Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Elvyn and The Matavaras, in retrospect.

Elvyn, from Peterborough, played here on Saturday, December 19th with The Matavaras.
We were laughing perpetually, only breaking to allow time for their performances.

It had been a while since Elvyn had been to Phog, and it was The Matavaras first time...but I had forgotten how much fun those Peterborough boys were.

They posted a little something on their blog about their show in Windsor.

They make reference to the sound check that I live-streamed, so I figured I'd link you to their blog post, and post the video of The Matavaras.

Next time either of them are in town, be sure to spend some time yarn-spinning with them, as they know how to entertain at the bar stool as much as they do on stage.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Field Assembly with Lee Gaul for an ALL AGES show on December 23rd

Adam Fox is a friend, which makes it hard to give praise in the presence of newbies.
Would I talk-up a friend beyond their abilities? Possibly. But with Adam's newest venture - Field Assembly - I can't really say enough about it, friend or not.

This record he just popped out is BY FAR one of my favourite out of this city ever.
Songs like Alkali and especially Light Speed are songs I perpetually play at home, in the car, and in personal times of decompression. And he's playing this Wednesday before Christmas (almost like a present to me) with long-lost love of Windsor; Lee Gaul.

Lee is yet another friend, who's been trucking and hustling between Montreal, Toronto, and Windsor for the last couple of years, and it's our pleasure to house his music this season. I can't say enough honest, reverential things about his music either.
I'm super-charged to see what he's going to play, as he has done a quiet rendition of Etta James in the same set as a blinding "Black-Keys-like" rock/blues number that peels your skin back.

You don't know what you'll get, but you know it'll be incredible.
This is a sharp double-bill that I'm glad Adam took the time to build.

Show begins at 9pm SHARP.
See you then.

Construction and Destruction (Halifax) play Phog on Tuesday December 22nd with The Last Trio


Construction and Destruction is a band, that when they were first recommended to me by Dr. Disc owner Liam O'Donnell, I knew was going to be great.

They play a certain kind of east coast music that reminds me of certain parts of other bands from out that way: Museum Pieces and Eric's Trip to name two.
The sound at the live show is notably scarce. A two-piece usually. But it's the kind of stuff I've come to enjoy...quite a bit.

Because of Liam's friendship with this musical couple, I've asked The Last Trio (Alan Penner, Liam O'Donnell +1) to play this show. Which is code for, the best vibe in all of Windsor will be happening in Phog Lounge on December 22nd.

To learn more about The Last Trio, see this quick interview I did with them: http://bit.ly/51TJIh

Come out. It will be fantastic and friendly.

I did this interview with them recently. It'll give you some sense of what kind of awesome they bring to a room. I think it's absolutley ideal for the winter months.

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Promotional Head's Up, Please

When a band books a gig at Phog, I supply a litany of information.
A list of things that happen, or are expected to happen before, during, and after a show.

We discuss money, posters, and promotion.

This third thing, promotion, is something I find myself having to ask bands for information about. Actually, to be more clear, I find myself stumbling onto Twitter posts from bands declaring their upcoming shows at Phog. Then, and only then, am I made aware that they even HAVE A TWITTER ACCOUNT.

Some of you are rolling you reyes.

For me, this is key to show promotion.
If I don't know that you have a band/musician Twitter account, blog, Facebook Fan Page, or FLAVORS.ME page, it hinders the promotional opportunities. People can't follow your progress on tour, photos from your other shows, video blog posts, tour video diaries, promotional giveaways, ANYTHING unless they ALREADY follow you (good luck) or if the promoter (me) can help let people know that you exist in these realms.

This week, I found a post from The Matavaras. A band from Halifax playing Phog on Saturday December 19th. Found. I didn't know they had a Twitter account. It's @thematavaras by the way. If I knew earlier, I could list it in the Facebook event listing, the blog, the calendar, etc. Since this example is leading me to making a list...I will begin doing so for you, the music fans of Windsor who ALSO embrace the tech connection.

Musicians, at the very least, I can help funnel people to your stuff if they are already interested in following or knowing more about your band, progress, and tour.

Please tell me, bands, if you are coming here, OR NOT, that you exist in these places so that I can help fans know more about your promotional efforts. This way, when you HAVE Windsor music fans following you, YOU can ask THEM great places to eat, buy guitar strings, rent a hotel room, or to find a floor of a fan to sleep on. It wouldn't be a bad idea to enact these suggestions in the cities you travel to frequently, as the only people who stand to benefit from this is you, your fans, and the venues you're playing.

Any thoughts?
Can anyone tell me ANY Canadian bands, Windsor or otherwise, that are currently using Twitter?
I will collect them for a little while, and then post them subsequently.
Thanks in advance!

EDIT - We have been gifted the answer...the list...by Brenda Lee (@kn0ttyn3rb), an awesome Canadian Music fan from Vancouver. She replied within minutes of this post with this unbelievable link to NONE OTHER than North By East West - the Canadian Music Blog SUPREME!

Here's the link to the ultimate Canadian music Twitter list. I need to add around 200 bands now...
Thanks Brenda, and thanks NXEW.ca

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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

The Dudes...tour stories. Worthwhile read.

The Dudes play Phog on Friday, December 11th with ASK (Chad Howson's Birthday) and Frontiers...a new Windsor outfit that I'm excited to hear.
Here's something from their most recent press release, to add a nice little story to their performance this week.

"What they say must be true, as after The Dudes released their album titled Bloods, Guts, Bruises, Cuts earlier this year the band (and others involved in the making and development of it) has suffered nothing but.  Take for example their photographer Randy who took shots for the album and next thing you know he falls into a parked car and needs staples in his head.  Or Megan who shows up at the shooting for the video ‘Girl Police’ and breaks her ankle within the hour.

None compares, however, to the injuries that the band themselves have sustained.  Two days before heading out on tour lead singer/guitarist Dan Vacon’s white BMX took him down the highway of hurt resulting in 12 staples to the head and a broken collarbone.  A month later drummer Scott Ross borrows and bails on the same bike to end up missing 3 of his front teeth, a bunch of his face, and a piece of his moustache.  Witnesses say he got up swinging like he was in a fight.  Eerily enough it was the same intersection in Calgary where both accidents happened.

Most recently Vacon crashed into a tree skiing at Lake Louise and broke the other side of his collarbone.  Again two days before leaving out on tour.  Last week the band got caught in a blizzard and while hailing a cab Ross slipped and got dragged 30 feet underneath the bumper of an oncoming car.  With both knees busted, Scott can’t yet walk but still somehow manages to rock.

Blood, Guts, Bruises, Cuts?  Exactly.  Don’t be surprised if their next album foresees the title Millions Sold, Millions Made.

Nominated for a CBC Radio 3 Bucky Award for their offstage antics and voted Calgary’s favourite band for the last 4 years, FFWD Weekly calls them “a rock band capable of taking on the world at large.”  These guys rock as hard as their injuries do.  Catch The Dudes bloodied, gutted, bruised, and cut on their remaining tour dates."

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Monday, December 07, 2009

Have a new CD coming out?

If you are releasing new music, you need to take this contact info down:

Dylan Kristy - dkristy@thestar.canwest.com

He's the new CD reviewer for The Windsor Star Scene page.
This is the guy you need to contact, and get music to, in order to have your CD coevered in the pages of Windsor's daily newspaper. It doesn't matter if you're releasing digital download cards, vinyl, CD, or anything else. He's the guy to contact about getting some press about it.

Thought you'd appreciate the head's up, as it can be intimidating to cold-call the newspaper trying to find out who reviews CDs.

Simple information. Just wanted to deliver it to you as per my conversation with Dalson Chen recently.

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Wednesday, December 02, 2009

An open call to other venue owners in Canada...

I have been talking about this for a while.
A collaboration.
But there are physical barriers.
So I'm using this to reach you...venue owners!
Especially those who fell into the CBC Radio 3 Searchlight contest for their special attention to live music hosting.

Here I am, on a Wednesday night, in the winter, with nothing booked.
That means it's usually quiet in the early evening, picking up in the last half-hour.
But I know something's going on somewhere else in the country tonight.

I would LOVE to start showing LIVE broadcasts of bands playing in other venues, cities, provinces. Phog has been live-streaming shows, on and off, for a good while now. We just need an internet connection, a camera of some kind that will connect to your computer (I use a FireWire to a Sony Handycam circa. 1995). Then you need an external microphone with a USB connection to your computer. Ustream.com and other streaming sites make it pretty easy to set-up the video and audio...and then once you've got your settings...you keep them the same and simply adjust audio for volume.

I wish, wish, wish that another venue was willing to broadcast some stuff, so that I could PROJECT it onto our big screen on the nights when we don't have something booked.
I'd actually put it in the listing as something people could come and watch LIVE.
Touring bands could hit two audiences at once.

Is this a pipe dream, or is there someone out there willing to get the ball rolling by trying it out with one show?

If you're reading this and you have contact with a venue owner who might be open to this, send them to this post, or have them e-mail me at phoglounge@gmail.com.

It'd be killer to catch Said The Whale or Joel Plaskett or Jill Barber playing some other venue in Canada, knowing that they were playing to two audiences.

What do you think of this idea?

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Phog's Weekend Thursday, December 3 - Saturday, December 5

Anonymous Bosch and High Mother plan to knock the walls off of Phog nice and early this Thursday, beginning at 9pm, when the LOUD bands take over the building for Anonymous Bosch's forst Phog show.

Friday the 4th is an all-instrumental night, that I was hoping to book on one of the nights I work, with What Seas, What Shores playing with a band called Meadowlark Five. It going to be a great vibe...with all the ups and downs of instrumental, atmospheric awesomeness. - 10:30pm start.

Saturday the 5th is all ages.
The Original Lady Eyes bid farewell to a band member, Matt, and have asked Andrew MacLeod and Travis Reitsma to join the bill. Should be a great singer/songwriter night, as I never get to hear Travis anymore (and I love his first album), and Andrew is always busy with his west-side gigs. - 10:30pm start.

Very exctied for this fun weekend.

If you ever want updates on events, or videos, or audio from Phog Lounge, feel free to pop over to www.phoglounge.com for listings and more!

Have a great weekend. We have to party away this gloomy weather!