Confessions of an economic hitman
Losing My Virginity - Richard Branson
Life - Keith Richards
Transformer - lou reed Doc
Yes men fix the world
Ralph Nader Bio
To your soul
"How was your day today? Did you learn how to believe or did you learn how to think?" - Nader's Dad.
31 years old is a real “odd” age.
I feel very similar to how I felt at 20. Moved to Toronto from a smaller town and was overwhelmed by some new ways of thinking. Dark philosophies. Realizing the world is a lot bigger than a little town you grow up in.
I remember going through a little darkness, like we all must do as we move through life at our own pace and deal with our own things as they come.
I remember waking up after 2 months of an odd depressive state and going to the gym. I felt great and I also realized that I had spent 60 days thinking about myself. I literally made a decision that moment to try and be a good friend and a good person and not think so much about myself. Also to make sure I was getting the exercise I wanted. Thus balancing physical and mental to be positive and not too introspective.
That worked for 10 years.
Time to be introspective again and make sure I’m doing the things I want to be doing.
So now I find myself obsessing over people’s ways of thinking, gathering insights of others and trying to find this new balance that will take me through my 30s and keep things positive and forward moving
I’ve been reading and listening to people like Leonard Cohen, Steve Jobs, Lou Reed, The Flaming Lips, Louis CK, Ricky Gervais, Sacha Baron Cohen…. That’s right…
Sacha Baron Cohen.
Odd choice to find some life perspective?
I’ve always been kind of into how he’s “Marketed” and the level of integrity he maintains despite what anyone says. Limited Social Media, tastefully coming in and out of the public eye so people actually give a shit when he decides to put something out into the abyss. Turns out too he’s got some real insightful things to say too about where he’s coming from.
I spent a little time reading about his own philosophies about life and I found some very interesting things. One thing in particular was that he talks about a professor he had back in his University days that said “the holocaust was paved with Apathy.”
I read on.
He went on to say that he realized that a lot of Nazi Germany were perhaps not even Anti Semitic but rather APATHETIC.
This really struck a chord with me.
One of the biggest frustrations I have day to day is a level of apathy I find in some, dare I say A LOT of people. I won’t generalize. I won’t make blanket statements. But it’s a real piece of shit.
Kind of explains the extremes that Mr Cohen takes doesn’t it? And the risks? And the dynamic?
That’s my first rant.
For a free download of "Business of Forgetting" go to this link..
Son Ame Feliz means "Her Happy Soul" in French, Spanish and Panda. I have always been a big T.S. Eliot fan and have written some poems and lyrics using multiple languages and playing with different types of alliteration. The name of the record is inspired by our soul searching solitude, our child like tendencies, our greatest loves and our worst fears and heartaches. And well.. It all kinda just happened to be like this.
I hope you enjoy it. And if you scroll down through this little blog-reel of "Pandaland" you can see a little about it's short history of growth.
The plan is to release a song and video every month until the album release in Spring 2012.
Dylan Noble and I met on a sky diving trip that never happened back in 1969. I commissioned Dylan to do a painting for me of my favourite songwriter Elliot Smith.
He is a phenomenal artist and I'm so happy that he is doing my album artwork.
check out his work at www.dylanrnoble.com
My good friend and associate on a few other of my creative projects is Renee Rodenkirchen
Renee's work speaks for itself and I really enjoy working on photoshoots and videos with her. She is a true artist and technician.
I wanted to start on this video story with her and I hope you like the first song and first video off the record.
My opinion is that this is the way all music should be released. We all have a lot going on and music, as important as it is should in my opinion still receive proper attention when it's playing. When theirs a visual component to it too than we are making the song multi dimensional and hopefully stimulating people to reflect and appreciate it on a greater level.
blah blah blah.
I hope you like it.
Getting the tracks mastered is a final process of polish that is vital to any record. Sean mixed down a few tracks and we headed up to the studio of Canadian Recording Phenom, Darryl Neudorf .
Darryl added some rip to the vocals and drums and we left with a few tracks that were ready to have you listen to.
I hope to do the rest of the record with Darryl.
Through the grapevine of some friends of mine in a staple Toronto band Ride the Tiger came the word that Melissa Cameron had a beautiful voice, a ton of soul and would really add a lot to the sound of my record. I've always loved the idea of having female backups and we were able to work together on this track "Business of Forgetting". The record is still in Post Production and I really hope Melissa will be on more tracks to come. Check out Melissa's own beautiful solo work and her wicked site at www.melissacameron.ca
A massive reason why my life has been reinspired with music is because of this dude. Kevin Pullen. I played in his band The Dunes for a few years and we have maintained a strong friendship over the last 5. I asked him if he would sing on a track or two for the record and I'm so happy he did. One of the best songwriter's out there folks. And an epic soul.
Now I'm the first to admit some of the skills I lack as a musician. Can I play a backbeat at 120 for 4 minutes? Yes. Can I do anything worth listening to on a kit for a record that is supposed to offer something different in this day of over excess and over access? No.
So enter Jesse Labovitz. He used to play with one of Canada's most notable Punk/Hardcore groups
Jesse knocked the session out of the park, bringing in some electronic drums and also writing a sweet guitar lick for another song to be released with the record next spring 2012. Jesse manned up the sound of the record with some heavier beats which I believe was really important to stop this from being anything like an acoustic rock record. A trap that's hard for any songwriter to break out of when the majority of their writing begins on an acoustic guitar.
I met Dave Chester, owner of Chalet Studios, on a past project and met a man of integrity and someone who really understands what they're doing. As an artist himself and someone who has run an amazing studio for some amazing bands over the years I knew this was the place I wanted to record my record.
Setting up the studio to cater to all the instruments I wanted to lay down, Sean and I set this up as an indulgent playground for a multi instrumentalist and Producer... a perfect haven to be able to lay down the sounds we wanted when we wanted them.
Multiple guitars, amps, basses, organs, pianos, banjo, mandolin, trumpet all laid a foundation of a dream for any songwriter.
Meet Sean (www.seangugula.com). He is a good friend and an amazing Producer. We met on a past project with my old band and I really put my trust into him in doing this record. After starting relationships with some other prominent Canadian Producers but not really feeling they were the right match, I really found the missing piece of the rotisserie with Sean and decided to move forward with him. After months of Pre Production and sawing down over 100 songs to our favourite 15, it was time to hit the studio and record a record.
First song off the record.. "Business of Forgetting"
The idea of this blog is to finally be able to just rant a little, openly.. as an artist.
So I hope you enjoy this song I did as the first track off my record with my boy Sean Gugula and the video I made with my good friend Renee Rodenkirchen and over the next little while I will update on the course of making this record and how it's coming along.. on the way to a Spring 2012 release.
ps Pandaland is a place named by one of my best friend's Jeff Mackay.
I spent a good chunk (10 years) of my childhood coming home and playing on my own. Using my imagination to create worlds and being a kid. Alot of that has carried through into my adult life. Daydreaming and Soul Searching still as a child.
It's a little chaotic sometimes too. Coming undone just as we all have or feared. But it's a positive place in the end.