Hunkering Down

What better than a cozy tracking session on a snowy and blustery day?!

Fraz Milne and Chris Bender were in to lay down drums on two of the former’s new songs and the results sound already really good. I leave it to Fraz to reveal when these will see the release light of day.

Going rather well, I think.

If you want to see me do something different, pop in to Relish Bar and Grill this Tuesday December 3, 2019, when I will be mixing the Django Jazz Band at 7pm.

Hot jazz, great food and a wide variety of drinks! What could be better on a cold winter evening?

Until then, be well!

In Praise of Small Spaces

Another late post, due to a family emergency. Sorted for now…

Last week, I caught the show at the Dock on Queen that featured Ryan Schmidt, with Isaak Bonk on harmonica, and Timothy Sheldon.

It was probably the best I’ve seen both Ryan and Tim perform. The harmonica was a perfect complement to Ryan slide guitar work and gritty vocals. Tim’s voice was in fine form and modulated perfectly to match the emotions of the songs. Super evening!

I’m looking forward to another opportunity to catch these fine performers.

The club itself is very conducive to an intimate vibe. I’ve played there a few times already myself and this show reminded me of how cozy it felt.

Perhaps they’ll have me back. TBC!

Until next week, be well!

Weekend Warrior part 2

My gums bleed when I floss. | Dr. Jim Ellis, DDS
Image courtesy of http://www.bestogdendentist.com

As mentioned the first part of this post, here is a song about “amateur” musicians, whatever that means.

There are still issues with it, and some edits and rewrites may be forthcoming, but the essence and gist are there. I hope you enjoy it.

I May Be Bad (But It Still Feels Good) © 2019 R. Pelletier/Félix and the Cats

 


Coming Up This Week

There is a great double bill coming up this Friday November 22, 2019 at the Dock On Queen featuring two great performers: Timothy Sheldon and Ryan Schmidt. It’s in my calendar and plans to attend. I hope you can join me.

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In the meantime, time to practise, practise, practise, practise, practise, practise*…

Be well!

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*listen to the recording!

Reset

An abbreviated post this week as I reset the blog to a better schedule. The midweek post day has not been as effective as hoped, both from publishing  and a readership points of view, so it’s back to Sundays.

Last week had a number of fun things happen, including a great matinee show at the Black Swan last Sunday (thanks to Omar Saab for being our guest, and to Kevin and Jen for always great sound) and an encore attendance of a Menage show at the Piston.

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FatC with Omar Saab!

I had a chance to speak briefly with the host of the Indie Night show (5 years running), and we exchanged experiences about running a weeknight event. All I can say is that the effort put forth by clubs like the Piston and many others in the city to promote independent artists are highly appreciated.

Unless something unplanned-for comes up, the Cats will be focusing on recording for the next while. Our next show is back at the Black Swan on Sunday, January 26, 2020 from 4 to 8 with special guest Chris Scian. Please mark you calendars accordingly!

Until next week, be well!

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Frazzmatazz

As written about over a week ago (yes, I know…) Fraz Milne and Fintan McEnroe opened for us at the Linsmore and I plugged his original band show on the following Thursday. I forgot to include the photos for that show, including one of James Clark and Tim Gall. If you missed both, Fraz and Fintan are back at Sauce this time on November 9 from 4-7 pm.

James Clark and Tim Gall
Fraz Milne, Chris Bender and Jay Vyas

Upgrades

For gear wonks out there: I was away earlier this week which partly explains the tardiness of this post. While visiting daddy-o in Rivière-du-Loup, I popped in to Métronomie, a local music store, and saw a lovely set of Lace pickups (nothing to do with intimate apparel) being sold by one of the employees at an irresistible price. Installed pronto and amazing improvement in the old Félix Télécasteur. I hope to show this off on November 3. More about that on the next post.

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Lace TN-100 on the neck and T-150 on the bridge.

Until then, be well!

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Kid Kodak

When I was young, someone who enjoyed taking pictures was referred to jocularly in French as Kid Kodak. One such kid is Ian Sinclair. Ian and I go way back, having played in a few bands, some more ill-fated than others, but I never lost my respect for Ian as a music fan and dedicated player. Ian also excels at photography, hence the title of this blog, and his pictures literally shine with his love of the subject. you can check out his pictures on his Facebook feed. Well worth it!

So it was a thrill to have him take pictures at our gig this past September, which I alluded to in the follow up blog to that event. Ian and I met recently and he passed on a DVD of more shots from that evening, some of my faves I am sharing with you today.

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The happy cats

 

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Out and About

This past Tuesday, the Cats played the Linsmore with the FortNights and Phillip Vonesh and the Spare Parts. It was a great show for all involved. Thanks for the support!

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Fintan McEnroe and Fraz Milne: the FortNights
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Phillip Vonesh and the Spare Parts

Last night I returned to the Linsmore to catch more of the aforementioned Fraz, this time with his original trio featuring Jay Vyas on bass and Chris Bender (yes, that guy!) on drums. Opening was one of my favourite pop songwriters, James Clark who played a great acoustic set with Tim Gall on bass. A packed house and great music all night!

Until next time, be well!

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Weekend Warrior

A few blogs back, I wrote about the polemic against “amateur” musicians “stealing” pro gigs. I have huge admiration and respect for pro players, and have always tried to pay them accordingly when I’ve hired them. However, I believe that the distinction between amateur and pro is fluid, and the former, even the most débutant, also deserve a place at the table for their love and support of live music.

Spinning off of that, I was inspired to write a new song titled I May Be Bad (But It Still Feels Good) dedicated to all the part-time players. The demo is still too rough to share, but I expect we can play it for you at the Linsmore on October 15 (9 pm).

I hope you will come out for that one and a few other new tunes.

Until then, be well!

Photo Op

Sorry for the late post. The desktop computer has crashed and is in the shop for an OS rebuild.

So this is being done on an iPhone.

Last week’s feature at Relish was a great night. On top of it, we had two ace photographers taking pictures of the band. One of them, Peif Weyman, was there for Chris as he is a Murat Diril cymbals endorser. Good friend Ian Sinclair with whom I have played with in previous bands came out to capture the band live as we needed to update our shots.

Here are a few samples.

Until next week, be well!

And Speaking of Which..

Ultra brief blog this week just adding details to the Linmore show mentioned last week and scheduled for October 15.

Guest will be:

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The FortNights (Fraz Milne and Fintan McEnroe) at 8:00

The Cats will be on at 9:00. A few new tunes may make their way into the set list, so regular fans will be in for more than the usual.

 

 

 

 

Closing the night at 10:00 will be Phillip Vonesh and the Spare Parts, for whom I played a while back when the lead guitarist was away. This time Phillip will be backed by his usual crew so a great show is in store for all.

Until next time, be well!

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Side Launch

This Saturday (August 24, 2019 – 9:30 pm) will be my first full show at the new Relish, albeit not with the Cats but with the one-of-a-kind Salabama. I’m very excited and proud to be called upon to be second guitar for this one particularly as Sal has recorded many of the tunes we will be performing in the ManCave Studio and this will be a great opportunity for you to get a sneak peek of his upcoming album.


The Answer to Last Week’s Quiz

The bass feet posted last week belong to as follows:

Tom Rich
Lucas Gadke (Chloé Watkinson Band)
Robin Latimer

That’s it… short and sweet.

Be well!