Little Hell

When one of our sons started getting interested in bands, I would take him out to shows he wanted to see. We once went to Winnipeg’s Garrick Event Centre (a former movie theatre I used to go to as a teenager) to see this new act, called City and Colour… it must have been aroundContinue reading “Little Hell”

Jimmy Mo Mhíle Stór

When my sweety and I started our relationship, money was often tight. To continue satiating my appetite for new music, I joined one of those eight-ten-or-twelve-CDs-for-one-cent clubs. I only stuck around long enough to make the minimum commitment of purchases. (Two such clubs, Columbia House and BMG, merged in 2005 but filed for bankruptcy inContinue reading “Jimmy Mo Mhíle Stór”

Deadlines

(Warning: video contains a cuss word.) I don’t know much about the Hamilton, Canada band, Arkells, but I purchased the song “Deadlines” from their debut album, Jackson Street in 2008, the year it was released.  A few years later, in a job where my days often felt like they were awash in unmeetable deadlines, I’dContinue reading “Deadlines”

I’m Gonna Be Strong

Cyndi Lauper broke out onto the popular music scene with her colourful, audacious and whimsical style in 1983. I remember spinning her She’s So Unusual long-play record often and have enjoyed her music since then. She became big when music videos were still a relatively new thing, but each one was well crafted, and sometimesContinue reading “I’m Gonna Be Strong”

Chasing Cars

The night before my marriage to Sweety in July 2009, I was listening to songs over the computer speakers. I was listening to music I thought would nudge my inspiration to write the words she’d read in a card the afternoon before our ceremony: what I was feeling about our life together going into theContinue reading “Chasing Cars”

Drive

A friend, with whom I’ve connected, disconnected and reconnected several times over our 42-or-so years of knowing each other, introduced me to R.E.M. when they were becoming big in North America, particularly on college radio, when we reconnected around 1981-82. He was in community college at the time, and I was working an office jobContinue reading “Drive”

Don’t Delete the Kisses

Whenever sweety and I have gone to the United Kingdom, part of my routine has been to scout out plays, musicals and concerts in London. We’ve been lucky to see some pretty terrific performances over the years. On our last trip there three years ago, I noticed that the North London foursome Wolf Alice wasContinue reading “Don’t Delete the Kisses”

Going Home (Theme of the Local Hero)

Trigger warning: this post contains discussion of suicide. A half-dozen friends and I went to see the movie, Local Hero in 1983. They all hated it. I loved it. All the characters had such magnificent and unique personalities and the story was wonderful, playful and touching. I won’t give it away if you haven’t seenContinue reading “Going Home (Theme of the Local Hero)”

The Law and the Lonesome

I first met up with and heard Canadian troubadour and national treasure Corin Raymond when one of our sons (Kieran West and His Buffalo Band; watch for them and other KW music projects on these pages) opened for Raymond in February 2015 at Winnipeg, Canada’s best honky-tonk, the Times Change(d) High and Lonesome Club onContinue reading “The Law and the Lonesome”

The Ballad of Lucy Jordan

Shel Silverstein is perhaps best known for his book, The Giving Tree, but I learned when looking up “The Ballad of Lucy Jordan” that he wrote it for the 1970s band Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show. (Anyone here remember them?) He also wrote “A Boy Named Sue” for Johnny Cash, “The Unicorn,” which wasContinue reading “The Ballad of Lucy Jordan”

When You’re Gone

Today’s selection was featured on our wedding CD mix, and the liner notes for the song say, “1998 and 1999 were really tough years as we moved into a new relationship and home together, through financial hardship and which led us to seek out work wherever it could be found. At one point, that meantContinue reading “When You’re Gone”

Under the Ivy

The B-side on Kate Bush’s 12-inch single of Running Up That Hill (1985) was “Under the Ivy.” That record and a number of her other albums on vinyl, CD and digital are in my collection. She’s always intrigued me with her unique and beautiful voice, and her magical performances on the many official videos producedContinue reading “Under the Ivy”

Mother Fighter

When I went through my Shazam app earlier this month I bought 25 tracks all in one go, each of them by different artists. Some of them I heard on either BBC 6 Music programs (in the addition to Guy Garvey’s Finest Hour, I often listen to Amy Lamé, Tom Robinson, frequent Garvey sit-in CillianContinue reading “Mother Fighter”

Heart Is a Drum

When I was earning a paycheque full-time, my morning routine would be to cycle or walk to work, shower, get suited up, eat, and before the office day started, I’d go for a proper cup of coffee at Parlour, a hip coffee shop that had opened in 2011 near the office where I worked. OneContinue reading “Heart Is a Drum”

Stay by Me

For me, sometimes the measure of a really great song is if I feel that it belongs in a film when the ending credits roll (for more on that idea, see my January 12, 2020 post on “Sultans of Swing”). You know; it’s that moment you realize the movie is ending, but you want itContinue reading “Stay by Me”

Dietro Casa

Whenever I hear a new-to-me piece of music that catches my attention, I seek out the title/artist using the Shazam app, and then refer back to the saved titles on the app when going on the modern, online equivalent of my 70s record shopping trips (see post on “Orpheus,” January 13, 2020, for more onContinue reading “Dietro Casa”

A New Career in a New Town

David Bowie collaborated with Brian Eno, Robert Fripp and others on what’s referred to as his Berlin Trilogy, three albums made between 1976 and 1979 (Low, “Heroes”, Lodger), all overseen by his long-time producer, Tony Visconti. The albums, particularly Low, are a real departure from the soul and funk of Diamond Dogs and ‘Young Americans’Continue reading “A New Career in a New Town”

This Blue World

I first heard of the band Elbow through one of my cousins in the UK. He and his siblings and families and I reconnected in 2007, with my sweety-and-then-future-bride in tow (well, that’s perhaps another story: they said upon meeting her that they’d come to Canada to visit if we married, so we did, andContinue reading “This Blue World”

A Taste of Honey

In addition to its healing and mood-lifting qualities (for more on that, please see January 15, 2020 post on Ben Wytinck’s “’Bel”), music has a tremendously powerful way of evoking memories for me. While down another internet rabbit hole recently, I came across a song by Burt Bacharach… the composer, producer and performer was behindContinue reading “A Taste of Honey”

Come Talk to Me

Peter Gabriel was what I guess I’d call a “musical acquaintance” through my teen years; I didn’t have any of his records early on, but one of my friends was a big Genesis fan and had continued on with collecting Gabriel’s solo works. So while not a collector, I enjoyed the music.  But the 1992Continue reading “Come Talk to Me”