Corby's Orbit

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

Friday, August 31, 2018

Tremendous Orbital Energies Generated By The Fusion Of New Sounds

Today's show is all zoom zoom with fleeting flashes of fresh new Canadian music.There will be a call at 5:30  from Guelph's Tragedy Ann (Liv Cazzola & Braden Phelan) whose amazing sophomore album, Matches, fulfills the promise of their recent Folk Festival successes. They will be live all over Ontario in the forthcoming months supporting the record.
Sep 6 | Silence | Guelph, ON 
Sep 27-30 | Folk Music Ontario | Toronto, ON 
Oct 3 | The Moonshine Café | Oakville, ON   
Oct 4 | Artword Artbar | Hamilton, ON  
Oct 6 | Mahtay Café & Lounge | St. Catharines, ON  
Oct 13 | Burdock | Toronto, ON

Spicy Jam will be my guests for some live jive at 6:00. 
As the Jam-Session Host band at  this year's "T.U. Jazz Fest 2018" ,Spicy Jam is currently hosting their modern jazz, rock, RnB, hip-hop, Indo jazz explorations twice a month at Yauca's Lounge.
The band includes Bandleader/Jam host/Guitarist Anoop Isac, Drummer Jinu Isac, Keyboardist Nick Rorai Mcniel and Bassist Devon Goping.

This year's festival, taking place September 4th to 8th at the Jazz Bistro, The Frog and Firkin Pub and Mel Lastman Square, features some incredible student talent, as well as some of Canada's finest musicians, including Mike Downes and Larnell Lewis.   The festival pairs Canadian Jazz professionals with student artists on side-by-side stages, and it focuses on promoting education and inspiration in the music community.  

And at 6:30, on his way to a show at St. James' Gate in Toronto tonight,
Sammy Duke will be by to introduce his new album, 
Terminus, into the Orbital sphere.

Radio Regent is now available on ROGERS Channel 60 in downtown T.O. - online 

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Keeping Time: A New Release From The Ennis Sisters

In a career of over 20 years, The Ennis Sisters have established a national reputation for their elegance in harmony and repertoire, illuminating the song traditions of their native Newfoundland with the luster that only sisters can conjure. Along the way, Maureen Ennis, the eldest in the trio, has managed to become a significant songwriter with a conversational mesh to her lyrics that sustains powerful emotional feels and that signature flavour of salty wisdom that is seemingly carried within the Atlantic breezes out there.
Credited as co-writer on ten of the album’s eleven songs, she has come to the task with deeply personal motives. The group’s recent shared loss to dementia of their “greatest supporter through thick and thin,” their dad, John Ennis, (“Our Superman” as he is eulogized in the liner notes) lends added resonance to the singing and to the title of the album, Keeping Time. By attempting to “keep” time and to call to mind past wonders, the album attains a higher purpose. It allows closure for the whole Ennis family with a musical group hug that extends beyond the expression of time-keeping that structures dance and songcraft. The waning of tradition, the gradual erosion of patience and love, and the unsentimental courage that the performing life and long stays in hospital rooms insist upon, all serve to power this collection into a testament to the imperative for careful curation of our valued memories. Maureen struggles in the lyrics with fate and failure while holding fast to love’s anchor.
Loving attention has certainly been provided by producer Alan Doyle, especially to the structuring of the tunes, whose arrangements and instrumentation envelope the sisters’ voices with a sheer radiance, often of Celtic origin. The musicians, which include Matthew Byrne and the late Ron Hynes, are tactful and exultant throughout, helping to tint everything from the poppy “Laurel Canyon,” the wistful “California Wine,” the road warrior anthem “Wheels,” the magically float-y “Goodbye,” the exuberant “Go Rosie Go” and “Daughters Of Newfoundland,” and the delicately restrained “Meant To Be.”  Graham Nash has the only song here that was not written by Maureen. His folksy characteristics inhabit a few of the compositions – “Sunken Garden” could have been written by him as a follow-up to “Our House” – but his song “Wasted On the Way,” a minor 1982 hit for CS&N, is a devastating capitulation to the treacherous tides of time and regret, which ultimately urges us to focus positively on the present. It closes a powerful album that calls upon us all to seize the moment, and shrug off the disaster du jour.
Let the comfort of this fine effort by The Ennis Sisters into your personal space. Embrace their music. You might need a hug yourself about now.

Originaly published at Roots Music CanadaIf you're enjoying their coverage of Canadian Roots Music, please help us keep the site running long term here:

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Playlist For Corby`s Orbit Show Of 24 August with John Pittman

                                                       Illustration from Saturn Cowboys of Denver Colorado

Commissioner of Selection: Paul Corby 

(Brought to you by Instant Coughing, Farthest Fires and Global Burning)

5-7 p.m. Fridays online and at .  
Canadians in Asterisk’d RED. 

Guest: John Pittman

Click on photos to enlarge.

5:00 Razor Glue

Manu Di Bango ~ Senga Abélé ~ The Very Best Of African Soul

The XX ~ Say Something Loving ~ I See You

Mojah ~ We Can Live Happily ~ On Moruga Road 

* K.C. Roberts feat. The Airplane Boys ~ Get Back To The Middle ~ Parkdale Funk ll ~@ Yonge/Dundas Square tonight

* Bob B. Ruglass ~ Roller Coaster Ride ~ We Want Bob

5:20 Pop Propulsion

* The Long War ~ Lightning & Thunder ~  Landscapes NEW DISK

* Great Lake Swimmers ~ Root System ~ The Waves The Wake NEW DISK

* Ian & Sylvia ~ Lovin' Sound ~ Lovin' Sound (MGM 1967)

Blood Sweat & Tears ~ Go Down Gamblin' ~ BS&T 4 ~ @ The CNE Saturday

5:40 Blues Blessings

Shemekia Copeland ~ Ain't Got  Time For Hate ~ American Child NEW DISK

Tortured Soul ~ I Might Do Something Wrong ~ The Yoruba Soul Mixes

Karin Krog (Herbert Remix) ~ Meaning Of Love ~ Rewind ll

6:00 Trumpet Trippin` with John Pittman

* John Pittman ~ Moray Crossing / Interview / For Siobhan ~ Kinship NEW DISK ~ @ Jazz Bistro Thursday 30 August for CD launch

6:15 Slide Effects

Mississippi John Hurt ~ Ain't Nobody's Business ~ 1928 Sessions

Ali Farka Touré ~ Saukare ~ Nia Funké

* Tanya Tagaq ~ Breather ~ Sinaa

Flor De Toloache ~ When We Love ~ Single NEW DISK

6:30 Resilient Brazilians 

Banda De Boca ~ Samba Da Bahia / Tamandu Costa ~ Samba Neu / Dona Zefinha ~ A Vaia ~ The New Brazilian Music (Musicadobrazil 2008)

6:45 Jazz Precipice

* Genevieve Marentette ~ I`ve Never Left Your Arms ~ MUSE by The Tiki Collective NEW DISK ~@ Kensington Market Jazz Festival 

* Mike Murley ~ Sonny Rollins` Oleo ~ Sax Summit ~ The Rex Saturday / Toronto Music Listings 

Tara Kannangara ~ Atoms For Peace ~ Some Version Of The Truth ~@ The Poetry Jazz Cafe Thursday 30 August & @  Burdock Monday 17 September @ Kensington Market Jazz Festival

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

A Midsummer Night's MUSE with The Tiki Collective

Everything that there was to shake was shaken, and everything that could be stirred was stirred at the launch for the MUSE CD by Toronto's The Tiki Collective on a recent balmy August night. Florid songstresses and torrid musicians (the always exploratory Ernie Tollar, above, was especially smooth) generated a lounge-y tropical atmosphere under a waxing moon in an air-conditioned harbour of song, courtesy of Vesuvius Records and host Jaymz Bee.

 Jocelyn Barth (left) brought her subtle skills to bear on the classic "All Too Soon", then came back to add elegance and impromptu choreography to Genevieve Marentette's "I've Never Left Your Arms".

 In true Tiki tradition, a musical torch was lit and brandished wantonly when Irene Torres stepped out of bounds to blaze through "Quizas Quizas Quizas" and brought the dance floor into the center aisle.

Fashion summits were being maintained all night throughout Berkeley Church Field House, amongst guests and performers alike, but Jessica Lalonde significantly rocked a garden of cotton colour as she performed "I'll Be Seeing You" (above, with special guest John MacMurchy), and Lily Frost's slit mini-kimono shone roses through her rendition of "Mountain High Valley Low".

 Recent outstanding top-of-the-class grad, Mingjia Chen (left), already making waves in the real world, brought an emotional brilliance to Billy Strayhorn's "Chelsea Bridge" without singing a word. The real lowdown was provided by bassist George Koller, (right, above) who spent his evening alternating between the doghouse and a vintage Hofner Beatle bass.

Tyra Jutai (below) ignited a pulsing Ellingtonian swing on her darkly inflammatory pass at "Mood Indigo"  

The ever-harmonious Willows were in high demand, contributing a swoon factor to Paget's Sade homage, "Sweetest Taboo" (above), and Heather Luckhart's dreamy "Hypnotized" (middle above), as well as adding honey to the mix on Melissa Lauren's mellowed out makeover of "Don't Fear The Reaper" (top) and ended up going above and beyond to bring the "Caravan / Bali Hai" finale across the goal line.

As this soirée trés soignée drew to a close, Denielle Bassels, had a "Happy Birthday" sung to her in three-part harmony by the audience (including brother Jay, above). She was in a sufficiently celebratory mood by then to deliver album closer "The Wanderer", an original tune with a contagious bounce that affected the dancers like a windstorm in a flower garden (see evidence below).

 The album "MUSE" by The Tiki Collective will be available at Vesuvius Records and on all platforms on August 31st.
info at:

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Playlist For Show Of 17 August with Mingjia Chen and Aretha Franklin Theme Park

                                                                 Illustration by Michael De Adder

Commissioner of Selection: Paul Corby 

(Brought to you by The Natural Woman, Unchained From Fools & Aretha Yes P-E-C-T)

5-7 p.m. Fridays online and at .  
Canadians in Asterisk’d RED. 

Guest: Mingjia Chen

Click on photos to enlarge.

5:00 Bouquet Voice

Aretha Franklin (March 25, 1942 – August 16, 2018) 

"The most important, identifiable and influential female voice in black music."
~ (Soul - The Essential Guide)  

That's The Way I Feel About Cha ~ Hey Now Hey (The Other Side Of The Sky) / Money Won't Change You ~ Lady Soul / Soul Serenade ~ Aretha In Paris / Bridge Over Troubled Water ~ Live At The Fillmore West / Why I Sing The Blues ~ Spirit In The Dark / Brand New Me ~ Young Gifted & Black / Don't Play That Song ~ Live At The Fillmore West / Border Song ~ Young Gifted & Black / Somewhere ~ Hey Now Hey (The Other Side Of The Sky)/ One Way Ticket ~ Spirit In The Dark / Young Gifted & Black

5:45 Drum Dream

Naghmeh Farahmand ~ Sounds Of Persia ~ @ Harbourfront Saturday with Sahba Motallebi for Small World Music Festival 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. 

Freddie McGregor ~ Africa Here I Come ~ Studio One Roots (Soul Jazz 2001)

* Laura Repo ~ College Street ~ Mountain Of Me ~ @ The Local tonight

6:10 Turbo Mingjia 

* Mingjia Chen ~ Floatwalking / Friends / Friend ~ Feel Seen NEW DISK / Interview / Chelsea Bridge ~ MUSE NEW DISK ~ Double EP Release  (with Kohen Hammond) @ Heliconian Hall Thursday 23 August

6:30 Pleasure Chest

* Basement Revolver ~ Dancing ~ Heavy Eyes NEW DISK @ Supercrawl Hamilton 14 September

Beach House ~ Turtle Island ~ Devotion ~ @ Sony Center Monday 20 August 

* Charlotte Day Wilson ~ After All ~ @ Nathan Phillips Square tonight for Manifesto Festival

Dawes ~ As If By Design ~ We're All Gonna Die ~ @ Scotia Bank Arena Saturday

6:45 Illumination Round   

University Of Toronto 12Tet ~ Radiohead's Ocean Bloom ~ When Day Slips Into Night NEW DISK / Toronto Music Listings

Jim Kweskin Jug Band ~ Storybook Ball ~ The Best Of... ~ Jim Kweskin @ Hugh's Room Live tonight

Friday, August 17, 2018

Reprint: Review of Aretha Franklin in Toronto at the Downtown Jazz Fest 24 June 2011

I saw the Queen last night and she is, as is said, all that, and extra ... PLUS ... (and then some). Toronto Downtown Jazz caringly curated her majesty to about 6000 people to celebrate the opening of their 25th Festival. (Actually, the Festival began a half hour earlier with the immaculate opener, Jordan John, singing "When You Wish Upon A Star"). 

She sang Cherokee as her opening number, along with a team of pink-faced horn players, a churchy rhythm section and a four piece choir. She sang A Natural Woman and Think perfunctorily, even briefly slipped into the "You need me" middle eight instead of the "Freedom" bridge in the latter...and then, sometime during Curtis Mayfield's Something He Can Feel, she actually began to sing. Daydreaming followed (hey, Aretha likes the same Aretha songs I like!), with intense harmony work by  her backup vocal quartet.  I Say A Little Prayer was delivered lightly and delightfully, allowing the crowd to echo "Forever" for her.

Time for a little break. She gathered up her foamy white train and stiffly step-walked offstage.  Because Aretha broke her toe falling on a pile of Jimmy Choo shoes last week, she now has an even bigger pile. "Jimmy Choo is good", she joked, " they sent them over and said now don't fall on them all." A few perfunctorally funky pink-faced solos were passed around.

She came back after about five minutes and offered some music from her new record, A Woman Falling Out Of LoveB.B. King's Sweet Sixteen gave her the chance to sing the blues and I heard intervals and embellishments that I've never heard any other singer deliver, not even Aretha. When she sat down at the piano, everything clicked into place. "Don't trouble the water", chanted the ladies. And Aretha told us what to ask for when we're down and out, when we're on the street. And the ladies sang "Glory Hallelujah" and I looked around at all the women holding cameras over their heads and Muslim families and gay men hugging and dowagers and teenagers and the noisy Haitians and the old pastel jazz fans, and I thought "Here it comes", and then she improvised some church dialogue, and some testimony, and she shook her head, and closed her eyes and shook her head again so that long Wonder Woman wig shimmered under the spotlight, and she ran up the piano keyboard with some Ray Charles filigrees and then she sang that word she'd been waiting all night long to sing: so high it was hard to even distinguish it from the choir-of-four's overflowing melismatic decorations: and she sang it: "Jeeeeeee - he - su -huss".

After that she was in high gear. She ran the opening piano motif of her classic version of Sam Cooke's You Send Me; the horns took it up, the Haitians started talking excitedly about "Sam Kook", and at this point I noticed a cop was dancing. Aretha announced Freeway of Love, complimented the crowd, and commenced her exit from the stage, which lasted in all about 15 minutes. I walked away in a blue surge of happy people in a proud city on the first Friday of summer. The true effects of the presence authentic royalty were everywhere abundant. Send her victorious, happy and glorious, long to reign over us. You know the rest.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Orbital Edibles and Almost Audible Comestibles

The complex blending of the appetites of the senses is a major characteristic of musical enjoyment. How many meals, how many movies, how many trysts have been ameliorated by perfect notes and rhythms? We touch and taste beauty as much with our eyes and skin as with our ears when we are experiencing music thoroughly. 

Every so often an image can almost make you taste something delicious. Here  are a few that can provide your imagination with a sumptuous basis to accommodate your good taste with some extra-musical enjoyment.