Soundtrack of My Life: Top Ten Songs from the Monkees


Where would I be without the Monkees? Quite possibly dead. Throughout my life, the Monkees have been a source of comfort and laughter even in the darkest of moments. I cringe at the racist and sexist plot points, but there is an anarchy in the humour I appreciate, and the music remains absolutely perfect fifty … More Soundtrack of My Life: Top Ten Songs from the Monkees

Soundtrack of My Life: “Full of Grace” by Sarah McLachlan


Twenty years ago was the beginning of a love affair I had with a girl. It’s not like that. It actually had its genesis twenty-five years ago, when the terrible film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer was released. Overall it’s an uneven experience. While Paul Reubens and Donald Sutherland give great performances with middling material, … More Soundtrack of My Life: “Full of Grace” by Sarah McLachlan

“Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave.”


I watched The Mary Tyler Moore Show long after it had left the air ( the show ended two months before I was born). It was at my maternal grandparents house over one summer. They had Nick At Nite on their cable package. I also watched some of The Dick Van Dyke show while I was there, … More “Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave.”

“I don’t want my life to imitate art, I want my life to be art.”


I have never seen Star Wars as a complete movie. I fall asleep, usually within half an hour, or I enter some bizarre trance and cannot recall seeing it at all. I’m aware of it, of course. My brothers are both fanatics, as most guys born between 1960 and 1985 are. I’d rather watch Star Trek. So … More “I don’t want my life to imitate art, I want my life to be art.”

“No Dress Rehearsal. This Is Our Life.”


It’s odd being a Canadian who writes about music. The narrative is completely different from what it would be if I had grown up in the American midwest or in East Anglia. Australians might understand it. Another English-speaking land with its own cultural touchstones, musically. I once heard someone try to explain Powderfinger to an … More “No Dress Rehearsal. This Is Our Life.”

Alan Rickman- “There’s a voice inside you that tells you what you should do.”


The hits just keep on coming. In my house, Snape is king, more so than any other Harry Potter character. Not just because he’s a misunderstood misfit. It’s because Alan Rickman played him, and Alan Rickman is this household’s favourite actor. It goes beyond Snape, trust me. I still love Hans Gruber, with his Euro … More Alan Rickman- “There’s a voice inside you that tells you what you should do.”

The 2013 Polaris Music Prize Goes To…


… the enigmatic post-rock instrumental of Montreal’s Godspeed You! Black Emperor for their 2012 masterpiece ( and my twentieth favourite album of 2012) Alleluia! Don’t Bend! Ascend! I have championed it since it was shortlisted.  They’re not an easy band- twenty-minute noisy instrumentals that mix freestyle jazz and Can (the band) wonk is a tough sell … More The 2013 Polaris Music Prize Goes To…

It Was Always About the Movies: Roger Ebert (1942-2013)


I don’t talk or write about film much because I knew I could never write about film as well as Roger Ebert. I’m not talking about his ability to give quick blurbs and four stars. I’m talking about his ability to express, pretty accurately, how I felt about these films. He was a far, far … More It Was Always About the Movies: Roger Ebert (1942-2013)