|Posted by ...Doo Whop? on October 31, 2012 at 2:00 AM||comments (0)|
Just Working on new songs and
working things out for the album.
But do check out our newest track -
T BEENEYS (music all live in studio)
Songs in Media
|Posted by ...Doo Whop? on September 29, 2012 at 2:05 AM||comments (0)|
So if ever there was a home away from home for People Call it Home to call home, it would be Brixx Bar and Grill. Which I think is pretty cool, too few house's now a days are made of bricks.
IS YOUR HOME MADE OF BRIXX?
TICKETS ONLY $5 !!
Doors @ 9:00pm
PCIH @ 9:30pm
Saturday, October 6th
Brixx Bar and Grill
10030 - 102nd Street
NO MOTHER SCRATCHIN MINORS
|Posted by Wholia on September 14, 2012 at 12:15 AM||comments (0)|
Thanks again for being on my email list. Below are my tour dates, and some other stuff. There's a big show in Vancouver coming up Saturday, September 15. Click HERE to buy tix. I'm playing at the prestigious, ultra-hip POP Montreal festival September 20 with people you will not believe. Europe is coming up. There's loads to talk about.
It's been a gloriously bizarre festival summer. I played 9 festivals. At both Vancouver and Edmonton folk festival, I was, against all logic, allowed onto the mainstage at the finale to sing a verse of the Theme Song.
In Vancouver, they asked me to write a new verse of Woody Guthrie's "This Land is Your Land" against the Enbridge Pipeline. That's the scary thing the Canadian government wants to build from Alberta to the West Coast, ruining the land and water with inevitable tar sand spills. What an honour to be asked to write anti-corporate muckrakery in the style of Woody Guthrie!:
"And as a side note,
I want to point out
We don't want no
This land ain't gon-
-na be a spill zone
This land was made for you and me."
At Edmonton Folk Fest, I got to stand up there with the well-liked Albertan country singer Corby Lund and the lovely chanteuse T. Nile, in front of 19,000 people and sing lead for the "If I get there before the snow flies" verse of "Four Strong Winds." Couldn't resist changing "By then it would be winter" to "By then it might be winter". I know. Silly. Mavis Staples heard us rehearsing our harmonies backstage and pronounced it "beautiful". No, really.
Right before we hit the mainstage, Corb suggested switching in mid-verse to an old cowboy trail song classic, "Winnie the Winnipeg Whore", but I over-ruled him. Thank God I was there to be the Voice of Reason. It was impressive that he knew all the words to all 6 verses, though. Definitely shout it out as a request if you're at one of his shows. It's Part of Our Canadian Heritage, after all.
The summer has been a crazy rush of those kinds of surreal musical moments. Too many to recount all of them. Let me just say that Canailles is my new favourite band. Drunk, dirty Quebecois folk music. Their album is a masterpiece on par with "Rum Sodomy and the Lash". I can't wait to play with them in Montreal. Oh! How fun that shall be.
A while ago, I promised you a piece called "Drinking With the Norwegians During the Breivik Trial". Breivik has just been found guilty, so I should probably post it. It's turned out very long. I've put Part 1 below the tour dates. Part 2 will come soon.
I should also tell you that I am planning an IndieGoGo project. That is, a project that I will be asking you to help me fund. Consider this to be your warning. The project falls between the cracks of record company and book publisher, but still has good reason to exist. In fact, I have been told by those with whom I've shared the early drafts that I should "emphasize the awesomeness" of this particular thingamabob. Do you have experience with or thoughts about kickstarter and indiegogo? Any advice would be appreciated.
Alright, enough of that. Here are the tour dates. Below that is the Norway piece.
Sept. 15 - Vancouver, BC - Accordion Noir Festival, The Waldorf, with Maria in the Shower and much other fun stuff. Click HERE to buy tix. Click HERE to invite folks to the facebook event.
Sept. 20 - Montreal, PQ - POP Montreal Festival, at The Rialto, with Fanfare-Ciocarlia and Canailles, who are my new favourite band. Wherever you are, you should fly to Montreal and buy tix HERE.
Sept. 22 - Falardeau, PQ - Festival de Valinouet, with Canailles
Sept. 27 - Kingston, ON - Skelly Park House Concert, with Swamp Ward Orchestra
Sept. 28 - Guelph, ON - The Square, 86 Wyndham Street N.
Sept. 29 - Thinking about playing Toronto. Anybody got any ideas?
Oct. 5 - Cumberland, BC - Foggy Mountain Fall Fair, at The Waverly
Oct. 6 - Victoria, BC - The Fort Street Cafe, with Meat Draw
OCTOBER/NOVEMBER EUROPE ADVENTURE:
Oct. 25 - Osnabrück, Germany - Unikeller
Oct. 26 - Probably Berlin. Have almost figured out exactly where. Stay tuned.
Oct. 27 - Dresden, Germany - Societaetstheater
Oct. 30 - Mainz, Germany - Hafeneck
Oct. 31 - Mainz, Germay - Hafeneck, (with Guro von Germeten)
Nov. 1 - Trier, Germany - Brunnenhof
Nov. 3 - Hannover, Germany - Feinkost Lampe
Nov. 4 - Castrop-Rauxel - Bahia de Cochinos
Nov. 5 - Düsseldorf - KIT Café
Nov. 6 - Dillenburg, Germany - Erbse
Nov. 7 - Nürnberg, Germany - MUZ, (with Guro von Germeten)
Nov. 8 - Stuttgart, Germany - Laboratorium, (with Guro von Germeten
Nov. 9 - Crailsheim, Germany - 7180 Bar
Nov. 10 - Saarbrücken, Germany - dasTiv
Nov. 12 - Zürich, Switzerland - El Lokal
Nov. 13 - Waldshut-Tiengen, Germany
THE DENMARK PART, all shows with the exciting Kabaret Sybarit!
Nov. 14 - Esbjerg, Denmark - Tobakken
Nov. 15 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Huset i Magstraede
Nov. 16 - Kolding, Denmark - Pistop
Nov. 17 - Aarhus, Denmark - HQ
Nov. 20 - Skanderborg - Walthers Musikcafe
Nov. 22 - Vostrup, Denmark - Vostrup
Nov. 23 - Randers, Denmark - Cafe Von Hatten
Nov. 24 - Aalborg, Denmark - 1000 Fryd
Dec. 7 - Calgary, AB, TBA
Dec. 8 - Edmonton, AB, TBA
Ok, now for the first installment of what has turned into an Epic Narrative Essay, a boozy political horror travelogue, a something that's probably not for everyone...It's--
Drinking With the Norwegians During the Breivik Trial
Part One, Arrival: The Darkness and the Politeness
This is about my Norway, and their monster. I’m not Norwegian. I’m an outsider. But I’ve been observing it for 12 years as a touring musician. It's a very particular way to see a country and its people. It might not align with your particular Norway.
I’d describe myself as a Known Unknown in Norway. I’ve never had a hit there (or anywhere) or anything, but I get a lot of people out to my shows, and I manage to get on NRK, their national radio, pretty much every time I play there.
I’ve built my following brick by brick, or maybe drink by drink, returning once a year. It helped that on my first trip, I became friends with two young bands that are still together, and have gone on to become among the most-loved acts in the country—the Realones, and Kaizers Orchestra.
Let me just say right away that I do love Norway. This was the first country to play my songs on national radio—before my own country. From the very first live show, the audience seemed to “get” my sick sense of humour and allusions to battles with depression. There is a strain of Norwegian culture that has a cheerful darkness about it. It speaks to me, and I guess I speak to it, sometimes. I guess I'm partly trying to speak to it right now.
Ten years ago, on one of my first European tours, I was refused entry to the UK because I was caught trying to get in without a work permit. I’d flown into London from Norway and so was sent back, broke, to Oslo. I was in despair about my career, my life. The people at the bars MIR and MONO took me in, let me play impromtu pass-the-hat shows and gave me the whiskey I needed to cope with my situation. At the end of one night’s show, my friend Herjulv sat down across the small round table from me, set down the first bottle of red wine, and proceeded to drink in sympathy with me for a very long time. “You know,” he said, “in this country, we have an old saying: ‘Don’t worry, because it’s never going to work out.’” Somehow, that night, that saved me.
I’ve made a lot of Norwegian friends, real friends. Friends who've saved my life, emotionally, at times, and some who saved me from a vicious beating or two (thank you Benny). I've and gotten a better and better feel for what the place is really like. At first it seemed like a Canadian leftwinger’s ideal--what Canada might be if Tommy Douglas had become Prime Minister in the 50s and his semi-socialist N.D.P. had stayed in power for most of the last 60 years. Over time, the picture has become more nuanced. Not everything there is paradise.
Last summer, along with millions of others, I experienced an extra-intense version of the familiar overwhelmed, helpless, sad and angry massacre feeling, as a result of the actions of Anders Breivik, the ultra-right terrorist who blew up a government building in Oslo, killing 8, and then went to the island of Utoya, just outside of Oslo, and shot over a hundred people at a retreat for Labour Party youth activists, killing 69 of them. I wondered if I knew any of those teenagers, if any of them had been at the shows, sending shots up to the stage, or maybe some were once the little kids of the middle-aged punk rockers I know, the little kids who shock you when you only return once a year, by suddenly being a foot taller than you with a beard and quoting the Simpsons at you in Minnesota English.
Citing the boring-but-still-nasty clichés of the anti-Islamic, anti-immigrant parties that have risen up in the last 10 years in Europe, Breivik said that he was fighting to preserve Norwegian culture against a flood of immigration, and that he blamed the Norwegian Labour Party for opening the floodgates.
It seemed so un-Norwegian. In a few hours, Breivik beat the average annual Norwegian murder rate by more than a factor of 10. Norwegians, like Canadians before the Harper government, like to think of themselves overall as a force for peace and rationality, as non-imperialist Good Citizens of the World. But here was a side of Norway that the world hadn’t anticipated. I mean, people hardly think of Norway at all. Now, when they think of it, they think of Breivik, with his odd blond comb-over. Which is weird. Most Norwegians are very stylish--although not frighteningly so, like the Swedes. Yikes.
By coincidence, my first comprehensive, soup-to-nuts, tip-to-tail Norwegian tour in years was planned for May, when the trial was in full swing. I mostly play in bars. I like to hang around in those bars and have a few drinks and chat with people after I play. Sometimes the staff locks the doors and we do that until 5 in the morning. People tell me stuff at these times that they don’t tell anybody else, ever. And Norwegians speak better English than most Anglo-Canadians, even when very drunk, so language is not a barrier.
On this trip, I decided to try to get various Norwegians talking about Breivik, the trial, and What It All Means, and see where it got me.
On May 2nd, I arrived in the former fishing town (now an oil city) of Stavanger, and took a taxi; “The Rock Taxi”, a big black maxi taxi painted with rock n’ roll flames and driven by a big chubby rock n' roll guy in a black Rammstein t-shirt. The Rock Taxi had a great big rock n’ roll wheelchair ramp in the back, as per Norwegian government regulation. It was early evening. It's a good idea to fight jetlag by having your first beer at the same hour you would normally have your first beer at home. This teaches your body to adjust to a new "drink o'clock". So I went straight to Tom Brekke's new bar.
Tom’s about my age, and looks a bit like me if I was in better shape, taller and Norwegian (Carolyn Mark once joked to me that Norway should have a sign at the border like the ones at midway amusement rides, that would read “you must be THIS tall and THIS good-looking to go on this ride”;). Tom has run bars and record companies in Stavanger since the early 90s. He and his wife recently bought “Bøker og Børs“, which means Books and Booze, which is what it sounds like. A really charming cozy place, with lots of old books and lots of the new Norwegian micro-brewery beers that taste so good, not like the old generic pilsners that taste like nothing. Tom poured us a couple of the good ones.
Tom told me that in times past, it was required of a farmer who held a certain number of acres to brew beer on the premises. By Norwegian Law, if a farmer did not brew any beer for 3 years, his lands would be forfeit to the Norwegian Church. Then under Prohibition, the local breweries were shut down by the state, to protect the people from demon alcohol. When prohibition ended, big companies divided Norway up into regions and sold them all the same clear yellow pilsner that tastes like nothing much but gets you pissed after a while. But now the micro-breweries are springing up everywhere, and the oil-prosperous Norwegians have re-developed their taste for beers that taste like something. This is a welcome cultural development, believe me.
Why should we care what’s going on with the Norwegians? Well, for one thing, the Norwegians are the new Princes and Princesses of the Earth. Having discovered oil in the North Sea in the 60s, they have become absurdly rich. Unlike Canada, they retained ownership of their state oil company. As a result, all government services including university are top-notch and pretty much free. They started squirreling away the extra money about 20 years ago, and now their national surplus has gone into the hundreds of billions of dollars. They have tasty tap water and are protected by a wall of money. Refineries in Poland process most of their oil, so that Norway doesn’t become polluted by the source of its mind-boggling wealth. Poles and other foreigners also do a lot of their heavy labour, including fruit picking and the constant replacement of the cute stone cobbles that make up the cute streets. The stones come from Portugal now, it being cheaper to import stone into this country made of stone. This country that used to only have a bit of farming and forestry and a lot of fishing now processes all its fish in China, then ships it back, frozen, for local consumption.
I was at Justin Newall's birthday party in Oslo on this last tour (just to jump ahead for a moment) where I witnessed Justin's visiting Welsh nephew being told about how the Norwegian government, annoyed by the pollution from a nearby Russian factory across their border, just decided to pay for the Russians to build a new, more modern, less polluting factory. It floored him. “Fuck me.” He observed. He suggested that Russia being Russia, they will soon build most of its heavy industry near the Norwegian border. Dont' rule it out.
With its insane reserves of cash, Norway has influence beyond its size, both as a model of a healthy, socially equitable society, and in a darker way, with its ability to project vast economic power pretty much at will. For instance, Norway has made big investments of its rainy day fund in Canada, where they own a considerable chunk of our Mordor-like Albertan tar sands, and our wild-fish-destroying fish farms.
So I guess I’d say that all means two important things: If a fellow can’t be happy living in Norway, the place with maybe the highest quality of life in the history of humanity, he’s got a serious problem (maybe he’s craaaaaazy, as the prosecution suggested). And if Norway goes seriously wrong, it means a lot more wrong all over the place than you might imagine.
I asked Tom about Breivik. He said “sorry for the poor choice of words”, but he felt that the media had been guilty of “overkill” on the story, constantly casting about for new angles, new people to interview about the case, over-analyzing the question of Breivik’s sanity, which no one really doubted, talking to people who were only distantly connected to the case, people who’d “heard the shots” from their boats or whatever. What else was there to say?
He noted that one of the serious newspapers now had a button you could press on their website, and if you pressed that button then you would not get any news of Breivik, only the other news. I thought that was very interesting. I’d recently been reading Gertrude Stein, so I randomly imagined Gertrude Stein living in her village in France during WWII, pressing the button on her newspaper so that she would not get any news of the war. She probably wouldn’t have pressed that button. She would have understood how to talk about the phenomenon of the “don’t tell me about that” button, though, I bet. She understood modern things before other people did. I don’t understand what that button means, but I suspect it means a new something that I don’t understand.
I mentioned that I had been following last summer’s events online as they happened, and was watching in realtime on the internet during the few hours when no one knew who was doing the bombing, and most were making the assumption that it had been immigrant Iraqi or Somali Islamists who were the culprits. The Norwegians on facebook were instantly facebook debating the question of “Have we been too generous and friendly to the foreigners lately?” “Have we been naive about the Islamist threat?” Of course that is the question that Breivik wanted Norwegians to wonder about, but once they realized that it was one of their own, Tom said that people had “taken a step back” from talking about their worries about foreigners.
I asked Tom if people had turned away from Siv Jensen and her evil nationalist “Progress Party” since the massacre. He said that they had already been turning away from them, partly because of some scandals that played up the sexual hypocrisy of the conservative world-view. People in Siv Jensen’s party kept getting caught high on drugs, having sex with sexy same-sex immigrants, paying for it all with state money. I asked if people couldn’t see clearly that Breivik’s actions are the logical conclusion of Siv Jensen’s ideas? He said that no, in fact, if anything there had been a backlash the other way because people didn’t think it was “fair” to link a mass murderer to a legal political party that doesn’t advocate violence. Tom and I think it’s fair, but apparently many people in Norway feel it’s impolite to say so.
Like the English, Norwegians value their own kind of politeness very highly, and like the English, they see their own kind of politeness as “politeness”, rather than “Norwegian politeness”. For instance, a Norwegian will go into a pub, bang on the bar, and state “Beer”, to indicate that they would like a beer. To say “Beer, please,” is impolite, because in Norwegian that sounds exaggeratedly polite to the point where it appears to be sarcastically mocking the server for moving too slow. Do you see? No? Neither do ex-pat English barmen living in Norway, who are known to often kick Norwegians out of English-style pubs for rudeness when they don’t say “beer, please”.
Here’s another peculiar aspect of Norway: its drug laws are still very illiberal. They’re a highly educated, almost-socialist country, but they have drug laws similar to the worst of the American states. For instance, Tom told me that if he was to be caught smoking a joint, he would have to forfeit his license to operate a bar.
After a few Norwegian micro-brewery beers, I was ready to float my own ideas about Norwegian attitudes towards multiculturalism. I told Tom that my part of Canada, Vancouver, British Columbia, feels like the place in the world that is currently most aggressively chilled-out about immigration. About 5 years ago, Vancouver became Canada’s first majority non-white city. Nobody blinked an eye. As our recent riot attests, people of all colours care infinitely more about hockey. Also, marijuana is our documented #1 industry in terms of income for the province, and no one has been charged with possession of pot in B.C. for at least 12 years. Probably just a coincidence, right?
Could Breivik and Norway have been saved from his years of industrious, obsessive murder-planning by the inevitable result of a flood of B.C. weed—that being a mixture of torpor, memory loss and warm, friendly feelings towards immigrants who will make and deliver endlessly varied tasty food to your door at any hour? We’ll never know. Perhaps it’s impolite to even ask the question. Late night drinking is a good milieu for asking lots of impolite questions. In the morning, we can sort out which ones were useful, and which ones were just stupid. And then we can try again the next night...
THAT WAS FROM A EMAIL CANADIAN ACCORDIAN SUPER STAR GEOFF BERNER OR THE WHISKEY RABBI
|Posted by ...Doo Whop? on August 13, 2012 at 9:50 PM||comments (0)|
People Call it Home Play under the Starlite. But i dont mean brixx bar and grill which is actually under the starlite room, i was just making a bad joke about courting you under the star's, even tho it will be inside, up stairs and there willl be no visible stars... So back to what is actually important, People Call it Home are playing at the starlite room august 25, tickets are $10 and the show starts at NINE. We are hoping to give you new material and talks of a circus lion are still Under way.
Email for tickets firstname.lastname@example.org