Saturday, April 30, 2016

To Barrie with Larry (and other gigs & news)

I've been getting a little lazy with these Blainletters but I'm sure that some of you out there are fine with shorter and less frequent...

Of course there's some gigs to promote up front. Once I wrap this up I'll loading up for a gig in Barrie with Larry Kurtz. Details below along with info on other upcoming gigs.

Sat Apr 30
Bull and Barrel, 75 Cedar Pointe Drive
Barrie, ON, CA | 8:00pm

Sun May 8
The Tranzac Club, 292 Brunswick Avenue
Toronto, ON, CA | 5:00pm
Celebrating Mother's Day with Max Layton and Robert Priest

Fri Jun 3 12:00pm
TD Bank
Orangeville, ON, CA |
Busking in the Bank w/Larry Kurtz

Fri Jun 3 8:00pm
Orangeville Blues and J…
Orangeville, ON, CA |
guesting on main stage with Larry and the Lawbreakers

Sat Jun 4 2:00pm
Aardvark Boutique Audio
Orangeville, ON, CA |
part of Orangeville Blues & Jazz Festival

Sat Jun 4 2016 6:00p
Steakhouse 63
Orangeville, ON, CA

I had some plans for another Motherless Day Blues Concert but Max invited me to sit in at his monthly residency at the Tranzac and that seemed a lot easier to manage for this semi-retired, part-time, barely-managing...But next Mother's Day I'm going to make a special event and invite a lot of my favourite musicians to play with. I've been doing something special on Mothers' Day week-end for the last 12 years and if there's anybody reading this who doesn't know why it's throwback to the song that provided my "fifteen minutes" way back in the 70's. There are lots of stories surrounding the recording of that song, record company horror stories, illicit bi-coastal love affairs, drugs, loss, betrayal and even murder. I'll save that for the gig but if you want to hear "Don't Forget Your Mother" click here.

The rest of the gigs are part of Orangeville Blues & Jazz, the perfect little blues festival which never fails to introduce me to some great artists (and maybe my music gets introduced to some new folks, too!)

On The Radio

People are always telling me I have a good radio voice so I got work it a bit this month guesting on Catwoman's funda-raising show on CIUT then an hour-long spot on Steve Fruitman's show with Allan Fraser previewing the just-released double LP of Fraser & DeBolt on Roaratorio Records in the US. You can hear the archived show here:

My electronica alter-ego now has a website. There's not much there except for a few tracks of me jamming in the basement (some with Joel) but it's an HTML5 template so it was quite straightforward to put together,  a flashback to my days as an HTML code-warrior. I should have cleaned it up before announcing it like this but it was that or get this Blainletter out before I head to Barrie. Ignore the greek text. We're all friends here, eh?

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Streaming comes of age

Just watching the East Coast Music Awards - on my computer. They don't have enough of an audience to rationalize prime time on TV but streaming to the internet they can have as much time as they want - even streaming different events simultaneously on different channels. The production values are top notch with 3 or 4 cameras and some fancy switching (a little too much switching at times). The local production company has done a great job and the stream on YouTube is rock solid. There was one time when it choked up and the sound was not perfectly in sync with the video on the live feed but it looked fine when you looked at the video after (yes, it;s instatntly archived on YouTube) Amazing. I also watched a lot of SXSW from Texas and also the JUNOs, who used YouTube for some stuff and Livestream for others. Everything worked out pretty good.

Back to ECMAs, I was introduced to some great Atlantic electronica artists like Pineo & Loeb and The Scientists of Sound. But I have to say on the roots side I was mostly underwhelmed with the succession of earnest young singer songwriters - even the local heroes like Jenn Grant and Amelia Curran. Maybe we have great expectations from East Coast musicians - there's been so many that broke through in recent years. But when I did hear something that perked up my ears, I quickly realized he was an Australian (?) And when I dug up his name, I thought it was familiar then remembered I last saw it on a USB stick - he had been handing out his EPK on a USB stick at some event I attended last year. I'm still using it, though I erased the EPK right after I looked at it...but at least I looked at it!

ECMA Late Night Electronic Showcase: