Sunday, 29 May 2016

Drone day recap

It's two hours till Showtime and my tape is still not ready. Im in a band called Mescaline Ditch, we've been looping tape and building a wall of sound in the underworld aka my basement for the past three months. National drone day, a Canadian tradition for a few years now, is upon us today, and we have no tapes to sell.

We've got one sweaty, busy brunch, though. Nicole put a few new creases in her chefs cap. Asparagus and asiago omelettes and pulled lamb poutine All day. Michael Burtch, local sculptor and percussionist Par excellence, holds court amd prepares for his gong set at 180 projects.

What is this Drone Music? Wikihow defines drone music as "any style or type of music that restricts itself to a minimal number of chord changes" 

 Trance music


Systems music


Drones signal the primal elements of music: the pulse of rhythm within every human body, the growing climaxes of anticipation and velocity, the focus in metaphor of the eternal Now, presence and the moment...

Now it's about two pm and I'm hiding behind Jamie Vincent's big amp drinking a beer. Mikey hands me his phone and tells me to make backwards noises. Occasionally this is how mescaline ditch shows go. We tried to do a set at the Fishbowl  Festival but things were even less prepped. Tried to do noise Therapy, ended up sounding like husband material. We've got a Kaoscillator now. Boyd seems to think we're cool.

Mikey and me are smoking later outside the gallery. Inside, Pete Mozarowski is performing an original piano suite. There is a brief window between drone brunch  and the 6pm jam at the café. Some of us use this time to sort through vintage freebies and consume beer, a sort of festival atmosphere permeating the sunny street of unity/gore.

The heat beats down, the day drones on, hot and humid. Rihkee Strapp around the hood with us.The drone jam starts late. Our set with Michael Burtch was called off, but I can assure you that everyone at Mescaline Ditch is very committed to bringing  avant garde/experimental music to a laundromat near you. Soon!

Chris Shoust shows up at my house with a compact disc in his hand. We head to Barrelhouse, a place on Queen Street that's open past ten. Where Embers used to be. Tasty sliders, cool droney house music, just what you'd expect from an after party with some big kids of the Soo Art scene. 

On the way home we find a few discarded fax machines, and get catcalled by high school girls. One time some girls shot a sticky dart at me from a car , and I threw some music papers at them. Not my proudest moment.

It's like midnight, we've returned home and perhaps sent a few embarrassing texts disguised as performance art using white plastic phones and a CPR mask.

 the weeks top karaoke tunes:

Mr big, I'm the one who wants to be with you, Suzanne Vega Tom's diner, Sophie B Hawking's, damn, I wish I was your lover

On Sunday night we'll go try these out at Redneck's, but for now it's cafe brunch and backyard rehearsals. The harmonies...!

Around six am I wake up and try to listen to more weird  music, but it didn't work. Nation Drone day comes but once a year here in Canada. Happy bday going out to Kylie Minogue. 

My heart goes out to the low n slow crew, what with all the construction going on south of Albert and Gore. I love you all. Keep your chin up and stay strong. Thanks to Jackson Reed, Ears and Eyes, Nick Luck, Jason Willet, Dale, Bill, Great Chamberlain, and the 180 projects crew.


Friday, 27 May 2016

Fortnight Festival/ Art Party/ Events Listings

There's fresh art on the walls of the café.
Brenton Ellis will be hosting a soirée in celebration of this month's exhibition

at Gore Street cafe Friday May 27 at 830 pm
check out some snaps of his work throughout this post...

The Gore Street Café is proud to announce the Fortnight Festival
Running June 15-29  2016

Here's the schedule so far...

 June 15, 7pm - ☯ ☯ EARS AND EYES PRESENT • 
Painted Fruit feat. Johnny de Courcy | Live at Gore Street Cafe ☯ ☯ 

 June 16, 6pm - Community Dinner

 June 17, 7pm - Rae Spoon

 June 18, 7pm - HUSH PUP

 June 21, 6-9 - Gore Street Open Mic hosted by Sarah Ayton
 9:30 - Sarah Ayton

 June 22, 7pm - Mayhemingways + Blue Moon Marquee

 June 27, 7pm - Avec le Soleil Sortant de sa Bouche + Valued Customer

June 28, 5-9pm Gore Street Open Mic

9:30pm Future States

June 29, 7pm - Fox Who Slept the Day Away + Telephone and Address
 more TBA
Submissions accepted until June. 
 Festival Passes: $25

stay tuned to the tinderbox for interviews with Festival artists:-)

This Saturday May 28..Ears and Eyes- Wyrd canada - 
180 Projects and Gore Street cafe present
National Drone day-the Sault Ste Marie edition

Sunday May 29- 9pm
Graham Nicholas Live at the Gore Street cafe

Monday May 30
730 pm
Roger Roger with Logan McKillop
live at Gore Street cafe

Tuesday May 31
Open mic with chandra barnett

Friday June 3rd
Dance Night fundraiser

Friday, 13 May 2016

Roger Roger @ Gore Street Café May 30th

There's going to be a lot of Winnipeg bands playing at Gore Street Café this spring and summer. It makes this particular prairie boy feel proud. I'd like to thank Nicole, Jackson, and everyone at First Date for working hard to make so many awesome shows possible... Thanks to Bucky Dreidger for rocking the dance floor to bits with Royal Canoe at Lop Lops this Wednesday, thanks to Pevans, Miley, JPkaYo, seef, kids, Soo York, and the whole $unny vibe for putting it on last night, rip Prince and TGIF...
Here's a talk with Lucas and Madeline Roger, twin Winnipeg musicians who will be coming through on Monday, May 30, performing as Roger Roger at Gore Street Café, in our theatrical laundromat.

Sammy: is this your first time playing in the Soo?

Roger Roger> It sure is.

S: is this your first time playing in a laundromat?

RR> Yes! We've played on trains, buses, in art galleries, libraries, living rooms,
a ski lodge, farmers markets, and a pottery studio, but NEVER in a laundromat. We'll be sure to bring some dirty socks. 

> > > > S: laundry,'s like a one-stop oasis for the touring band. How have your travels been? what do you listen to on the road?

RR> Lately we've been listening to a lot of Alabama Shakes' new album Sound & Colour, and we bring a healthy stack of CDs in the car like the 90s kids that we are. Streaming CKUA is always an option too.
> S: I can get behind a well-curated CD booklet. I'm so nineties. what do you like to eat on the road?

RR>Depends who you ask.
Madeleine is quasi vegan and Lucas is an opportunivore - being that he'll eat whatever is in front of him - so the grocery store is our friend for veggies, hummus, sandwich fixings and the like. In terms of eating out, anything that comes in a wrap, bowl, or a pile is usually a pretty good bet for both of us. We've also been known to eat chips for breakfast. It happens.

S: Chips for breakfast. Sounds like a party:-) You two are siblings! Have you always played music together? How long has this project been in existence?

RR> We've been singing together since we were kids, and we've been collaborating together as Roger Roger for about two years now. Our debut album "Fairweather" came out in the middle of this January, which we had been working on for half a year prior to the release.

S: So you're on the road now in support of Fairweather. How far are you travelling on this tour?

RR> We'll be going as far as Montreal, then we're heading back to Manitoba for our cousin's wedding! We'll be (travelling) with Logan McKillop for this tour, who is a wonderful singer-songwriter and also an excellent guitarist. We'll be joining each other quite a bit - I expect that some three-part harmonies will be inevitable. 

> > > S: That sounds lovely! Good fun, so what's been the best show so far?

RR> Our album launch in January was a pretty special show - it's amazing seeing all of the corners of your life in one room, as well as all of the local fans. There are overwhelming feelings of support and love getting thrown around on nights like that, and the excitement of finally releasing the album that we had worked so hard at is hard to beat. We laughed afterwards that we probably could have played some blades of grass and kazoos for an hour and it still would have felt like a great show.'s hard to rate the "best" show because they're all so different, and we've had all kinds of amazing shows.

>>> Roger Roger performs with opening act Logan McKillop on Monday, May 30 at the Gore Street Café. Show is all ages, pay what you want. Doors at 7, music at 8

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Walking and waking...

What a weekend!

Big thanks to the Jane's Walk team: Tori, Michael, Nicole, and to all the walkers who came out to stroll through town and look around, soak up some history and share some memories.

It was quite an experience to lead a few dozen people on my usually more solitary lane-walks, and taking in Michael Burtch's observations on historical Queen Street buildings was also an amazing outing.

After brunch on Saturday, we whipped up some fresh ravioli and other goodies for a private dinner party of 15. Then there was a roast to cook for mother's day brunch, and some picnic treats for the Jane's Walk wrap up event. Everything was yummy, everyone was lovely, and the café bees were very busy.

So what's up this week?

Tonight, a spoken word climate change presentation is being put on by Nordik, Algoma U, RAIN, UIYFC, and Soo York City.  6-8 pm

Tomorrow at six, Rihkee Strapp is hosting the weekly Gore Street open mic night. Come check out the diverse artistic community and see what's cooking.

Matt Peters and I first met back in Winnipeg. At that point he was in the Waking Eyes, and I soaked up every show and demo I could. The musical heavyweight and his current crew Royal Canoe are playing Lops this Wednesday. And it's a FREE SHOW!!

Then me and Mikey get to play Lops, as Sammy D and DJ Miley in Manitobanality, part of the Soo Jersey crew opening up for West coast rhymers KIDS on Thursday night!

If you miss that show and peolke tell you DJ Miley is the greatest ever, come see us on Sunday, opening up for epic Winnipeg indie rockers Basic Nature at the Gore Street Café