Blog

Thoughts on music, the arts, and interviews with friends.
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2. Barry Elmes – Climbing I’ve told this story a hundred times but never written it down till now. As Canadian jazz festival season is in full swing, it seems appropriate to finally pen it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwfmfyndYAQ Long ago in a land where jazz was valued, touring Canadian bands would come to St. John’s NL and record at the CBC building on Water Street. These sessions were often for broadcast on JazzBeat. Katie Malloch – I don’t know where to begin. Easily one of the greatest supporters of Canadian jazz. Her show, along with Don Warner’s JazzLand and later Jeff Healey’s My Kind of...

Presenting the first in a few installments of my top 40 records of all time ahead of my 40th birthday in August. This meticulous research is sustained by red wine and all my ethics reviews came back negative. I’m not afraid to turn 40. In fact, I’ve been dressing like I am 80 for a long time so no one will notice my getting old. As this socially constructed milestone approaches, I thought it was important to look back and consider which recordings and musicians have had a particular profound influence. Like driving a new car off the lot, the value...

Big bands are more about people than music. Ellington wrote specific parts for specific sounds people made. Freddie Green played with Count Basie for 50 years. In buses, hotels, and in rehearsal, players learned to live and work together against all common sense. The twenty-two hours off stage is fuelled by the two hours on stage each night. It was a hard way to make a living. JazzEast is a led by my good pal Bill Brennan. This group is celebrating their 20th anniversary and I am thrilled to join them for the party. That is something worth celebrating! On May...

Join myself, George McFetridge (piano), James Young (double bass) and Paul Fitterer (drums) at the intimate Martin Batchelor Gallery Saturday April 28, 2018. We'll play an opening set of new music, but then things really get interesting. We'd like to experiment with a kind of "improv salon" where musicians, poets, dancers collaborate with us in the second set. There are no rules other than to respect the space and the sound. We can make a running order on the intermission. If you have any other questions, zap us a note. Here is the FB event for the show. George, James, and Paul are...

Gerry Squires made this sculpture in 2005 honouring Shanawdithit, widely believed to have been the last of the Beothuk. She died of tuberculosis on 6 June 1829 in St. John's. I feel strongly that if you spoke to most Newfoundlanders who left high school in the mid 1990s, this fact would be the sum total of their experience with Indigenous people. That or a school trip to Halifax to see Mic Mac Mall.  Indigenous people weren't talked about in school or at home. This past spring I taught MUS 391 Indigenous Peoples and Music at UVic and I would welcome the opportunity to...

[photo Jack Vartoogian/Getty Images] In my recent youth, me and Mark Neary were typical arseholes. We knew it all.  Tinkling his parents Young Chang during a break from a Trimmed Naval Beef rehearsal, we hatched a scheme. “What if we just made posters that said GORD NEARY: ONE NIGHT ONLY?” Mark’s dad, to the best of my knowledge then and now, is not a musician in any way. But punks that we were, we thought we could take a bite out of the avant-garde scene by making everyone think Gord’s improvisations would be must-hear music. (I didn’t know what avant-garde was then and I...

Dr. Peter Narvaez wore many hats. Musician, singer/songwriter, folklorist, and friend. I was lucky to perform and record with him, but my favourite Peter moments were in his MUS 3018 Blues and Jazz course at Memorial University. When I was getting ready to start work at the University of Victoria where I taught a similar course, he laid all manner of great advice on me. This guy had big ears and a big heart. But “Peter the Teacher” is just one side of this incredible human who we lost too soon. I had heard of this wild, provocative music he made...

Victoria BC cannot say that it experiences 'winter' in the wider Canadian sense. People are mowing lawns today. I've very much enjoyed rediscovering my love of ice skating this year. In a small way, it connects me to colder friends in far flung places. No matter where you are, you can enjoy this curation of classic (and not entirely classic) tunes to skate to. Each song is guaranteed to pair well with an out dated sound system that cackles "reverse skating, please" every half hour. Engage your inner Toller Cranston. https://open.spotify.com/user/patrickboylemusic/playlist/5EwVDbTBYY1SvHktm3lExJ?si=f-bPzZRbTyuy9RZv37COqg  ...

Travel by plane 45,926km   Proudest Moment Helping my wife Jenny Ambrose move The Makehouse into its new location and seeing it do so well. Honourable mention: getting to know Shane Kelly and learning how to take better photos with him.   Funnest Gig (witnessing) The single best gig I was at was Eugene Chadbourne at Logan’s Pub, Victoria BC. Honourable mentions include: MonoNeon, Lucy Woodward, and GhostNote at Hermann’s, Victoria BC Paul Brady, Andy Irvine, Kevin Burke, Donal Lunny at Ulster Hall, Belfast NI Tanya Tagaq, Christine Duncan, Jesse Zubot, Jean Martin at Sugar, Victoria BC Molly, Jane, and Cara Walls at Cross Keys, Antrim NI John MacLeod’s Rex Hotel Orchestra,...

"Waldesnacht" (excerpt) from Op. 62, Sieben Lieder (Seven Songs), for mixed chorus (1874) Johannes Brahms (1833-1897) The Patrick Boyle Chorale Patrick Boyle - soprano Patrick Boyle - alto Patrick Boyle - tenor Patrick Boyle - bass Recorded at the bottom of the stairs by Patrick Boyle using a Shure SM57 https://soundcloud.com/patrickboylemusic/boylesingsbrahms        ...