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Monday, March 26, 2012

The fun you do for friends

I was asked to perform a little number, as well as "Happy Birthday" for my dear friend Joan, at her shared birthday party this past weekend. I was delighted to be a part of this fantastic bash! Take it from me, the best way to celebrate life is by not wearing pants ;-)

The birthday girl is on my bum, and has something to say!  Photo by Joan Athey

Photo by Joan Athey
Performing for your friends is the best, especially your Art-family friends. Artists need nurturing, and so we surround ourselves with a community of fellow creativity lovers, ingenuity enablers, art supporters, inventiveness boosters, imagination sustainers, and then we partake in very fun parties!

NOTE TO SELF: I have GOT to get my act together with replacing the 9-volt battery, that gives my pick-ups their juice, BEFORE the gig! It seems pretty prehistoric that I'm plugging a 9-volt battery into my instrument, which in case you didn't know, requires dismantling the left-side of my accordion to get at it and swap it out. Packing an extra battery -check! Packing a tool kit to perform the procedure -fail! So, once again, I was blasting my bellows into a vocal mic - which works for being heard, but I'd rather utilize the pick-ups!

I danced away the night with Joan's Dad. I was amazed how well he could twirl all 5'9 of me, and there is nothing more fun then being whipped around the dance floor by a 92-year old man! You heard me! Thanks for the dance lesson, John! One, two, cha cha cha...


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Go Go Accordion Girls

I absolutely love art. I love photography, paintings, drawings, sketches, and illustrations depicting life. To have your portrait drawn, or photographed is magical. I feel that the hands of the artist come in contact with something divine, a higher power is lending a helping hand, and through these forces you are immortalized.

I've recently made the acquaintance of a wonderful illustrator, Kinkong Watanabe, from Tokyo, Japan. Kinkong first found me and my blog, and after I saw all the whimsical illustrations of girls playing accordions, I asked if there could be one done of me :)

Sure enough, here I am!
I love this!! I do enjoy looking up at little birds, and have also thought that the pattern on my bellows look like lips.

Check out Kinkong's blog here: http://gogokinkong.blogspot.jp/2012/03/saving-world-with-accordion.html

Check out my latest sounds on SoundCloud:

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Where dreams come true! TING!

The Metro Theatre, Victoria BC, Canada - Photo by Darren Stone

I've got one piece of advice for you... no wait, two pieces of advice:
1. NEVER tell Captain Hook to get out of your chair.
2. ALWAYS pack at least two pairs of underwear.

Somethin's cookin' alright!

Monday, March 19, 2012

A mid-March update!

Oopsie, poopsie! I haven't updated my blog in over a week!

Did everyone have a good St. Patrick's Day? I had a blast! I celebrated with my very own Irishman, Darren Stone.

Photo by Darren Stone

When you play the accordion,  you're a great candidate for being categorized into whichever folk music has become mainstream at that moment, and has the accordion present in it. I leave St. Patrick's Day to the Irish. Or, I am just too young/still gaining a catalog of music in my brain, to be able to whip out a heartfelt rendition of "Danny Boy"? I am only becoming familiar with every culture there is! Patience, please! However, I would have chosen covers, like my second favourite Irishman - Morrissey.

Sighhhh :)

I make up for my lack of Celtic music knowledge with baking green shortbread cookies in the shapes of shamrocks. I'd say that's a good alternative, no? Yes!

The goal for next year will be to celebrate St. Patrick's Day in Ireland. I will learn a traditional St. Patrick's Day song while I am there. What a concept!

Hey! You look like you might need a button to cheer you up!

Am I right? Well, I thought so!

Send me your address, and you might receive one in the mail :)


There are a few new songs on my SoundCloud page, here they are:

Friday, March 9, 2012

Happy International Women's Day!

 To celebrate International Women's Day, I hung out with some ladies... in bed!


In collaboration with the "Give Peace A Chance" Art Exhibition of Gerry Deiter's famous photographs of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's "Bed-In For Peace" (happening at the Limelight Art Experience in the Cedar Hill Recreation Centre), myself as well as jazz vocalist Aurora Scott came in and entertained the guests of the gallery.

What does International Women's Day mean to you? Well, for me, it has me reflecting on the women in my life. There are the women that mean a lot to me, those who have inspired me, have given me strength like my late Grandmother, or my recently deceased step-Grandma, or my Grandma Helen - who is still alive and well! My Mother, my cousins, and all the fantastic, talented, brilliant, and hilarious lady friends I have.

I think about how hard we work, how we nurture, care for, show compassion and tenderness, laugh, cry, worry, forget, change our minds, get irritated, take crap, all while wearing fuzzy slippers. I think about how hard we are on each other, and how hard we are on ourselves. I think about how we share our recipes, fashion trends, music, our fears and our dreams.

I think about how modest women were at the gym in Florida, how they would go in the sauna fully clothed and here they are so free with their bodies and hold no reservation about changing in front of each other. I think about how clueless men are when they talk to me. I think about all the little girls I have met while performing, all the little "princesses" I've met, and what this world we live in has in store for them. What is 2012 like for a little girl?

I think about how every woman deserves to be told, and know, that they are truly beautiful. I think about how life can take some serious ovaries to make it through the hurdles you're thrown, and for me - I like to do it whilst wearing false eyelashes and a serious pair of heels. 

Photo by Darren Stone

Happy International Women's Day.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Meeting the artist!

After the event I did on February 22, 2012, Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School, I received an incredible collection of artwork and only one artist included their business card. It was Rosalinde Compton. I was on Facebook one evening, and noticed a comment made by the artist, Rosalinde, on the Dr. Sketchy's Facebook page. As I went to write her a message, thanking her for the great illustration given to me, I noticed we had a mutual friend which was: my Mother! How lovely!

This fantastic artist invited me to her studio, and it was a delightful visit. Seeing all of her artwork, the range of her ability, from use of pen and watercolor to acrylic; depictions of landscapes, gardens, sculptures, architecture, to maps and abstract imagery - all of which were done in a different corner of the world.

This accomplished, well-traveled artist is very talented, and I feel lucky to now have a second painting from her! I'm very tickled to have any, and now the collection is growing!

She let me know she handed in more of her artwork that night, and I must have it, but I'm not able to pick it out from the collection of work I have. The artwork featured at the top of this posting was signed, and included her card - as I mentioned, the rest were amongst the shuffle which Lily Fawn and I sifted through at the end of that night.

There's a romantic quality in not knowing who the artists are, almost like a secret message given to me - and the more I look at the sketches the more there is revealed as I will create a story in my mind of what the person was thinking or imaging while they drew.

Thank you again, Rosalinde!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

My Davy Jones story

Last May 2011, as I was working at Epcot WDW, there were concerts put on in the American Adventure pavilion. The American Adventure pavilion was right next to the Italian pavilion, where I performed, but my break trailer was backstage of the American Adventure, the "AA trailer" as we all put it.  There was a performance stage where many concerts are held such as the Christmas Candlelight concert, and many other acts that I would sometimes go check out, and so the backstage area was always bustling with activity of some kind.

There was a day when I knew The Guess Who would be playing, and I was very excited as I was actually needing to see some Canadian rockers, to cleanse my palette of Americana. What do I find, but a shadow of their former selves. No Bachman, no Cummings, but a bunch of other guys in their place. Ohhh, that's right, Randy and Burt don't tour under "The Guess Who" because The Guess Who have the rights, or what ever legal nonsense is having The Guess Who remain unrecognizable to a Canadian gal like myself.

Well, that was disappointing. I did, however, enjoy The Fifth Dimension. I passed on seeing Starship Jefferson or Jefferson Starship, as I saw them walking backstage in their tourist t-shirt/short combo with frizzy rocker hair, prior to changing into their rockstar attire (it ruined the mystique of asking Alice what the doormouse said). I would like to be Grace Slick for 10 minutes, but wait - Grace Slick wasn't there either!

I enjoyed Billy Ocean's performance, and running into Boys2Men backstage, but I began to see the pattern... the acts that were being brought in were those of musicians that were popular between the 1960s and 1980s, and haven't had a presence in the music scene since, if not for kitsch popularity - because of a Shrek soundtrack, or something.  So, when I heard Davy Jones would be performing, I couldn't bare to see that go down as well. I didn't want to find out something disappointing there, so I just heard his voice carrying, singing "Venus if you will" as I waited for the bus backstage, by the American Adventure trailer. That's a Frankie Avalon song, just for the record. I was a typical cynical Canadian, eh?

Now Davy Jones is dead, and everyone is sad, and I feel like a douche bag!

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