November 8, 2011 – The CBC, Whitehorse, Etc.

There’s been a lot of talk and a lot of pressure from the government to change how the CBC operates and competes. Amidst all the negative press, all the demands to either cut our national broadcaster’s budget or abandon it altogether, I think people have forgotten just how important a single entity like the CBC can be to a national identity. The CBC and its various arms and branches are dedicated to Canadian artists and topics in a way that literally no other organization in this country can match.

Giving the public access to artists without the benefits of major labels, like Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland–artists that don’t get to tour across the country supporting Lady Antebellum–is important.

The variety of personalities attracted to the CBC is interesting; as well as being staffed by Canadian icons, like the aforementioned Ghomeshi, George ‘Strombo’ Stroumboulopolous, or Peter Gzowski, people who you may not immediately think of as broadcasting personalitites, like Graham Wright from Tokyo Police Club, host some of the most entertaining and interesting segments you can find. Could most of these characters make it in private broadcasting? Maybe–if they were willing to pretend they were the same as every other coiffed-by-committee talking head staffing stations like MuchMusic, A Channel and MTV.

I think it’s really important to protect this thing, built to encourage the national identity and awareness of ourselves as a country and culture we so need. Without the CBC, I literally would never have heard of half of the bands I count as my favorites; from Toronto, how would I ever have been introduced to the Vancouver-based Yukon Blonde before they were name-dropped on How I Met Your Mother last week?

… For that matter, how would anyone from the How I Met Your Mother writing staff have been introduced to them?

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I suppose you may want some things to do in Toronto tonight. Imaginary Cities are playing at the Horseshoe. Their great, accessible, sing-along-able album Temporary Resident is one of the best releases of this year, and has been largely overlooked. Check them out, and buy their record. Help them pay their bills!

Next week’s insane for cool shows, but that’s definitely the coolest thing going on until Saturday night. If you’ve got something better, drop me a line. I’d love to hear it.

Did you fly a million miles for every single one that I ran? / I don’t know which of us is crazier, oh, sweet baby; that’s the madness I desire

Happy Springst’ween!

I’m not a big Springsteen fan. I still remember losing an entire seminar in a senior culture & theory class questioning the guy who sat across from me as to why, exactly, Born to Run was the best album evar.

At the end of the three hours, I remained unconvinced, needless to say.

For some reason, all my favorite musicians love covering him, though. And I tend to love their covers.

This is Whitehorse, the husband-and-wife duo of Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland, two of my favorite singers. They’ve got kind of a Carter & Cash thing going on, but with the incredible guitar talents of Doucet and the unmatched range of McClelland, they’re a musician’s dream. They’re on tour now, but are coming back to Toronto to play the Winter Garden downtown in February next year.

…there’s a freight train running through the middle of my head…

Summer Mixtape

Hey guys, thanks for tuning in! My blog’s getting more hits than ever; apparently Google likes my old article about Mumford & Sons. Anyway, you may remember me posting a mixtape a few months ago. Well, here’s another one, using youTube videos, of what I think you should be listening to this summer. I’ve tried to use live videos whenever possible because they’re more interesting.

If you think about it, I’m kind of like a superhero. Except, not really. Adam Brady: Listening To Everything So That You Don’t Have To. If you’ve got a mix, or an artist that you think the summer of 2011 needs, email it to me. I’d love to hear it!

Anyway, click past the link for the mix!

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Through Michigan to Illinois; Indiana, Too…

What I’m Up To: Interviews, writing reviews, playing guitar and long nights in bars. Little jobs in a big career, writing on broken computers and playing on borrowed guitars. Gigs n’ other things, but everything’s at least a long drive away.

Ah, well. Canadian Music Week’s over; now, I can get back to work.

Coming Up: “Rope” by the Foo Fighters, Northrop Frye on Why We Read/Why We Write, and a vain quest for me to put together 3 grand for a Gretsch White Falcon (even though I’ll probably still play The Beast more.)

PS Aw yeah. These guys are amazing.

Well, the city lights are risin’ / On this midnight black horizon / And I’m wishin’ you were with me / When no passengers are ridin’.


Hearts of Fire Moving Mountains From Hell To Here And Back: Cliché in Poetry & Lyrics

The first lesson you learn as a poet is to eschew the preformed phrase. Whatever you want to say, come up with your own way to say it; preferably it’s one that’s never been used before. I worked hard to learn that lesson; reading over some of the stuff I was writing at the end of high school, it’s almost difficult to imagine that I ever had the nerve to print pieces out, show them to people and put them up all over my dorm room. Sorry, Terrance.

But maybe I’ve been too hard on myself. Working on my discipline as a songwriter as well as a poet, I’ve always been amused by how close everyone else seems to think they are related, but how far apart they are in actual, practical usage. It’s more like the difference between swimming and scuba diving—questions of depth, equipment and training—than simply putting something down on a scribbled-out notebook and deciding arbitrarily if it’s poetry or lyric.

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In Which I Become The Han Solo Of Bullshit

I thought that title up last week, and liked it more than anything I wrote towards the idea of having it headline.  So it’s on this one, a point-form list of thoughts and things in the works…when I’ve got enough time to have things in the works:

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