Corby's Orbit

Corby's Orbit
Listening in All the High Places illustration by John Kricfalusi

Thursday, June 29, 2017

A Good Dog Is Lost ~ Canada`s 150th Birthday ~ Our 17 Greatest Songs ~ Fifteenth Post



"A Time" - Statue of Ron Hynes by Morgan MacDonald on George Street, St. John's



I came to Ron Hynes ten years ago, very late in his career, long after the magnificent cheerfulness of The Wonderful Grand Band and Codco had been retired to DVD, after Sonny`s Dream had won him a national ear, and near the end of his output of immaculate solo albums, full of original songs which were by turns comic, literate, sentimental and hard-nosed. Sometimes all at once. 

I was booked to interview him after seeing his bio-documentary Man Of A Thousand Songs. In it, perhaps a bit too courageously, he unveiled himself as a raging but wistful abuser of all forms of humans and substances. I was terrified by the man I saw. I was meant to talk to him over the phone from Newfoundland, but he seemed totally disinterested in having a conversation that day, and not much was communicated. In later encounters he was much more hospitable, though still full of barbs and blades. 


I didn`t actually get to see him play til five years after, in a small Toronto club. I had by then found a few of his disks, but I had never heard A Good Dog Is Lost. It still stings my heart and stirs something I can`t even name when he says:


``Well I can, I can hardly believe,

That a picture of a puppy drawn with a crayon
Would get to a guy like me.``

Ron Hynes' daughter Lily was going on four when events led up to the creation of this ballad about a shih-tzu belonging to Cathy Jones, of CODCO and This Hour Has 22 Minutes who at the time lived just down the road from the Hynes home in St John's. Lily drew a poster to hang in the nearby store and Ron wrote this ballad. Ron has the love of a father in the tone of his singing, and this may have something to do with the overall effect of the recording, on Get Back Change (2003).

The artistry of the song, the stammering emotion, the characterizations, the puppy P.O.V. and...and...what he does at the end (no spoilers here) combine to set this song even a notch beyond his usual standard of concise excellence. When his ragged recent biography, the dirty posthumous footnotes, the monster from Man Of A Thousand Songs, maybe even Sonny`s Dream - God Forbid - have retired to the sidelines, anyone who chances upon this song will sigh, sob and say ``This man must have truly been a monarch of song.`


Rebecca Campbell contributed a live version of the song to one of my shows and we both held on for dear life that she could get through it dry-eyed. Here it is, so beautiful.



`

A June Of Tunes: The Toronto Culture Is Hot Like A Shot

Baque De Bamba, Broken Dance, Drum Fest, Winter Garden Orchestra and NXNE. All melter, no swelter.
The summer high places are already filling up with dancers and drums, so while the sun and the skeeters are withholding their sting, I've been venturing out into the musical thick of things.
Above: Aline Morales and Baque De Bam  
and Below: Broken Dance at East York Cultural Hotspot Launch 





















Okavango with Donne Roberts and Tich Maredza at Koerner Hall's 2018 Season Launch on the left and Muhtadi Drum Fest bringing the thunder on the right. Below, at the drum fest, Dave Hynes' Conundrum had the actual fundamentals of the day vibrating to epic pulse jams.




 The Winter Garden Orchestra excels in time travel, taking their audience back a hundred years or so.
Settings range from gay Paree to ragingly dark Berlin sturm und tango.
The Berkeley Bicycle Club's Monday night jazz scenario fit their style to a modern model "T".
 And , yes. There WAS Charleston.


A panel of authorities illuminated from from the inside the vectors that make Toronto music rotate and spiral. At The Great Hall's Futureland Business Or Pleasure symposium, host Sacha Miller attempted to discover from CBC's Raina Douris, Monique Barbieri and Weaves' Jasmyn Burke what is the deal with making money in music? The answer seems to be proceed step-by-step to the goal(s).

And at NXNE's bugless breezy brilliant Port Lands performance area Saturday, all honk was breaking loose with rocking appetizers Son Little, (below)














MUNA (left) and Bleachers...

followed by arch DJ's Tinie Tempah and Kaytranada.
All big music.


And summer only just started!








Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Our 17 Best Canadian Songs For Canada 150



Illustration: Joni Mitchell's Shine by Paul Corby

This is the 1,000th post on my blog. It has been a labour of personal music-drenched luxurism for seven years now, giving me opportunities to quicken and align with the prisms of positive creativity that shimmer in an orbit around our planet-bound ear-hearts. With intimations of othernesses beyond us all, beyond even the musicians who bring these masterpieces to ground, we charge up on a free energy beyond definition that outlives time and transcends space.

" Music “says” things about the world, but in specifically musical terms. Any attempt to reproduce these musical statements “in our own words” is necessarily doomed to failure. We cannot isolate the truth contained in a piece of music; for it is a beauty-truth and inseparable from its partner. The best we can do is to indicate in the most general terms the nature of the musical beauty-truth under consideration and to refer curious truth-seekers to the original. "~  Huxley


I undertook, early in this year of Canada's 150th, to collect my great Canadian songs. These selections, significant to my mind's ear, mean to outrank your typical category of list, (usually featuring the admirable Four Strong Winds / American Woman team playing big-ass touch tag with Snowbird and The Circle Game). In the interest of furthering Huxley's Beauty-Truth enigma, I have resisted posting those traditional show-ponies and even my own personal deep cuts. So, with regrets, The Wheat Pool, Susan Aglukark, Feist and a hundred other worthy candidates are not included here either. Greatness, you know, is not uncommon in Canada.


My selections are for the most part still pretty well-known. Although the wrinkly and seditious significances of a few of these tunes have been pressed out of play by the C-Bestiary and their well-mannered serious satellites, there are still some global hits here. All six of our household deities (Joni Leonard Buffy Gordon Neil and Bruce) are included, but not with their characteristic chart champs. Rather, the hymns and manifestos that they conceived to effect perspectual metamorphosis in matters of history, social justice and spiritual growth are celebrated here. Curbing a national tendency toward the pompous, I have included songs of bright confidence and severe truthing, infused with the communal jubilation of clear-sighted younger writers, and woke Maritimers.


(No francophone artist is represented, sorry, simply because I don't understand the language well enough to assess the organic worth of, say, Ferland, Harmonium or Capitaine Nô. Maybe someone with better knowledge will represent).


I plan to play all of these consecutively on my show of Friday the 30th of June. I will probably succumb to terminal goosebumps. Please join me then, or watch for the podcast on Mixcloud.


http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/shine-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/pamphleteer-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/ohio-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17-best.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/brainwashed-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/acadian-driftwood-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/black-day-in-july-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/barretts-privateers-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/rise-again-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/wild-things-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/mystery-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/thank-u-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/share-land-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/waving-flag-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/god-loves-everyone-canadaa-150th.html 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

God Loves Everyone ~ Canada's 150th Birthday ~ Our 17 Greatest Songs ~ Fourteenth Post


Ron Sexsmith writes songs with a profound compassion and a rigor of description akin to the talents of great short story writers. The gregarious melodies that he hangs his words on lighten the impact of the simple truths with which he frequently pierces himself and his characters. 

Cobblestone Runway, Ron's sixth studio album, from 2002, contains some of his most sincere pathos and his most succinctly stated assertions of faith. Standing out from his musings on the nature of love is one hymn full of adoration for a universal spirituality. God Loves Everyone speaks of the oneness of a benevolent spirit. Only an enlightened Canadian could have written this song. It negates the dualities of European theology and mediates issues that trials and wars have forever raged over, historically and to this day.

Inspired by the brutal murder of gay Wyoming student Matthew Shepard, and galvanized by the intensity of personal heartbreak that Sexsmith had recently experienced, it makes a clear case for living in the confidence that you are the best judge of your own life, free of the fear of consequences from traditional paternalistic god/devil misbeliefs.

 A blessing by songcraft. Unconditionally.

* Ron Sexsmith will be singing with the T.S.O. at Toronto's Nathan Phillips Square on Canada Day

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Playlist For Show Of 23 June


Commissioner of Selection: Paul Corby 
(Brought to you by Runcible June, July Beans and Augustral Maneuvers In The Dark )

Guests: Geoffrey and Jason Hopkins of Mermaids Exist, Gord Grdina of Haram and JP LaChapelle of Keychain and Ron Gaskin of TONE Festival

5-7 p.m. Fridays online http://www.radioregent.com/ and at tunein.com .  
Canadians in Asterisk’d RED. 

5:00 Vertical Weekend

Les Nubians ~ With Or Without You ~ In The Name Of Love: Africa Celebrates U2~ U2 @ Rogers Center tonight

* TUNS ~ To Your Satisfaction ~ TUNS ~ @ Junction Summer Solstice Festival Saturday

James Paul McCartney b. ‎18 June 1942 ~ Peace In The Neighbourhood ~ Off The Ground 

Catch 22 ~ American Pie ~ Washed Up!

Vieux Farka Toure ~ Bullet The Blue Sky ~  In The Name Of Love: Africa Celebrates U2~ U2 @ Rogers Center tonight

5:15  Instrumental Incendies

* CFCF ~ Invitation To Love ~ Continent ~ @ The Great Hall Saturday for Cascades 

* Haram ~ En Shakawt-Al-Hawa ~ @ The Pilot Sunday / Interview with Gord Grdina TD Downtown Jazz

The Neville Brothers ~ Spiritual Chant ~ Yellow Moon ~ Aaron Neville @ TD Downtown Jazz Saturday

5:40 Deft Charges 

* Lily Frost ~ Sex Trip ~ Rebound EP NEW DISK @ Lula Lounge Thursday 29 June for Big City Social #2

* Keychain ~ Prime Time / Interview with JP LaChapelle ~ Breaking Out NXNE

Michael McDonald ~ Redemption Song ~ Soul Speak

6:00  Aquatic Romantics

* Mermaids Exist ~ 16 Cigarettes / Interview with Jason & Geoffrey Hopkins / Little Man (live) / Call Me A Liar ~

 Losing Colour NEW DISK ~ @ 3030 Dundas Thursday 29 June for Losing Colour CD release



6:20 
I've Got A Sacred

* Buffy Ste.-Marie ~ He's A Keeper Of The Fire ~ Illuminations ~ @ Nathan Phillips Square Friday, 30 June

* Rose Cousins ~ Lock & Key ~ Natural Conclusion NEW DISK ~ @ Nathan Phillips Square 1 July

* Sattalites feat. Jojo Bennett and Barry Malcolm ~ You Don't Know ~ Classic Variety Vol. 1 ~ @ Lee's Palace Saturday for Reliving A Night At The Bamboo

Interview with Ron Gaskin Re: TONE Festival  https://tonetoronto.tumblr.com/



6:40 Absorbancy's Orbit

Toronto Music Listings

Rosalie Sorrels (June 24, 1933 – June 11, 2017) ~ Starlight On The Rails ~ Strangers In Another Country

* Linda Carone ~ Under The Spell Of The Blues ~ Black Moonlight ~ @ Gate 403 Sunday 5-8 p.m.


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Brainwashed ~ Canada's 150th Birthday ~ Our 17 Greatest Songs ~ Thirteenth Post

Illustrator from Buenos Aires Al Markha 


Street fighting reform school grad David Clayton Thomas got his rewards later, after replacing Al Kooper in Blood Sweat & Tears, but he was already an  anti-authoritarian icon and an important musical innovator after his hit single with The Bossmen in Canada in 1966. On the a.m. radio, Brainwashed was censored with a significantly irritating beeeep at the point in the lyric where he roared "60 million people reading all about Viet Nam / 85 percent of them don't give a damn". 


Aggressive snare and guitar, combined with a frenzied bridge of jazz keyboard / bass, all of it mixed waaay into the red, gave the song instant status as a standout track of social change, paving the way for songs like Ohio and Black Day In July. A future of musical breakthroughs, Junos and Grammies followed, but this moment stands as a high-water mark of ferocious Canadian song-writing.




Saturday, June 10, 2017

Playlist For Show Of 9 June

                                                     Photo by Alexander Legaree (@coalphotography)


Commissioner of Selection: Paul Corby 
(Brought to you by Guilt by Dissociation,  Anonymosity and Jumping To Collusions )

Guest: Tony Quarrington 
5-7 p.m. Fridays online http://www.radioregent.com/ and at tunein.com .  
Canadians in Asterisk’d RED. 

5:00 Crucial As Usual

Gary Clark Jr. ~ The Life ~ Blak & Blu ~ @ Danforth Music Hall Monday & Tuesday 12-13 June

* Whitehorse ~ Kicking Down Your Door ~ Panther In The Dollhouse NEW DISK ~ @ Massey Hall 8 December

Taj Mahal & Toumani Diabate ~ Queen Bee ~ Africa Fête 1999

* Denielle Bassels ~ And Nothing Less ~ What About Wool Wishbags ~ @ Alliance Francaise Saturday for From Paris To Toronto

* The Band ~ You'll See Me ~ Jubilation ~ Tribute To Levon Helm @ Hugh's Room tonight

5:30 Molotov Fairytales

Joan Baez ~ Do Right Woman ~ No Woman No Cry ~ @ Massey Hall Wednesday for Four Voices

* Tara Williamson ~ Sundogs ~ Songs To Keep Us Warm 

Glen Brown ~ Version: 78 Style ~ Pressure Drop Remix (Blood & Fire)

Michael Jackson ~ I Wanna Be Where You Are ~ The Remix Suite ~ 50 Years Of The Jacksons tonight @ Rebel

Cheryl Wheeler ~ If It Were Up To Me ~ Stop Handgun Violence

6:00 Guitar Escarpments

Fred Lipsius ~ Better Believe It ~ Stop Handgun Violence

* Jon Brooks ~ Down By The Dirty Don ~ The Songs Of Tony Quarrington NEW DISK

Tony Quarrington ~ Interview

* David Storey ~ When Townes Sang 'Em Down ~ The Songs Of Tony Quarrington NEW DISK

* Willie P. Bennett (with string quartet arranged by Tony Quarrington) ~ Azure ~ Heartstrings

* Ed Bickert with Rob McConnell & Don Thompson ~ Dream A Little Dream Of Me ~ Tribute To Ed Bickert @ Hugh's Room Live Wednesday 14 June

* Nathan Hiltz ~ You're The Top ~ Songs Poetic ~ @ Mezzeta Cafe Wednesday 14 June

6:30 Orboretum

Bonnie Raitt ~ I'm On Your Side ~ Fundamental ~ @ Sony Center tonight

* Feist ~ Baby Be Simple ~ Pleasure NEW DISK

Mary Chapin Carpenter ~ Mellow Yellow ~ Steal This Movie sdtrk. ~ @ Massey Hall Wednesday 14 June for Four Voices

* Ed Bickert with Rob McConnell & Don Thompson ~ In The Blue Of Evening / Toronto Music Listings

* Shania Twain ~ Hallelujah God Bless The Child ~ Single

* Sarah MacDougall ~ I Want To See The Light ~ Grand Canyon ~ @ Desboro Music Hall Saturday








Friday, June 9, 2017

Ohio ~ Canada's 150th Birthday ~ Our 17 Best Songs ~ Twelfth Post


On the 30th of April 1970, U.S. president Richard Nixon announced the American ground invasion of Cambodia.

On the 4th of May 1970, 4 protesting university students at Kent State  were killed by National Guard riflemen under the command of Ohio governor James Rhodes.

On the 10th of May, 2 more university students at Jackson State were killed by Mississippi highway patrolmen and police shotguns.

On May 21st, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young recorded Neil Young's new song, Ohio, with their new rhythm section of Calvin Samuels and Johnny Barbata. Atlantic Records rushed it to release a few weeks later.

"And when you just might start to be thinking, you don’t dare have a voice or there is no voice, from the radio comes this voice of solidarity and outrage. It wasn’t just a pop song.” 
~ Pop-culture historian and journalist David Bianculli 

Although Keep On Rocking In The Free World comes close to being his best song, the cultural effect of Ohio still prevails as a beacon in our musical history. The mechanical, threatening guitar grind that opens the song promises no mercy. Name-checking the president, the song connected an entire generation to a gravity that had been suppressed by the media's theoretical dismissal of the peace movement (altruism) and the furious murders of many of the major Sixties activists (paranoia, conspiracy theories). Neil and his anthem brought back the ominous dread of the government with nine instant lines of rage. "We're finally on our own." He has been a free radical ever since. 

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Best 17 From Corby's Orbit ~ My One Thousandth Post ~ About Canadian Beauty/Truth Music

Illustration: Joni Mitchell's Shine by Paul Corby

This is the 1,000th post on my blog. It has been a labour of personal music-drenched luxurism for seven years now, giving me opportunities to quicken and align with the prisms of positive creativity that shimmer in an orbit around our planet-bound ear-hearts. With intimations of othernesses beyond us all, beyond even the musicians who bring these masterpieces to ground, we charge up on a free energy beyond definition that outlives time and transcends space.


" Music “says” things about the world, but in specifically musical terms. Any attempt to reproduce these musical statements “in our own words” is necessarily doomed to failure. We cannot isolate the truth contained in a piece of music; for it is a beauty-truth and inseparable from its partner. The best we can do is to indicate in the most general terms the nature of the musical beauty-truth under consideration and to refer curious truth-seekers to the original. "~  Huxley


I undertook, early in this year of Canada's 150th, to collect my great Canadian songs. These selections, significant to my mind's ear, mean to outrank your typical category of list, (usually featuring the admirable Four Strong Winds / American Woman team playing big-ass touch tag with Snowbird and The Circle Game). In the interest of furthering Huxley's Beauty-Truth enigma, I have resisted posting those traditional show-ponies and even my own personal deep cuts. So, with regrets, The Wheat Pool, Susan Aglukark, Feist and a hundred other worthy candidates are not included here either. Greatness, you know, is not uncommon in Canada.


My selections are for the most part still pretty well-known. Although the wrinkly and seditious significances of a few of these tunes have been pressed out of play by the C-Bestiary and their well-mannered serious satellites, there are still some global hits here. All six of our household deities (Joni Leonard Buffy Gordon Neil and Bruce) are included, but not with their characteristic chart champs. Rather, the hymns and manifestos that they conceived to effect perspectual metamorphosis in matters of history, social justice and spiritual growth are celebrated here. Curbing a national tendency toward the pompous, I have included songs of bright confidence and severe truthing, infused with the communal jubilation of clear-sighted younger writers, and woke Maritimers.


(No francophone artist is represented, sorry, simply because I don't understand the language well enough to assess the organic worth of, say, Ferland, Harmonium or Capitaine Nô. Maybe someone with better knowledge will represent).


I plan to play all of these consecutively on my show of Friday the 30th of June. I will probably succumb to terminal goosebumps. Please join me then, or watch for the podcast on Mixcloud.


http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/shine-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/pamphleteer-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/ohio-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17-best.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/brainwashed-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/acadian-driftwood-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/black-day-in-july-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/barretts-privateers-canadas-150th.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/05/rise-again-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/wild-things-canadas-150th-birthday-our.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/04/mystery-canadas-150th-birthday-our-17.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/thank-u-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/share-land-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/03/waving-flag-canadas-150th-birthday-this.html

http://djpaulcorby.blogspot.ca/2017/06/god-loves-everyone-canadaa-150th.html