Bonnie Raitt is something to talk about

“It’s about time,” says Bonnie Raitt about being back on the road again. She kicked off her Canadian tour in Montreal this past Wednesday to promote her latest release and 20th album Dig in Deep. Her remarkable musical career as a singer-songwriter and guitarist spans 45 years. After dropping out of Harvard University in 1971, she […]

Björk Digital: on the cutting-edge of music, art and technology

The iconic Icelandic singer, songwriter and actress, Björk, is one of the most innovative artists of her generation. She has pushed the boundaries of artistic expression, blending technology, performance art and music, throughout her 40-year career. She bridges the divide between experimental musician and pop celebrity, with her use of unconventional instruments, warm passionate vocals, electronic beats and wild […]

Blues wonder Philip Sayce releases Scorched Earth

Jon Bon Jovi was stunned when he first heard Philip Sayce play guitar alongside Melissa Etheridge at the 2007 Grammy Awards. After the performance, Bon Jovi told the audience, “I want to give a special nod to Philip, who I immediately opened the program and said ‘Who the fuck is that guitar player?’ Pretty fabulous […]

Review: Kid Koala comes home for Nufonia Must Fall

Imagine a post-apocalyptic Charlie Chaplin film with robots, puppets, a string quartet and a scratch DJ. This is Kid Koala’s staggeringly complex live adaption of Nufonia Must Fall, which was slotted for six performances at Montreal’s Place des Arts from September 2-5, 2016. The live Nufonia Must Fall experience is based on his original “silent” […]

Chaim Tannenbaum’s long-awaited debut album is finally here

The first time I heard Chaim Tannenbaum’s extraordinary singing was on Kate and Anna McGarrigle’s album The McGarrigle Hour, which was recorded at a gathering of friends and family in 1998. In particular, I was struck by the poignancy and luminance of Tannenbaum’s vocals on the traditional song, Dig my Grave. I thought, “Who is this guy?!” […]

The Travels of Babar: a classic tale with a modern twist

Babar the elephant has captivated the hearts and imaginations of children all over the world for almost a century. Babar first appeared in 1931, in the iconic French children’s picture book, The Story of Babar: The Little Elephant, by author and illustrator Jean de Brunhoff. The book is based on a tale that Brunhoff’s wife invented for their children. […]

Home with Ram Dass

I’ve just returned from one of the most powerful spiritual experiences of my life: the Ram Dass Retreat in Maui. I’d previously read some of Ram Dass’ books, listened to many of his lectures and heard podcasts of people that had attended his retreats. By myself, I can read and theorize; I’ve only experienced fleeting, elusive glimpses of […]

The Family Album: A labour of love for Jill and Matthew Barber

It was only a matter of time. After 12 years of working on their individual solo careers, Canadian singer-writer siblings Matthew and Jill Barber have just released their first joint project, The Family Album. “We always thought eventually some day we would collaborate because we’re good friends as well as siblings, and because we really […]

Canadian Bluesman Matt Andersen is an Honest Man

  “I can’t remember where we played last night.” says Matt Andersen, who is travelling by bus to the next date on his tour as we speak. He suddenly remembers,” We played Fall River, Massachusetts. We’re on our way into Boston and then off to Quebec City.” Canadian singer-songwriter Matt Andersen was born and raised […]

Donovan Woods’ new album: songwriting at its finest

“I love them all, they’re all sweet. They’re all just sweet guys”, says Canadian singer-songwriter Donovan Woods of the songs on his new album Hard Settle, Ain’t Troubled. The album has already received wide acclaim: The Globe and Mail describes it as “a gentle, honest collection of melancholic observations and hushed tunefulness.” From front to back, Hard […]

Blues sensation Steve Hill finds his true voice

Steve Hill is a guitar virtuoso and one of the top stars on the Canadian blues scene. What makes him unique is his ability to simultaneously sing and play guitar, bass and drums. He is an exceptionally skilled, raw and gritty blues incarnation of the one-man band. Steve Hill began his one-man odyssey with Solo […]

Montreal and New York comedians unite for three nights of stand-up

Montreal stand-up comedy fans were thrilled when a revitalized Comedyworks reopened in February of last year. Local comedy icon and Comedyworks regular, Peter J. Radomski, emceed the grand inaugural weekend. One year later, he is invited to headline five upcoming shows at Comedyworks taking place on three consecutive nights (Feb. 25-26-27, 2016). For the occasion, […]

Drones, the apocalypse and rock ‘n’ roll: Muse live in Montreal

I’m particularly susceptible to male rock singers with clear high voices, like Freddie Mercury of Queen, Thom Yorke of Radiohead, Jeff Buckley, Justin Hawkins of The Darkness, and of course Matt Bellamy, lead singer of the British band Muse. Seduced by Bellamy’s soaring  vocals, theatrical musical arrangements, fiery guitar solos and heart-stopping riffs, I bought a […]

A review of The Weeknd in concert in Montreal

The ghost of the artist who goes by the name of The Weeknd has been haunting my psyche for months. By ghost, I mean five albums worth of dark, brooding beats coupled with outrageous lyrics sung in a high melodic voice reminiscent of Michael Jackson. I’ve been listening obsessively to The Weeknd’s music since late […]

Everybody’s working for The Weeknd

I’ve recently discovered and can’t stop listening to the music of The Weeknd, a singular Canadian talent who is rapidly becoming one of the biggest acts on the planet. The 25-year old singer, songwriter and producer is known for his dark, hypnotic R&B, angelic pop voice and lewd lyrics. In 2011, he was a relatively […]

Toronto ain’t so bad after all

I’m spending Saint-Jean-Baptiste or “la fête nationale”, a public holiday celebrating the province of Quebec and it’s culture, in Toronto, Ontario. I’m a fluently bilingual Montrealer, visiting my American father and my Quebecoise mother who live in Toronto. Sacrilege you say? I don’t think so.   Most Montrealers, whether English or French speaking, view Toronto as […]

The aggravations of being an American living abroad

The US Government is penalizing Americans that are living and working abroad, rather than considering them as an asset. I’m a dual citizen living and working in Canada, and I recently spent about $700 just to correctly file the paperwork for both my US and Canadian tax returns. I was obliged to pay tax to […]

A review of Joe Rogan’s stand-up comedy show in Montreal

Last Friday, I saw Joe Rogan perform an energetic 2-hour stand-up comedy show in Montreal at the The Corona Theatre. Onstage, Rogan is a high octane, intense and supremely confident alpha male, with an imposing muscular build and the testosterone levels of a large bull. The audience was predominantly male, and I was part of […]

Waldorf schools, Theosophy and Rudolf Steiner

Out of curiosity, I recently visited the École Rudolph Steiner de Montréal, a private French language school in Notre-Dame-de-Grace. The school spans grade 1 to 8 and practices Waldorf pedagogy, which is centered on imagination, spirituality and holistic learning. The first Waldorf School opened in 1919 in Germany and now there are over 1000 Waldorf schools in 60 countries worldwide. Waldorf […]