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Some Kinda Wrap Up…

Missed the last weekend wrap up after I went to Montreal, and I didn’t take enough pictures then or from this weekend at my parent’s place for a BBQ and pool-floating day. (Have I complained enough about my Nikon cam being in the shop for the past 7 weeks? Hoping it’s back in action for Edgefest this weekend!) Here is a wrap up of what I’ve been up to:

I took my first Megabus trip from Toronto to Montreal to meet boyfriend there for the weekend. I thought our bus driver was hilarious (by my 6am standards) until he told me we wouldn’t have time to run over to the Timmie’s in the SAME parking lot as the rest stop in Kingston. I felt so victorious when I got this for the last half of the trip and got some studying in since my computer had died.

These kids were DJs, I think they called themselves Eargasm. I caught them at a Supernova show in Montreal on Friday night. I’m not kidding, these 2 kids could DJ at Wrongbar and we’d all shit our pants and line up for hours to dance our sweaty pants off with them. Please someone in Toronto – book these guys at your club so I can come dance my jean shorts right onto your floor.

Then we saw Simon Walls play – great as always. Everyone in the bar was SO impressed by his voice and use of the loop pedal to make it sound like he had a whole band behind him. I really wish Simon could find a girl to walk across the country with him to sing with him. I love the way girls voices sound harmonized with his. There are some songs he sings where I can hear the girl’s voice where it’s supposed to be.
I told Simon I would learn to sing so that I could sing with him when I’m at the shows. I don’t sing in front of ANYONE, hate the sound of my own voice and don’t like talking into microphones. Simon says we have a long way to go…

Simon also says Raise your hand. Now put it down. HAW HAW SIMON DIDN’T SAY TO PUT YOUR HAND DOWN.

Was nice to see Simon in his own element in Montreal. The boys spoke French and I chimed in with phrases I strung together with my basic vocab (like “Le oiseaux caca sur l’auto”). Simon brought us to La Rockette which was just our scene. I got a kick out of the unisex bathroom!

This made me giggle. I love funny WIFI names. More giggles here.

I did some shopping and walked through Montreal Jazz Fest. Was supposed to be finding the car but I was distracted by so many cool street performers.

Love the Toronto skyline. I love coming back into the city after some time away. This is my home! This view makes me happy to be a Torontonian. Isn’t our skyline pretty?

My brother’s both graduated within a few days of each other. One finished grade 8, the other grade 12. Both are starting new things in September and I’m so excited for them! I always get them to make this face dating back to an old e-mail forward we loved when people actually read e-mail forwards.

One fun thing about your brother’s grad being held at the Powerade Centre in Toronto – popcorn during the ceremony. My dad and I sat next to each other and made up the peanut gallery for the ceremony. Mom turned around and yelled at us. We had fun cheering for my brother and his girlfriend. Fun fact: My fam lives on a small crescent in North Brampton. 8 kids in my brother’s graduating class live on our street!

The other fun thing about your brother’s grad being held at the Powerade Centre is posing for pics like this. Boyfriend thinks I’m a closet puck bunny (untrue) so he’ll love finding this picture. Fun fact: I did used to go to tons of Battalion games and I loved going to talk to the players after the game. I had a few of them on ICQ, including Raffi Torres.

AND NOW ON TO THINGS I WISH I DID LAST WEEKEND:

Travis Snider!

I’ve been complaining ever since he got sent back down to the minors that the Jays don’t know what they’re doing. On Saturday I commented to my brother and the boyfriend that I was going to boycott watching Jays games until they brought him back.
Sunday afternoon I heard he was being called back for Monday’s game. The boys got a kick out of that! Good thing I didn’t have to boycott because I do enjoy watching the games.

Today Snider got 3 Doubles and 2 RBI’s so my brother tweeted that I should manage the Jays. Yeah, basically.



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Look Ma, I’m Famous!

Remember the studly adventurer/musician Simon that I blogged about last week? I was just looking through my copy of his new album and found this on the inside of the CD cover:

Weeee! It’s my first liner note mention! Rock For Humanity has been thanked a couple times and so has the founder Jordan, but this is my VERY. FIRST. TIME. Thank you Simon for making me smile for the next few months! You know what they say…a girl will always remember her first!

In other news…

Anita and I attended the #pepsithrowback party at Revival on Tuesday night. It was tons of fun and everyone was dressed up like the 80’s. Unfortunately my J-O-B would not have appreciated 80’s gear so I came dressed like a party pooper straight from work. Everyone else looked glam!

The party was hosted by Casie and Keshia Chante who danced like pros to M.J.’s Thriller, led by Shawn Hawaii and Scott.

Also: major cred goes to Photo Junkie for his pictures!! My cam is STILL in the shop @NikonCanada so I’m having to rely on everyone else for fotos lately. Good thing he takes awesome ones!

P.S. Yo-yo’s rule.
P.P.S. Can we please keep our fingers crossed for no rain tomorrow? I’m going to my cousin’s housewarming BBQ. Moe is tagging along too!

The New Face – and Feet – of the Music Industry

Simon Walls

I first met Simon Walls three years ago when I was booking bands to play at the Paradise Restaurant patio on Toronto Island during Wakestock as part of a Rock For Humanity fundraiser. While I was looking for bands to fill the bill we got a press kit in the mail from Simon Walls – a singer/songwriter from Montreal – with a short note and his second EP “Don’t Ask Your Eyes What the End Looks Like”. His music was personal, the riffs catchy and his work ethic inspiring. Simon wanted to play Rock For Humanity shows in Toronto and we thought he was a perfect fit for the Wakestock bill. Simon has a hectic work schedule working at a youth house in Montreal and couldn’t take much time off so he drove overnight from Montreal and napped in his car while he waited to meet up with us at the ferry docks.

Fast forward to the present. Simon is walking across Canada. He’s no stranger to blistered heels; Walls walked over 1000 km across Spain in 2008 and used some of his footage to create the music video for “Things I Will Give Up”. While Simon may have experience in roughing it, nothing could prepare him for his newest venture. Clocking in at just over 9,000 kilometers if he sticks to the route he’s mapped out in advance, Simon’s journey has seen the western tip of the country and will continue all the way east to the ocean. Throughout his walk, Simon documents his journey via updates to the blog on his website, plays shows wherever he can and lets his travels inspire him. When he reached the halfway point of his walk in Toronto, Simon took his newfound inspiration to the studio and will resume his walk across the country on Tuesday with a new record titled “Klein Blue”.  (Click on the link to buy).
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Despite all of his planning prior to his departure, Simon continues to be surprised with what his walk brings.  He couldn’t have anticipated the kindness of strangers he’s met who offer him food, money and sometimes even a place to stay. When he isn’t being hosted by someone he’s just met Simon sleeps in fields, parking lots, forests and campgrounds. He’s been surprised by a pack of coyote’s sniffing and snarling outside of his tent in the middle of the night and has endured sleeping in a field next to a tractor during a massive storm in the prairies. He’s spent lonely nights in his tent (which he carries on his back while he walks) recording new song ideas on his iPhone.

On the final leg of his walk, Simon is looking forward to swimming in the ocean when he reaches St. John’s, Newfoundland in September and meeting all the great people the east coast has to offer. He’s looking forward to walking through Montreal, his hometown, and is hoping to get a big group of people to walk with him there. Simon’s learned a few things from the first 4,800 he’s walked:

I really have to pace myself at first. Take it slow. I’ll have to really work on going slow all the way to Montreal, then I can pick up the pace. One of my goals is to meet more people, try and sleep in more houses as opposed to fields, in my tent.

The music industry certainly isn’t easy to make it into. With it’s future resting precariously in the hands of internet and new media, artists, management and labels are trying to find ways to still make a profit. With emerging artists like Simon, the future is clear. Imagine if all artists worked so hard at their art or traveled such great distances to promote their albums. No tour bus, no rider, no ego and no misplaced sense of entitlement; just pure, inspirational motivation and talent.

Whatever awaits him on the second and final part of his walk across the country, one thing is for sure – Simon will be charming the heart and ears of everyone he meets.

Simon is playing his last show in Toronto at the Cameron House on Monday, May 30, 2011 before he leaves for his walk on Tuesday morning.