Archive for January, 2014

Viva Las Vegas

January 22, 2014

It’s been a great weekend. Friday afternoon I picked up a free ticket to see Cocksucker Blues at TIFF. It was uploaded to youtube a few years ago, but up until then it’s always been a difficult movie to see because for a long time it was only allowed to be screened 4 times a year. If you really want to know the whole story read the wikipedia entry about it.

Since the screening I’ve had a few conversations with different people in which my position varied from “ehh whatever, I’ve been around enough debauchery, who cares?” to “Yeah! It was great!”. I think the experience of picking up a free ticket to a 1-off viewing that ended up “sold out” and watching the movie on film, on a big screen, in a packed theater with a giant lineup outside of people who weren’t able to get in was pretty fun and memorable. Plus, I got to check out the Cronenberg exhibit at TIFF in the afternoon which closed on Sunday. I’ve seen all except for 2 or 3 Cronenberg films. I’m not as into body horror as he is, but I am a fan of many of his other subjects and influences like William S Burroughs, Freud and Jung, Marshall McLuhan etc…This picture with the Mugwump was worth the price of admission.

Saturday morning I flew off to Vegas for a weekend of playing blackjack, drinking lots of free beers and cocktails and stuffing myself at buffets with Mike and Kevin.

This was my 2nd time in Vegas. Last time, in early 2008 was more of a “party” cough*hkrs’n’blw*cough scenario, whereas this time was all $5 blackjack ‘n’ all-you-can-eat buffets. I lost $100 on the tables, but considering my original limit I’d set for myself was $200 I don’t think I did so bad. I decided to lower my loss limit and buy a couple of souvenirs like this sculpture of my head, and a tiki mug from Frankies.

Mike took this picture of me sitting for my portrait.

It’s like I’ve got my very own Bosson head of myself!

I think it rivals the crystal hologram I had made of my head on my Vegas 2008 trip. I’ll be honest I’m not sure which one I like more. New tradition! Everytime I go to Las Vegas, I’ll commission a new glorious ridiculous representation of myself!

Next time I’ll get full body naked statue of myself made. I’ve got the same hair as Neptune!

This pose kinda reminds me of the new Drake album cover, with the clouds in the background.

I don’t think I’ve ever posted this many pictures of myself in a single blog post before, except for that 1 to 21 post from awhile back. Here I am giving the eye of the tiger with Sigfried and Roy. I sort of look like what Sigfried and Roy and their white tiger would come out as if they went through the teleportation booth from the Cronenberg movie The Fly together.

…..annnnnnndd me sitting in the sunken living room beside the flaming pool at the Peppermill, which was briefly featured in the movie Casino. I need one of these installed in 159 Manning.

This was my last buffet plate from my trip. Sushi, prime rib, salad, cantaloup, mixed veggies, macaroni salad and pumpkin pie. MmmmmMMMMMMMMMM!! I looovvve stuffing my face full of food til I can’t even function or move anymore. When in Vegas, do as the Romans did.

Looking forward to next years trip. VIVA LAS VEGAS!!!

Shape Note @ Bloor Street United Church + FIDLAR @ Soybomb

January 16, 2014

I started off last night at Bloor Street United for their monthly Shape Note Singing.

I recorded last nights rendition of #159 from the Sacred Harp songbook, Wondrous Love, on my iphone.

I had to leave just before the half-time break, to head over to Soybomb to do sound for the VICE/Pistonhead Lager party featuring performances by HSY and FIDLAR.

I couldn’t see the bands because there were so many people there but it was a fun show!

Winter Picnic

January 15, 2014

We’re half a month in, and 2014 is treating me well. Last Tuesday January 7th was the first C!C!C! singing of the year, the theme for the week was Britpop wars, Oasis vs Blur. In a surprise victory, Blur won!

Wednesday I practiced guitar all day so I could play a song (Leonard Cohen – the Old Revolution) at the Fat Fat Sounds’ Winter Picnic @ Scouts Honor, 1576 Dundas West. My fingers hurt by the end of the day, I’m more of a piano, bass or drums guy so my fingertips aren’t callus enough to make for easy guitar playing, but I think I pulled it off.

Stephen Prickett kicked of the night with a couple of his own songs. The lineup for the night was coincidentally all the people who were supposed to play in the geodesic dome at my NYE party.

Noah Mintz played next. He and Stephen were the ones who organized/curated the night.

^Jeff Pinto. You wouldn’t believe how dark it was in there. It’s hard to take pictures in the dark! That’s why they photos are less than crisp. You’d never get these shots on an iphone or a cheaper camera without a flash.

^ Luke Kuplowsky AKA LUKA. v Alan Snoddy

There are no pictures of me since I’m the photographer, but I swear I sang a song!

v Jesse Bellon wrapped the night up, then he and I went up to Northwood to catch Justin Peroff DJing some tunes from his personal vinyl collection. Justin and I are currently working on curating and organizing this years’ 159 Manning BBQ together. We’re strongly considering throwing 2 BBQ’s this year; first on on Friday June 13th, and another on Friday June 20th. Ideally I’d have Choir!Choir!Choir! sing at both BBQ’s to tie them together, but aside from that having a totally different lineup for each of the 2 days.

Thursday afternoon I took some photos for the new Bike For Three album, titled So Much Forever. Joëlle Lê makes music under the name Greetings From Tuskan, lives in Belgium and is 1/2 of the project. She took portraits of herself and my aim was to take matching shots of Rich. This is the press shot that Joëlle sent back to me and I think it looks great!

Taking pictures for BFT about 5 years ago is actually how I met Rich in the first place, so it’s nice to still be involved, for the circle to continue. Here’s one of my outtakes from the session.

Here’s the album trailer:

Thursday night Soft Hell played an amazing show Sneaky Dees for Send It Courier’s First Annual Holiday Party! I didn’t get any pictures of that, but the crowd freaked the fuck out, and gave us the best possible response we could hope for. All that practicing we’ve been doing since July is finally paying off now that we’re playing shows. Here’s a few pictures from the show was played at Izakaya Sushi on Sunday which were taken by Sarah Beal on my 5D Mark II.

Here’s a couple pictures I took of the Green Ray that night.

Monday I delivered magazines, Tuesday (yesterday) I had a karaoke band practice with Fraser, Jesse and Craig. Jesse’s guitar playing and his ability to play seemingly any song we come up still blows me away every time we jam. Our first gig at Parts & Labour is just under a month away on Thursday February 13th.

So This Is The New Year

January 6, 2014

Happy New Year! I thought my NYE party was going to be a bit scaled down from previous years, but it was my biggest party ever! 400 people before midnight with a final headcount of 650 when I let security off work at 4am (the party ended at 6am). I think the article on Indie88’s blog was what sent so many people my way, because I think I only recognized about 50 people who came, the rest were all new faces. I felt really good vibes from everyone except the crackhead I had to forcibly remove after 6am once everyone else had the good sense and reason to clear out.

I popped a bottle of Veuve Clicquot at midnight that I’d been saving for exactly 1 year since Raymond Nishimura gifted it to me last NYE.

There were so many highlights throughout the night, like the living room sing-a-long at 10pm which was a huge success, the performances by the Green Ray, and Sam Coffey + the Iron Lungs in the basement, and Buck 65 doing the midnight countdown on the mainfloor. Rich has become a regular fixture at my parties, performing hour-long MC sets in the backyard during my last 3 BBQ’s and DJ sets the past 2 NYE’s.

I sent a limo to pick Samson up from Parts & Labour at 1am, which I thought was pretty ballin’.

Soft Hell’s set at 1:30am was packed! My playing was a bit sloppy, but I forgive myself because I’d been busting my ass non-stop for 3 days getting ready for the party and there was 600 people at my house, so my head was in a few different places at once. Besides that, the crowd response and energy in the room was amazing so what more can you ask for?!

The tent city in the backyard turned out spectacular and was part of the what allowed me to accommodate so many people. I regret not having more pictures capturing the night, but on the other hand it means you just had to be there.

(B+W fog room photo above lifted from Quantel Wronski’s instagram)

Thanks to my dad for all his help, Patrick Biller for bartending, Carolyn Tripp for running the coat check, all the bands, all the DJ’s, Johnny O.C. and Andrew McCall for doing Security, Jessica Thompson for doing door, my roommate Josh for all his help, Noah Mintz, Stephen Prickett, Jesse Bellon and everyone else who participated.

My plans for 2014 are to continue running 5k/day, eating healthy, staying sane, to continue participating with the various musical projects I’m involved with, and hopefully expand my repertoire and experiences even further. It’s day 6 of the new year and I haven’t lost my mind yet, so we’re off to a good start!!