Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

A Musical Countdown

February 7, 2018

Rolling Stone

My brother and his son are doing a countdown of the 500 greatest albums according to Rolling Stone. It sounded like a cool project so I jumped aboard. It will take me a bit to catch up, but soon we’ll synchronize our listening so that we can talk about the albums. Most of the music can be found on Tidal.

When I am on my holidays at the end of the month, I am going to try to listen to one album every other day, starting at number 500, Aquemini by Outkast. It will be a musical education as some of the picks are unfamiliar to me.

The link to the Rolling Stone article and top 500 list of albums can be found at Feel free to share your music ratings in the comments as we go along.

Trucking through the Night

September 3, 2016


I have been attempting this year’s contribution to the 2016 Grey Bruce Writing Marathon. We changed the name a wee bit. Seven us are undertaking this fundraiser for the Library’s Adult Learning Centre. Thanks to everyone that made pledges. You have been very generous!

I have been playing some scat music while writing, but now I am listening to truck driving related songs and movie and television themes. It is related to part of my novel and it also a lookback at part of my recent hitchhiking trip.

Here is the playlist if you are interested in singing along:


White Line Fever

Eastbound & Down (Song starts at 1:17)

Phantom 309

BJ and the Bear

Movin’ On

24 Hours from Tulsa

Road Hammer




A Day in Maple Ridge

July 16, 2016


I spent a great day with Emily’s Dad. In the morning, I worked on my postcards and I browsed his music collection.

I listened to:
Bob Dylan”s Highway 61 Revisited
Neil Young’s Live at Massey Hall 1971
Townes Van Zandt’s High, low and in between
Townes Van Zandt’s The Late, Great Townes Van Zandt

After that we went for a 15 mile bike ride starting on the Pitt Meadows Dyke trails. It was fun! The sun was behind some clouds at the start and there was a nice breeze. The trails are flat and the ride was scenic. That is where I took today’s photo. We passed blueberry farms and an elk farm.

Bob is making penne pasta with a spicy rosee sauce, Italian turkey sausage and asparagus. Later we’ll have a wee bit of Jameson’s Irish Whiskey.

After I update the blog, I am going to to some reading / magic studying. It has been a great day. Very relaxing.

Weird Coincidences

July 11, 2016


Thirty years ago when I was hitching to Expo, it was late September. I caught a ride from Ignace to Regina from a long distance trucker. My rides had been great and I had places to stay until that point. I was outside Regina with nothing nearby and it was 10:30 at night. I pitched my tent in a wheat field, unrolled my sleeping bag and crawled into bed.

At 3:30 in the morning, I woke up frozen. It was so cold, my body did not want to be sleeping. I packed up all my stuff and stepped out on the road to start hitching again. I was totally disillusioned and frustrated with myself. I was questioning my stupidity of hitchhiking across Canada.

I put on my cassette recorder which had an fm radio. I tuned in a station and it started playing King of the Road. This was a song that I knew from the health hustle in grade 7. I put my thumb out and before the song had finished I was riding west in a dump truck, warm and back on track. I’ve told this story many times to family and friends.

This week, I caught a ride in Marathon and learned that I could hang on until Calgary. While this was cool. I did have some private reservations. Would I be safe? What about sleeping? I would have to build some trust, etc. I was mulling these thoughts as we pulled to a stop in Schreiber which is about 75 minutes away from Marathon. I left my backpack in the truck as we walked into the restaurant. The one concession had a radio playing…  King of the Road.

King of the Road (Proclaimers version)

Village of a Poet – Jeong Taechoon

May 22, 2016

In my last post, I explained how I was introduced to the music of Jeong Taechoon. Give it a listen. Let me know what you think.

Expo 86 – Karma Song

May 22, 2016

Expo 86 - Village of a Poet

In 1986, I went out west to Vancouver for Expo 86. I had a great time touring the pavilions, watching the films and the live performances, trying the multi-media displays and reading everything that I could get my hands on.

When I visited the Korean pavilion, I found myself appreciating the music that was being played. They had created a mixed tape of various Korean performers. Although I did not understand the lyrics, I really enjoyed the music. I asked about the songs that they were playing on their boom box and one of the attendents offered to make me a copy of the mixed tape. I don’t remember how much I paid, but it was definitely less than 10 bucks. I went back a few hours later and picked up my new cassette and thanked them for their kindness.

Over the next few days, I listened to the tape in my portable cassette player (it wasn’t a walkman brand). When I went to fly home, there was a young couple in the seats in front of me. I think he could hear the songs bleeding out of my headphones and he commented that I was listening to Korean music. He told me that they were Korean and we talked about the pavilion at Expo 86. I handed him my music player and told him that I really liked the song that was playing. He listened to it and smiled and said that the singer was Jeong Taechon. He told me that the song was one of his favourites and that if I wanted, he would translate the lyrics for me into English. I have treasured the song and the lyrics for almost thirty years now.

For years, I have copied the songs from one cassette to another. Eventually, I packed up the page with the lyrics. Then it became harder to have cassette players handy. In 2013, I found the song with English subtitles on youtube and I was very happy. (That’s how I knew how to spell Jeong Taechon!) I will share the youtube video in my next post.

Desert Island Discs – Far and Wide

April 17, 2016

Leader of the Pack / Peaceful Easy Feeling / Imagine / Dust In The Wind

Always Seventeen / Forty-five Years / Highway Patrolman / People Get Ready

Waiting On A Friend / The Fool On The Hill / Flaming Star / Good Vibrations

These are twelve of my favourite songs. This one is called far and wide because later in the year, I am going to post my favourite songs from artists local to Grey Bruce. The links take you to youtube for each of the songs. I tried to choose live version when I could so that you could close your eyes and imagine yourself at a concert. I hope that you enjoy my mini jukebox. Feel free to comment about the songs. (And let me know if any of the links wind up breaking.