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Posts Tagged ‘Bluesfest’

A Brood worthy of shortlisting

July 11th, 2009

This past Tuesday, the Polaris Music Prize shortlist was announced. This is an award presented to the best full-length Canadian album of the year, based on artistic merit and regardless of genre or commercial success. I was thrilled to find out that Elliott Brood’s Mountain Meadows is one of the 10 shortlisted contenders.

I’ve seen this trio perform numerous times, and it’s always a romp. They were in town on Thursday as part of Bluesfest in the Byward — and it was a particularly memorable night. It was the loudest, most keen crowd I’ve ever seen at a Brood show; all around me, people knew the words and sang along. There was also the closest thing to a mosh pit I’ve seen in years.

These guys have a sound all their own — eclectic, heel-stompin’, raspy. It always astounds me how they fill in each tune, being just three. Here are a couple of vids I caught from the show:

Give them a listen and see them live if you get the chance. They put on a show and a half, and deserve every success that comes their way; they just happen to be really nice, humble guys to boot.

The Polaris winner is announced at a gala in September; go git ‘em, Brood!

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How do I dig thee, Kathleen Edwards?

January 13th, 2009

Let me count the ways.

In December, I wrote about Lucas, a buddy of mine who’s been in Afghanistan since last summer and about his facebook post “All I want for Christmas is a mixed tape” — and encouraged folks to send songs his way. Well, on Christmas Day, he got his wish and it was hand-delivered by the lurvely and talented Kathleen Edwards:

(Lucas kindly pointed out that he happened to be wearing one of my wears on the day of :))

As it happened, Kathleen was in Afghanistan to perform for the troops, and she’d very thoughtfully brought along dozens of cds to hand out along the way.

In the weeks leading up to Christmas, Kathleen’s sis-in-law / my dear friend / cbc3 radio host Amanda Putz took my blog post and exponentially dialed it up by linking to it from the cbc3 site, inviting feedback from listeners, and then putting together a playlist which she then burned and mailed to Lucas. She also mentioned the story to Kathleen — and from there, the Christmas Day meet-n-greet came to be. When Lucas sent me the pics, my heart swelled.

For there are already many reasons I get a big grin on my head when Kathleen comes to mind; below are but a few…

Reason #93: One of the greatest videos. Those with crushes on hockey, Jim Cuddy, Colin Cripps and/or Dave Hodge, dig in. Ottawa’s other sweetheart, Jim Bryson, is in it too; in fact, the whole dang song is about him!

Reason #104: She does a mean karaoke version of Like a Virgin. It involves throwing off her shoes.

Reason #36: She gave me my first break at designing merch: I did the artwork for her tees & hoodies last year — vacuum tubes and album-inspired flowers (woot woot, Daniel Lohnes for a beauteous cover design!).

Reason #29: Have you HEARD her? If not, visit her site and you can hear some of her latest songs (streaming) from her “Asking for Flowers” album. Then go get the cd… which, by the way, was one of the shortlist finalists for last year’s Polaris Award.

Reason #277: Her sweet hubby Colin was the one who kindly offered to get one of my tees to Bryan Adams, then Kathleen caught the moment on megapixels.

Reason #184: She plays a mean fiddle, and looks great playing it on a jumbo screen (this is last summer at Bluesfest):

Reason #71: She likes pomelo hats too.

Reason #240: She gives good hugs.

Ok, I’ll stop gushing now.

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