If I want some snark, some verbosity, some damn fine songwriting, I turn to Elvis Costello. There is something about how his songs play out. He’s fearless about genre (and occasionally language itself). And sometimes he shows up in the most random of places. Austin Powers cameo? Sure, why not! Host my own talk show* … More Soundtrack of my Life: Ten Best Elvis Costello Songs
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.”
My Irish side is hidden by my very Danish name. It’s the side of melancholy, lamb stew, and whisky. It’s also the side of black humour, sarcasm, and avoidance. But the Irish side of me is what probably fuels my love of music, as the very first music I remember, aside form what I heard … More Soundtrack of my Life: “The Unicorn” by the Irish Rovers
Music form artists we lost, and bands that lost members as well. And one Beatles track for Sir George Martin.
As we are all very aware now, I love Dylan. So very much. But this song choice is basically coming down to this: It’s fine. It’s cool. I get it. Really I do. You win. I give up. And that is that. It’s pointless to fight for something when it only seems to really … More Soundtrack of my Life: “Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright” by Bob Dylan
I can’t find the words. I cried. God, how I cried. I curled up on my bed and cried until my eyes could no longer produce tears. But my body still rocked from sobs even then. I couldn’t stop. Maybe my already fractured state I couldn’t take one more loss, one more piece of sadness. … More “There’s a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”
Fifty Mission Cap Courage (for Hugh McLennan) Wheat Kings At the Hundredth Meridian In A World Possessed by the Human Mind What Blue Tired as Fuck Machine My Music at Work Lake Fever Toronto #4 Putting Down Twist My Arm Three Pistols Fiddler’s Green Little Bones The Last of the Unplucked Gems Something On Poets … More Set List: Tragically Hip, Rogers K-Rock Centre, August 20, 2016
If you are so inclined, take a wander over to our new sister blog, Noise That Thinks. I am literally writing about my vinyl collection. It’s more like a diary with entries sprung from the album I’m writing about that day. Take a gander, follow if you like. Remember, my Twitter is still palais1977, my … More Sister Blog Notice!
My devotion to the man now known as Yusuf Islam is absolute and unwavering, so very important his music was to me in my childhood. Without fail, a Cat Steven’s song would lift my spirits, bring me joy, and soothe my anxiety. To this very day, Tea For the Tillerman is one of my favourite albums. … More Soundtrack of my Life: “Peace Train” by Cat Stevens
The first love of my life was Mork from Ork. I think it was because Robin Williams was furry like a teddy bear. Or it was the rainbow suspenders. Today’s news is sad and confusing, but Robin Williams was open about his demons. It’s distressing. Depression is a soul sucking phenomenon. I hope he has … More But O heart! heart! heart!
There is only one correct answer to the question “What is the greatest John Hughes movie ever?” The Breakfast Club. It is always The Breakfast Club. The others have charm and are good, but The Breakfast Club is superior to whatever your so-called favourite John Hughes film has. Plus, it has “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” … More Soundtrack of My Life: “(Don’t You) Forget About Me” by Simple Minds
Year end lists are my favourite thing, because it forces me to look at what I have collected over the year and after several glasses of pinot grigio, declare a list of twenty worthy of sharing with the world. This year was hard, as my house got over taken by Miley, Selena, Demi and something … More My Favourite Albums of 2013
2013 was actually full of really spectacular pop songs, including songs I really like from former stars of Family Channel shows I remember watching with my kids and promptly hating myself for getting sucked into like this girl and this girl. But my 2013 list didn’t need them, as it is chockfull of dancey, pop … More My Favourite Songs of 2013
Songwriter, singer, and guitarist J.J. Cale has passed away at the age of 74. He famously wrote “Cocaine”, memorably covered by Eric Clapton, but I always preferred Cale’s version. A live version below.
Unlike 2011, 2012 turned out to be an amazingly diverse and quality year for albums. There are albums I thought for sure that were going to be on this list that fell just short ( Jens Lekman, Sigur Ros, Leonard Cohen, Bob Mould… yeah, I had to cut Bob Mould. BOB MOULD!). Sitting down an … More 20 Best Albums of 2012
It is time, once again, for Canada’s Polaris Prize, where a jury tells us what album over the last twelve months has been the peak of artistic triumph or something like that. I’ve had a crap day. This will soothe the troubled soul. 6:02- Grant Lawrence and Lauren Toyota pay tribute to Sam Sniderman, who … More Polaris Blogfest
MCA, AdRock, and Mike D. As it should be.
There is a moment in one’s life where you just suddenly realise that yes, the youth you cling to desperately is truly over. The feeling of getting old is always present, but then you get a gut shot of reality when those who you still think of as of your childhood start leaving the world. … More Adam “MCA” Yauch: 1964-2012
http://action.cwa-union.org/c/779/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=3515 Click the above link to sign the petition to stop the Canadian Parliament from passing their very own version of SOPA. Please? Thanks.
“The essence of the independent mind is not in what it thinks, but in how it thinks,” -Christopher Hitchens, 1949-2011 So long. Farewell. And thanks for the words you wrote.
One of the best things about the recent OWS protest in Zuccotti Park was that Jeff Mangum, NMH’s erstwhile leader, played music. In the twelve years since the band famously just stopped, Jeff has been a mercurial creature. Recent activity might indicate a future for the brilliant man to come back to. He curated ATP … More The Album List #20: Neutral Milk Hotel “In The Aeroplane Over the Sea”
Once again, the best of Canadian music has come together to celebrate all that is wonderful and perfect about my home and native land’s music. This years short list has ten great records on it. But one is the clear favourite. The ten albums on the Polaris 2011 short list are: Arcade Fire The Suburbs … More Polaris Music Prize 2011- Live Blog
I have a very complex relationship with this album. I have stop and started this piece all week. I hate what Prince became after Purple Rain– a hateful, vengeful, misogynistic, derivative pop star who would alienate many of his former fans with his prickly personality. He would never be as good as he was in … More The Album List: #71 Prince and the Revolution “Purple Rain”
I broke one of my rules. I had to. I couldn’t make the choices I needed to make, so I dumped two songs I like but was really unenthusiastic about and- I repeated artists. I tend not to do that, simply because I believe you should try to allow as many artists on these lists … More The Top Twenty Songs of 2010
Another request came in, and I’ll throw it in the list even if it isn’t on my personal list. It’s the Waitresses with “Christmas Wrapping”, and I’ve found a lighting display to go with it. This is for someone’s DH, and I hope it’ll help him feel better. Now, my pick for today is … More Christmas Countdown: The Christmas Music List Day 5
The 2010 Polaris Prize for Music was handed out tonight in Toronto. Like the Mercury Prize in the U.K., it honors one band’s album for the year as the best in the nation. I watched the live stream on MuchMusic.com like a good little music geekazoid, and I must give props to Sirius for being … More The 2010 Polaris Music Prize
I have been asked on several occasions by various people in my life what I would bring to a desert island if only given a certain amount of music, books, and movies. I have decided to take this and turn it into a series of posts, because that’s what I do – take memes and … More Desert Island Picks: Albums