Canadian Songwriters Honored In US-Based International Songwriting Competition (ISC)

Faouzia

“Knock On My Door“ – Faouzia Ouihya (Faouzia) Carman, MB, Canada – Teen


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
 

Contact: Candace Avery
International Songwriting Competition
615.251.4441
press@songwritingcompetition.com
www.songwritingcompetition.com


Canadian Songwriters Honored In US-Based International Songwriting Competition (ISC)
Judges Include Lorde, Hardwell, Tom Waits, Nancy Wilson (Heart), Ziggy Marley,
Kaskade, The Mavericks, Martie Maguire (Dixie Chicks), Bastille, and More

April 18, 2018 — The International Songwriting Competition (ISC is pleased to announce its 2017 winners. Created in 2002, ISC is widely recognized as the most prestigious and respected songwriting competition in the world and received more than 16,000 entries from almost 140 countries. Prizes include more than $175,000 in cash and merchandise.

The Grand Prize winners this year are Nicholas Miller (better known as Illenium), Annika Wells, Kate Morgan, and Michael Biancaniello for the song “Crawl Outta Love Ft. Annika Wells.” The Grand Prize consists of $25,000 in cash (USD) and over $35,000 in additional prizes.

Winners hail from all over the world (61% of this year’s winners come from outside the USA) and range from talented amateurs to seasoned songwriting veterans. The 23 categories include all genres of contemporary music, from Rock to Pop to Country to R&B/Hip-Hop and more.

Canadian songwriters fared extremely well in ISC, garnering four First Places and three Third Places. Canadian winners also received 39 Honorable Mentions.

“This marks the first time in the competition’s history that Canadian songwriters have scored four First Places in categories,” says Candace Avery, ISC Founder and Director. “It takes a lot of dedication and hard work to write great songs, and ISC is honored to throw the spotlight on these talented Canadian songwriters and their achievements.”

Over the years ISC winners have included: Vance Joy, Bastille, Passenger, Kate Miller-Heidke, Lindsey Stirling, Gotye, The Band Perry, Kasey Chambers, Lupe Fiasco, Rachel Bloom, Gin Wigmore, Kimbra, Gregory Porter, Kehlani, For King & Country, and many more.

For a complete list of ISC 2017 winners and to hear the winning songs, go to: https://www.songwritingcompetition.com/winners.

The complete panel of judges includes:

Recording Artists
Lorde; Tom Waits; Ziggy Marley; American Authors; Nancy Wilson (Heart); Martie Maguire (Dixie Chicks); Booker T. Jones; The Mavericks; Sara Evans; Bastille; Keane; Hardwell; Danilo Perez; James McNally (Afro Celt Sound System); Billy Cobham; Gerald Casale (Devo); Natalie Grant Lee-Phillips; ; Krewella; Matt Nathanson; Amadou & Miriam; John Tibbs; Kaskade; John Mayall; Joe Louis Walker; Nicholas Gunn; Ashwin Batish; Lonnie Liston Smith; Walter Trout; Trilok Gurtu; Tommy Chong; and Tony Joe White.

Industry Executives
Gregg Nadel (President, Elektra Records); Seymour Stein (Chairman/CEO, Sire Records); Daniel Glass (President, Glassnote Records); John Esposito (Chairman/CEO, Warner Music Nashville); John Burk (President, Concord Label Group); Ed Vetri (President, Wind-Up Records); Bruce Iglauer (Founder/President, Alligator Records); Steve Yegelwel (Sr. VP, Island Records); Nate Albert (Executive VP of A&R, Capitol Records); Jacob Edgar (Founder, Cumbancha); Aaron Bay-Schuck (President of A&R, Interscope Records); Mike Easterlin (President, Fueled By Ramen/Roadrunner Records); Josh Bailey (Senior VP of A&R, Word Entertainment); Gordon Kerr (CEO, Black River Entertainment); Richard Stumpf (CEO, Atlas Publishing); Steve Greenberg (CEO, S-Curve Records); Kim Buie (VP of A&R, New West Records); AJ Tobey (Head of A&R, Rough Trade Publishing); Cory Robbins (Founder/President, Robbins Entertainment); Angel Carrasco (Latin Music Consultant); Julie Kertes (Editor/Manager, Hot Diggity Media); Laura Margolin (Publishing, Glassnote Records); Leib Ostrow (Founder/CEO, Music For Little People); Katherine Danes (Co-President, The Children’s Music Network); Claire S. Green (President, Parent’s Choice Foundation); Benjamin Groff (Founder, The Brill Building); Sas Metcalfe (President, Global Creative, Kobalt Music); Golnar Khosrowshahi (President, Reservoir Media Management); Carianne Marshall (Partner, Songs Music Publishing); Tamara Conniff (EVP, Roc Nation); Dara Frank (Head of Comedy Central Records/Viacom); Carl Caprioglio (Founder/CEO, Oglio Entertainment); and Elena Epstein (Director, National Parenting Product Awards).

ISC is sponsored by: AKG By Harman; Berklee College of Music; Celebrity Access; D’Addario; Dark Horse Institute; Disc Makers; Eventric; Gig Salad; JBL Professional by Harman; Lurrsen Mastering; Merch Cat; Musician Wellness; Musician’s Institute; ONErpm; PreSonus; SongU.com; Sweetwater Sound; PAWW Premium Sound; and Tunedly.

Entries are now open for the 2018 competition. For more information and to enter, go to http://www.songwritingcompetition.com.

For low-res photos of all winners, go to http://www.songwritingcompetition.com/winners

For high-res photos, please contact Candace Avery at press@songwritingcompetition.com

The list of 2017 Canadian winners is as follows:

First Place Winners

“Knock On My Door“ – Faouzia Ouihya (Faouzia)
Carman, MB, Canada – Teen

Born in Morocco and raised in the Canadian prairies, Faouzia is a young artist who is wowing audiences and industry alike with her contemporary pop hooks and heart-wrenching lyrics, not to mention a voice that is truly distinctive with a huge range, taking on subtle trills and stylings. Her first single “Knock On My Door” found its way onto regular rotation at Canadian radio, and the follow up “My Heart’s Grave” is already seeing adds in both Canada and her native Morocco. Already a multiple award winner in ISC, as well as the Grand Prize winner of the 2017 Unsigned Only Music Competition, Faouzia is an up-and-coming artistic force whose star just keeps shining brighter.

“Sheep“ – Darrelle London
Toronto, ON, Canada – Children’s Music

A piano pop singer/songwriter, Darrelle London is known for her clever quirkiness and has performed at festivals such as Lilith Fair, Canadian Music Week, Pop Overthrow, and more. She was named the Toronto Lilith Talent Search winner and the BellMedia Emerging Artist. London has attracted some celebrity supporters along the way, including fellow Canadian songstress Chantal Kreviazuk who discovered her music and collaborated with her on several songs for London’s album Eat A Peach. The celebrity blogger Perez Hilton has also been a vocal champion of her music. Her latest album is a lullaby EP entitled Sing To The Moon.

“This Little Light“ – Jaylene Johnson
Winnipeg, MB, Canada – Christian

Jaylene Johnson, is a singer/songwriter based in Winnipeg, MB. Her song, “Fallin'” took second place in the ISC last year in the Christian category. Her work has been heard on network TV shows including “Pretty Little Liars”, “So You Think You Can Dance”, and “Degrassi: The Next Generation”. Co-written songs have been recorded by artists including JJ Heller, ‪Amy Sky, Brian Doerksen and ‪Luke McMaster among others. Her most recent album, Potter & Clay, was nominated for a Juno Award, a Western Canadian Music Award, and several Covenant Awards. Two of her songs earned songwriting trophies at the Covenant Awards this year.

“Untouchable“ – Dylan Edward Roberts (King Dylan)
Calgary, AB, Canada – Music Video

The winner of the Music Video category for his stop-motion animation video of the song  “Untouchable,” King Dylan (the King didn’t give himself that name – it was written in his high school yearbook) is best described as if Blink 182 had a lovechild with Eminem and Lady Gaga’s backup dancers. This one-man machine has performed live for thousands across Canada and released a handful of albums and music videos. Previously he played bass guitar in the hard Rock band Broken Ride (Regional Radio Star winners 2013), performed in and produced the hip hop group The DC Show, and played piano for the band Lost In Film at CMW 2014. Dylan has also just finished a new full-length album featuring “Untouchable” and eleven other hard-hitting tracks. The award-winning video utilized over 4,000 photos of legos taken over the course of 450+ hours.

Third Place Winners

“Backroads” – Jimmy Zee (The Jimmy Zee Band) – Vancouver, BC, Canada – Blues

“Never Have Time” – Jared Salte, Bethany Salte (The Royal Foundry) – Sherwood Park, AB, Canada – Rock

“Tequila” – Johnny Simmen, Hunter Leath, Matt McGinn – Toronto, ON, Canada – Country

Honorable Mentions

“A Flat Miner” – Troy Kokol – Calgary, AB, Canada – Comedy/Novelty
“Ambition” – Soul – Toronto, ON, Canada – R&B/Hip-Hop
“Ask Too Much Ft. Spence Holden” – Spencer Heaslip, Spence Milne-O’Neil (Taabu) –  Dundas, ON, Canada – EDM (Electronic Dance Music)
“Baby, I Understand” – Kat Goldman – Toronto, ON, Canada – Folk/Singer-Songwriter
“Beautiful Thing” – Aaron Buchholz, Ian Eskelin – Langley, BC, Canada – Christian
“Booger Song” – Tim Machin (Sing Along Tim And The Pacifiers) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Children’s Music
“Campfire ” – Dinah Desrochers, Aaron Cadwaladr, Phil Wipper, Jocelyn Hallett (The Kerplunks) – Gabriola Island, BC, Canada – Children’s Music
“Chills” – James Barker, Donovan Woods, Travis Wood, Gavin Slate (James Barker Band) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Country
“Ciento Viente” – Roman Smirnov – Newmarket, ON, Canada – Instrumental
“Don’t Give Up” – Maggie Szabo, Stefan Lit, Chaz Mason – Dundas, ON, Canada – Pop/Top 40
“Eleven! ” – Dylan Bell, Ed Hanley, Suba Sankaran (Autorickshaw) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Children’s Music
“Fall In Love Again” – Chris Graham, Mikalyn Hay (Xtro And Mikalyn Hay) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Teen
“Firetruck Firetruck” – John Donnelly (Rockin’ Robin And The Magical Tree) – Delta, BC, Canada – Children’s Music
“Freedom” – Ariana Gillis – Vineland, ON, Canada – Folk/Singer-Songwriter
“Gamblin Man” – Richard Tichelman – Surrey, BC, Canada – Teen
“Good Thing Go” – Powell Peebles, Brett Sheroky, Andy Wills (Powell Peebles) – North Vancouver, BC, Canada – Country
“House On Fire” – Don Oriolo, Jason Gleed, Chris Bolger – Toronto, ON, Canada – Rock
“I Don’t Want To Lose You” – Luca Fogale – Burnaby, BC, Canada – Performance
“Knock On My Door” – Faouzia Ouihya (Faouzia) – Carman, MB, Canada – Unsigned Only
“Lay It Down” – Jordan St. Cyr, Jaylene Johnson, Ben Calhoun, Taylor Watson – Niverville, MB, Canada – Christian
“Love It Up” – Tyler Lorette, Roberta Quilico – Courtice, ON, Canada – Performance
“Lowdown” – Matt Zimbel, Doug Wilde (Manteca) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Instrumental
“Move On Down
The Track” – Spencer Mackenzie, Rich Mackenzie (Spencer Mackenzie) – Ridgeway, ON, Canada – Blues
“My Heart’s Grave” – Faouzia Ouihya (Faouzia) – Carman, MB, Canada – Pop/Top 40
“My Heart’s Grave” – Faouzia Ouihya (Faouzia) – Carman, MB, Canada – Teen
“Nosotros” – Christopher Alexander Gaitan Valencia (Ness El Digital) – Montreal, QC, Canada – Latin Music
“Roses” – Gus McMillan, Robyn Dell’Unto – (Gus McMIllan) – Toronto, ON, Canada – AC (Adult Contemporary)
“Sanctuary City” – Cat Toren (Cat Toren’s HUMAN KIND) – Vancouver, BC, Canada – Jazz
“Sing For Kwanzaa” – Chris McKhool, Richard Bona (Sultans Of String) – Toronto, ON, Canada – World Music
“Summer” – Paula Eve Kirman – Edmonton, AB, Canada – Lyrics Only
“Temptation” – Debra Power – Airdrie, AB, Canada – Blues
“The Pee Song” – Jason Gleed (Redd Butts ) – Toronto, ON, Canada – Comedy/Novelty
“This Little Light” – Jaylene Johnson – Winnipeg, MB, Canada – Unpublished
“Three Words” – Sara Diamond, Austin Tecks, Noah Barer (Sarah Diamond) – Montreal, QC, Canada – Unpublished
“Unsure” – Sara Diamond, Austin Tecks, Noah Barer (Sarah Diamond) – Montreal, QC, Canada    – Unsigned Only
“Untouchable” – Dylan Edward Roberts (King Dylan) – Calgary, AB, Canada – Unsigned Only
“What’s A Boy Gotta Do” – Sean Thomas – Langley, BC, Canada – Teen
“When You Think No One Loves You ” – David Leask, Daryl Burgess (David Leask) – Mississauga, ON, Canada – Performance
“Worth It” – Wes Mason – Rockwood, ON, Canada – AC (Adult Contemporary)

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In Conversation with Wayne Byrne, Author of The Cinema of Tom DiCillo: Include Me Out

Title: The Cinema of Tom DiCillo: Include Me Out
Author:  Wayne Byrne
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Released: September 2017
Pages: 208
ISBN: 9780231185356

The Cinema of Tom DiCillo

As the author of this insightful and entertaining book, he delves in deep and comes up with the goods. Through his conversations with Tom we see the thought processes and strategies on each of his films, his hopes and frustrations, and everything in between. One thing about Tom, he doesn’t hold back. We also hear from many of Tom’s collaborators, and he has worked with some of the best in this business.

In short, this wonderful book details the ultimate triumphant journey of one of independent cinema’s smartest, funniest and fiercest warriors. ~ Steve Buscemi


As a long-time fan of the award-winning, independent, New York filmmaker and recording artist, I was very excited to be among the first readers of Wayne Byrne’s well-written, fascinating, detailed analysis of The Cinema of Tom DiCillo.  Irish author Wayne Byrne’s book is comprised of a series of essays about each of DiCillo’s eight films – Johnny Suede, Living in Oblivion, Box of Moonlight, The Real Blonde, Double Whammy, Delirious, When You’re Strange: A Film About The Doors, and Down in Shadowland – embellished with insider insight from some of the films’ stars.

Wayne, congratulations on your auspicious debut as a writer! I read somewhere that you never intended to be a writer, so how was it that you became one?

Thank you, Christine.  It’s such a great feeling whenever I hear those words.  It reminds me that the book is a real thing.  I’m getting used to the thrill of walking into a book store and seeing it on the shelf.

What I meant by that reference to never intending to be a writer was that I never consciously set out to become one, in the sense that I never said, “I would love to be a  writer when I grow up,” nor ever pursued it academically.  It just wasn’t on my radar when wondering what to do with myself.  I always thought writers were Ivy League academic types, an exclusive club that I would never be privy to, and my not being academically inclined meant it was just never a consideration.

I wrote this book out of necessity.  I wanted to own a book on Tom DiCillo and for that to happen I had to write it myself.  That is the essence of the “accidental writer” quote you are referring to.

Even though writing is now my life, there’s an element of accident, or perhaps fate, to my professional breakthroughs.  At some stage many years ago, I started writing my own movie reviews for nothing other than the fun of cataloging what I was watching.  At the suggestion of my friend I submitted this massive portfolio of amateur scribbling to the editor of a newspaper just for the sake of doing something with them.  I didn’t think anything would come of it, and looking back on those writings now, I’m surprised something did.  The editor replied to set up a meeting with me.  So, I went in and he pretty much hired me then and there as their film critic and columnist.  I couldn’t believe it!  I did that for two years, before the Arts pages were cut from the paper to allow for more advertising inches.  But it was the springboard for my professional writing career.

I’m currently a music journalist, again not something I intentionally set out to do.  I was asked by the editor of a highly-regarded magazine here in Ireland called Hot Press if I would be interested in joining them as a regular contributor.  This was after I had sold to them what I thought was a one-off freelance piece that I wrote about a musician friend of mine.  I’ve been an avid reader of that magazine for twenty years so it’s very exciting to now be part of it.  What an honor to be asked to join them.

I’m familiar with Hot Press as I’ve been to Ireland three times and read it while I was there. It’s an excellent magazine! I think that being a music journalist is possibly one of the coolest jobs in the world. Do you still have fun with it or is it simply work?

Oh I absolutely have fun. Of course there are occasions where you don’t necessarily like a band that you are reviewing, either live or their album, or you’re not familiar with an artist that you have to interview, but you have to be fair and diligent and go do your homework and have some context going in.  Often I end up very surprised that I like an album that I would normally have reservations about.  If I’m unfamiliar with a band who I’m reviewing I will often go and listen to their back catalogue.  But yes, I am fully aware of how cool a job it is.  Getting paid to go to a Morrissey concert or listen to the new Weezer album?  Hell yes!  But it is an important magazine and I treat it as such, with absolute professionalism.

Can you speak to your process as a writer? Where do you like to write? Do you listen to music when you’re writing?

My process has certainly changed over time, having become busier and juggling various writing jobs. When I began writing The Cinema of Tom DiCillo, I wasn’t under any contract, I had no publishing deal, and so I had no deadline.  While there was a certain level of uncertainty there in not knowing if all of this work was ever going to be published or not, it also gave me complete freedom of time and effort.  It allowed me to write the book I truly wanted to write.  It meant I could wait for people to become free to interview them.  If a very busy actor said they could talk to me in two months that was fine, I would wait, rather than having to move on without them.  Only when I was ready and happy with my book, and had satisfactorily covered everything I wanted to, did I say, “it’s finished!”  It took me nearly five years, from developing the idea, research, interviews, writing, editing, getting a publishing deal, proofreading the final text, arranging the illustrative materials, coordinating all the Interview Release Forms, and then seeing it published.

It sounds like a long time, but it is time-consuming, especially in wanting it to be of an extremely high quality and a definitive study of Tom’s work, and I was also learning to become a writer as I wrote.  I have no formal training and I’ve never taken a class on writing or literature; I learned as I was doing it.  I don’t know if that would work for everyone, but it worked for me.  And after it was finished, I submitted the manuscript to some publishing houses and there weren’t too many people I sent it to before I got the reply that I wanted.  I knew I wanted to sign with Columbia because they own Wallflower Press, an imprint that has released some of the absolute best books on films and directors.  It was the company I had always wished would release a book on Tom DiCillo. And now they have, but I wrote it, which is still surreal to me.

I tend to write exclusively, at home. If I don’t have my easy chair by the fireplace, then I don’t write. I don’t listen to music while working on the books, but when I’m writing about a specific film I will have it playing in the background, so I can jump in at any time to analyze a particular scene for any number of reasons: thematically, aesthetically, technically.

But when writing for the magazine I do listen to music, because I have to if I’m discussing a particular album or song, and so I will inevitably end up hearing something, some small musical flourish or nuance in a song that I didn’t hear upon first listen but I can now work it into the article or review.

One thing that you and I have in common is that we have both met Tom DiCillo and have had the pleasure of getting to know him. How did you initially meet Tom and how long did you know him before you decided to write a book about his films?

My first contact with Tom was just as a fan, contributing conversation to his blog posts. Soon enough I had cause to contact him in a professional capacity to request an interview for the release of When You’re Strange, as I was writing about it in my coverage of various film festivals.  The idea for the book came about a year into being acquainted with Tom personally, having written him several times and covered his work for various publications.  It was during this period that I mentioned to Tom that I had wanted to buy a book on his work for many years but all I could find were some career overviews in film encyclopedias and reference books; no books wholly devoted to him.  So, at some stage I put forward the idea that I wanted to write the first book on his career.

As Tom is my favorite director, I knew I was in this rare position of being able to talk to him and pick his brain.  Before I began the actual work I experienced some moments of insecurity, not knowing a single thing about how to write a book, and I started questioning how you go about doing that – do you have to go to college to be a writer? How do you become a published author?  I really didn’t know how the whole system of professional writing worked.  But when Tom gave me his blessing and support it encouraged me to just go for it, to write it and worry about becoming published later.

How difficult was it to gain access to the actors that you interviewed for the book?

Not difficult at all, thankfully, for 99% of them.  In almost all cases Tom introduced me personally to the actor and we talked and arranged everything between us.  Brad Pitt was a different story.  There was a team of “people” I had to maneuver through. I would get some positive responses such as “Brad is considering it but is very busy at the moment and will get back to you.”  This went on for a period of time and at this stage I was close to finishing the book.  I felt it was just about ready, so spending more time waiting on responses from people was starting to drag the whole endeavor out.  I asked once more, stating that I needed to know if Brad was in or out because I had to finish the book and they came back and said Brad had, after carefully considering it, decided he could not contribute at that time.  While it wasn’t the answer I would have liked, especially after the kernels of hope I had received, I appreciated that it was at least a firm answer.

Who would you say provided you with the most detailed insight into Tom’s process as a filmmaker, aside from Tom?

It’s hard to name any one person.  Everyone brought their own great insights into Tom, but Catherine Keener, Steve Buscemi, and Chris Noth gave me perhaps the most detailed account of what Tom is like as a person and as a filmmaker, because they have either worked with him a lot or have known him for a long time.  In the case of Chris Noth, he and Tom’s friendship goes back to their acting class and cater-waiting days in the early-eighties.  Chris gave me so much insight.  We spoke at length about their very long friendship, reminiscing about the old days of trying to make it in movies in New York in the 1980s, and their time working together on Law & Order.  Likewise, Steve Buscemi has known Tom since around that time as well and so there’s a great history there between them.

What was the most surprising thing that you learned about him?

It was fascinating to discover the intimate details of his life before the films and the fame: his background, his family life, his influences, his world view, and the relationships created early on with other artists.  It was those more personal moments that were revelatory, and very interesting and rewarding to me as a writer.  No detail was too minor or superfluous.  It all added up to help me create what I hope is a definitive work of this great artist.

I believe your book is the definitive work about Tom DiCillo.

I really appreciate that, Christine. I’m happy to have written something that would be considered Wayne Byrnedefinitive, but I also always look forward to any other film commentators or scholars writing about Tom, I would always be interested to hear of other people’s opinions on the films, maybe spotting something I didn’t see or analyzing something from a different perspective.  The great thing about any arts criticism is that it’s completely subjective.  Every person brings their own personal history and sensibilities to their experience of a work that makes it exclusively their own. What I see in Tom’s work could be completely different to what another writer sees, and I would always be interested to hear what other people see in his work.

I find it difficult to pick a favorite of Tom’s films, can you?

It depends on what day of the week it is.  I find it hard to pick one favorite, but I do know the ones I connect most immediately with for different reasons.  Johnny Suede will always be the most important film for me, so it is probably my personal favorite, as it was the film that opened my eyes to cinema.  It’s because of that film that we’re having this interview.  While Living In Oblivion is perhaps the definitive DiCillo film, being so perfect in every way, and being released at the time it was, it’s such a crucial piece of American Independent Cinema.  But, objectively speaking, I do think that Delirious is a frontrunner as his best work.

That said, I have programmed Tom’s films at many events (festivals, clubs, etc.) and the film that most people tell me is their favorite is Box of Moonlight.  Something about that film really clicks with audiences.  What Al Fountain (John Turturro) experiences in that film is probably something many people experience in their lives at some point, and Tom pulls it off with such cinematic skill, a deft surrealist aesthetic, and with great humor and pathos, those elements which are so distinctly DiCillo.

I agree with you about Delirious.

It’s a masterpiece. It has such a vital energy, such a range of emotion, and a stunning command of style. Tom was really firing on all cylinders on that one; the performances speak for themselves, and it has some of the best scenes of Tom’s entire catalogue.  For me it is easily the best American film of the last decade. Certainly it’s my favorite film to come out since Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut.

For me, one of the things I enjoyed the most about your book was that you elaborated on the themes that run throughout Tom’s films. Can you reiterate those themes for my readers?

Yes, of course.  It is one of the main objectives of the book, to acknowledge and analyze the crucial and relevant themes that run throughout Tom’s films.  I have always been very unsatisfied with critical commentary of Tom’s work, because very few, if any, acknowledge the themes at the heart of the films.  Rather, they look to the immediate context of satire, trying to pick up on sly digs here and there at these venerated institutions, painting Tom as purely an iconoclast.  And that’s fine, but there is so much more to Tom’s films than that.  I think a lot of critics overlook the pathos of Tom’s work.

Look at the thread of familial discord that runs through from Johnny Suede right up to Down in Shadowland.  Even When You’re Strange, a film about The Doors, shares many of the same themes as other DiCillo films, such as the illusion of fame, the fragility of ego, identity crises, the severed connection of family and the toll that takes on someone.  It’s amazing that all of these ideas remain present in a documentary ostensibly about one of the biggest rock bands of the last fifty years. Because of Tom’s ability to weave these deeply personal themes throughout, the film becomes less an objective biography of a band, but, for those familiar with DiCillo and his work, a very intimate portrait of two artists: Jim Morrison and Tom DiCillo.

You’re so right!  That’s something I’ve never been able to put into words, but you’ve nailed it. When You’re Strange is how I first connected with Tom so it will always have a special place in my heart as a result, but I also happen to be a big Doors fan.

I was very familiar with The Doors but never a “fan”.  But, testament to the power of Tom’s film, I am now a fan.  I now deeply admire their mysterious style of music and their prodigious musicianship.  I love the whole social and political historical context that was going on around them, which makes them a fascinating band to write about. The chapter on When You’re Strange is one of my favorite chapters in the book.  I interviewed drummer John Densmore and guitarist Robby Krieger for it, which is a pretty cool thing, to have those guys in there.

I love that you mention how wonderfully eclectic the soundtrack to Box of Moonlight (Wall of Voodoo, Peter Murphy, Nick Cave) is as it was a highlight for me.  One of the things that so attracted me to Tom’s personal music project, The Black and Blue Orkestre, was how his musical influences resonated throughout their first album. Tom’s taste in music really endeared me to him. Do you feel the same way?

Tom’s involvement in music is very important to me and to our friendship.  We have spent a lot of time working on music together.  I played guitar and piano on the Black and Blue Orkestre track In Your Dreams.  I’m very proud of it.  It was very exciting working with Tom on vocals and the actor Kevin Corrigan on bass – my job was made easier working with such skilled performers.  I love Tom’s voice and the sonic universe that he creates.  It just makes you want to grab the guitar and start recording, it’s so inspiring.

Tom’s use of music in his films is also wonderful, it is so crucial to the tone and atmosphere that he creates.  And the fact that he uses some of my favorite bands – such as those you just mentioned – just sweetens the deal.

I had no idea that you played guitar and piano on In Your Dreams!  That’s fantastic! I can’t wait for Tom to release the new songs that he’s recording with The Black and Blue Orkestre. Have you collaborated with him on any of them?

Thank you, I appreciate that. Yes, that song is pretty amazing.  I love how Tom mixed that song, it sounds terrific.  I have worked on a number of tunes, but I’m not sure what songs will end up on the next release, as this is Tom’s project and I just came in and did some guitar.  I like that session player aspect of working with the bones of a track, fleshing out the sound and my work is done.  Tom then does his production and engineering work on it and I just look forward to hearing the finished version just like any other fan.

Who are some of your favorite recording artists?

Music is a big part of me.  I love everything from 1930s dance bands, to 60s surf music, to 80s pop, to hardcore punk.  I’m inspired by every kind of music.  If you are over at my house for dinner or a beer, you could hear anything from The Circle Jerks to Slim Whitman to John Denver to Madonna.  I’ve started collecting vinyl, so I’m going back to albums I really love and relishing the great sound of records, so I’ve recently been listening to the first two albums from Bruce Hornsby and The Range (The Way It Is and Scenes from the Southside), Heartbeat City by The Cars, Lives in the Balance by Jackson Browne, Diesel and Dust by Midnight Oil, Court and Spark by Joni Mitchell.

I know I probably sound like some nostalgic dinosaur pining for my lost youth, when there is a whole world of new music out there, but I hear enough of the new stuff in my job writing for Hot Press (legendary Irish music magazine), so when I’m home and relaxing I tend to listen to the albums that continue to thrill and comfort.  I’m tragically unhip when it comes to music – I just like what I like.

My favorite albums would include:

Tango in the Night by Fleetwood Mac
Midnight to Midnight by The Psychedelic Furs
Déjà vu by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young
Book of Love by Book of Love
Heaven on Earth by Belinda Carlisle
Candy Apple Grey by Husker Du
Heaven or Las Vegas by The Cocteau Twins
In My Tribe by 10,000 Maniacs
Famous Monsters by The Misfits
Straight to Goodbye by Pale Divine

Wow, that’s an eclectic collection of favorite albums, but I love it!  If it’s any consolation, I’m probably just as tragically unhip when it comes to music because I still love listening to 70s and 80s music the most but maybe that’s the same for everyone who came of age in a certain time period.  The music of our youth remains special to us forever.  Are you familiar with The Tragically Hip who are from my hometown of Kingston, Ontario? I couldn’t resist slipping that in here…

Yes absolutely, I am a great admirer of The Tragically Hip.  Road Apples is a great album, and I absolutely love Small Town Bringdown EP – which has, for me, some of their best songs – Small Town Bringdown, Last American Exit, I’m a Werewolf Baby…just sublime! The production is fantastic, very much of that late-80s era. Just sublime!  You must have been able to see them live during those times, which would have been great.

What has writing this book taught you about filmmaking and The Arts in general?

That I know almost nothing about filmmaking.  I am truly in awe of filmmakers. They’re part of my intense interest in the subject of cinema.  Yes, I detailed a lot of the production methods and behind the scenes activity of Tom’s films, but filmmaking is still a mystery to me, and I hope it always is a mystery.  I want whatever magic is conjured in creating the art to remain elusive.  I want to retain some of that awe that was instilled in me upon seeing Masters of the Universe in the movie theatre when I was four.

I do sometimes ask the question of myself, “Who am I to write about or teach film?”  I have never been on a film set.  I have never acted or directed.  All I can offer are my opinions and thoughts on the films, back it up with some words from those who were there and have actually made the films, and then try and edit it into some kind of legible or readable context.  That, really, is my job.  I’m just spreading the word about movies and artists I love.  I consider myself less a writer and more a proactive fan.

Of the Arts in general, writing this book has made me appreciate the dedication of every other writer who takes the time to write about a subject that fascinates them, no matter what discipline they work in, because their passion fuels the passion of others.  I hope my book fills the gap on the shelf that Tom DiCillo fans have been waiting to fill, and I hope it inspires others in the way that other film commentators have inspired me.

Who or what will your next book be about?

This has taken a lot of people by surprise, because it’s a completely different cinematic universe to that which I cover in The Cinema of Tom DiCillo, but my next book will be on Burt Reynolds.

Some people think that because you love art films and write about independent cinema that you wouldn’t have any time for the kind of stuff that Burt Reynolds is known for, but I always ask, “well, what do you know of Burt?” and the answer is inevitably Deliverance, Smokey and the Bandit, and The Cannonball Run.  They aren’t aware of or haven’t seen the eighty other films he has made, some of which are simply fantastic works of cinema. Reynolds has worked with some of the greatest directors, and to name just a few of the brilliant films he has starred in with these filmmakers: Hustle (by Robert Aldrich), Starting Over (by Alan J. Pakula), Breaking In (by Bill Forsyth), At Long Last Love (Peter Bogdanovich), Navajo Joe (by Sergio Corbucci), Semi-Tough (by Michael Ritchie), White Lightning (by Joseph Sargeant).

My writing process on this one is completely different to that of The Cinema of Tom DiCillo.  On that book I spent five years writing about eight films.  On the Burt Reynolds book, I have one year to write about eighty films and several entire TV shows, the major ones that Burt starred in, which means Riverboat, Gunsmoke, Hawk, Dan August, B.L. Stryker, and Evening Shade.  And I couldn’t be happier, but it means I am extremely busy. There’s a lot of people to interview, a lot of films to analyze and write about, and I still have my bill-paying day and night jobs (librarian and journalist) to keep me busy.  So when I’m not in work I’m still at work.

Will it be published by Columbia University Press?

No, this book isn’t the kind of thing that Columbia would go for.  Columbia is really focused on publishing works on contemporary, influential directors who are presently relevant throughout the entire spectrum of World Cinema, and whose work has immediate academic currency, all of which applies to Tom DiCillo.  Burt Reynolds, however, doesn’t necessarily fall into those categories because he hasn’t directed a film in nearly two decades, is mainly celebrated for his acting work rather than his directing, and some people might not see the “academic” value of my writing about Cop and a Half or Smokey and the Bandit II.

My Burt Reynolds book needed a publisher who understands and shares my perspective on Burt Reynolds; that he is one of the truly great American film stars and an enduring icon of US cinema. There is something absolutely compelling about him every moment he is on the screen, and he’s one of the few actors left who you can genuinely call a living legend.  As a book of film history and film criticism it will benefit from Reynolds’ prolific and expansive work which spans many important movements through American film history, going from the Golden Age studio system of the late 50s, through the New Hollywood of the 60s and 70s, to the blockbuster world of the 80s, and indie cinema of the 90s and up to today. For this book I’ve already been talking to some great directors, cinematographers, and actors – some truly fascinating people.

I signed with a distinguished publisher who have an amazing catalogue of film books to their name and who immediately understood what I wanted to do and shared my enthusiasm for the man.  They also saw the gap in the market for a book on Burt Reynolds’ actual films because while there have been books on him in the past, they were more concerned with his personal life.  I have no interest in his personal life, but I absolutely love his films.  He’s probably my favorite movie star, alongside John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Doris Day, Steve Buscemi, and Dennis Hopper.

I’ve definitely enjoyed some of Burt Reynolds’ work that I’ve seen but I’m sure that after I read your new book, I’ll want to revisit his work.  I’ll look forward to that!

Thanks Christine! Yeah, I hope it encourages people to check out his work which has gone under the radar or is simply forgotten.  It’s also a celebration of and tribute to this great figure of cinema and his vast body of work, as well as an opportunity to appreciate the art of the films.  Burt has recurrently worked with some of the finest cinematographers, such as William A. Fraker, Nick McLean Sr., Vilmos Zsigmond, to name just a few.  You don’t read much technical and aesthetic analysis of many of Burt’s films, and so that’s partly what I’m doing.

I think I could talk to you for days, Wayne, but I should probably end our conversation here. Thank you very much for taking the time to talk to me and for sharing your passions with my readers.

It was my pleasure, Christine.  I hope people enjoy the book and go out and watch Tom DiCillo films. That’s really what it’s all about.

Sultans of String Celebrate Lyric Inclusivity of O Canada with a New Video & Recording

O_CANADA_3000x3000_ENGLISH

In January 2018, legislation was passed to make an important change in the English-language version of Canada’s national anthem O Canada. The line “True patriot love in all thy sons command” was replaced with “True patriot love in all of us command” to ensure gender parity. This is an important step towards recognizing and including all Canadians in our national anthem.

3x JUNO Award nominees/CFMA winners Sultans of String are celebrating this change with a new video and recording!

As bandleader Chris McKhool explains, music is a perfect medium for uniting people for social justice: “What I really love about music is its ability to bring together people and cultures in a way that emulates what we love to see in the world, creating collaborations that break down the barriers that divide us, helping us to see our common humanity, and providing a model for peace. So we went into the streets of Toronto and invited people to write a message on our ‘Peace Kite’, and then flew it to spread the message of inclusion and peace across the country. Making this video revealed the tremendous generosity and goodwill of regular Canadians, and the gratitude and pride we all feel about our country. It also reminded us of Canada’s important reputation as a peacekeeping nation, and a haven to which people from around the world find freedom from persecution and war.”

For a musician whose career has been dedicated to bridging cultures through song, these themes are particularly meaningful. McKhool, whose name would have been spelled Makhoul in Kfarmishki, Lebanon, where his ancestors are from, loves being able to write and perform music with people from around the world who share a common vision. This production is another in an ongoing collaboration with award-winning Pakistani Canadian sitar player Anwar Khurshid.  “He’s become a great musical and personal friend”, says McKhool. “Together we started writing songs about the freedom and equality we personally experience living here in Canada, and about our hope of creating a better world for all.”

We welcome individuals and schools to download and use our MP3s royalty-free.  
  
English version on YouTube: https://youtu.be/Q_cwkqa14Cg
 
Bilingual version on YouTube: https://youtu.be/PLOAYoT4X-Q 

 


Credits:

Sultans of String:
Chris McKhool – violin
Kevin Laliberte – guitar
Drew Birston – bass
Rosendo ‘Chendy’ Leon – percussion

Featuring special guests:
Anwar Khurshid – sitar
Rebecca Campbell – vocals
Ravi Naimpally – tabla
Choir – Amoy Levy, Ciceal Levy, Adrienne McKenzie, Camille Harrison, Nevon Sinclair, Danah Martin

Produced by Chris McKhool
Engineered, mixed, mastered by John ‘Beetle’ Bailey
Videography by Jake Roels
Flag pattern by Gabriel Oliveira

www.sultansofstring.com
www.facebook.com/sultansofstring
twitter.com/sultansofstring
For more info, and to invite Chris McKhool and Sultans of String for presentations, please contact:
Lisa Weitz
416-624-3466 (office) • 416-846-6877 (cell)
lw@lwcommunications.ca

The Cinema of Tom DiCillo: Include Me Out by Wayne Byrne

The Cinema of Tom DiCilloBook Review
Title: The Cinema of Tom DiCillo: Include Me Out
Author:  Wayne Byrne
Publisher: Wallflower Press
Released: September 2017
Pages: 208
ISBN-13: 978-0231185356
Book Reviewer: Christine Bode
Stars:  4.5

I admit that I can’t review The Cinema of Tom DiCillo: Include Me Out by Wayne Byrne without bias, but I can say that my bias is formed by a deep appreciation of Tom DiCillo’s films and Tom DiCillo, the man. I was fortunate to receive a review copy of the book from Columbia University Press’ Wallflower division and am pleased to give you my honest opinion about it.

I believe that the first of DiCillo’s films that I ever saw was Living in Oblivion, when I rented it on DVD soon after it was released – likely in 1996. As a life-long film fan, Living in Oblivion, a humourous, heartfelt film about the making of an independent film, was an absolute treasure to discover and has since become DiCillo’s seminal masterpiece. It wasn’t long after that when I also rented and enjoyed watching Johnny Suede, the now cult film with a cool surf music score that helped to launch Brad Pitt and Catherine Keener’s careers. Because I’ve always enjoyed Keener’s work and because she was in four of DiCillo’s films, I kept watching them and had seen at least four of them before I got to know a lot more about the filmmaker.

Then, in a strange, albeit serendipitous twist of fate, I became friends with Tom DiCillo when I discovered his blog as he was writing about the process of releasing and trying to find a distributor for When You’re Strange: A Film About The Doors (which won a Grammy in 2011), over seven years ago. The Doors are on my Top 5 Favourite Bands of All Time list and as such they formed the basis for our original conversation. However, we have continued to stay in touch ever since, because Tom is a very accessible, generous man with a kind heart and genuine appreciation for his fans. Not only am I a fan of his body of work, but I admire and respect him as an artist and a human being.  I’m equally enamored with Tom’s music project, The Black and Blue Orkestre, because I love his singing voice and the combination of Spaghetti Western, Surf and Cinematic Gothic Rockabilly grooves that form the music.

But back to the book. This volume by Irish author and Film Studies lecturer / education consultant Wayne Byrne is an extremely well-written, intelligent, enthralling addition to the Directors’ Cuts series published by Wallflower Press and a must-read for any cineaste or film student. It took Byrne five years to complete, but during that time he interviewed not only Tom DiCillo, at length, but also many of the actors in his films, including Steve Buscemi who wrote the foreword.

“In short, this wonderful book details the ultimate triumphant journey of one of independent cinema’s smartest, funniest, and fiercest warriors.” ~ Steve Buscemi

Byrne’s book is an interesting in-depth look at all of DiCillo’s eight independent films (seven of which premiered at Sundance) the agony and the ecstasy of birthing them, as well as an honest, insider’s view into the independent film industry and the machinations of the Hollywood system.

In his book, Byrne analyzes the themes of identity, family, and masculinity in DiCillo’s work and supports it with “in-depth coverage of the generic and aesthetic aspects of DiCillo’s distinctive and influential film style.” Through detailed chapters on each of his feature films, readers receive “…a candid look behind-the-scenes of both the American independent film industry – from the No Wave movement of the 1980s, through the Indie boom of the 1990s, to the contemporary milieu – and the Hollywood studio system.”

Byrne studied the writing, production, and release of each of DiCillo’s films and followed them with an extensive and intriguing Q&A with him, as well as exclusive interviews with many actors and collaborators including Steve Buscemi, Catherine Keener, Peter Dinklage, Sam Rockwell, John Turturro, Chris Noth, Maxwell Caulfield, Matthew Modine, Gina Gershon, Kevin Corrigan, Alison Lohman and John Densmore and Robby Krieger of The Doors.

Johnny Suede (1991)
Living in Oblivion (1995)
Box of Moonlight (1996)
The Real Blonde (1997)
Double Whammy (2001)
Delirious (2006)
When You’re Strange (2009)
Down in Shadowland (2014)

I own all DiCillo’s films and have watched them all again with new eyes after reading Byrne’s book, getting something new from each of them even though I’ve seen six of them previously, at least a couple of times. Perhaps that is what allows DiCillo’s work to endure throughout the years. It is clever, often subversive and upon first viewing you may think, “Well, what was that all about? That was a bit bizarre…”, but upon further viewing, you really get a feel for the director’s unique style and voice, use of colour, choice of music (often created by composer Jim Farmer) as well as the themes that inspire him. It is DiCillo’s way of viewing and expressing humanity in his work with his distinct sense of humour and pathos that makes these films stand out in the crowd of slick, violent, comic-book infested, often soulless, unoriginal movies from Hollywood that we’re seeing today. Give me the work of Jim Jarmusch, Richard Linklater, The Coen Brothers, Michael Winterbottom, Tim Burton and Tom DiCillo any day. If you agree, read this book.

Flamenco Guitarist Holly Blazina Introduces Debut Album Transcendencia on October 13, 2017

Holly Blazina Flamenco Guitarist

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 13, 2017

Calgary, AB flamenco guitarist, Holly Blazina will release her debut independent album, Transcendencia on October 13, 2017 through iTunes and Spotify.  Her CD release concert will be held at Decidedly Jazz Danceworks in Calgary on October 13 at 8:00 pm and tickets can be purchased online here. The album features nine compositions drawn from years of emersion, study, and collaboration in the flamenco music scene, both in Spain and Canada. Transcendencia was produced by Montreal-based performer, composer, and musical director, Amir Amiriand boasts accomplished players from the Canadian flamenco and world music scenes, bringing in modern elements not traditionally found in the genre, such as saxophone, violin, piano, and santur. The pieces were also workshopped with acclaimed flamenco guitarists, Paco Fernandez of Seville and San Fransisco’s, Ricardo Diaz.

The compositions on Transcendencia span a number of years from the time Blazina began writing in 2005, and parallels her experience in studying flamenco. “I decided it was time to truly actualize myself as an artist, which meant going beyond myself and living large. Recording these pieces was the most important step I could take in that direction,” Blazina explains. The arrangements explore the full expressive capacity of the nylon-stringed guitar, and for Blazina, cultivate a resilience that is both physically and emotionally demanding. She has refined ways of making the instrument truly speak, and claims space as an accomplished female player in a traditionally male-dominated genre.

ABOUT HOLLY BLAZINA Holly Blazina regularly performs as a soloist, in traditional Flamenco ensembles, as well as with other musicians from the jazz, classical and world music genres, delighting and inspiring audiences wherever she plays. She has performed as part of the Calgary International Flamenco Festival, and participates as an instructor and performer each year at Calgary’s Classical Guitarfest West. Holly has had the good fortune of studying intensively with renowned artists both in Spain and North America.

Website: www.hollyblazina.com | EPK: https://hollyblazina.com/epk/

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For more information, please contact: Jen Eisler, Publicist |
416-526-0969, jen@jeneisler.com http://www.jeneisler.com

Jen Eisler Publicity jen@jeneisler.com /416.526.0969 / jeneisler.com

Toronto’s Chauteuse JORDANA TALSKY Debuts her new cd “Neither of Either”

Irene Carroll Et Associates
Public and Media Relations
I See.

Toronto’s Chanteuse JORDANA TALSKY
Debuts her new cd “Neither of Either”


Wednesday, October 4, 2017 – 8 pm
Supermarket, 268 Augusta Avenue (Kensington Market) Toronto

Jordana TalskyPhoto credit: JEN SQUIRES

Jordana Talsky and her band will debut her new full-length album ‘Neither of Either’ Wednesday, October 4th, at the Supermarket, 268 Augusta Ave., (Kensington Market), beginning at 8 pm. Admission is free.

Marking an evolution from jazz songstress to performer with a distinct sound, Jordana combines acapella and full band tracks while seamlessly weaving between intricate support harmonies, vocal percussion, and quirky textures to create an innovative and compelling sound.

The Toronto based vocalist-songwriter takes risks, sonically and stylistically, encompassing her diverse influences across multiple genres from jazz to pop, to alternative and ambient, to blues and soul and beyond.

Produced by Juno award winner Justin Abedin, the multi-instrumentalist, producer, and composer recognized Jordana’s innate sense of music and deep well of creativity.  “She understands the value in the craft of songwriting and brings a fresh approach to her style”. 

‘Neither of Either’ – The Tracks

Pushing the boundaries of her current sound, Jordana and Justin ensured the 10 track ‘Neither of Either’ has a great vibe, ease of vocal transition, convincing lyrics and musicality that harkens to other strong female voices influential on Jordana including Fiona Apple, Dido, Feist and Alanis Morissette.

From the catchy quirky intro of “Run” to the roots infused post-rock “Around You All The Time” followed by the darkly soulful “Ways”, and the epitome of being fed up expressed in “Sick”, Side A rounds out with “Bitter Sweet Heart”, where Jordana’s mesmerizing voice takes over. “Spark”, the first track on Side B, is a reminder that sometimes, that’s all that’s needed. “Wave of Emotion” conveys the confusion of being pulled in two directions while the title track, “Neither of Either” considers that sometimes not making the choice is wise. The RnB flavoured “Don’t Know” precedes Jordana’s imaginative acapella remake of Alanis Morissette’s “You Oughta Know” and completes the album much like it began – catchy, great vibe and shining vocals.

“Jordana made a very positive impression on these ears with her 2013 debut, Standard Deviation.

She ups the ante on this new album, one that shows a real evolution in her singing and writing.

Her pure phrasing is devoid of affectation, and her supple voice is equally convincing on a wide range of material.”

– Kerry Doole (FYI Music News)

SIDE A

  1. RUN  (3:11)
    J. Talsky
  2. AROUND YOU ALL THE TIME (4:03)
  3. WAYS (5:26)
    J. Talsky
  4. SICK (2:29)
    J. Talsky
  5. BITTER SWEET HEART (4:03)
    J. Talsky, J. Gray

SIDE B

  1. SPARK (3:30)
    J. Talsky
  2. WAVE OF EMOTION (4:05)
    J. Talsky, D. Breithaupt, J. Abedin
  3. NEITHER OF EITHER (3.34)
    J. Talsky, S. McCully, J. Abedin
  4. DON’T KNOW (3.37)
    J. Talsky
  5. YOU OUGHTA KNOW (4.59)
    A. Morrissette, G. Ballard

Vocal Arrangementby JORDANA TALSKY
Produced by JUSTIN ABEDIN
Mixed by VIC FLORENCIA (Side A track 5, Side B tracks 1, 2, 3, 4)
KAI KOSCHMIDER (Side A tracks 1, 4 and Side B track 5) &
DARRYL NEUDORF (Side A tracks 2, 3)

Recorded in Toronto at THE CANTERBURY MUSIC COMPANY
By Jeremy Darby, Assistant Engineer JULIAN DECORTE and at
KEEN MUSIC by JUSTIN ABEDIN
Mastered by JOAO CARVALHO
Photography by JEN SQUIRES
Graphic Design by YESIM TOSUNER
© Jordana Talsky 2017. All rights reserved.

Jordana Talsky – The Artist

Jordana Talsky, is a voice to be heard. Her unique sound and varied style may be attributed to her wide-ranging experience. Once an opera singer, a musical theatre performer, and member of a funk band, Jordana pushes boundaries and embraces all of her musical sensibilities. She was a finalist in the John Lennon Songwriting Competition, a semi-finalist in the Sarah Vaughan International Vocal Competition, and runner-up for the Julian Award of Excellence for Emerging Canadian Artists and Toronto Independent Music Awards (vocal jazz).

With a live show of high energy and excitement, Jordana’s reputation has led her to perform in several music festivals and renowned venues. Established as one of Canada’s most exciting new artists in music, Jordana Talsky continues to perform on many notable stages both in the US and Canada making her a rising entertainer to watch.

Show Dates:

Sept. 16 – Kensington Market Jazz Festival – Justin Abedin -Trinity Common, TORONTO, ON

Oct. 4 – CD debut at Supermarket, 268 Augusta Avenue (Kensington Market)  8pm, TORONTO, ON – Free

Oct. 20 – tbd – Junction City Music Hall, Toronto, ON

Nov. – tbd  – C’est What | Cameron House, Toronto, ON

Nov 10 – Official Indie Week Showcase http://www.canada.indieweek.com  | The Painted Lady, 8:30pm Toronto, ON

Dec. 15 – Homesmith Bar, Old Mill Inn, Toronto, ON

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For More Info:

www.jordanatalsky.com
https://www.facebook.com/Jordana.T.Music/
https://twitter.com/JordanaZT
https://www.instagram.com/jzt123/
https://soundcloud.com/jordana-talsky
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGDx5kOITWiyonLVry6-xRw

Media Interviews | Industry Enquiries:

i see.
Irene Carroll Et Associates
Public and Media Relations

Irene Carroll, Strategist

t] 416.366.5473
e] irene@iseeassociates.ca

Radio Promotions | Interviews:

LAST TANGO PRODUCTIONS LTD.
Yvonne Valnea
t] 416-538-1838
e] info@lasttangoproductions.com

Civil Wray Releases New Video “Fie” From Self-Titled Debut Album

Toronto Singer-Songwriter On Tour Now in Maritimes, Album Official Launches September 29 at Toronto’s Monarch Tavern

Civil Wray

Photo Credit: Ivan Otis

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Aug. 22, 2017

TORONTO ON — Toronto singer/songwriter Civil Wray (aka Andrea de Boer) has released a new video for the track “Fie” from her self-titled debut album. It coincides with her current tour schedule in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick and finds her officially launching the album back home on Sept. 29 at the Monarch Tavern(see full schedule below).

Civil Wray represents a new musical and lyrical direction for de Boer, who has channeled all of her past experience into a new and fresh identity. The seven-track collection was produced by Chris Stringer (Timber Timbre, Holly McNarland, Jill Barber), and features guitarist Champagne James Robertson, keyboardist Robbie Grunwald, bassist Devon Henderson and drummer Joshua Van Tassel collaborating with de Boer to create an indie rock vibe with a touch of country that intensifies her trademark smoky vocals.

“Numb”—the first single to radio, produced by Matt DeMatteo—is an upbeat, surprisingly sultry pop track that finds de Boer sounding more vibrant and vixen-ish than ever before. Another key track is “Fie,” which, infused with a lush, Latin dance-pop vibe, displays de Boer’s dexterous vocal range over a full tropical template of orchestral synths. Furthermore, on “Don’t Make Me,” she looks to Bobbie Gentry’s iconic “Ode to Billie Joe” for inspiration, adding some Southern Gothic romanticism to the mix.

As for the origin of “Civil Wray,” de Boer came up with the concept when contemplating retiring her previous moniker blueVenus. A friend suggested titling her next album “Civil,” a word that soon took on deeper meaning for de Boer in terms of how she wanted to live her life. She later came across the word “Wray,” which in Old English means “discover.” Putting them together represented to de Boer how everyone can keep learning how to treat people better.

De Boer considers the years spent performing as blueVenus, which produced her 2009 debut Grin, a blessing. This period also included tours of North American and Europe, along with a six-year residency at Castro’s, one of Toronto’s legendary music venues, making her well prepared to record Civil Wray live off-the-floor.

Ultimately, Civil Wray is a testament to the confidence de Boer has displayed in making a major professional transition that’s allowed her to musically reframe the world. “Sometimes you just let music percolate and have its own life,” she says. “When you don’t have control over your own life, you can sometimes transform it through a song. It’s all about hope.”

Andrea de Boer is available for interviews.

CIVIL WRAY TOUR DATES

Mon. Aug. 28 :: Halifax NS :: The Carlton (HUFF Festival)
Tues. Aug. 29 :: Charlottetown PE :: Baba’s Lounge
Wed. Aug. 30 :: Saint John NB :: Pub Down Under
Thurs. Aug. 31 :: Fredericton NB :: Grimross Taproom
Fri. Sept. 1 :: St. Andrews NB :: Red Herring
Sat. Sept. 2 :: Halifax NS :: The Loose Cannon (HUFF Festival)
Fri. Sept. 29 :: Toronto ON :: Monarch Tavern [Official CD launch]
Fri. Oct. 20 :: Montreal QC :: Le Cagibi
Fri. Nov. 3 :: South Branch Bistro :: Kemptville ON

Civil Wray

TRACK LIST

1. Don’t Make Me
2. Numb
3. Midnight
4. Fie
5. Crows
6. Talk About Lies
7. Try

For all enquiries, please contact:

Jason Schneider / jason@jasonschneidermedia.com / 226-500-4865

Help Sultans of String Record Their New Christmas Caravan CD!

I have been working with Chris McKhool and 3x Juno-nominated Sultans of String for the past six years and I love these guys, but I have a confession to make. I’d love this group of Canadian musicians if I’d never worked with them. I would still be a super fan because they’re superb musicians at the peak of their craft who blend genres of music like a gourmet chef creates new recipes, and with each album they release, they astonish me with their talent more and more.

Sultans of String is in the studio recording their 6th CD… a world music Christmas Caravan and they’re really excited about and proud of this project! This is a Christmas album but approached from the perspective of a world music band. We would love for you to take a look at the EPK video for this album at:

http://kapipal.com/projects/recording-our-christmas-caravan-cd/

Sultans of String explore diverse genres, from Quebecois fiddle tunes to collaborating with a traditional Turkish string ensemble. They jump from the classic sounds of the Andrews Sisters to a Himalayan sleigh ride to African roots music, Gypsy-jazz, rumba flamenco, and ska, to the grandeur of the symphony.  They made a dream list of their favourite vocal artists to join them, all of whom agreed to join in the fun! This is their most exciting album yet, and the vocal guests infuse a tremendous amount of energy into their music. You’ll have to watch the video to find out who they are!

These independent recording artists have no record company support, so they need to raise money to finish production… but they are not asking for handouts. Rather, they are offering fun incentives to encourage your support – and you can truly become part of this journey with them. You can pre-order the album, get advance concert tickets, even the Executive Producer credit is up for grabs, along with the front row of seats at their banner CD release concert at Toronto’s Isabel Theatre on December 2, 2017!

If you love what you hear, we would be grateful if you’d share this link http://kapipal.com/projects/recording-our-christmas-caravan-cd/ with your friends.

Sultans of String wouldn’t be able to continue to make new music without you.

Thanks for listening!

www.sultansofstring.com

Toronto Singer, Songwriter & Actress Melanie Peterson Launches 3rd EP ‘Two’ at The Artists’ Garden in Toronto, July 26

 

New lyric video (premiered by online music publication Canadian Beats) for the first single “Been So Long”

 

Toronto, ON, July 17, 2017 – Toronto singer, songwriter, and actress Melanie Peterson launches her new EP ‘Two’ (about two sides of love) at The Artists’ Garden outdoor stage in Toronto (presented by AGC/Plein Air Garden Concerts).

‘Two’ (now available; official album release date, July 14, 2017) continues to embrace Peterson’s catchy folk-pop sound and love inspired lyrics. As with her prior records (2013’s first full-length album ‘Unbreakable’, 2014’s six-song cover EP ‘Read It On The Radio’, and second full-length ‘Anywhere From Here’ in 2016), it was produced by Mitch Girio (Emma-Lee, Tamara Williamson), and was recorded at Union Sound Company and Slow Cooker Studio, Toronto.

For the lead single/lyric video “Been So Long”, video motion graphics are by Andrey Sorokin (also worked with Lindi Ortega), who is based in Kirishi, Russia.

WHO: Melanie Peterson (guitar/lead vocal) as her trio, including Mitch Girio (guitar/backing vocals), Peter Collins (bass/backing vocals) – all of whom performed on the new EP.

WHERE: The Artists’ Garden, 345 Balliol Street, Toronto, ON, M4S 1E1

WHEN: Wednesday, July 26, 2017; Doors at 7:00 p.m., Melanie at 7:30 p.m.

HOW MUCH: $10.00 at the door. Advance tickets at; https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/agc-plein-air-concerts-present-melanie-peterson-folk-roots-tickets-35239897482

ARTIST QUOTE: Melanie Peterson, who in 2016 received two FACTOR grants, states, “My new summer EP is about two sides of love. The, I can’t believe it, I’m falling in love side (#1, Been So Long) AND the now that the honeymoon is over, are we going to make it as a couple side (#2, Kiss Me Like You Mean It). My hope for the album release show is that folks enjoy the evening in the outdoor setting and they like the new songs!”

FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/1297715740347599

ARTIST INFO: http://melaniepeterson.ca

Peterson earned her spot within Toronto’s independent music scene when she was invited to host and perform her original songs in the monthly female singer-songwriter night called ‘Girls Girls Girls’ at the renowned Cameron House (September 2010 to December 2012) and in March 2012 when she initially showcased at Canadian Music Week. She was invited back to perform two showcases at CMW 2013 and in that same year she launched her first full-length album ‘Unbreakable’ in Toronto. Melanie followed that up with a triumphant 2013 NXNE showcase and a successful southern Ontario tour.

MEDIA QUOTES:

Feature for new video “Been So Long” – http://www.fyimusicnews.ca/articles/2017/07/12/music-news-digest-july-12-2017 ~ FYI Music News, July 12, 2017.

Video premier feature; http://canadianbeats.ca/2017/06/27/premiere-melanie-peterson-releases-lyric-video-for-been-so-long. ~ Jenna Melanson, CanadianBeats.ca, June 27, 2017.

“Melanie Peterson is a Toronto-based singer/songwriter with a lovely lilting voice and strong songwriting chops.” ~ Kerry Doole, FYI Music News, 2016

“The songwriting is genuine and self-aware, and there is a positive tone even in the heartbreak.” ~ Cate McKim, Life With More Cowbell, 2016

“This is an artist who knows how to entertain an audience, playing three 45 minute sets to a packed house of admiring fans.” ~ Frank Mcfadden, Snapd Beach/Danforth

“…we have very much enjoyed playing a variety of tracks from ‘Unbreakable’, and my Saturday morning listeners have been quick to let us know they enjoy what Melanie does!” ~ Monica Winfield, host, BBC Radio Leicester, 2013

“A melodically enchanting songwriter and musically adept guitarist, she has the crowd eating out of her hand. I’d call her music smooth pop as it is as inviting as it is sweet.” ~ Gary 17, Toronto Moon Magazine

“…check out Melanie Peterson, a terrific singer and songwriter. She sounds just as good live as she does on her album. She has a beautiful voice.” ~ Joe Warmington, Toronto Sun, 2011

“I can hear the Joni Mitchell influence in her voice, but there is a significant difference —Joni’s voice is cool, introverted and detached, whereas Melanie’s is warmth personified.” ~ Altrockchick.com

UPCOMING TOUR DATES:

August 5 – Bancroft, ON at Millennium Park, Bancroft Art & Craft Guild Summer Show and Sale
August 18 – Ottawa, ON at Avant-Garde Bar

ABOUT:
Blessed with a voice reminiscent of an early Joni Mitchell, and an ability to imbue her vocals with palpable and authentic emotion, Saskatoon born, Toronto based singer-songwriter and actress Melanie Peterson has become one of the brightest lights on the Toronto music scene. Previously, she has released a five-song EP called ‘After the Fall’ (2010), her first full-length album ‘Unbreakable’ (2013), a six-song cover EP titled ‘Read It On The Radio’ (2014), her second full-length album ‘Anywhere From Here’ (2016), a holiday single “Santa’s Sleigh” (2016), a single “Sunshine” (2017) and most recently, her newest EP ‘Two’ (July 14, 2017).

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For media info, CDs, digital albums, photos and interviews please contact:
Laurie Lockhart
GET THE MESSAGE Publicity
Tel: 416-988-2530 / Email: publicity@getthemessagepr.ca
Facebook.com/GETTHEMESSAGEpublicity / Twitter.com/getthemessagepr
getthemessagepr.ca

For more artist information please visit:
melaniepeterson.ca
Facebook.com/misswatermeloni
Twitter.com/MissWatermeloni
YouTube.com/user/mellysings
Soundcloud.com/melanie-peterson

The Bombadils Release “The Fountain” Official Video

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Today’s the day! Borealis Records recording artists, The Bombadils, are so excited to share this video for their song, “The Fountain” from their album New Shoes!

Written by Sarah Frank and Alan Mackie about summer travels and adventure, the video came together last summer and fall, featuring shots of Montreal, Quebec, and St John’s, Newfoundland. It’s a dreamy display of fountains and mountains, cool old buildings, fish, birds, and other summertime delights, all wondrously captured by Nasuna Stuart-Ulin.

Although The Bombadils made the video long before they had any plans to move to Halifax, it’s interesting that the locations that Nasuna filmed create a parallel to their recent move from Montreal to the east coast. Looks like Nasuna was one step ahead of them!

Video ~ Nasuna Stuart-Ulin
Audio ~ James Perrella & Julia Graff
Songwriting ~ Sarah Frank & Alan Mackie (aka Berty Lancaster)
Band ~ The Bombadils (Sarah Frank on fiddle and vocals, Luke Fraser on guitar and vocals)

Big thank you to Borealis Records and The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent On Recordings (FACTOR) for making this possible.

New Shoes available through Borealis Records, iTunes, and Spotify.