Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Exclaim's Monthly Earshot Listings

Every month, when Exclaim!*@# Magazine comes out, I go straight to the back of the issue.
The Earshot Listings (The National Campus & Community Radio Report) are located in the back. The Top 40 most-played bands/musicians across Canada on Campus and Community Radio.

I get out the pen or Sharpie and I start making check-marks next to the bands who've actually played Phog. It's a great exercise. It reminds me of how much work I'm doing to bring in top acts...or how much MORE work is needed to get in bands and musicians I haven't booked yet.

Here's a picture of this month's chart. And a rarity for us, to have the number one band as one of ours, happened this month with You Say Party, We Say Die! making it to #1. Click on the photo to see a close up of our best bands...who are willing to play Phog (at one time or another).

Phog on the web this week

My Google Alerts turned up these web-hits this week. Now you can check them out if you'd like.
Jean Paul De Roover's Blog
Library Voices Blog

Interview with The Last Trio

The Last Trio, made up of Al Penner and Liam O'Donnell (Dr. Disc), are one of my favourite sounds in Phog.
They are playing a kind of jazz, that almost doesn't adhere to any general definition of jazz that most people are used to...
It's like a soundtrack to an independent film that you LOVE.
Hopefully we can get more of this in here, as it sets a beautiful tone to the entire night.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Yellow Wood and Phog Lounge appear in CBC Radio 3 TV episode!

When these things happen, it blows my mind, and then I get this feeling of incredible honour for being welcomed into the Canadian music scene by all of those who each play a part in it.

What am I talking about?

CBC Radio 3 produces kick-ass, weekly videos (among a litany of other things), featuring different bands, people, topics in Canadian music.

This week, they featured a documentary that Bend Sinister put together a couple of years ago while on tour. Their documentary is about life on the road, independent music, and the joys and pitfalls of those experiences. They busted out the camera while playing Phog those MANY months ago, and captured some thoughts from myself (Tom) and from the boys in Yellow Wood!

Well, to my surprise, I got an e-mail from our HUGE fan in Michigan (Jon Corbin), who is also a huge fan of CBC Radio 3, telling me that it was cool to see me in the video for this week's R3TV.

This doc looks absolutely incredible, and this R3TV episode was cool to watch, because it's weird to see Shammy from the Doers, Wax Mannequin, B.A. Johnston, and other band members we know in this way, because I'm only used to seeing them in-person.

But watch this, because it's cool...and Yellow Wood has the LAST WORD on the whole video!!!

The Mark Inside (Toronto) w/ Young Rival (Hamilton) - Saturday, November 28th

I have been holding my breath.
It's very difficult to build up a show, when the shows happening in almost 6 weeks leading up to it are also phenomenal.

But this show on Saturday is epic.
These two groups are more than bands. They are friends of Phog. When we were just beginning, they were blowing this place up regularly, and playing for near-peanuts.

These days, these bands rarely cross paths, as they are both uber-headliners and aren't seen playing the same bills.

We are super psyched to have them in town, together, playing some of the best rock music in Canada.
Honestly, this is going to be a beyond-memorable night of music.

Tickets are $10 if bought in advance.
$12 at the door.

Young Rival has a dearth of video on Youtube, ranging from documentary-style vids, to live shows, music videos, and more. Check them out!

Here's a great video of The Mark Inside playing a heavy one at Phog during the P.A. Music Festival some years ago...My favourite song that they play live. The guitar solo at 2:15 of this video is just ridiculously sick.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Phog December Listings

Thursday 3 - Anonymous Bosch w/ High Mother - 9PM START - 19+
Friday 4 - What Seas, What Shores w/ Meadowlark Lemon (Sudbury) - 10:30PM START - 19+
Saturday 5 - The Original Lady Eyes w/ Andrew MacLeod & Travis Reitsma - 10:30PM START - ALL AGES
Monday 7 - Open Mic Surgery with Tara Watts - 10:30PM START - 19+
Friday 11 - The Dudes (Calgary) w/ ASK & Frontiers - 10:30PM START - 19+
Saturday 12 - By Divine Right (Toronto) w/ Square Root of Margaret (Chatham) -  10:30PM START - 19+
Monday 14 - Open Mic Surgery with Tara Watts - 10:30PM START - 19+
Tuesday 15 - Raw Shock Monthly Film Festival - 8pm START - ALL AGES
Saturday 19 - The Matavaras (Halifax) w/ Elvyn (Peterborough)
Sunday 20 - Yellow Wood w/ Bulletproof Tiger & Kid Brother - 9pm START - ALL AGES
Monday 21 - Open Mic Surgery with Tara Watts - 10:30PM START - 19+
Tuesday 22 - Construction and Destruction (Halifax) w/ TBA - 9PM START - ALL AGES
Wednesday 23 - Field Assembly w/ TBA - 9PM START - ALL AGES
Saturday 26 - The Windsor Salt Band - 10:30PM START - 19+
Sunday 27 - Pat Robitaille w/ Leighton Bain - 9PM START - 19+
Monday 28 - Open Mic Surgery with Tara Watts - 10:30PM START - 19+
Tuesday 29 - Al Tuck (Halifax) w/ Kenneth MacLeod - 9PM START - ALL AGES
Thursday 31 - New Year's Eve with Lonesome Lefty and The Cryin' Shames - 10:30PM START - 19+

Phog Changes

This might be news to you.

To others, this is old hat.

For the past 7 or 8 weeks, we at Phog had an epiphany. An ongoing epiphany.

We have been holding all of our weekday shows (any show where MOST people likely have to get up early the next day for work or school) nice and early. Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday shows have been starting at 9pm. This starting point is regardless of whether there are two or three bands on the bill.

This adjustment was made due to the increasing requests from people who want to come to shows, but cannot because of their inability to leave a show and get to bed at a reasonable hour.

We listened.

So you can take this info, and put it somewhere memorable.
Shows on weekdays will begin at 9pm. Simple. You come on time, you see the show.

And believe me, it has been incredible to see so many people at weekday shows! It seems that those who begged for earlier shows are actually making it a priority to reward the early showa with their presence, attention, and good cheer. So thanks everyone for responding so heartily to the new schedule developments.

We felt it would offer more time for the bands to mingle after their shows, fraternize with the locals, making more opportunities for other events to form out of those interactions, such as future shows or after-hours fun.

Also, many of the weekday shows, when appropriate, have been ALL AGES. And this has been better-than-hoped. It's great to have people who appreciate the music in the building, rather than sequestering them in their homes, only to watch the Phog Live Stream.

So from now on, the listings will list clearly the start times of all the shows, and whether or not it's an ALL AGES show. So keep your eyes on the listings for show details.

We'll see you at some weekday shows!

If I have any advice for venue owners seems like the touring bands LOVE the earlier shows. I hear them say things like, "I wish we had earlier shows back home. They start SO LATE."

I understand the apprehensiveness to do this. But we were catering to a group of people, for the longest time, who were trying to time their attendance with the "hopefully" eradicated cover charge by coming later and later. And the "cool factor" of being late was also at play. But we don't care about who wants to be cool. We care about who wants to patronize the Canadian music scene. And by taking care of THEM, everything else has fallen into place.

We just kept holding the show off longer and longer...and pretty soon, people who work the next day never come to shows, and the cover-avoiders just avoid the building altogether.

So we end up waiting for customers who really don't have their hearts set on a show.
Changing to earlier starts, the music fans, who make sure they're on time are making every show worthwhile for the bands by getting there early. It has been a wonderful two months.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Saturday, November 21 - KOUSHIK (Dundas, ON ::: Stones Throw) w/ VOWLS, Kero, & (wh)y.m.e(??)

Saturday, November 21 2009

Phog Lounge 157 University Ave West, Windsor

KOUSHIK (Dundas, ON ::: Stones Throw)

ON HIS FIRST tour with a live band, the young Canadian producer Koushik will be performing songs from his lush albums Be With (2005) and Out My Window (2008), both released on Peanut Butter Wolf's Stones Throw Records based in LA.  Koushik's sound can only be summed up as beautifully arranged downbeat hip hop songs that pay homage to the originators of the genre.  Having collaborated with Dan Snaith (Manitoba/Caribou) and Kieran Hebden (Four Tet), Koushik's works are renown as dually pretty but weighty, creating songs that are perfect for both hip hop beat junkies and lovers of warm string harmonies and airy vocals. His output includes over 16 releases, with collaborations and remixes for some of the most important artists in underground hip hop, including Percee P, Madlib, MF Doom and Peanut Butter Wolf.  

Watch/listen: Koushik's video for his song Nothing's The Same from the album Out My Window.

VOWLS (features players Brandon Hocura, Adam Trozzolo, Naomi Hocura and Alex Janssen on a variety of intstruments including the ebow, moogerfinger, circuit-bent electronics, water, the sitar and glockenspiel to say the least -- it's all wrapped together with live programming and keyboards, drums and guitar.  Vowls' sometimes sparse and gentle vocals are backed by rich synths and accented with more classic hip hop beats, upbeat guitar and electronic beeps for a toasty warm West Coast effect.

Watch/listen: Click here for music video Vowls produced during the Monterey Pop Festival this past year.

Koushik and Vowls are a perfect match for a live performance that will make you forget all about the approaching cold as they share the stage with global electronic heavyweight DJ KERO (Detroit Underground) and the electronic 303 rhythms and layers of (wh)y.m.e(??).  Contemporary visual ambiance will be provided by Citynoise of the Broken City Lab collective (

Doors are at 9PM, 19 and up, $6 cover at the door.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Paper Lions KILLED at Phog last week. Here's proof.

This band from PEI was untouchable!
Paper Lions were stand-up people, to begin with, and utter pros when they got on stage.

Our own Magic Hall of Mirrors was reduced to a three-piece...opening the show...and flat out KILLING it in what I can easily say is the most impressive set I've heard from them to date.

Sean Barry, Darren Dobsky, and Justin Faubert were more than on top of their game Wednesday night. They were in the zone, as we athletic wannabes call it.

If you ever hear about Paper Lions coming back to Windsor, or to your town (for out-of-town readers), get your butt in gear and get advanced tickets. you will NOT be disappointed. Good gawd.

I recorded this interview with one of the members, David.
It is easily the best Show Up podcast I've recorded.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Scot McFayden and Sam Dunn filmmakers interview

Lucky me! I just got to meet some awesome filmmakers who are in town to speak at the Capitol Theatre about their new documentary featuring the Canadian iconic band, Rush.
Listen to the interview I did with them for 5 minutes.
It's pretty fun.
They will likely be back at Phog Lounge tonight for the metal/punk/rock show tonight, as it is right up their alley...they directed Global Metal, Metal: A Headbanger's Journey, Iron Maiden: Flight 666, and more...
They're here as a part of the Windsor International Film Festival, which is totally surpassing all other years for turnout, interest, and acclaim.
They were SUPER-nice guys. Loved having them here. Enjoy the talk.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Silly Week - November

It's just silly.
Stupid almost.

Downright irresponsible of me.
To have booked this much firepower in one week...yikes.

Thursday, November 12th
Wax Mannequin (Hamilton) w/ Rae Spoon (Calgary) & Mark Bragg (St. John's, NL)

Friday, November 13th
Lindy (Toronto)

Saturday, November 14th
Myles Deck and the Fuzz (Halifax) w/ High Mother and Curbside Sofa

Sunday, November 15th
Amos The Transparent (Ottawa)

Thursday, November 05, 2009

The Wooden Sky (Toronto) w/ MICHOU & Evening Hymns (Peterborough)

Okay, look.

The Wooden Sky just played for a month, touring with Elliott Brood. Windsor's own Ryan Fields, who's been touring with both of them has been doing sound on this tour. He messaged me on Twitter to say that this is easily one of his favourite bands right now, after watching them 24 nights in a row.

Simply put, this band has been evolving steadily since its days as Friday Morning's Regret, when they played Phog every 3 months.
This is a super-gifted band, bringing super gifted friends, Evening Hymns, from Peterborough. Their myspace music is HAUNTING, and BEAUTIFUL, and will totally KILL in Phog's little audio-space. GO LISTEN!

And to add to the madness...the UBER-talented MICHOU will be playing on the bill also! Love these fellas.
This is an all-ages show.
You should come.

Below, is three parts of a slick documentary being shot about The Wooden Sky. I encourage you to take a look.

See you Saturday!
The Wooden Sky - A Documentary in Pieces - PART ONE (HD) from Black Box Vimeo on Vimeo.

The Wooden Sky - A Documentary in Pieces PART TWO (HD) from Black Box Vimeo on Vimeo.

The Wooden Sky - A Documentary in Pieces PART THREE (HD) from Black Box Vimeo on Vimeo.

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