Underwear Races

One of the side effects of having kids is that you’ve got to clean them.  Bath time in our household is anything but pleasant for anyone here.  However, there is a short window just before wrestling them into the tub where they are playing together without fighting and being quite hilarious. They would do what we would call “Underwear Races” where they would race from one side of the house to the other, obviously in their underwear.  Sadly, the races have ended and evolved into something a lot less appropriate for this site.

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The Carleton Music Bar & Grill

The Carleton is an award winning music venue and is consistently at the forefront of the local music scene.  However, all of their awards are tucked away in a little space not in plain sight.  You do not need to see all of their awards hanging on the wall to know that The Carleton is one of the best venues for live music in Atlantic Canada.  You can tell by all the amazingly talented artists who want to come a play shows there and by the patrons who always leave more than satisfied.  Every artist who I have met, whether new or returning to the Carleton, all rave about what a well run professional establishment it is.  This speaks volumes of the work owner Mike Campbell has put into this place.  Jonathan Cornwall also deserves special acknowledgement for all the behind the scenes work he does.  Every show he is responsible for the sound, ensuring the audience can both hear the music and listen to the words.  He considers this delicate balance an art and the efforts do not go unnoticed.

I want to thank both Mike and Jonathan for letting me do my thing with no strings attached.  I feel very fortunate for the opportunity they have both given me.  I had a great year covering some unbelievable shows and I look forward to more in the new year!!

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The Carleton – Meaghan Smith

Meaghan Smith played two sold out shows at The Carleton Music Bar & Grill.  This was definitely the most difficult show I have ever shot. The house was at capacity, so moving around was difficult, but I was more compelled to simply leave my camera at my waist and just enjoy her show.  She also gave me heads up that she was going to kill the lights for one song minus a few candles and told me to have fun with that.  She is the consummate professional.  Her voice is simply amazing, but the way she engages the crowd is outstanding. To round out her musical talents, she pulled out a variety of instruments which included a kazoo. The last time I saw a kazoo during a live show was coincidently here at The Carleton.  She was joined by her hus-band Jason Mingo to perform a mix of holiday tunes and songs from all of her albums, so the crowd got a good taste of her musical journey.  Here  are a few images from the show.

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The Carleton – Casey May

I first heard of Casey May through some country music links, but I am not quite sure you can really peg him into one genre.  Casey is part of this new breed of country artists, who can appeal to all music lovers, not just country music fans.  He has a clean sound and lyrics that simply make sense.  I had the opportunity to catch him at The Carleton when he was accompanied by Ryan Roberts and Shelton Swinimer and without question they put on a show.  Casey opened up with “Jolene” by Ray Lamontagne, which really surprised me because I have always associated his voice with pop country.  He sang this song with a bit of grit which really sold me on his talent.  They did a number of covers throughout the night, but for me the highlight came when they performed “On More Last Chance” and my favourite “Leave a Light On”.  You have to check him out if you ever get a chance, you won’t be disappointed.  You can purchase his debut album “Eden” here on iTunes.  Here are some images from the evening:

 

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David Myles – “So Far” Album Review

When I heard David Myles released his first US album “So Far”, I ran to his site to check out what was on it.  At first I thought it was only available to the US, so I started working my contacts to see how I could get it across the border.  With it being so close to Christmas, my wife was disappointed that I eventually realized that it could be ordered in Canada.  I was tracking my package everyday on Amazon, so there was no way I was waiting until Christmas.

Some of the other listeners referred to “So Far” as a “Greatest Hits” album, but there are too many good songs left off the list for it to be considered that.  However, this compilation does pay tribute to his previous albums and brings me back to ripping off the plastic of my first David Myles album.  If you have never seen one of his  live shows, this album is probably the closest you can come without actually going.  The only thing missing was his charming personality and his self-deprecating stories in between songs.  I can pop the CD in the car and easily listen straight through, it flows nicely and has a steady tempo, in some instances I feel compelled to do some backup vocals.  It appears that the album has really emphasized his smooth voice, it feels like he is sitting in the car with me every morning.  The stripped down approach of the album really brings out the essence of the songs; it has allowed me to rediscover “Turn Time Off” and “One In A Million”.  “I Will Love You” brings the album home for me.  After they played this song with Symphony Nova Scotia last fall, my wife and I turned to each other in awe at how amazing it was.  As soon as I got the CD I had to skip to that track to listen because, to my knowledge, the version we heard that night was only available in YouTube videos and at his live shows.

This is a strong album and I am extremely happy to add it to my collection.  I would’ve loved to have seen a few other songs included, but of course what do I know.  Overall, if my girls are wiggling in their car seats and singing along when they can, it gets two thumbs up from me!!

WEBDavid-Myles

r jacobs - a superb album. maybe his best to date — and that’s saying something!

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