Archive for the ‘Music and Movies’ Category

A house concert

Monday, March 16th, 2009

Smiles and laughter and pleasant times
There’s love in the world but it’s hard to find

(Bruce Cockburn – Festival of Friends)

This is a couple of days after the fact, but I just thought I’d mention that the concert that Janet and I went to on Saturday evening has hooked me on the concept of “house concerts”.   In terms of concert intimacy, they are the ultimate.

I won’t go into details about the house concert by Dale Nikkel and Kimbal Siebert because  Marc, Sharon, and Linea (the birthday girl) have already blogged about it.  Check out the links for their impressions.

Dale Nikkel and Kimbal Siebert - house concert in Prince Albert, 2009-03-14

(photo credit: Marc V.)

These go to 11

Saturday, March 7th, 2009

Following on the Spinal Tap theme, here is my favourite scene from that movie – Nigel showing off his guitars and amp.

Unwigged, unplugged, unspandexed …

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

… generally untapped.

If I lived in Vancouver I might make an effort to go see the Unwigged & Unplugged concert by the touring Spinal Tap.  Besides performing songs from the Spinal Tap mockumentary, and from their album Break Like The Wind, they will be doing songs from The Mighty Wind. (I did  enjoy the music of The Folksmen).

Spinal Tap - The Folksmen

Always and forever

Saturday, February 14th, 2009

It’s Valentine’s Day, so here for my sweetheart is one of my favourite love songs …

Why do you love me?
Why do you need me?
Always and Forever
We met in a chat room
Now our love can fully bloom
Sure the World Wide Web is great
But you, you make me salivate
Yes I love technology
But not as much as you, you see
But I still love technology
Always and Forever
Our love is like a flock of doves
Flying up to heaven above
Always and Forever
Always and Forever(stifled sobs)
Yes our love is truly great
Always and Forever


(from Kip and La Fawnduh’s  wedding scene after the end credits in the movie Napoleon Dynamite … I couldn’t find a video clip but a sound clip can be listened to by clicking here)

Satellite sky

Friday, February 13th, 2009

Why do I lie awake at night
and think back just as far as I can
To the sound of my father’s laugh outdoors
To the thought of Sputnik in free-flight?

Before I could fashion my poverty
Before I distrusted the night
I must’ve known something
I must’ve known something
Those were the times I live for tonight

Why, why, why, I say Why, Mama, Why?
Why can’t I sleep in peace tonight
underneath the satellite sky?

It can’t be easy for my children
I’m hollow before my time
It looks like a desert here to me
Where is the promise of youth for my child?

Where are the faraway kingdoms of dreams?
We’ve been to the moon and there’s trouble at home
They vanished in the mist with Saint Nicholas
They lie scattered to the ghettos and the war zones

Why, Why, Why, I say Why, Mama, Why?
Why can’t I sleep in peace tonight
underneath the satellite sky?

I want to stand out in the middle of the street
and listen to the stars
I want to hear their sweet voices
I want to feel a big bang rattle my bones
I want to laugh for my children
I want the spark to ignite
before they find out what it means
to be born into these times

Why, Why, Why, I say Why, Mama, Why?
Why can’t I sleep in peace tonight
underneath the satellite sky?

Mark Heard © 1992

An evening of culture

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

I’m no culture vulture.  Given my druthers, I’d generally rather listen to John Prine than some symphony orchestra performing the 4th movement of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto.

However last night’s concert was excellent.  I probably wouldn’t have gone if Fiona hadn’t been singing in the massed choir.  The concert included the Saskatoon Youth Orchestra, the Saskatoon Strings, the Prince Albert Strings Orchestra (including Linea and Joanne from our church), and a Prince Albert Massed Choir (including Fiona with the École Vickers School choir).

Congratulations to the organizers who worked hard to pull this event together, and to all the musicians who practiced hard to make it sound great.

Luke and Charlotte cover Animal Collective

Monday, January 19th, 2009

I can’t say that I’m a fan of Animal Collective, and don’t ask me what their song “Peacebone” is about, but I kind of like the folkie interpretation my talented kids give it in this clip.

Northwest Passage – a robust Canadian response

Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Yesterday the White House issued its new policy on the Arctic, a test of Canadian sovereignty in our northern regions.

In his final days in power, President George W. Bush asserted U. S. military “sea power” over the oil-rich Arctic on Monday, in another forceful rebuttal of Canada’s claims of sovereignty over the Northwest Passage.

The White House formally released the text of a sweeping new directive on the Arctic, two years in the making, just eight days before Barack Obama is to be sworn in as the 44th U. S. president and on the same day as Bush held his final White House news conference as president.

Key elements of Bush’s policy challenge the ambitious Arctic sovereignty agenda put forth by Prime Minister Stephen Harper that includes bolstering Canada’s military presence and fostering economic and social development. The Bush directive reiterates the Northwest Passage is an international waterway–a rebuttal of Canada’s claim of sovereignty over what is emerging as a major global shipping route because of the shrinking polar ice cap –and it highlights the boundary dispute in the resource-rich Beaufort Sea.


In a related article, Premier Floyd Roland of the Northwest Territories is calling for a robust Canadian response. (source)

I concur.

As a very important part of a robust Canadian response I urge you to get over to the CBC Radio 2 website and vote for “Northwest Passage” by Stan Rogers, as one of the 49 songs to be presented to President-Elect Barack Obama.  The song has made the shortlist of 100 nominees, but it belongs in the top 49.  In fact it should become our new national anthem.

To vote, click here.  Voting ends Friday, January 16 at 11 p.m. ET so don’t delay.

UPDATE 2009-01-20:  According to the CBC Radio 2 blog, the top 5 vote-getters in the “English Pop Folk etc.” category were:

Closer to the Heart – Rush
Canadian Railroad Trilogy – Gordon Lightfoot
Hallelujah – k.d. lang
Democracy – Leonard Cohen
Northwest Passage – Stan Rogers

(now does anyone actually expect President Obama to spend time listening to these 49 songs?)

If you wanna reach the Co-op, boy, you gotta get by me

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

Farming can be a tough life, but if it doesn’t work out …

… well you can always become a pirate on the river Saskatchewan (arrgghh).

(more Arrogant Worms here)

Northwest Passage from Stan to Obama

Thursday, January 8th, 2009

I’ve been listening to some of the nominees in CBC Radio 2’s 49 songs from north of the 49th parallel contest, and there have been some good ones, including a couple of Neil Young songs.

However I hadn’t heard any mention of that very Canadian song “Northwest Passage” by the late great folksinger Stan Rogers.  I saw him perform it at the Edmonton Folk Music Festival sometime in the early 1980s, probably a year or two before he died.  The song gave me goose bumps then and it still does.

I checked out the “Obama’s Playlist” website, and yes Northwest Passage by Stan Rogers has been nominated, so I don’t need to do that. However I’ll be sure to vote for it.

I wish I could offer up a YouTube clip of the full song, but all I could find that actually had Stan Rogers singing (instead of covers by other singers), was this short clip that only includes the chorus.

Youtube does have a somewhat longer version, albeit not including all the song’s verses, as background to a montage of icebreaker shots on a CBC documentary that ran on “The National”, that can be viewed here.

UPDATE: I belatedly realized that just because a song had already been nominated didn’t mean that it would make the shortlist (duh), so I emailed in my nomination.