cashbox Canada

The 57th Annual Grammy Awards were held on February 8 2015 and the winners are: (drum roll!)

Music Export Canada Presents: Canada Stand and Canadian Blast at MIDEM 2015

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June 5-8, 2015 in Cannes, France

On February 11, 2015 CIMA announced the line-up for the seventh annual Canadian Blast showcase series at MIDEM in Cannes, France. Seven Canadian artists are confirmed for nighttime showcases at Morrisons (10 rue Teisseire) in the heart of Cannes.
Canadian Blast showcases confirmed for:
Saturday, June 6 include Mario Peluso & les Hobos Hurleurs(Artic Records);
Mimi O’Bonsawin (EMG); The Jonny Debt Band (Sugar Moon Music) and Virginia to Vegas featuring Alyssa Reid (Wax Records)

On Sunday, June 7, showcases include Ambre McLean (Letting Artists Make Art (LAMA); Claire Mortifee (Bombay Records); The Walkervilles featuring Glenn Lewis and Dru (Fullcc Music Group – Full Capacity Concerts)

For the past forty years, CIMA has dedicated itself to strengthening the Canadian independent music industry.

WinterFolk Tickets At a Glance

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Submitted to Cashbox Canada

The WinterFolk Festival hits Toronto again next week and as always there are some great acts to catch. Here is a basic line-up of ticketed events you can get to support live entertainment.

Friday Feb 13, 2015 – Doors open at 7:00 – $10 Advance, $15 Door Globe Bistro
Suzie Vinnick, John Brooks, Laura Bird, Meg Tennant, Kelli Trottier,  Clela Errington, Jocelyn Barth 

Friday Feb 13, 2015 – Doors open at 7:00 $15 Advance, $20 Door
Alfie Smith, The Heavy Weights Brass Band, David Essig , Jack DeKeyzer, Gary Kendall, Al Lerman, and more
Black Swan Tavern (2nd Floor) 154 Danforth Ave

LILITH COMES TO WINTERFOLK –  A Celebration of Women in Song
Saturday February 14, 2015 – $15 Advance, $20 Door
Lynn Miles, Linda McRae, Rae Billing,  Shawna Caspi, Lynn Harrison, Soozi Schlanger
Black Swan Tavern (2nd Floor) 154 Danforth Ave 

Saturday February 14, 2015 – Doors open at 7:00 $15 Advance, $20 Door
Laura Fernandez, HOTCHA!, The Trio of Fun (Ken Whiteley, Wendell Ferguson, Tony Quarrington), Swamperella
Black Swan Tavern (2nd Floor) 154 Danforth Ave 

Someone In That Something - Meet Victoria Talent

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Submitted by Shelley L. Buffitt

This past summer I was introduced to a young lady named Victoria Talent via YouTube.  I was beyond impressed with what I heard and saw. Miss Victoria Talent is a young musician. Her instrument of choice? The piano.

After watching her videos, I emailed Victoria to offer words of encouragement. In my role as a mentor to young entrepreneurs, I have learned that the best wisdom we can impart on our youth is validation through the recognition of effort.  Professionally and personally, I believe we should allbe validating our peers and youth, particularly when it comes to the arts.If I hadn’t taken 15 minutes out of my day to hear Victoria on YouTube, I would have lost the opportunity to introduce you to this special young lady.

Victoria’s reply to my initial email was nothing short of mind-boggling. The email was like reading something from a University Professor. All I could think was, “How old is this kid?”  I checked again for her age….yep, she’s 11 years old. Impossible…then again, maybe possible if she has an IQ of 190 and has already obtained her Doctorate in Communications, Literature and Music. Oh yes, and has a degree in Marketing and Public Relations. But she doesn’t. Victoria is just a girl who loves her family, friends, school, learning about computer programming and learning in general, reading Highlights Magazine, tobogganing, anything that involves Disney or Star Wars, drawing cartoons and all things to do with music and creating.

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